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Posted Aug 21, 17 20:05 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Overrun Countries


I wrote the whole story of the set in the January 1998 American Philatelist, including how and when and why each subject was selected, which FDR proposals were rejected by the State Department (colonies of allies), other stamps that the POD considered part of the series (Bataan-Corregidor and China Resistance), essay designs by leading artists, plate layouts, production methods and varieties, FD ceremonies, and postal history.

Larry Sherman reprinted an abridged version of it in the CCC book The United States Post Office in World War II.

Several years later Roger Schnell and Jim Mazepa bought my collection, and I believe each of them took his share to gold.

Posted Aug 21, 17 18:55 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Precancels and a Small Breakthrough

MG: Thanks for clarifying about your editorship of the T & T Catalogue. My incorrect notion that Bill Cummings was editor at that time is a delusion I've held for 43 (!!!!) years. I'm certain that I didn't get this wrong idea from Bill himself, rather from one of the people at Scott who hired him. I'll blame this mistake on life in Manhattan in the early '70s; seem to recall that at least one other person has recently used that as an excuse. Although I only worked at Scott for 16 months, as one of several editorial assistants whom Cummings shared with James Hatcher, Lilly Fried, and Harvey Warm, I got to work with him frequently and at a moment's notice. A real pleasure doing so, as he was naturally funny, always fair-minded, and didn't seem to have a malicious bone in his body. Last time I saw him was Pacific '97. Please send him my very best regards!

JK, JB, & KL: The discussion of precancels, especially the posting of First Airmail precancels off and on cover, got me thinking that last year's purchase of precancelled Overrun Countries was prompted not on account of their Oregon origin but rather because the basic stamps, like #C3, are multicolored, which made them visually attractive. Even single-color precanceled stamps look good on cover. Floating around here somewhere is a ca. 1906 large-size multipage illustrated circular from a firm in Davenport, Iowa franked with a precanceled 1902 1 cent Franklin. Beautiful item, made even more so on account of a personal connection to Davenport. Obtained at the August 2016 Precanex show.

So all this led me to do a bit of brainstorming about the Overrun Countries series, of which I'd been aware since obtaining a mint set when I was a kid. Never gave much thought to these stamps until this morning. As is well documented, 12 of the 13 stamps were issued in 1943, between June 22 and December 7. Every one of these depicted flags of occupied sovereign nations in Europe.

Only the 13th stamp depicted the flag of a non-European nation, Korea, and it wasn't issued until November 2, 1944. Korea was not, however, a sovereign nation at this time. It had been annexed by Japan back in 1910, and since that time had been a protectorate or colony. Did some minimal research on the subject this morning, and it appears that sometime during the US involvement in the Second World War, Syngman Rhee (a name known to many of us who grew up during the '50s) persuaded FDR to recognize the Korean Provisional Government, a government-in-exile that had existed since 1919.

So, assuming that FDR had some influence on what US stamps were developed and issued, it might well have been his idea to add a Korea stamp to the Overrun Countries series. The series did not include a Philippines stamp, although its commonwealth status should have qualified it for inclusion in the series. Can't believe I'm the first person to notice this, and its undoubtedly been written up somewhere. I mention it merely to illustrate how talking about precances has led. Thank you, Board!

Posted Aug 21, 17 13:36 by paul bourke (paulb3)

Global Stamp

John Barwis

Thanks for the information -- what I thought was the case.

I anticipate a "frank and candid" conversation with some hapless postal official as soon as the eclipse passes.

Posted Aug 21, 17 13:00 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

Now Accepting PDR2017 Exhibits

I just uploaded the information here. It is also linked from the "exhibits" button above. Thank you to all who participated last year!

Hope to see some fresh entries with maybe some old friends mixed in.

Posted Aug 21, 17 10:13 by Rainer Fuchs (rainer)

Number of Members of German Philatelic Society (BDPh)

It was asked for the number of members of the German Philatelic society. It is currently around 38000 going down..., but not bad considering the size of Germany population.

Posted Aug 21, 17 7:47 by John Barwis (jbarwis)

Global stamp


It will be honored. I frequently use them for mailing heavier items to U.S. addresses.

Posted Aug 21, 17 7:19 by Michael Gutman (mikeg94)

Precancel Town and Type Catalog

Steve Frumkin, Bill Cummings did not edit this catalog. I edited the first five editions starting in 1974 and Arnold Selengut has edited the last two editions and is now working on the 8th edition.

