We do not sell modern reprints.
We only handle, sell & ship original vintage and antique items. Old printed sheets of paper. Items which are really old, like we say.
We strive to describe our items accurately. We understand you cannot see it in person. We are trying to present it accurately. We try to convey the condition correctly with careful digital photography, accurate flat-bed scans of the item which are zoomable, printed sheet & image dimensions and knowledgeable descriptive words.
It is important to understand that many, if not most old items survive merely by chance, and all are somewhat unique if you inspect them closely. Few of the same type match exactly if compared side-by-side. Each has it's own characteristics and patina.
Individual pieces have typically seen numerous owners and been handled many times over the course of their existence. On old sheets of paper, short edge splits (which are often carefully repaired with discrete small pieces of archival tape), foxing, discoloration, etc. are all things to expect. It's often unrealistic to expect all old sheets of paper to survive looking like new or without flaws. The key to any printed sheet is the overall visual appeal of the piece. Oten small signs of age do not distract but rather they often add to the overall visual character. Big Little Books of the 1930's come to mind as an example of this.
Keep in mind when you receive your item that you are not handling a modern copy, nor some clever Chinese reprint, or so on. You are holding a genuine piece of graphic history, an old sheet of paper that was printed long ago and will, with some basic proper care, be around for a long time yet to come. In the meantime, you can visually enjoy it in your portfolio, on your wall, give it as a present, etc.
We really do try to note any significant or visually significant flaws in the description. Less noticeable, subtle or common minor age flaw characteristics may not be specifically mentioned, although often they are clearly visible within the zoomable scans or close-ups provided. Please look closely before you click the buy-it button.
Virtually all old sheets of paper display some sort of visible age wear somewhere, and any attempt to capture every last one of them in words would just end in mental & physical grid-lock. Short minor closed edge splits, uneven blank side margins (of no significance 99.9% time), obvious narrow margins, light scattered age spotting or inoffensive light dampstaining, etc. are all often not commented upon, as they are typically not worthy of specific mention. Rather, their presence is reflected in the overall grade of the item, such as Fair, Good, Good+, near VG and finally VG to VG+. We do not use superlatives, we do not over-grade or puff an item up. We grade conservatively.
When we say "Good" or "Good+", it means basically "quite OK" , "nice" and in our opinion "entirely acceptable for most people" in overall appearance. It does not mean stunningly excellent or virtually like new, nor does it imply lousy, defective, poor, etc. Those lesser conditions are either avoided in acquisition or clearly noted, as are the higher ones.
"Near fine" means approaching excellent, really quite nice. Likely the item is not perfect, it likely posseses some minor trivial flaws, or has minor blank margin issues, some light visible spotting, etc. But when you have it before you, it is clearly worthy of ownership, display, perhaps a museum collection or an advanced collector, etc.
These basic condition distinction shouold be understood. There are a few buyers who act surprised and get upset when they learn many, if not most old maps come from atlases (like Mercator, Ortelius, and most loose old maps, etc) or that many old prints were actually first issued within books which today are now rare, expensive and widely sought after (for instance, Audubon, color plate books, etc.). We never "break" fine copies of old books or atlases worthy of preservation. Their market position & prices do not allow this to occur. Much of our inventory has been acquired loose, in large batches, or from stray defective odd volumes over the past 27+ years and we are very active buyers today.
Remember, you can return anything you buy from us without quibble for 14 days. How fair is that for doing business?
We are a US based business. All of our measurements are in Inches. If you need the size in Centimeters please multiply the supplied measurement by 2.53.
Payment and Shipping
We happily accept PayPal!
Payment is appreciated within 5 days. Why buy something and then not pay for it? Please wait until you are ready to pay before you buy something.
Once payment has been received we do our best to make sure all orders are shipped within two business days and most often have them shipped within one. Sometimes, we ship within hours. Your order goes out promptly, with basic tracking details and transit insurance!
We send a payment confirmation and a copy of the Paypal payment to the email address associated with your PP payment.
All orders are shipped well protected in sturdy tubes or flat white mailers (depending on size) via the U.S. Post Office.
