April 15, 1865 New York Herald Reprints

September 30, 2008 by  
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From our guest contributor, Rick Brown:

Authentic April 15, 1865 New York Herald

I have been collecting Lincoln assassination ephemera for 43 years now. Since I am listed in several directories, I average 2 to 3 telephone calls a month from people wanting to know the value of their old newspapers. In the past 43 years I have been offered the April 15, 1865 New York Herald perhaps as many as 10,000 times and only once was it an original. I’ve heard many a story like  “It can’t be a reprint because my great grandfather fought in the Civil War and bought it in New York and brought it back home.” One of the strangest responses I received when I informed the owner their specimen was a reprint was: “Producing a reprint is against the law. Therefore it HAS to be an original!”

To add to the confusion, the first reprint was produced in 1871 and the last about 1908. (This does not include the reprints printed on parchment – those are still being produced today.) Thus, the reprints DO look old because they are old.

In 1995 I did extensive research into newspaper reprints including the April 15, 1865 New York Herald. At that time I documented 32 different versions. The only Herald reprint produced on rag linen was a single sheet printed on both sides. The back page has a large ad for Grain-O-Coffee (who later became the originators of JELLO) and was produced in 1871.

Due to the nation’s centennial in 1876, interest in major events in American history was high. Publishers produced literally a hundred different newspaper reprints of various titles.

Starting in 1890, Kitchel’s Liniment, a patent medicine company, produced an annual version of the April 15, 1865 New York Herald. The front and back page remained the same. Pages 2 and 3 were testimonials for Kitchel’s Liniment. At the top of page 2, centered in the margin, was the phrase “Use Kitchel’s Liniment (1890) and Forever.” Each subsequent annual reprint changed the year in the phrase. The last Kitchel’s Liniment reprint version I have found is 1908. Another patent medicine company that produced New York Herald reprints was MA-LE-NA liver pills. They, too, produced annual reprint versions but with no date indicated like with Kitchel‘s Liniment.

The assassination of President Garfield and McKinley also saw reprints of the April 15, 1865 New York Herald produced. Ford’s Theater and various museum gift shops also sold these reprints and still do today.

Authentic Left Column Heading

While very few actually indicated on the paper itself that is was a reprint, it is important to note that NONE of these reprints were meant to deceive. In the case of the patent medicines, people were hired to give the reprints away at county fairs or other places where a large quantity of people would be gathering. The reprints were a marketing device. It was reasoned that having the Lincoln assassination news on the front and back page, people would not throw them away like they would if it were just a flyer advertising their product.

In the 1930s, however, the height of the American depression, there were a few scam artists who went door to door selling a “valuable relic of American history” – An old April 15, 1865 New York Herald reprint they had obtained in quantity. Unknowing people would take what little cash money they had and purchase it for $1 or so (big money in those days.) They were hoping to sell it for much more. Meanwhile, the scam artist had moved on to another city.

Of the 32 versions I have documented, only one was printed on rag linen; the Grain-O-Coffee one. Four of the versions were single sheet and printed on both sides. All four of these have the date April 15, 1865 on the front page and April 14, 1865 on the back page. Three were printed on parchment paper and the other one on wood pulp paper. The rest of the reprints were 4-page editions. Of the 32 reprint versions, all but 6 of them have printed on the front page in the forth column from the left and about six inches down the phrase EXTRA 8:10 AM is printed. There were NO original 8:10 AM EXTRA editions produced. Originals have eight pages and were printed on rag linen.

One of my continual searches on Ebay is “April 15, 1865 New York Herald.” Currently, on average, there are 3 to 4 of these placed on Ebay on a weekly basis. Very few correctly state that they are offering a reprint. Most claim to be originals. From time to time I will send an email to the seller pointing out that their specimen is actually a reprint and referring them to my site for further information. – http://www.historybuff.com/library/refhotlist.html.  Of each ten sellers I send the email to, on average, four thank me for pointing it out to them but seldom edit their listing to point out that it is a reprint; four do not respond at all; and, shamefully, two reply back with something like “You know it is a reprint, and I know it is a reprint, but THEY don’t know it’s a reprint.” In the past 12 years I have used Ebay, only ONCE was an original offered. Fortunately, very few of the April 15, 1865 New York Herald’s reprints actually sell.

Authentic Page One Report

Recently, yet another Herald reprint was offered on Ebay that made me snicker. The photo showed one of the single sheet reprints so badly deteriorated that it was in four pieces. The seller stated that he would not normally sell this family heirloom, but for the right price he would sell it. The minimum bid was $100,000!!! I didn’t have the heart to break his bubble.