Saw Bill at the annual convention a few weeks ago in Louisville. He remains an avid precancel collector and is one of the few old timers still with us.

Bill has contributed a great deal to the precancel world over the years and his latest gigantic effort has been to compile a listing with illustrations of all precancel fakes and forgeries.

Precancel collecting is a niche collecting area but like most niches it is narrow but very deep. There is an abundance of precancel catalogs to help both the new and advanced collector enjoy precancel collecting.

Precancel collecting permits one to collect in any way one wants and the ways are almost as numerous at the close to 600 members of the Precancel Stamp Society membership. In the precancel world new finds still occur which makes the thrill of the hunt ever more interesting.

Posted Aug 21, 17 7:13 by paul bourke (paulb3)

Interchangeability of stamps

Are current postage stamps interchangeable which is to say, if I mistakenly used a Global Forever stamp (present cost $1.15) on a domestic letter (current postage $.49) should the Global stamp be honored?? Thanks,


Posted Aug 21, 17 6:51 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

2c 1869 Issue Proofs


I removed your ebay links. If you want to buy proofs of the 2c 1869 issue, please contact James Lee, a specialist dealer in proofs and essays who has a web site here or buy from one of the top tier auction houses. To check values, you might do a "power search" of the RA Siegel website for comparables (#113P1 search results here).

It is unwise to buy proof and essay material on ebay unless you understand the nuances that make the field both interesting and dangerous at the same time.

Posted Aug 21, 17 2:25 by Henrik Mouritsen (dkcollector)

Dear all,

I am thinking of including a die or plate proof of the 1869 2cent pony express rider in my wife's open class exhibit. However, I am wondering that several of the items I see look like a plate proof or a die proof with small margins have been glued onto a much larger piece of paper. Are these fakes?

(RCF removed ebay links)

What's a fair market price for a genuine die and/or plate proof of this stamp?

Best wishes, Henrik

Posted Aug 20, 17 23:13 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

Final Garrett, WY Blog

Again---hoping to locate a C2 to complete my set of the 1918 airs with Garrett, WY handstamps. Here is another group from the Mary Banner Garrett post office.A fascinating woman and possibly a better shooter than Annie Oakley!! But, that's another story. Joe


Posted Aug 20, 17 20:59 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

1918 air Blocks on cover


Glad you like it!! Here's an unusual piece---cancelled after the stamps were applied. What are the odds it's flavor is "Philatelic"?


Posted Aug 20, 17 20:53 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

T&T devices

Looking through my 2002 listings, fewer than 10 of the T&T types discussed are handstamp singles---the VAST, overwhelming majority are HS(M)--Handstamp multiple, primarily 10 or 25 subject. Worth a look!!


Posted Aug 20, 17 20:34 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

Precanceled Air used!


That's a wonderful cover.  Fantastic.  I share your enthusiasm!


Posted Aug 20, 17 20:28 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Precancel T&T listings

John Boker collected all pre-vinyl types. Bill Cummings has explained that precancels struck by single-subject devices are not listable under PSS T&T criteria. Obviously they are collectible, but it's futile to expect a catalog to list stamps that it explicitly excludes.

Posted Aug 20, 17 20:09 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

Fun is the best part!!


Agree with you 100%. Of the more than 300 examples (counting C1-2-3) I've recorded---that being different T&T's, it's unlikely that 10% were legitimate. That's not even counting the known fakes, counterfeits, and even what some call provisionals.

Finding any legitimately used on card/cover/package is rare, but here is a good example.


Posted Aug 20, 17 19:54 by joe kirker (centuryc3)


Wish I could have been at the show, but, alas, not to be.

You are right in that the possible local/favors examples are just this side of infinite.

That is part of the "frenzy" that took place in the late teens and at least another decade---some of the early precancel monthly magazines had full pages of collectors seeking "newer" towns on the black Harding, Victory stamp, and(a little later,) the Lexington Concord, Huguenot Walloons, pilgrims, so on. There were some who literally travelled the country with batches of new issues so as to get every small town precancel they could get---and they had ample ready clients!!

