The TAC Difference

By Dan Matthews


Why Choose The Authentication Company? Learn the TAC Difference

At Matthews, we want our clients to be sure they're not getting a fake collectable. That's why we take extra care with your antique collection and make sure it lives up to our TAC standards. 

We at TAC have been authenticating antiques for almost 25 years. We take our authentication so seriously, we designed a whole rating system just for our process.

We must hold the piece in our hands. We do not authenticate from photos. This ensures we can see all sides of the piece and accurately review its overall condition as well as details that prove its authenticity. 

Antiques verification with TAC (pronounced “tack”) guarantees all items marked with their security holograms & serial numbers to be original items and not reproductions. Items that are found to be authentic received a specific TAC number for a specific item.  No items will have the same TAC number. 


We take our authentication so seriously, we designed a whole rating system just for our process.


Get Peace of Mind through TAC Number Authenticity

When you have an item that is "TAC'd" (receives our official number indicating its authenticity) we will maintain the information in our TAC database that shows it is an original sign. When and if you sell it, the buyer will know the piece they're buying is authentic.

All of our specialty items have maintained or increased their value over the decades. 

Because these items continue to rise in value, you should make sure that you are buying what you think you are. 

It is well worth getting your item "TAC'd". When items are in similar condition, a TAC'd item will appraise at a higher value than other antiques.


When items are in similar condition, a TAC'd item will appraise at a higher value than other antiques.


The TAC Process

Using our own renowned rating system, we (Dan and Joey, the TAC owners) make sure the antique item is of the period, not an new reproduction (copy) or fantasy sign.

A TAC employee will review your item to determine if it is authentic.  Items deemed as authentic will received a TAC number, which is generally placed on the front edge of an item (TAC’s discretion is used when placing the tags on items).  TAC will also give the item a rating on a 1 to 10 scale which is good only for the day of the authentication.  TAC uses the Matthews Grading System which can be viewed here.

TAC will also give customers a general market price estimate of the item at the time of authentication. 

Large Collections

Clients with larger collections should invest in a TAC gold or platinum membership. There, you can maintain a detailed database list of your items with TAC numbers, ratings, price estimates, etc.  For many collectors, this is a great way to have your collection in an easily accessible file format or a printed document.


Benefits of Getting Items TAC'd

Individual collectors and auction houses can benefit from antiques authentication from Matthews TAC.

  • For Auction Houses: we authenticate the item, write a description and rate each item. We do not post the items that the auction house sells until after the items sell actual sale prices are made public.
  • For Individuals: we estimate the value of the items we are authenticating.

All of our specialty items have maintained or increased their value over the decades. 


If you only have one item we can help you, or you own (or inherited) a whole collection of antique signs or other collection in one of our fields of expertise, we can help you authenticate a collection, too. The process is just a little different, depending on how many items you have. 


Small Collections

You can send the items to us or bring it to a show where we are authenticating. 



Large Collections

Got a collection that's too big to travel? We can travel to you. Contact us to discuss travel options. Note that collections must be estimated to be at a specific dollar amount for our travel services.