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About Us
Worldwide Specimen Shells was founded in 1977 by Richard Goldberg who has collected shells since his youth. The idea to start his mail order shell business was more or less happenstance. After issuing a couple of very small, but successful printed price lists containing extra shells from his collection, the business began to grow. This was at a time not too long before the advent of personal computers, yet long before the Internet became part of almost every household. Richard has been proactive in the use of new technologies for Worldwide Specimen Shells, the same technologies that are now changing and benefiting the hobby and science of conchology or shell collecting. This Web site is one of the outcomes.

By profession Richard is an award winning television writer/producer of non-broadcast programming, yet he's been self-studied in molluscan sciences or malacology. He became very knowledgeable about non-marine or "land" shells. His interest and support field work and research of a particular group of land shells from Southeast Asia led to the discovery of a species of mollusk then unknown to science. The land shell, endemic to a small island in the eastern Indonesian Archipelago was later named for him.
< Amphidromus richardi

Richard travels extensively around the world in search of new and interesting shells for his shell business. He scuba dives and is an avid hiker and outdoorsman in search of exotic land shells. His travels have taken him throughout the West Indies, the Mediterranean, Indonesia and, of course, the U.S.

Richard has actively participated in local, national and international shell clubs. At 31 years old, Richard became the youngest President of the Conchologists of America, an international organization of shell collectors; this after being editor of their quarterly publication. He has also judged numerous competitive shell shows across the country and is an experienced appraiser of shell collections.
He's written dozens of popular articles about shells and shell collecting in conchological newsletters and journals published both here in the U.S. and overseas. His shell and nature photography has been published in a number of books and magazines, and film and video footage he shot of mollusks has been used on science television programs. He also wrote, produced and directed the first television news magazine devoted solely to the hobby and science of conchology.

Richard actively promotes the hobby of shell collecting through talks and presentations given to shell clubs, museums, conferences, schools and even the Girl Scouts. One presentation given to a Brownie Troop led to the awarding of a "Mollusks" merit badge to all of the girls who participated. The largest venue to talk about and promote shells and shell collecting came when he was invited to be a guest on the Martha Stewart Living television show in March 2004. More recently Richard has worked again with the Martha Stewart producers, providing shells used in a segment dealing with Tiffany Pearls.

Richard created this commercial site for Worldwide Specimen Shells and a related non-commercial shell Web site called "Conchology - The Art & Science of Nature at worldwideconchology.com. The two Web sites have evolved enormously since they first appeared back in the mid-1990's. With conchology solidly anchored on the Internet, the future looks bright for Richard and Worldwide Specimen Shells after more than 30 years of offering shells of scientific value and aesthetic beauty to shell collectors around the world. Since 1977, Worldwide has been "Your One Stop Marine & Land Shell Connection".
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Contact Information
Do you have a question about shells or shell collecting, or want to know more about a shell for sale on this Web site?  You can email us ** at worldwide "at" rcn.com (replace the "at" with the @ symbol).
Snail mail inquiries and orders can be sent to:
Worldwide Specimen Shells
P.O. Box 6088
Columbia, MD 21045-8088; U.S.A.

Telephone: (443) 535-0427
We BUY AND EXCHANGE shells from SCUBA divers, field collectors and those with access to shells brought up in trawl nets and fish traps. Contact us with your offer to sell or exchange your self-collected marine and land shells. We only consider well-documented specimens of the highest quality. The more uncommon or unusual your shells the more likely we are inclined to consider an exchange or purchase. Please have a price in mind for the shell(s) when contacting us. A number of shells offered for sale on our Web site have come through similar channels. The benefits of such sales and exchanges with us are excellent.

We also purchase individual high quality shells from private collections.

INHERITED A SHELL COLLECTION from a loved one? Inquire about our Shell Collection Appraisal and Disbursement Services. Over the past 30 years we have handled dozens of large and small shell collection appraisals that were donated to major museums around the U.S. with the appraisals used for tax purposes of the estate.

** Please note that due to increased incidents of frivolous "fishing-for-information" we have adopted a policy not to conduct correspondence without first having your full contact information, which includes a valid mailing address and phone number where you can be reached. It is a policy that many in the shell business adhere to. We appreciate your understanding.

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