The value of a newspaper… impacted by content…

April 12, 2010 by  
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One of the common questions received at Timothy Hughes Rare & Early Newspapers is “What elements are involved in determining the collectible value of a newspaper?”   Several posts on this subject may be viewed at:  “Determining the Value of an Historic Newspaper“.   Two of the elements which drive the collectible value of a paper are content and age.  For example, the $0.50-$1.00 newsstand price of a Washington Post, USA Today, or Chicago Tribune with the 1st report on the election of President Obama quickly rose to $35 a month (and higher) after the event (content), and will likely be valued at many times this amount in 20+ years (age).

In contrast, we recently came across a newspaper whose value increased by more than 700% (due to content – a photo) before the end of the day of its initial printing.  Our find… the May 1, 1945 Mediterranean edition of Stars and Stripes.  The front cover printed the famous photo of Benito Mussolini shown after his execution.  In an effort to show a little discretion, the photo is not shown within this post, but may be viewed at:

Although there have been times when the collectible value of a newspaper increased by the following day, we’d love to know of other pre-2000 events which resulted in an increase in the value of the newspaper on the same day the issue hit the newsstands.  If you know of any, feel free to share with the collectible community.

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7 Responses to “The value of a newspaper… impacted by content…”

  1. Paul Sarna on April 12th, 2010 9:12 pm

    Don’t know about that Mussolini paper being THE best… I have (by coincidence readily by my side when you posted this) a Mediterranean edition (printed in Italy) of Stars and Stripes dated April 30th, the day before your edition, with the headline “Partisans Execute IL Duce; Milan Entered; KO Readied” with a two-column photo of a fierce-looking Mussolini under the caption “Benito Finito”.
    Though yours is pretty darn good too!…and that is one powerful photo.

  2. Paul Sarna on April 12th, 2010 9:40 pm

    Though it might not increase notably that very day, Pulitzer Prize photos on the frontpage of a first report of an event has got to help the newspaper’s value enormously.
    Though it wasn’t a banner headline, the New York Times (and other papers) carried the famous photo of a grieving woman at the so-called “Kent State Massacre” in 1970.
    Also the Dallas Times Herald of Nov. 25, 1963 had the Pulitzer Prize photo (of the newspaper’s very own photographer!…Bob Jackson), that showed Jack Ruby killing Lee Harvey Oswald.

  3. Morris on April 20th, 2010 3:17 pm


    A good observation and one with which I concur. Some award winning photos would include. The Iwo Jima Flag Raising,

    The surrender of Saigon with the last helicopter on the top of the building and people climbing the ladder to get on.

    Also, the photo of June 8, 1972, with young Pan Thi Kim Phuc fleeing down Route 1 from the village of Trang Bang in Viet Nam. She was burned by napalm dropped from South Vietnamese planes.

    The photo of Robert Kennedy lying wounded on the floor. The photographer actually stood over the senator to take this photo.

    The photo of Harry Truman holding the paper reading: Dewey Defeats Truman.

    I often give much consideration to the photos in a paper when considering their addition to my collection.

  4. GuyHeilenman on May 28th, 2010 9:20 am

    Thanks Morris. I appreciate your comments.

  5. Micah on June 7th, 2011 2:45 pm

    I stumbled across this website, in hopes to find an answer to a question. Recently I was cleaning out an old dresser of my grandfathers who had passed away and noticed that most of the drawers had bee lined with newspaper from the 60’s One of these papers(nearly in mint condition, with age of course) was the front page of the Buffalo Times, from NY dated Nov 25th 1963 which showed the historical photograph of Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald as he was being transferred.

    My question to history gurus and collectors alike, is how much would this be worth today? Mind you its not a New York Times or Washington Post, but still is intact and fairly crisp, as if it had been purchased and then just put in the drawer.


  6. GuyHeilenman on January 13th, 2012 9:21 am

    Hello Micah,

    Please send this information along to

  7. Pete Rosa on June 15th, 2013 7:39 pm

    What is a D-DAY newspaper wort NEW BEDFORD STANDARD TIMES in excellent condition?



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