Here's another "Late one"---or is it? Acquired this a few years ago (a pair) and sent it off, if I remember correctly,to both Mike Gutman and Phil Cayford for their opinions as to the precancel strike itself. Both gave positive approval.

It was the first 1918 air I had seen from Hawaii---someone care to research the story? The T&T is both PSS and Hoover listed, but Hoover does not mention any 1918 air. (sorry for the poor scan)


Posted Aug 20, 17 19:42 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

Precancels. . . again

The database was built because we wanted to extend knowledge of when devices of certain types for the towns were issued; not necessarily to promote collecting one way or another. After 50+ years in philately, if I have learned anything it is that people will collect whatever they enjoy chasing.

The T&T catalog is only one of many precancel catalogs.  There probably is not another specialty in philately with so many catalogs of one sort or another - and most have been or are in process of being brought into the digital age.

The problem is nevertheless, as I tried to point out, that given a disinterest in stamp issue, all precancel catalogs from the git-go listed pretty much anything an editor had seen. From a purists point of view, that's equivalent to GIGO.

And when one chooses to collect high value airs, it needs to be realized that while they can be collected for their aesthetic and all of the other resasons that we attach ourselves to these little bits of paper, not a lot of them were likely used as precancels.

So what?  Have fun; which is not likely someone would be able to do collecting them on commercial cover.

Posted Aug 20, 17 19:25 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Precancels T & T

I suppose that considering the almost infinite number of varieties that could be created due to favor-canceling using local precancels, it would be impossible to put together a truly complete listing no matter how much tiem and effort one devoted to the endeavor.

In a commercial sense, one might classify a way out-of-period postmark such as the 6 cent Jenny with the Ridgeway Iowa type introduced in 1932 in the same way one might regard the recently-discussed concentric-circle postmarks posthumously applied to unused examples of 1893 Columbian high-values. Collectible but not in the same class as a natural/necessary item.

Of course, at the other end of the spectrum are the Washington-Franklin Perf 11x11x11x10 varieties, some of which are worth several thousand dollars but are only known precanceled.

The Precancel Society's website lists various upcoming regional events. They had their 2016 convention in Portland immediately following the APS show. This included a five-day bourse with about 15 dealers. I impulse-bought a page of about 20 1943-44 Overrun Countries commemoratives with local precancels of some Portland-area small towns. Cost next to nothing but all highly attractive. I suspect that one could have bought some 1918 Airmails on that occasion.

Posted Aug 20, 17 18:44 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

PSS Town-Type

As I see the situation, creating a large data base to incorporate which postal issues would (probably) have been in postmasters hands during the life(?) of a governmental issue precancel device seems like a near-lifelong daunting challenge.

I suppose I'm just trying to understand the collecting "Purity" of it all, except to add extra legitimacy to a given example, or deduct from same. The PSS Catalogs, which began in 1973, covers towns and types extremely well, but no listing under each town and type with known postal issues. Of course, those who collect by town and type regardless of the stamp so handstamped, aren't concerned as much as would a collector seeking, say, a particular stamp or set (as I do with the 1918 airs).

The older Hoover Catalogues did a pretty good job of such listings--far from complete, but, at least the collector can search through the catalog say for any reference to the 6 cent Jenny (Scott C1 and Hoover #574).

Incorporating somewhat overlapping time frames of the PSS device "life" with probable yet-available postal issues , again, seems like a monumental challenge.

In my two monographs, I cross-referenced the PSS numbers for T&T's with the older Hoover #'say PSS 509 with Hoover H-2 for Salina, Kansas.

Here's an example of a DEFINITE late use!! (from my 2002 monograph)


Posted Aug 20, 17 17:51 by Alexander Haimann (bastamps)

Filatelic Fiesta WSP Show

Hello PhilaMercury Board Members,

I am posting on behalf of the Filatelic Fiesta WSP Show Committee - The 2017 show will take place November 11-12 in San Jose, CA. Applications to exhibit at the show are welcome! It's a World Series of Philately qualifying national show. Plus if you are in the San Jose area that weekend, please consider coming by to visit the bourse and peruse the exhibits

Show Website -

2017 Exhibit Prospectus -

Questions? Please reach out to the show chairwoman - Jessica Rodriguex

Email - [email protected]


Posted Aug 20, 17 16:29 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)


Don't believe he's posted on this board for a few years, but William (Bill) Cummings might be able to help with questions regarding precancels. Longtime editor-in-chief of the Scott Catalogue, first in NYC and later in Ohio, he was also editor of the Precancel Town & Type Catalogue, His meticulous attention to detail was one of the reasons he was hired by Scott, and this surely was of paramount importance in his precancel work, which, I suspect, required much 'weeding'.

