Ben Rapaport, a Virginia resident, retired U.S. Army career officer, and currently working as a systems integrator for a high-tech defense firm, has been collecting antique pipes for 40 years. Although his collection includes examples from around the globe, he has a special fondness for pipes, cheroot holders, and cigarette holders of meerschaum made in the last half of the 19th century to early in the 20th century. He is the author of four books on collecting tobacciana and has co-authored several other works on related tobacciana subjects. He was initiated into the Pipe Smoker's Hall of Fame in 1973, elected as the U.S. founding member of the International Academy of the Pipe in 1985, and inducted as a ConfrŠre Pipier of the Confr‚rie des MaŒtres Pipiers de Saint-Claude in 1991. He regularly writes for art journals and tobacco trade magazines about the lure and lore of tobacco collectibles. He believes that this latest written contribution to the collecting world will visibly-and unquestionably-show why he and so many other enthusiasts collect antique meerschaums.
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