Other than trains there isn't anything else I collect but there are a few sundry artifacts connected in some way with trains I've acquired along the way. One of my favorites is this piece of U.S. money - a $5 National Bank Currency note.
From about 1863 to 1929, if your bank purchased a specified quantity of bonds deposited with the U.S. Treasury, Uncle Sam would print U.S. money with what was basically an ad for your bank on the front. There were over 14,000 of these banks in all states and territories of the U.S. Among these banks were a few that had connections to the railroad industry. One of them was this Cleveland, Ohio bank which also has the distinction of having the longest national bank name printed on these notes.
One can only imaging what it would have been like to have had to answer the phone for that bank way back when - "Good morning Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers Co-Operative National Bank (whew). How may I direct your call?"
It is worth noting they later changed the name of the bank to The Locomotive Engineers Bank (probably had too high a turnover in receptionists because they became hoarse and quit).
I love collecting. Village lit buildings are the big thing now, but I've always had a collection of something.
The first thing I ever collected was the coin sized cardboard inserted into milk bottle caps. Every dairy had their own and I had a cigar box full of them. (Yes, a real cigar box) Every kid had one for their "valuables".
I'll bet half the people here have never seen a milk bottle, let alone the caps. Wow, hadn't thought about milk bottle caps for a long time.
I enjoy collecting more than displaying. That's why my site is called "the village collector".
I been a collector for many decades. Started in my youth when I received Whitman Books for Christmas and Birthdays and now have over 200. Then I saved items from days in the service and flying to point I had at my peak over 300 helmets and gear. Hartland western figures was another endeavor. I sold almost all my collections except for my books.
Should add. Of all my years of collecting and hobbies, only one remains, my books and my trains. Ever since my days of being a cowboy, owning and raising horses and playing a cowboy on the screen, I became interested in Cowboy Action Shooting. This will be the last year also I'm involved in the Western Train Show put on in St Mary's GA. Were we have re-enactments and shoot-outs for train passengers. We do 4 shows a day for 2 weekends and every trip is sold out. But this keeps me active and nimble besides enjoying myself for sometimes a 2 or 3 days were I get to shoot and hit targets with live ammo. I also was Florida's State Champion in 2017.
You guys have some amazing collections. I admire your collections but have no desire to start one of my own because I don't collect anything, not even trains. All the trains I have I run. If I find that I have trains that I don't run I sell them. I have other hobbies but collecting isn't one of them.