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Mid Century: Cards produced from 1919 to around 1940 or so.This group contains the ever popular "linen" postcard type, with a sort of "fabric" type feel to them, produced in the 40's.
Undivided cards required all writing correspondence to be on the front (picture) side and the address only on the back, while the divided back allowed both a handwritten message and a space for an address on the back side.
Real Photo, RP or RPPC postcards were made from images taken with an actual camera.
They were developed in a darkroom and printed onto postcard stock, often in a brown sepia tone.
This will greatly affect the cards collectible value. Postcard grading will probably never be as precise as coin or baseball card collecting, with manufacturers production numbers and standardized price guides.
As for vintage postcards, some "one of a kind" cards can be worth big $$$!
Chrome Era: Chrome postcards were produced from the 1950's until present.
These late century postcards used a new "chromolithic" process, with lifelike vibrant colors, resembling more of a true photograph, then a printed postcard image.Many collectors today look for the earlier postcards, from around 1898 until the 1940's.But as these cards become harder to find, a new market for cards produced from the 1940's until the present have been created.Black and white postcards are great examples of view postcards, but a true Real Photo postcard of the same place most often demands a much higher price.Rarity: How many of this particular postcard were produced?Postcard Types/Dating: Dating postcards can be somewhat easy when postmarked on the back when sent.