For hundreds of years the dental profession has been the subject of artists in the forms of etchings, paintings, posters, Victorian trade cards, postcards, and more. Through these artists we are able to gain insights to our history.
My fascination with collecting began at the age on ten with baseball cards. Then on to stamps and coins, albums and 45’s, retro clothes, mid-century modern, etc. You get the idea. Having been in the dental profession since 1969, mostly as a hygienist, it wasn’t until about ten years ago that I decided to start collecting dental items.
I’m not sure why it didn’t occur to me sooner. Maybe because I never heard of anyone who collected dental items. Besides, what is there to collect: old toothbrushes, and instruments? No so exciting! Turns out there is a list of collectibles as long as the names of those pesky bacteria we studied in school.
Let me start with what I call Dental Art. When I tell people I sell dental art they look at me and say “Huh”? To which I reply, “artwork that relates to dentistry”. Once I started looking, I was amazed at how much great dental-related ephemera exists. This is our word-for-the-day; ephemera – meaning paper collectibles.