Cummings' successor at Scott, Chad Snee, might be able to put you in touch with him.

Posted Aug 20, 17 16:01 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: Roland Lyon typescript list of all of the precancel devices

Jim and all,

Modern technology now would permit this information to be entered into an accessible data base with images as available. Who is the current steward of this information especially the original documentation?

Contact me off board if you wish.

Russ Ryle

Posted Aug 20, 17 15:57 by joe kirker (centuryc3)

Garrett, Wyoming

The handstamp prepared for Garrett was locally made by the Postmistress Mary A Garrett, probably in the later 1910's. She had been Postmistress in Rock Creek up to 1890 when her and husband Thomas moved to the Garrett area. She was born in England in 1863, but had emigrated to the US in the 1880's.

Even with a small general store, remote ranch life was financially difficult and making a some added funds by cancelling any postal issues she could get (or be sent) was a plus. There were, especially post WW1, collectors anxious to get "precancels"on any and all stamps possible, especially the new airs of 1918, 3 cent Victory issue, black Hardings, etc. The more remote and obscure the location the better! The precancel enthusiasts couldn't get enough.

The PSS Catalogs have never honored Garrett with any listings, The 1940 Hoover Brother's Black Book, covering US precancels to 1920, refers to the handstamp as "favor".

My Garrett examples were a gift to me from John R; Boker, Jr, who was great assistance when preparing both my First and Second Editions of "UNITED STATES AIRPOST, 1918, Precancel Towns and Types", 1991 and 2002. US precancels were certainly one of Mr Boker's true passions (he was even the New York State Editor for the 1940 Hoover Black Book.)

Mary Garrett, maiden name Banner, died in 1925. Many other interesting facts surround her and her life, but no room here. Suffice that by saying she was also the First Woman in the World to be appointed a Justice of the Peace (according to WOMEN of WYOMING)

The following excerpt is taken from my 2002 monograph mentioned above (self-published):


Posted Aug 20, 17 15:22 by Terence Hines (thines)

The One-Cent Maganta by James Barron

This is a most fascinating and enjoyable book and an easy read. The interviews with some of the major, recent, players in the story of the 1 cent added a lot to my knowledge of the history of the stamp. There was also a lot of history that was new, to me at least. However, it's hard to figure out why there wasn't a single picture in the book - not of the stamp in question, other famous stamps and covers described or any of the major figures involved. Pictures would have made the story even more interesting for non-collectors.

Posted Aug 20, 17 13:07 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Precanceled 1918 air mail stamps

Jim Baird is mostly right (but the man's name was Rolston Lyon). I once owned and wrote about Rolston Lyon's first dated precancel pair, which became a key item in Clyde Jennings's "Half A— Collection."

However, regarding precancel usage, the POD annually encouraged postmasters to use precanceled postage on Christmas season parcels to expedite service at the counters. After 1918 there was little call for the 1918 air mails, so those remainders often were put to that use, including at small post offices. Even so, the largest user of those precancels was the APS publisher.

Posted Aug 20, 17 12:38 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

Michael Laurence

Sorry, I forgot to get this in.  Michael is:

-a prince of a man
-extremely knowledgeable about postal history and philately in general
-not all knowing (and he knows it) - so he depends on his section editors
-conscious to a fault about getting facts straight
-the editor of the finest journal of its kind in the world
-principally responsible for that

Working with him - and section editors - has been an absolute joy for me.


Posted Aug 20, 17 12:31 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

Garrett, WY

The Garrett WY cancel shown on Joe Kirker's post is not listed in the Precancel Stamp Society "Town & Type Catalog. "  The "form" is not of a government issued precancel device.  It was probably made locally, perhaps by the postmaster - who either precanceled stamps for collectors; or loaned it to collectors who would no doubt have run riot with it.

It must be remembered that precancels, legitimately used for the purpose which they served (avoiding delay in canceling in the post office), wwere generally used on third class mail by mass mailers.  Who would have had a need for mass mailing catalogs, whatever using airmail stamps?