Rick Brown
HistoryBuff.com
A Nonprofit Organization

Editor’s Note:  The Library of Congress also provides a great web page which discusses this commonly reprinted issue:  NY Herald Reprints

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Comments

91 Responses to “April 15, 1865 New York Herald Reprints”

  1. GuyHeilenman on December 13th, 2011 8:27 am

    Hello Ben,

    We charge $35 for the authentication. If you end up selling the issue to us, we wave this cost. Please know there is no pressure to do so. If you want to proceed, send the issue to:
    Timothy Hughes Newspapers
    341 E. Southern Ave.
    S. Williamsport, PA 17702

  2. Shelley R Heard on December 25th, 2011 8:14 pm

    I have a copy of the New York Herald that my grandfather, Keith Morton Read of Savannah, Georgia, kept with instructions (written on the paper) to KEEP! The paper is a single sheet, roughly 30 x 21 inches when unfolded. The paper is light brown in color – as if pulp paper, but I am no expert. It is in good conditions, but sadly folded twice in aditional to the original fold. How do I determine which version of a copy it is? The “original” left column looks exactly like the one displayed on your site.

    Shelley Read Heard

  3. GuyHeilenman on January 5th, 2012 8:33 am

    Hello Shelley,

    Your best bet is to take a few photos and e-mail them to timothy@rarenewspapers.com

    I hope this helps.

  4. GuyHeilenman on January 13th, 2012 9:18 am

    It would appear that it is not, but if you want to take a few photos and send them to timothy@rarenewspapers.com, he would be happy to verify. If a reprint, we would have no idea when it was printed. Perhaps Rick Brown at http://www.historybuff.com would know.

  5. Ali on January 24th, 2012 7:20 pm

    I am not sure if mine is an original or a reprint, it is not yellow or crumbly at all, just a little ripping on the sides, it is 4 pages long and says April 14 1865 on the front page. It is most likely fake because it is not old looking at all, but could you tell me anyway?

  6. GuyHeilenman on January 25th, 2012 8:15 am

    April 14, 1865 issues are typically not reprints. The fact that your issue is not crumbly is another good indication that your issue may be authentic as well, since issues from this period were printed on paper with a high percentage of linen (“rag” paper). If authentic and in 1st-rate condition, they can retail anywhere from $60-$100 (2012 estimate).

  7. SKIP PARRISH on May 28th, 2012 10:46 am

    SIR, I DONT KNOW WHAT I HAVE. MY DAD WHILE DEMOLISHING A HOUSE IN LYNCHBURG VA., IN 1938, FOUND THIS NEWS PAPER WRAPPED IN LEATHER AND SEALED IN A BAMBO TUBE. HE FOUND IT IN THE FLOOR BETWEEN TWO RAFTERS. IT IS PRINTED ON ALL SIDES. I DONT KNOW IF IT IS A REPRINT. IF IT IS A REPRINT, WHEN WAS IT REPRINTED? LIKE I SAID, I DONT KNOW WHAT I HAVE. IF THIS A REPRINT, IS THIS WORTH ANYTHING, OR IS IT JUST AN OLD REPRINT?
    ANY WAY, SORRY TO BOTHER YOU. I NEED SOME GUIDENCE.

    THANK YOU FOR ANY HELP YOU MIGHT LRND
    REPECTFULLY. SKIP PARRISH
    1-210-563-1103

  8. GuyHeilenman on May 29th, 2012 7:05 am

    Hello Skip,

    Have you compared it to the examples we have on-line? If it is a reprint, it really has no value. There were so many reprints done, there is no way for us to know when it was printed with any certainty. If you think it may be authentic, feel free to contact Timothy Hughes (images would be helpful) at timothy@rarenewspapers.com. Good luck.

    Best wishes – Guy

  9. Doug on July 18th, 2012 12:14 pm

    I have one of the reproductions (beardless pic of Lincoln and ads on back) handed down from my grandparents (we always thought it was an original). It’s in pretty bad shape but I hate to just toss it out. Is there any place that my be interested in receiving this item as a donation?

  10. GuyHeilenman on July 18th, 2012 2:50 pm

    Hello Doug – Unfortunately not. They are relatively common. Sorry.

  11. jenny on July 23rd, 2012 10:26 am

    Hello.
    I found at a estate sale a newpaper Nov 23 1939 New York Heald Tribune head line British destroyer sunk by wild mine it also have a certicate sign by Robert L Mooers and Christian and a raise seal on it Its in a case.ant the certificate has a number on it
    From Historic newspaper archives. Can you give me any information on the newspaper is it real or a reprint
    Thanks,
    Jenny

  12. GuyHeilenman on July 23rd, 2012 10:34 am

    Hello Jenny – This issue was sold as a birthday paper. As a result, the value is to the person who was born on this date (or perhaps had an anniversary on this date), i.e. sentimental value as a commemorative gift, not monetary. Thanks for asking.

