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Where to Get Vintage Superman Comics

Updated on June 19, 2013
When I was a youngster, my cousin and I would walk to town and buy comic books and a soda at the corner drugstore.  'Superman' was one of my favorites. This issue is in my private collection. It is from December 1990.
When I was a youngster, my cousin and I would walk to town and buy comic books and a soda at the corner drugstore. 'Superman' was one of my favorites. This issue is in my private collection. It is from December 1990. | Source

Superman has always been the Man of Steel

Who doesn't know Superman? For this author he is the original superhero. He was born on the planet Krypton and sent to earth as a baby moments before his planet exploded. The Kents, a kindly couple who had a farm in the countryside of Kansas, found the infant and raised him as their own son. He was a bit different than the other kids though. He was strong, could jump over tall buildings and was impervious to everything except Kryptonite and love, as it turns out.

And he's a fictional character.

I've remained a fan of this comic character since I was at least 10 years old and began reading the comic books. I've often wondered if my interest in the adventures of Superman led to my lifelong interest in all things science fiction (books, movies and television shows). And I've wondered if my working as a newspaper reporter wasn't inspired - at least in part - by the character of Lois Lane. In fact, I remember a time when I was in my late twenties, I worked as a reporter for a small city newspaper and would dress in cute suits and wear high heeled shoes. And I would invariably be teased that I was the paper's resident "Lois Lane." Since in the comic books Lois was written as a pretty good reporter, I took that comparison as rather a plus!

Favorite Superman Characters

Who is your favorite Superman comic book series character?

See results
This issue, from 1993, is in the author's private collection. Not "vintage," but appreciated.
This issue, from 1993, is in the author's private collection. Not "vintage," but appreciated. | Source

Superman comics make super collectibles

People collect all kinds of things for all kinds of reasons:

  • dolls - many women collect them because they loved them as children
  • salt shakers - there is a staggering diversity of design and types and for those who collect them it is a passion
  • yo-yos - did you know there is a Yo-yo museum in Chico, CA?
  • metal lunch boxes - do you remember those? I once had lunch at a diner where the entire interior decoration was the owner's vast collection of metal lunch boxes.
  • comics - childhood fascination with and love of

Over the years the collectibles industry has become big business. In fact, it was reported by Reuters on December 1, 2011, "...A copy of the first issue of Action Comics, in which Superman was unveiled to the world, has sold in an online auction for a record $2.16 million. It cost 10 cents when it was published in 1938...."

A comic book. A vintage Superman comic book. Where can you find one?

Where to get collectible Superman comics

Finding vintage Superman comic books isn't nearly as difficult as you might think. The bigger challenge is narrowing down exactly what it is you're looking for; what era interests you-1938 to 1945, or the post WWII years of 1946 to 1949 as example? Do you have a favorite Superman artist and/or writer - such as Jerry Siegel or Joe Shuster?

Maybe what you're looking for are subclassifications...maybe you follow certain character arcs such as:

  • Lex Luthor
  • Mr. Mxyzptlk
  • Bizzaro
  • Lois Lane
  • Lana Lang
  • Jimmy Olsen

Once you know what you are looking for you can go shopping. The five main places to find vintage issues:

  1. Your local comic bookstore - many comic/collectible store owners themselves are rabid fans of at least one of the titles they carry and love to help fellow collectors find what they are looking for.
  2. Online resources - they include everything from eBay, CraigsList and Amazon to giant comic book search sites such as ComicSeeker (see the links box for a few suggestions).
  3. Conventions - comic book conventions...including the huge Comic-Con held in San Diego, California (USA) is a good place to buy and sell vintage comics.
  4. Garage Sales - don't laugh...some amazing finds have been discovered at garage sales, rummage sales and flea markets.
  5. A relative's attic and/or basement - here again, truth is stranger than fiction. An article appeared on the HuffingtonPost news website on February 21, 2012 written by Jamie Stengle, describing a couple of these types of amazing finds.


Another Superman issue in the author's private collection, 1993.
Another Superman issue in the author's private collection, 1993. | Source

Superman is a high value collectible

He is faster than a speeding bullet and he can lift the front part of a speeding locomotive with one arm. How do I know? I've seen him! Okay, like millions of fans I grew up on the adventures of this superhero from his first appearance on television to the motion pictures. I like this hero for the values the writers gave him of 'truth, justice and the American way.'

Although, were I to invent this character today, I would change that to: truth, justice and peace for all.

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    • LindaCSmith profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda C Smith 

      5 years ago from United States

      Thanks. Sounds like that museum is someplace I would enjoy!

    • SaffronBlossom profile image

      SaffronBlossom 

      5 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      I love this hub! Superman is my favorite superhero as well...my grandparents live by the Superman museum in Metropolis, Illinois, so I have been there many a time. It's a pretty neat place. :)

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