Beginning in mid-20th century, a lot of serious precancel collectors began work on the "T&T" catalog as it is known - and a huge amount of effort has been put into listing precancels which demonstrate precancels created by use of government issued precancel devices.  The effort continues among a serious handful of collectors who are deadly serious about keeping out the weeds.

It is interesting that the discipline shown in this has never been extended to the stamp issues on which precancels are found.  A precancel listed in the catalog, while highly likely legitimate, might be found on issues which preceded or succeeded the likely use of a given device.  So over the years, precancel collectors have asked postmasters to cancel their chosen stamps without regard to issue - "favors" they are called.  This makes for interesting "state listings" catalogs which voluminously list a legitimate type on all issues seen!

Back in the mists of time, a gentleman whose name was Roland Lyon, a post office employee with access to their records, created a typescript list of all of the precancel devices issued by the post office department to postmasters. As I recall, he listed by town the date a device was shipped and the kind of device - whether made by typeset, electrotype, vinyl, etc..  The "type numbers" which are assigned in the T&T catalog are the creation of the catalog editors.

But as I said, no one has ever been seriously concerned about which stamp issues were likely current when a device was used. (Devices were replaced from time to time by the gov't for various reasons.) Twenty or more years ago, I did the grunt work of transcribing Lyon's list into a digital database program and a couple of extremely knowledgeable fellows went to work on it and translated what Lyon had done using the town name, date the device was issued, and the kind of precancel device - and added the "catalog type number" to the database. I have forgotten how many separate listings there were.  Maybe 45000, on that order. I undertook the project with the idea that perhaps one day a collector might come along who wanted to collect precancel towns and types by the issue of stamps that was current at the time the device was current.

The idea - and the database list - drew a collective yawn.

Posted Aug 20, 17 11:13 by Steve Roth (inland waterways)


I agree with Gordon and Ron. Michael and his section editors do a superb job.

Bernard, if you aren't happy with the Chronicle, try to improve it with a scholarly, comprehensible article.

Posted Aug 20, 17 7:19 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Wright card?


That link doesn't work.

Added: But I did find some 1908 Wright cards from France. Thank you.

Posted Aug 20, 17 3:54 by Chip Gliedman (cgliedman)

Chronicle Articles

As the section editor of the 1861 area of the Chronicle, I invite anyone to submit an article (or correction) for the section. If you're not a confident writer, don't worry. We can turn just about any good ideas into a reasonable article.

Bernard- you're welcome to try again in my section. I'll try to make it as painless as possible.


Posted Aug 19, 17 23:31 by Roland Cipolla (roncipolla)

As for Gordon's comment - ditto!

Posted Aug 19, 17 22:47 by Gordon Eubanks (gordon)


The Chronicle is superbly edited by a dedicated philatelist. Nothing more to say.

Posted Aug 19, 17 22:16 by Bernard Biales (bernard b)


      Scott, You do not seem to be following the conversation.  My comments referred to several incidents involving several editors and was in response to a specific challenge of John Barwis about publishing in the Chronicle, not about the broader range of article problems.   So you completely mischaractized the development of the comments.  I did mention a specific editorial fault, and offered to discuss this off line. My feeling is that a blunt discussion of this in such a public forum will do more damage than good. 
     Writing an article is often an inappropriate method to deal with problems -- again, if you want an example I will give it off line.  A properly supervised letters or corrigenda is an infinitely faster way to get to the truth.  I can point to many failures that were not corrected for years or at all in the literature.

Posted Aug 19, 17 22:02 by Bernard Biales (bernard b)

Early Aviation Postcards


This is an image of a September 1908 sending from the Wrights.  I have to believe earlier postcards must have been produced for Santos Dumont and others' airplanes. It looks like an image search will turn up more.

Posted Aug 19, 17 21:14 by Scott Trepel (strepel)



I would prefer to let the matter rest. I initially responded to Terence H.'s criticism of Jay, and then to your criticism of the Chronicle editor, which felt more like complaining about an incident, rather than an accurate assessment of the editor's overall performance.

Regarding your suggestion about a Letters section, I dislike "Letters to the Editor" almost as much as I dislike "tweets" over substantive matters. Scholarship is an evolving process, and if there is something that must be published to correct or expand an article, I am sure that Michael Laurence will publish it.

