Matchbook Collecting Information

Have you ever thought about matchbook collecting (matchcovers & matchboxes)? You may be a phillumenist!

Phillumeny is a term attached to those who collect matchcovers and related itmes.

Most people have a drawer or cupboard full of old matchbooks. Perhaps, you found some in your box of ephemera collectibles. Or, maybe, you found some matchbook covers in a scrapbooking album. Why not start a collection?

old matches war bonds

Matchcovers and matchboxes come in all kinds of categories; mainly advertising: Banks, Local Advertising, Restaurants, Hotels, Casino's, Weddings, etc.

They also vary somewhat in size, paper color and graphics, striker width, and other miscellaneous markings (inside cover).

We once came across a couple of hundred of matchbook covers! Needless to say, there was quite a variety...including many interesting covers!

Wow! We now understand why the phillumenists love their hobby so much!

And so, it occurred to us...why not invite you to show us your most interesting matchbook cover? Sounds like fun to us! Follow the simple instructions below to get started!

What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

A life as a Phillumenist 
I´m from Denmark, Europe. I am 58 years of age and started collecting matchboxes, labels, books, skillets and all match-related items as I was a boy in …

Cepreri EceHUH Mystery 
I found a very old match book with small match books depicting stories and a larger one, like the size of a kitchen box of matches with a man on the front. …

World Trade Center Building 3 Tall Ships Bar 
On one of my trips to New York I ducked into the Tall Ships Bar in WTC-3 and picked up, in addition to a couple of Scotch and Waters, a few match books …

Uncle Ted's Matchbook Collecting 
My Uncle was an avid collector of many things. Matchbooks seem to be just one.... Recently he passed away and I now have hundreds of them. He kept …

Matchbook Box Find 
I purchased a wooden hand made box about a 1 yard cube in size at an auction and in it was 3/4 full of old matches mostly paper matches 500-600 and some …

Tucked Away!! 
I bought a box at the auction the other day full of 1950's thru 1970's different & unusual items. Tucked under the flap was about 7 matchbook covers in …

condition 
I have about 50 matchbooks. Most of them still have their matches. What condition is preferred by collectors? Should the striker be unused? joycemeryl@gmail.com …

Jazz Player 
I really don't collect Match covers or boxes, but I bought this from a fellow student while in high school about 25 years ago, aroundv 1985. His father …

Local defunct restaurant match books! 
Collected through the years from restaurants which no longer exist. They do have sentimental value. I will list them to an interested person.

matches for sale 
I bought about 5000 match books and boxes for the jar they there in , i don't know a thing about matches . Need help and to sell some of the matches.

Most Unusual Matchbook Covers! New York City sightseeing deal. 
I have 2 matchbook covers, one from Hotel President and one from Hotel Plymouth, both in mid-town Manhattan that offer:6 day tours that include--5 breakfasts,5 …

50 Matchbooks from 50 States 
That's what I was trying to achieve. Happened quite by accident as my work meant I ate out quite a bit and picked up matches from every place. …

Bag o' Matchbooks Not rated yet
I was recently given a bag of old matchbooks by a gentleman in his late 80's who was worried about throwing them in the trash and burning his house down....there …

Box and Bag of Old Matchbooks Not rated yet
I grew up in the Northeast of the U.S. during the 1950s and 1960s. I have a cardboard box about 20 inches, by 20 inches by 12 inches plus a small plastic …

Vintage Matchbook Collection (1940's - 1970's) Not rated yet
This unique collection contains 1,157 matches from U.S., Canada, Bahamas, Virgin Islands, Panama, Italy & Sweden. Subject matter includes restaurants, …

1200 Match Books Not rated yet
I bought a pickle jar filled with old matchbook covers accordion'd together. I paid $200.00 for them. I thought there were two or three hundred, but …

Elect Al Smith (1928) Not rated yet
As a family of political nuts, I have political and regular old time match books. I am almost 83 years old and want to sell them. My favorite is Elect …

Matchbook collection - unusual luck! Not rated yet
I did some painting for someone. Part of my compensation was her late husband's travel case from the 30's and 40's. It was full of matchbooks from …

Wardair Matchbooks Not rated yet
I was just given a jar with 34 Wardair Matchbooks (all intact) with the picture of an Airbus 320 on the face. Wairdair, as I recall was absorbed by Canadian …

Need More Information?


Please note: We do not offer appraisals or evaluations...of any kind! Why? Quite simply, we are not qualified to do so.

Rather, we encourage you to find your own value and appraisal and offer suggestions on how to do so, throughout our site. Thanks.


Okay, we are only scratching the strike pad here, so to speak! There are a lot of people out there that collect matchcovers!

In fact, there is an entire society that does so: The Rathkamp Matchcover Society!

This group has been collecting matchcovers for 70 years! They love doing it and are very knowledgeable. If you are truly interested in this hobby, it is worth checking out this site!

In addition to that, The Vault, is another interesting site related to matchcover collecting.

There, you can find extensive history, great buying and selling tips, tools of the trade, and a whole lot more information related to matchcover collecting.

One of our goals, on this site, is to help you find what you need for your collection. We have another page on Matchbooks, as well. Check it out! Hope that helps!

Looking for something else?

Use this search box and you're on your way!


Random Notes...


old matches war bonds

Matchbook collecting can be quite interesting! In some ways, matchbooks can be quite revealing too! Did you acquire a bunch of matchbooks from a friend, or perhaps at an auction? Or perhaps, that whole box is all yours?

Try this! Lay them out on a table! Put them in order, based on geographic location of an imaginary map. Notice any patterns?

Perhaps, you noticed cities where you used to live or work. Or maybe, you have an outline of all of your past vacation stops. Maybe...maybe not! But it's fun to try!

oversized matchbook



Our Advice?

Perhaps you are making matchbook collecting into a serious hobby, and would like to make some money on the side. Okay? Buy duplicates! Keep one! Sell or trade the other!


(Note: We used the terms matchbook and matchcover interchangeably throughout this page. We realize that this probably drives the true Phillumenist crazy! Sorry about that! But we are just normal people and grew up using the term matchbook, so that's what we did!)

Thank You Matchbook

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