Large items are far better sent rolled than flat. Large flat items are particularly susceptible to damge and require so much extra sturdy packing they become very heavy and cost a small fortune to ship. Our tubes will arrive undamaged, your items well protected in transit, within a plastic bag and ready for your inspection.
Please be aware that once we have shipped your order we no longer have any control over shipping time or delays. Some people appear to believe we control all aspects of global shipping on all parcels we send, but unfortunately this is not the case.
We are unable to ship to any address other than what appears on your PayPal Payment. Please be sure that this address is correct at the time of checkout. Please do not pay with one address, then email us to send it somewhere else. Can't do it.
Once your order has been paid for we are, unfortunately, unable to "Hold it". We are required to ship within 2 business days of receiving payment and we typically ship faster than that.
World Wide Flat Rate Shipping-
Please note- this shipping cost is obviously less than our true cost. No matter how many items you buy, for sure it will cost us more than we are charging. If the check-out system charges you too much for what-ever reason, just bring it to our attention--- we'll happily work with you to refund.
Important information for our International Buyers:
Import duties, taxes, and customs fees are not included in the item price or shipping cost. These charges are normally collected by the shipping service when the package is delivered or when you pick the item up. They are the buyer's responsibility and are not additional shipping charges. [Please understand they have nothing to do with us and we have no control over them].
We won't under-value merchandise or mark the item as a gift on customs forms. Doing so is against US and International law! Please don't ask. Any requests to do this will be ignored. All orders are labeled as merchandise and described as a printed old/ antique paper item. [again, please do not ask us to mis-represent International mail parcels.
First Class Mail is the least expensive shipping option available and as such is the slowest. In addition to this we have seen longer delays in customs in recent months-- it can take as much as 6-8 weeks to arrive.
Please be patient --your package will arrive, but it may take time. You can't be in a rush to receive an item if you live outside the U.S.A. International mail is efficient & 99.9% accurate, but it is not typically fast.
If you would prefer to upgrade your shipping to faster Priority options we are happy to send you an invoice. Our experience tells us Priority International post is often slower than First Class. It's backwards, and typically only makes sense if the parcel has value exceeding a certain level.
Antiquemapsprints is a very active online business and has been dealing full-time in antique maps, decorative printed history and interesting old books for more than 27 years.
We have always maintained a strong interest & stock in a wide range of antiquarian specialties, which include [but are not limited to] fields such as: cartography, philately, numismatics, printed geography & topography of the 17th -19th centuries, global ethnography, cultural & world-wide views of all sorts- especially fascinating or remote locations, 19th century chromolithographic printing, old & early wood or metal-plate engravings; rare, scarce and interesting books in numerous fields- including early American imprints & rare children's books (1750-1890's); old advertising graphics, travel ephemera, tobacco & fruit art, posters, old photographs, etc. We maintain a significant in-house reference library containing thousands of fine detailed monographs & bibliographies on all of the above topics and more. Many of these excellent works are thus far still easily unavailable on-line and this deep archive of information is consulted on a daily basis.
We are located in a fine large old c. 1820 house in the southern corner of beautiful historic New Hampshire; New England, United States. We are an hour north of Boston, an hour south of Portland, Maine.
We take a great deal of pride in what we do and the quality of service we offer. We efficiently process and ship countless hundreds of packages around the world every month.
We try to offer as much information as possible in our listings. Because we have various people involved in cataloguing many hundreds of items a week, something is ocassionally overlooked. Because our inventory is spread out among 3 buildings, it is often difficult to impossible to provide a precise annotated back-ground source for any given specific print. Our knowledge is deep. Our inventory is vast, growing and constantly shifting.
Don't like something when it arrives? (hard to believe, but it could happen).
If you receive your order and you are unhappy for any reason, please email us immediately! We are without fail friendly, honest, intelligent and we want you to be happy. We willingly accept returns for at least 2 weeks after you receive any item. We guarantee the authenticity and stand behind everything we sell-- for life. We are primarily interested in building long-term relationships and anything you ever purchase from us is subject to your inspection & approval.
We are working to become the leading world-wide source of authentic & well-priced interesting old maps & vintage graphically printed sheets of paper.
We also run our own website* which we invite you to visit.
Best regards from all of us here at Antiquemapsprints* [dot-com]