Case in point: The Confederate Philatelist published a preposterous article about the New Orleans postmaster's provisionals a couple of years ago. It did not receive peer review and contained demonstrably false statements and innuendo. The CP then published an excellent rebuttal article by Frank Crown. A Letter to the Editor would not have sufficed to correct the record.

Herman "Pat" Herst Jr. was a famous writer. However, as Dick Sine (editor of the American Philatelist many years ago) once told me, much of what Pat Herst published was closer to fiction than reality. True that.

Posted Aug 19, 17 21:03 by Bernard Biales (bernard b)


Scott,  Please read or reread both of my previous postings.  If you, or anyone, really needs more detail about the interactions I mentioned or examples of bad articles, and intends to do something creative about it, please get in touch with me offline. 
    I will expand on one point.  In my opinion, the lack of a letters section, where problems could be easily addressed and new information made available in response to articles, results in regrettably imbedded, rather than transient (interesting word)  faults. 

Posted Aug 19, 17 21:02 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Stanley Gibbons Park Row

Just did a google search on Milton J. Mirman.

Fourth item that came up was his 1999 obituary.

Posted Aug 19, 17 21:00 by Scott Trepel (strepel)

Stanley Gibbons Inc.

The British and American firms were separate entities and unrelated except in name.

The business was run by Gordon Nowell-Usticke. He was an extremely knowledgeable dealer and disovered a large number of 2c Harding Rotary Perf 11s (Scott 613). He was also a prominent conchologist (shell collector) and collector of Rembrandt etchings.

Siegel and Weill bought the SG Inc. stock and Usticke estate, including the etchings, which they turned over to Parke Bernet. It is still considered the greatest collection of its kind ever formed or sold. I recall Siegel and Weill lamenting that the etchings they sold for a shallow six-figures would have been worth a solid eight or nine figures if they had held it until the 1990s.
That handstamp is definitely Stanley Gibbons Inc. It is also found on Bluish Paper stamps bought close to the time of sale at the post office.

Posted Aug 19, 17 20:58 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Stanley Gibbons NY


The two companies might have been related at one time. When I visited their office in 1973 or 1974, they were not.

Just checked the 1970 ASDA directory:

Stanley Gibbons Inc., 38 Park Row, NY 10038 (212)-CO7-2766. Owner is listed as Milton J. Mirman.

I believe they produced the handy 'guide' to US envelope papers which contained samples of the different color/paper varieties.

Posted Aug 19, 17 20:42 by Gregory Waldecker (stampman2002)

FDR's National Parks Imperforate Sheets


It could very well be. I thought the two firms were related. They weren't?

Posted Aug 19, 17 20:28 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

FDR's Sheets

Could the handstamp be that of the long-established Nassau Street firm Stanley Gibbons, no relation to the London-based firm?

Posted Aug 19, 17 20:19 by Gregory Waldecker (stampman2002)

FDR's National Parks Imperforate Sheets

I'm looking for information about the break-up of FDR's National Parks Imperforate sheets. Here's what I have so far:

Roosevelt received a complete set of sheets from PMG Farley before they were gummed and perforated. This was in 1934, not to be confused with the 1935 Reprints. This is well documented in the philatelic and news press of the time, as well as Ralph Sloat's book "Farley's Follies."

Roosevelt retained these and they were sold by H.R. Harmer in 1946. The National Parks sheets were sold together as one lot. Again, well documented.

Here's where I need the help. Sometime after the 1946 sale, Stanley Gibbons acquired the sheets. They broke the sheets up and rubber stamped a small Stanley Gibbons Incorp logo on the reverse, penciling in "FDR" and the position of each stamp.

Does anyone have any documentation about this? An advertisement, a suggestion as to where and when to look, a news article or some other documentation. I've even called Stanley Gibbons but no one there knew what I was talking about.

I look forward to hearing what everyone has to say about this.

Here's one of the FDR stamps with the markings described above. This is from the 9 cent stamp. I chose this one because of its clarity; I have a full set of these.


Posted Aug 19, 17 18:54 by Scott Trepel (strepel)



You wrote:
"The Chronicle is a precious resource, but the editorial oversight for a supposedly scholarly journal, is occassionally pretty awful.  Also, there seems to be limited capacity to correct scholarly infelicities."

