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150-Year-Old Valentine for Sale

The Valentine was sent to Miss Clara Marsh in 1857.



    (Published Friday, Feb. 14, 2014)

    They say true love lasts forever - or at least 150 years.

    A historic Valentine's Day card, that dates back to 1857, is making an appearance at the Broward Convention Center for the start of the American Stamp Dealers Association convention from Feb. 14-16.

    The letter, being sold by collector Stanley Piller of San Francisco, is the original Valentine sent to Miss Clara Marsh in St. Louis. Miss Marsh and her beau were married less than three months later, according to Piller.

    "So it must've worked," Piller said.

    While the letter is valuable on its own, the stamped envelope, which was originally sent for 2 cents, is what ramps up the collectible's worth.

    "There are only five of these envelopes around," Piller said.

    Piller is asking for $50,000 for the letter, the envelope and the couple's marriage certificate.

    The hefty price tag isn't unusual for items like this one.

    "The collectible holds its value, really better than any other collectible," said Amy Niklaus, executive director of the ASDA.

    Read the text of the letter below:

    "I am dead in love, I’ll flee with thee
    By night or day, by land or sea
    Then come along, but just to prove the matter
    Tie a white ribbon to your window shutter
    Which shall by me be that fair warning
    As I pass by tomorrow morning
    In haste,
    Your Valentine"