One of the first difficulties I encountered when I started to collect razors was the lack of any reference information to assist me. Book stores and libraries had nothing to offer, and the internet was not yet even a virtual reality.
By luck, at a local antique show in about 1992, I found a copy of Phillip Krumholz's excellent little book "Value Guide for Barberiana and Shaving Collectibles", published by him in 1988. That book led me on to Bill Will's "Safety Razor Collector's Guild" (P.O. Box 885 Crescent City, CA USA 95531-0885), a club and newsletter format which led on to other sources. It's worth joining. There's help out there!
To assist you, I hope this page can serve as a sort of "razor reference library of the internet". Each reference is complete with whatever contact information it contains, as well as any relevant internet sources. You may also want to search for other razor related titles at Barnes and Noble , Amazon.com , or Knife World Publications on the 'net.
Click a Thumbnail to see a larger picture of a book. Please e-mail me if you have other references to add to the list, or find mistakes in what is presented here. Return Home.
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||"1000 Razors Priced and Illustrated." by Bill Schroeder,
first ed. 1970, through 1976.
Thanks to several visitors I now have some information on this book, which I have never seen. It has 71 pages, each page illustrates about 14 to 15 straight razors in black and white drawings of the blades of razors - tang marking and etching if there is any. No Information on handles.
|"2 in 1 Knife and Razor Book" by Robert Mayes. (1970)
I have never seen this book but Mark Zalesky of Knife World Publications sends along this information: This book contains just a listing of razor manufacturers in the early editions, the later ones have catalog reprints in them which contain some razors as well. In 1975 the book became "Knife Album", basically the same book but in a large format and hardcover. Knife World bought the last of these from Mayes, and ask $16.50 apiece for them.
||"Straight Razor Collecting", by Robert A. Doyle. (1980) This book has 125 pages of illustrated history of Straight Razors, Blades,Handles,Manufacturers,Shaving Kits and Razor Sets, and Corn Razors. Includes a system of charts that priced razor handles, blades, and brands separately. See more in Bernard Levine's column in the May 1999 issue of Knife World Magazine .|
|"The Vanishing American Barbershop" by Ronald S. Barlow (1993). Can be ordered from Windmill Publishing company, 2147 Windmill View Road, El Cajon, CA 92020. Price quoted is $16.95. Old photos, catalogue pages and articles about the gory (ooops...glory) days of the old fashioned barbershop.|
|"King C. Gillette, The Man and His Wonderful Shaving Device"
by Russell Adams (1978), published by Little Brown & Co. of Boston
Unfortunately out of print, but check your local public library (my home town has one) and used book stores. The definitive (and only extensive) biography of the man and his invention and the company that made it all happen (and still does). Written from a business history point of view but with many details and photos of interest to the collector.
|"Safety Razors A Price Guide" (no author) (1995). Published
by L-W Book Sales P.O. Box 69 Gas City IN USA 46933. They can be found on
the 'net at L-W Book Sales
A very nice book covering safety razors and stropping machines with a few blades for variety. The photos are a feast for the eyes; all in gorgeous color. My only beef is that the photos are not organized by brand (or any system), and although there is an index, it can be hard to locate things. You should have this one!
||"Collector's Guide to American Razor Blades" by Phillip
L. Krumholz (1995). Published by the author P.O. Box 4050 Bartonville
IL USA 61607. See Phil's web page:
. Also available at:
Knife World Publications
The definitive guide to razor blades, organized by brand with black and white pictures of the wrappers, and short overviews of the companies.
|"A History of Shaving and Razors" by Phillip L. Krumholz
I believe this was published by the author, and it has been out of print for some years although he has occasionally offered photocopy versions in his telephone/ mail auction sales. P.O. Box 4050 Bartonville IL USA 61607.
|"Value Guide for Barberiana and Shaving Collectibles" by
Phillip L. Krumholz (1988). Published by the author (Ad Lib Publishing
Co.), P.O. Box 4050 Bartonville IL USA 61607.
This excellent pocket size book covers straight, transitional, corn and safety razors, blades, banks, stroppers, furniture, barber poles, signs and advertising items. A very useful valuation system is used, and there a quite a few black and white photos.
|"The Complete Gillette Collector's Handbook" by Phillip
L. Krumholz (1992). Published by the author P.O. Box 4050 Bartonville
IL USA 61607.
The definitive work on the history, development and evolution of Gillette razors and associated shaving, display and advertising products. Also gives significant information on AutoStrop razors (which Gillette purchased in 1930), and on Gillette style "clones" such as Rotbart.
||"Getting To Know Your Straight Razors", by Phillip Krumholz (1999). New book, 101 pages lavishly illustrated, covers topics for beginner to advanced straight razor collectors, and has value guide. Retails new for $14 ppd. U.S. Check the author's web site . I have not seen this book, or read a review, but based on Phil's record it should set the standard.|
|"Standard Guide to Razors Identification and Values" by
Roy Ritchie and Ron Stewart (no date, but about 1996). Published by Collector
Books P.O. Box 3009 Paducah Kentucky USA 42002-3009. Available through
Knife World Publications
A very easy to use pocket book size guide with lots of both colour and black and white photos. Likely the best current guide to straight razors.
|"The Razor Anthology" by Knife World Publications (1995)
P.O. Box 3395 Knoxville TN USA 37927. See their excellent Web Site:
Knife World Publications
This is a collection of articles from past issues of "Knife World" magazine. It includes 72 articles on companies, razors, and other related collectibles. All straight razors on the cover, but lots of safety razor material and pictures indside. Well worth it. Now reduced from $14.95 to $8.95. Don't miss it at this incredible price.
|"American Premium Guide to Knives and Razors" (4th ed.)
by Jim Sargent (unknown date) published by
Knife World Publications
I got this fuzzy little picture off the 'net. I have seen this book in antique shops and bookstores, and it deals mainly with several brands of straight razors made by major knife manufacturing firms (Remington and Case).
|"Wig, Hairdressing and Shaving Bygones" by Gail Durbin (1984). Shire Album 117 Published by Shire Publications Ltd., Cromwell House, Church Street, Princes Risborough, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP17 9AJ UK. A 32 page pocket sized booklet with about one-third of its length devoted to razors and associated shaving devices. Lots of black and white photos.|
|"Safety Razor Reference Guide From Ace to Z" by Robert K. Waits (1990...xerographic reprint in 1992). Distributed by the author who can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org . This book is still available as a xerographic copy. The encyclopaedia of safety razors. Mr. Waits goes brand by brand with logos, ads, pictures and descriptions of the companies, and their various models of razors. There is a special section outlining Gillette models, history charts of company mergers and early razor patent information, plus an excellent bibliography.|
|"Safety Razor Reference Guide First Supplement" by Robert K. Waits. (1992). Published by J.IV.IX Publications who can be contacted at email@example.com. This book is still available as a xerographic copy. A supplement to Mr. Waits' first volume, this 87 page addition contains more companies, more models for known companies, and special sections on Kampfe Star and AutoStrop razors, more patent information, and a further bibliography.|
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