Sign Here: Autograph Books!
An autograph book is simply a small notebook where someone collects autographs from others.
They started to be used as early as the 16th century among students in universities and schools, where they could preserve handwritten messages, drawings, etc made by collegues and friends. Eventually, these books started to be used outside the academic environment, to collect signatures of artists from theater, opera, concert hall, circus,
Autograph books became increasingly popular, but their popularity started to slowly fade in the second half of the 19th century. They were still in use by some people in the 1930s and 40s, were much more rarely seen after 1950
It is not unusual to find old autograph books with signatures of opera and concert hall artists of all kind. But prices are not the same than a good old signed photo or even a nice program. Some have appeared where superstar Enrico Caruso not only put his signature but also added a beautiful ink or pencil caricature.
We have just added a couple of sets of loose pages from autograph albums (see here and here), and we have in stock many individual loose pages coming from such albums. Today, they are not only a reminder of the artists from the past but of the way past fans approached artists and how memorabilia was collected in their times.