  13. ronda on February 12th, 2013 10:56 pm

    I have a news ad 1865 april 15 but mine has his face on the paper. I also have a gettsburg address
    With lincoln on it

  14. GuyHeilenman on February 13th, 2013 8:00 am

    The first is definitely a reprint. Feel free to send additional details regarding the 2nd to timothy@rarenewspapers.com. Good luck.

  15. Gary on March 27th, 2013 3:52 pm

    Hello Timothy,
    I have a New York Herald Sunday April 16, 1865 Five Cents Whole No. 10.457. 2 page with both sides for total of 4 sides. No advertising. Only has information on the Lincoln assassination and aftermath. Paper is browned with some splitting and chipping. I would think it is a reprint but I haven’t been able to find any info on original or reprints. I am quite sure you can set me straight. Thank you for time and assistance.
    Sincerely, Gary

  16. david on July 4th, 2013 5:04 pm

    Has any one ever herd about a printing press misprint of the New York Herald, Lincoln assassination? I have an older looking framed, newspaper thas seems to be the front and back pages flat in the frame. The bottom right corner has a triangle shaped clear space, where the print that should be, but the print is there, further off down to the right bottom corner, and a small triangle sliver of print above that. it appears that it is a very possible misprint from the printing press. All indications I have searched appear to be it is “not real” but, I have never herd of a reprint of a printing press misprint. The fragmented story behind my paper is as follows: A persons` relative was a press operator. This sheet crumpled up in the press and that person removed it, and later folded it up and put it in his pocket and took it home. I don`t know the “supposed” transferral history down the years, but supposedly it was passed down in the family. It is brown, folded, with what looks to be actual tiny missing pieces of paper at some of the folded places, where the two pages would be folded into one piece, thn folded on down to a much smaller size. Very possibly enough times to be small enough to put in a persons pocket. I do have photos and cn get better ones to send if needed. Any info would be very much appreciated. Thanks in advance, David

  17. GuyHeilenman on July 5th, 2013 7:39 am

    Hello David,

    Take a few image shots and send them on to Tim Hughes are timothy@rarenewspapers.com. He will let you know what he thinks. All the best – Guy

  18. GuyHeilenman on July 5th, 2013 8:47 am

    Hello David,

    Take a few image shots and send them on to Tim Hughes are timothy@rarenewspapers.com. He will let you know what he thinks. All the best – Guy

  19. Debbie Steinberg on July 6th, 2013 6:20 pm

    I have a framed copy of the Lincoln assassination, but not sure of value. My Great, Great Grandmother framed it around 1903. I wanted to replace the frame, but after so many years am afraid it could damage the print. She folded it, but from what I can tell it fits all the correct indicators, except for a 2″ picture of Lincoln with a beard, (http://i698.photobucket.com/albums/vv343/gulegardiner/th_Lincoln.jpg). There are no ads. However, I have researched for hours and can not find a picture of this print. Hope you might be able to advise me as to the best way to take care of it. It is a family heirloom, even if it is a reprint. Thank -you in advance. – Debbie

  20. Gary A. Vinson on February 18th, 2014 3:31 pm

    Hello i am interested in trying to find the value of this newspaper that i have in my position.I do believe that it is a oringinal,I have had this for about 40 years.Please acknowlege any information to justify this newspaper (The New York Herald Saturday,April 15,1865). Thank You for your time is greatly appreciated.

  21. GuyHeilenman on February 18th, 2014 3:47 pm

    Hello Gary – Please send several pics to guy@rarenewspapers.com, and I will let you know if it is authentic. Once we know if it is, we can go from there.

  22. John Mountain on March 10th, 2014 8:52 pm

    Looking at previous posts, it looks like I have a reprint given it has the EXTRA 8:10 in the 4th column. Is there any way to know what year it was reprinted? I know it doesn’t have any collector value, but I am curious how old it is.

  23. Kimberly Glickstein on June 5th, 2014 10:46 am

    I have a copy of The New York Herald from Sunday April 16, 1865 (Whole NO.10,457.) and would like to find out any information that I can about it. It’s been in our family since I was born so forever but we know nothing of it’s value.
    I would very much appreciate your time and help.
    Thanks Kim

    The left column says “Our Loss” “The great National calamity” “Death of our President”.

    It appears to have several pages behind the first page but we are afraid to take it out of the frame that it’s in now. It has been professionally framed but when it was framed I don’t know either.

