American Columbia Values

this page first published by John Wright, 7 Dec 1997
last update 19 Mar 2012vintage@r2ok.co.uk

Note: I lived in US for a time but I have limited knowledge of US labels and current values. If you are American then Tim Gracyk is your expert and you can gain valuable information at:

Tim's main page Tim's value tips Tim's selling tips

The 'Columbia' Label

A common record label in an American 78rpm collection, Columbia is a source of all types of music. Columbia began to issue single-sided 7" discs in 1901, the double-sided A- series began in 1908, originally black labels with silver printing changed to dark blue labels in 1911, though later some of them were black again. Then in 1915 the labels changed to bright blue. And in late 1923 the populars changed to the -D series, some labels had tri-colour flag designs. The black 'race' series began at 13000-D. White country artists appeared on the 15000-D series. 1928 saw some special 'picture' labels on Paul Whiteman and Ted Lewis records. The red 35000 series appeared in 1939.

I have all the records listed below and the values quoted are typical prices paid at British record fair stalls where the stall-holder knows the demand for music and records. American readers could translate these values directly to $ values as a guide.
For example:

(Slide the frame left in order to see the table better)

Cat. No.Band or
Artiste
Issue
Date
Typical
Value
Comments
49Columbia
Orchestra
190110.00very early disc
694J W Myers19025.00early disc
A829Collins & Harlan
Ada Jones
19105.00ragtime songs
A937Vess Ossman
(banjo)
Prince's Band
19105.00ragtime
A1909Bert Williams19154.00interesting vocal
A2478Al Jolson
Collins & Harlan
19173.00collectable
early Jolson
A2577Mike Bernard
(piano)
191810.00ragtime piano
A2611Wilbur Sweatman
Jazz Band
19183.00not great jazz
A2844Gorman's Novelty
Syncopators
Ted Lewis Band
19193.00novelty jazz
of the time
A2905Happy Six19203.00getting hot
A2944Marion Harris19202.00popular
vocal
A3729Johnny Dunn's
Original
Jazz Hounds
19228.00blues-jazz
A3850Lanin
Orchestra
19231.00not so hot
A3857Georgians19235.00hot dance
A3936Bessie Smith192350.00blues
126-DFletcher Henderson
Orchestra
192415.00jazz
366-DHarry Reser's
Syncopators
19254.00good dance titles
with banjo
395-DFletcher Henderson
Orchestra
192520.00jazz with
Louis Armstrong
939-DLee Morse19275.00popular female
vocal with
good accomp.
1444-DPaul Whiteman
Orchestra
192815.00with Bing Crosby
and Bix
2010-DPaul Whiteman
Orchestra
192910.00with Bing Crosby
and Joe Venuti
(violin)
14343-DBlind Willie Johnson192730.00blues
14511-DWashington Phillips192930.00blues
15049-DAl Carver192515.00country blues
15102-DRiley Puckett192615.00with fiddle,
guitar
35667Paul Whiteman
Tram,Bix,Lang
19405.00re-issued/edited
titles from 1927-28
35672Bessie Smith
accomp Louis Armstrong
194010.00re-issued titles from 1925
36634Teddy Wilson
(piano)
19418.00popular jazz
pianist
36680Benny Goodman
Orchestra
19424.00popular big band
36722Benny Goodman's
Sextet
19406.00popular jazz
.....

These records are only examples of what kind of values are put on some of Columbia's very good records. There will be some records by the same artistes worth more or less, depends on the quality of the music and on how many copies of the records were sold.


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