The Washington Post's Metro Columnist, John Kelly, recently wrote a great column about collecting vintage newspapers. In it, he profiles Jack Waugaman, the owner of A Rare View Books and Prints. About the appeal of old newspapers, Jack is quoted as saying, "There's something so special about holding a newspaper. It's something that existed at that moment in time. . . You put it away like any treasure, and as years pass, you take it out."
However, Kelly makes a great point about the collectible value of these items. He writes, "Not all newspapers are treasures. The moon landing, Nixon's resignation, the Kennedy assassination -- these editions are commonplace, saved by so many people that they have almost no value. So, too, the final edition of the Washington Star from 1981."
To me, there's something 'old school' about newspapers. A newspaper connects us to the past even as it brings us the headlines of the day. It might be the most quintessential of paper-based ephemera. The news of the day...then...gone in a flash.