    HELP HELP HELP????
    Thanks again and I am so excited to hear back from you!! Just want to know what we have? Valuable or just a piece to keep holding on to.

  24. Kimberly Glickstein on June 5th, 2014 10:47 am

    I have a copy of The New York Herald from Sunday April 16, 1865 (Whole NO.10,457.) and would like to find out any information that I can about it. It’s been in our family since I was born so forever but we know nothing of it’s value.
    I would very much appreciate your time and help.
    Thanks Kim

    I can send you pictures if that will help.

    The left column says “Our Loss” “The great National calamity” “Death of our President”.

    It appears to have several pages behind the first page but we are afraid to take it out of the frame that it’s in now. It has been professionally framed but when it was framed I don’t know either.

    HELP HELP HELP????
    Thanks again and I am so excited to hear back from you!! Just want to know what we have? Valuable or just a piece to keep holding on to.

  25. GuyHeilenman on June 6th, 2014 2:04 pm

    Best to ask Tim Hughes directly at: timothy@rarenewspapers.com

  26. GuyHeilenman on June 6th, 2014 2:04 pm

    Best to ask Tim Hughes directly at: timothy@rarenewspapers.com

  27. Bill Smith on June 16th, 2014 11:52 pm

    Rick, You said in your last sentence that you didn’t have the heart to break the guy’s bubble. Next time, let me know, I’ll do it. I do it all the time (tell eBay sellers when they have reprints). Some of them get mad, but hell with ’em. Bill

  28. Danni Kaiser on January 15th, 2015 1:46 am

    I have a print from april 20th and was wondering if it was worth anything and how can i find out if its real? its not in great shape but is pretty kool.It shows the 3men that killed Abraham Lincoln, and the reward amounts for each one. Thank you

  29. GuyHeilenman on January 15th, 2015 9:56 am

    Hello Danni – If you are able, send a picture to Tim Hughes at timothy@rarenewspapers.com. He will respond shortly after receiving it.

  30. lorraine on April 9th, 2015 10:32 pm

    I Have the reprint of the herald with the grain o coffee on the back, you said reprint in 1871 and you tell me the value please

  31. Rich on April 16th, 2015 7:16 pm

    I’d love an image copy of the bottom of page 8 of the NY HERALD on April 15, 1865 (3:30 edition). There is a very short article with a distant distant relation to the Lincoln event, that involves my hometown of Poughkeepsie.
    I can’t find it on an easy googlesearch. Any tips?
    Thx

  32. GuyHeilenman on May 5th, 2015 12:43 pm

    This is a tough one. We’ve had this issue, and have photographed it – but only from a distance, and the image is not clear enough to make out specifics. Sorry.

  33. GuyHeilenman on May 5th, 2015 12:52 pm

    If a reprint, no value. Sorry.

  34. Chris on January 31st, 2016 8:38 pm

    I have copies of the April 15, 1865 new York herald. I need help. Ty

  35. GuyHeilenman on February 1st, 2016 8:08 am

    Send details and a photo or two of the front page to me at guy@rarenewspapers.com

  36. Sandy on March 19th, 2016 5:34 pm

    Hi, I bought a December 8,1941 New York Times paper today…How do I tell if its a reprint?

  37. GuyHeilenman on May 13th, 2016 7:03 am

    Please submit all queries regarding the value or authenticity of a newspaper or a set of newspapers to info@rarenewspapers.com. The blog is not monitored for such purposes. Once received, we’ll do our best to respond within 24 business hours. Thanks for your understanding.

  38. Audrey Marlow on September 14th, 2016 12:30 am

    I have one April 15 1865

  39. GuyHeilenman on September 14th, 2016 10:15 am

    Hello Audrey: Please send details (title, date – again, condition, and a photo or two) to me (Guy) at: guy@rarenewspapers.com

  40. morton bryer on February 17th, 2017 2:46 pm

    Dear Guy:

    This nothing to do with that Lincoln reprint, but I’ve had the December 5, 1863
    issue of Leslie’s for many years and have noticed, it is never on sale,
    unless I missed something.

    Unlike the Harper’s issue, same date, the Leslie’s reproduces Lincoln’s
    famous speech, plus a news story about the even and the center
    spread has a woodcut of the ceremonies.

    Can’t remember if you folks have ever listed this issue, in your monthly
    rundowns.

    Best Wishes to Tim!

    Mort Bryer

  41. GuyHeilenman on February 21st, 2017 10:33 am

    Hello Mort – It is good to hear from you. I’ll pass your regards along to Tim. We have not had this wonderful issue to offer in slightly more than 12 years. Even the few LI runs we’ve attained during this period did not include it. Thanks. It’s a great issue. – Guy

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