When it comes to antique prints, the owners of are experts. So much so, that they spend several weeks a year appraising items like the ones sold in their shop on “Antiques Roadshow”.
“They do the tapings over the summer, in six cities around the country. The owners divvy it up pretty evenly,” said Jane Toczek, who works at the shop.
Donald Cresswell, who runs the shop in Chestnut Hill, and Christopher Lane, who moved to Denver and opened a second location there two years ago, are the owners of The Philadelphia Print Shop. They split the Roadshow appearances between East and West coasts.
Lane opened The Philadelphia Print Shop West in Denver when he moved there for a teaching opportunity his wife received.
But in the shop in Germantown Avenue, on the corner of East Highland Avenue, the shop runs the gamut of prints, from customers coming in to check out old maps, to serious collectors with several thousand dollars to spend. ()
“A lot of people think we only sell Philadelphia prints, we’ll have someone come in and say they want to look at maps, and I’ll ask what kind of maps, and they’ll say ‘maps of anything.’ Well, we have everything from France to Nebraska to the North Pole,” Toczek said.
The shop is an educational place, as well. People come in looking for information, and Toczek herself said she learns new things all the time while she is doing research on the prints in the store.
“We had a print of Dartmouth by an engraver who was a convicted forger. But he was the best. So when they wanted the print of Dartmouth engraved by the best, they had to get him out of prison,” Toczek said.