Click on image for a lesson:
Here is another (scary) auction from an Ebayer with a rating of a 1000+ (even scarier!):
"Original Civil War Steamer "Shenandoah" Photograph
This is a framed original photograph of the US Steamer Shenandoah 1864. There is an old piece of paper with very well worn edges below the photograph, stating in old handwriting: U.S. Steamer Shenandoah‚ (1864). She took part in the blockade in 1864 that captured Fort Fisher during the Civil War. She weighed 1,378 tons and carried two 11-inch, two 24-pound and two 12-pound guns along with 171 men." The photograph came from a estate sale in Palm Springs, California".
What are the clues that help me identify this as a modern image? Well.... The burnt edges ("well worn" as stated in the auction) on the paper is the first thing that sets off a huge alarm. This is done to give the appearance of age. I thought that went out in the 1970's! Also, even though the seller never gives a close up photograph of the image for sale, it is obvious to the experienced eye that this is a copy of a civil war picture. Here's how to get experienced quickly in this case-look at the total packaged being auctioned- no close up images, a modern frame, the writing is modern, written on modern paper with modern ink and the "buy it now" option is available for $30.00. If it were real, it would cost a lot more than that. The total package being auctioned screams "1970's folk art". The clincher is the following statement from the last line of the auction: "As this is an auction, items are sold AS-IS, unless otherwise noted."
Pay attention to all the associated factors in an ebay auction and it will save you MONEY.