The official name of the hobby of matchbook collecting is “phillumeny.” The matchbook was invented in America in the 1890s. Front-strikers, with the striker on the front of the matchbook, are the oldest variety. Strikers were placed on the front until 1973, when for safety concerns, the strikers were moved to the back of the book. (There are a few early rear-strikers, but they are very rare.) The most common size contains 20 matches, thus the 20 front strike name for most of our older collectible matchbooks.
Here we feature some hard to find vintage matchbooks and some vintage match boxes. Find old hotel and resort matchbooks, vintage restaurant matches, sports matchbooks, or vintage advertising matchbooks.
Classic 1950s southern California matchbooks, including the rare La Valencia Hotel.
Early 1970s front strike matchbook for a California paraphernalia shop.
Great set of three classic 10-strike restaurant matches, two California and one New York.
50% OFF! this very rare 1980 promotional matchbook with a mail-in order form to purchase the Alien Nostromo Crew cap hat.
1950s front strike matchbook for a neighborhood market and liquor store on Balboa Island, California.
Classic, vintage Virginia City, Nevada front strike saloon matches.
Mid-1950s front strike horse racing matchbook.
Early 1950s matchbook from the historic Plantation Golf Club in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
50% OFF! this hard to find 1980 Maxell 'Pocketbox' match box with wood matches and a $2.00 coupon offer inside.
Early 1940s-50s matchbook from the legendary New Orleans hotel.
50% OFF! Very rare and unusual round match box of a central California savings and loan, promoting their rooftop 'weather beacon'.
Fantastic near mint 1950s matchbook for the luxurious California resort hotel.