Add to GuideAsk a Question

Selling Old Encyclopedias

Unfortunately old sets of encyclopedias typically don't have much value, they have become dated. Some crafters might be interested for using them to make altered books or for decoupage projects. This is a guide about selling old encyclopedias.


Share on ThriftyFunThis guide contains the following solutions. Have something to add? Please share your solution!

By 8 found this helpful
April 2, 2012

For over a year I have tried selling an encyclopedia set that is in pristine condition on Craigslist. I have even seen ads where people are giving away their encyclopedias for FREE. Due to the internet there is nothing that you can't find that isn't in the encyclopedia except the photos. However, they like other books, seem to be a thing of the past. It really is a shame.

Unfortunately I have to downsize and one of the things I have to part with are my books, so the encyclopedias seem to be hanging around without any responses to purchase them. I will probably end up donating them if I can find someone who wants them. I guess the only value of encyclopedia is the sentimental value one has for them. I myself think it is a beautiful sight to see books lining a bookshelf.

By carol from Beverly, MA

Comment Was this helpful? 8


April 7, 20120 found this helpful
Top Comment

Almost every day someone asks the value of a set of encyclopedias. Every day the answer is nothing. There is a reason for this. Information in a set of encyclopedias is almost instantly outdated. Names of countries change.


Statistics change. World leaders change and it is likely that whatever information you are looking for might not be accurate. Also they take up a lot of room. Encyclopedias can now be bought in sets of CDs that can be updated with very little cost. It is a pity that there is no use for them.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
April 7, 20120 found this helpful
Top Comment

I already intered a suggestion as to saving the pictures in these books. Some of them are of places as they were years ago or of places that no longer exist. They can be used for art projects. Someone suggested hollowing several of them out to keep valuables in. No one is going to steal these books.

I also thought that if you have friends or family members who appreciate a good joke you could give them wrapped version of the book with has their initial in it then when they open it there could be a nice gift inside or an envelope of money.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
April 7, 20120 found this helpful
Top Comment

I took my 1955 World Book encyclopedia set to Half Price Books in the Dallas area. They buy books but said all they could do for me was to recycle them.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
September 22, 20120 found this helpful
Top Comment

If you're having trouble finding a home for your set, call up your local theater company. Mine was more than happy to take one of my old encyclopedia sets to use as stage decoration, and they sent me a thank you letter that I could use for filing the donation as a tax deduction.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
April 25, 20160 found this helpful
Top Comment

I am donating mine to the local public library. I get a tax deduction and the library can sell them to raise money to help the library. Win/Win.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes


Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

September 25, 20110 found this helpful

I have had this book for a long time and need to know how I can sell them. Thanks.

By JoAnn B.


September 26, 20110 found this helpful

Unfortunately, most encyclopedia sets have very little monetary value. (Our library's annual book sale won't even take them, because they don't sell.) If you have a full set, you might do better to donate them to a school or youth program, and take the tax deduction.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
September 27, 20110 found this helpful

Most schools are not interested in old encyclopedias either. In my school, we toss out the old sets. Or try to use them for crafts or something.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question...

By 0 found this helpful
May 26, 2012

I am trying to sell my complete set of The Book of Knowledge, 1957, children's encyclopedia. It is the deluxe Mastercraft edition. Any advice?


By brickcity from Syracuse, NY


September 5, 20130 found this helpful

Do you still have this item? I'll pay you $50 for it shipped.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes
Answer this Question...

July 9, 20140 found this helpful

How much would I get for a set of Compton's encyclopedias?

By Maria

Answer this Question...

June 4, 20130 found this helpful

I have a 20 book, full set of encyclopedias. They are in excellent condition, copyright of 1992, hardback. I'd like to know how much they are worth. Any help?

By Megan D.

Answer this Question...

April 5, 20120 found this helpful

When my gran and I where cleaning out her bookcase we found 6 volumes of The New International Illustrated Encyclopaedia. We don't know if they are worth anything so any answers would be great.



By Alan

Answer this Question...
Related Content
Consumer Advice General AdviceFebruary 23, 2017
Halloween Ideas!
Thanksgiving Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.

Desktop Page | View Mobile

Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us

© 1997-2018 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Generated 2018/10/19 21:29:18 in 1 secs. ⛅️️ ⚡️
Loading Something Awesome!