I have reviewed articles at Michael Laurence's request and, in a few cases, have worked with the author to revise or expand the content. In my experience, Michael is diligent about peer review. For the most part, peer review has helped the authors and improved the content.

Historians have a knack for criticising others' research and alluding to "sloppiness." It's part of the game. However, placing the blame on the editor is misguided. We are lucky to have volunteer or modestly-compensated editors who do all of the work gathering articles, reviewing content (and in many cases translating them into an acceptable form of English), creating the printer-ready document and frequently writing articles.

I think John Barwis made an excellent suggestion. You should produce one or more substantive articles for the Chronicle. I think you would make a valuable contribution.

As for the past, I am sure we can find lots of errors, factual or otherwise. I am certainly prolific in that category of publishing. So be it. The moment one believes he or she has achieved infallibility, it is time to stop writing.

Posted Aug 19, 17 16:32 by Mark Schwartz (schwamoo)

Jay Bigalke

Matt, that was my understanding as well. The opportunity with Amos Press, which might possibly go beyond Linn's in the future, plus the difficult weekly commute from Ohio, was just too much to be overcome with a pay increase at the APS. My own view is that Jay has done very well with the AP, bringing much more interesting articles into the magazine for all levels of collectors. We will miss him, but all wish him well in his new position.

Posted Aug 19, 17 16:17 by Matthew Kewriga (mkewriga)

Linns verse APS


As I understand from Scott, the determining factor for Jay was not the money but proximity to home. He was traveling away from home to Bellefonte for the job.

Posted Aug 19, 17 14:28 by Bernard Biales (bernard b)

The Chronicle

John,  I am not that eager to make this about individuals who are putting in a lot of valuable volunteer effort, excellent or misguided as those may be.  But I suppose I need make some response to your challenge.
    I will, without naming names, point out that my article was first deep sixed for obviously false reasons, and in the face of a positive recommendation from Richard Frajola who was consulted by the editor on his own initiative, (the editor claimed my article might make people think the covers were more valuable than they are.  I'm not kidding.  For the form of it, I pointed out that I no longer owned the covers and they had been sold to two leading experts).  The editor promised response, but, unsurprisingly, did not reply.  Under a new regime, the article was published, but a new editor added a false footnote. 
     More recently I was asked to help review submitted articles, to which I agreed.  I pointed out the first article submitted was probably wrong, that exciting things could be done with the material, but that a simple addition of about two sentences would change the ariticle from great weakness to acceptability.  Not only were my suggestions rejected (which I could live with) but I was lied to about the problem, which is unacceptable.  As I recall, the Chronicle unilaterally terminated the consultancy, although I would not have continued in any case without an apology.
     If you wish examples of weak articles, I am ready to discuss this offline.
     Would you be chary of publishing in a journal that had repeatedly lied and undermined you?   Do you understand why I did not want to get too specific in my previous sending? 

Posted Aug 19, 17 13:11 by John Barwis (jbarwis)

The Chronicle


Instead of scatter-gun innuendo, why don't you give a specific example of poor editorial oversight?

Better yet, if you would like to see the journal improved, why not submit a scholarly article? The last time you published in The Chronicle was 17 years ago.

Posted Aug 19, 17 12:46 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Number of Stamps

JK, RS, & PD,

Thanks very much for your comments.

Wasn't aware of Kortelainen and his estimate. Pretty impressive. Factoring in the stamps issued in 2016 & 2017, I'm feeling comfortable with his quantity of 800,000+.

In my thinking, I had included Postage Dues and other Back-of-the-Book stamps but not Revenues or any Postal Stationery. Even if one includes Local stamps, those surely would add less than 100,000 to the total quantity.
Wouldn't be at all surprised if there are actually more than 1,000,000 different stamps. For my presentation, I'm now planning to say an estimated quantity of 800,000 to 1,000,000.

Posted Aug 19, 17 12:36 by Bernard Biales (bernard b)

Bernard B

The Chronicle is a precious resource, but the editorial oversight for a supposedly scholarly journal, is occassionally pretty awful.  Also, there seems to be limited capacity to correct scholarly infelicities.
One example that would be funny if it were not so tragic --- a contributor was not allowed to include important covers that he could not explain (as part of a larger study).   But of course getting out unexplained material gives access to the wider community to contribute to the solution. 

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