This October, I have been celebrating (U.S.) National Stamp Collecting Month with near-daily articles about different aspects of the hobby and mail delivery on my A Stamp A Day blog. Today’s article about the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. was my last on the subject, my 23rd in a month of 31 days. Tomorrow’s post will be Halloween-themed. After that, I will be taking a two-month break from lengthy ASAD articles. I will still post an image of a stamp from my collection each day during that time, but the descriptions will be extremely bare-boned (probably just the stamp’s caption and a line or two about the subject portrayed). There are several reasons for this, and I will explain them in my article on that blog on November 1.
In the meantime, I’d like to share the photos NOT used in today’s National Postal Museum article. This is a place I haven’t yet visited but I will definitely remedy that on my next trip to the United States. These photos help to remind me why I want to go. It might take me a few more years, but I will get there eventually….
Long-time readers of this blog and Asian Meanderings may recall that, from time to time, I have dabbled with creating “fantasy stamps” for my own local post. The Muang Phuket Local Post had its first releases in October 2013 and had a total of 26 designs through early August 2015. The stamps were printed on sticker paper (imperforate!) and affixed to the lower left of any correspondence I sent. I mailed first day covers to myself from a postbox near my work and these usually took between ten and 14 days to travel the two miles or so to my home (I think most of them went via Bangkok, 525 miles away!).
It’s been a busy month at work for me but still I have maintained daily articles for A Stamp A Day, all but a very small handful revolving around the theme of National Stamp Collecting Month. Today’s article gives a history of postcards, an introduction to collecting them and a discussion of the Postcrossing project. I’d chosen a Postcrossing-themed stamp from Romania to illustrate the article and planned to sprinkle scans from my meager collection of six stamps related to this topical.
At about the time I should have been wrapping up the article this afternoon, I began putting together a checklist of all of the Postcrossing stamps I could find. Not only that, but I sought out images of each of the stamps themselves (not always an easy task). I came up with a total of 20 different issues between October 2011 and early this year and 42 different stamps. Rather than simply throwing them into a slideshow, I decided to create an illustrated version of my list here on Philatelic Pursuits. Most of the images and catalogue numbers were sourced from the Colnect online catalogue with the Universal Postal Union’s WADP listings and Postcrossing providing a few others plus some information on sheet sizes and stamp designers. The listing is in chronological order.
It’s a great topical, both for stamp collectors and for deltiologists who love Postcrossing. Which reminds me: I haven’t sent or received any postcards at all in 2018 (been too busy with other endeavors, I suppose) so I think I should get cracking and write some cards this weekend.
This past Friday, Thailand Post announced — complete with design images — its first stamp for 2019 marking the Year of the Pig, due for release on January 1. This served as a reminder to me that it had been a while since I’d written about Thailand’s stamps released over the past few months. In fact, the last time I posted an article about Thai new issues was way back at the beginning of April!
Unfortunately, due to my work schedule, I haven’t been able to buy any stamps at the post office since mid-May (shortly after the issuance of the Thai-Turkish joint issue and they’d already sold out of the first day cover by that time!). Thus, most of the images in this article were sourced from eBay, Thailand Post, Siam Stamp Catalog, and the Facebook page of the Thailand Stamp Museum. My next day off that also is not a post office holiday won’t be until late December so I may just have to wait until the annual yearbook is released in February to obtain all of the stamps I’ve missed this year!
I won’t provide much commentary on the stamps in this article other than date of issue and a few other details. I have included the Thailand Post issue numbers for reference; it usually takes a few years (!) before I can track down Scott or Michel catalogue numbers….
October 9 is World Post Day, commemorating the date in 1874 that the Universal Postal Union was established. The week surrounding this date is also marked as International Letter Writing Week. My A STAMP A DAY blog has several articles about the Universal Postal Union and the commemorations of it, most extensive are those that appeared on this date in 2016 and one I published yesterday.
I have obtained a number of stamps over the years that specifically celebrate either International Letter Writing Week or World Post Day; many more in my collection mark the Universal Postal Union in some way (I have most of the 1949 omnibus for the UPU’s 75th anniversary, for example). I put together about 90 of my favorites for the slideshow below, titled by catalogue numbers (mostly Scott, but some of the newer stamps bear numbers from Michel, Stanley Gibbons, Thailand Post, and the UPU’s own World Numbering System..
Enjoy the stamps, write some letters (or postcards), and use the posts in your country!
Although I have lived in southern Thailand with its myriad of Royal and Buddhist holidays for going on 14 years now, there are a few American observances that I steadfastly cling to such as Independence Day and Thanksgiving (school is always in session during Christmas and the weather is so hot that I try to avoid the holiday altogether unless I am called upon to wear the Santa Claus costume to the delight of kindergarteners).
My favorite American “celebration”, of course, remains National Stamp Collecting Month each October. It is a rather philatelic month elsewhere as well containing such stamp-related observances as International Letter-Writing Week, World Post Day and several nations’ Stamp Days. In years past, I have promoted the stampy nature of October with a beginning-of-the-month article here on Philatelic Pursuits and the creation of a banner used on my personal Facebook page. For 2018, estimated to be my 35th year as a collector, I plan to step things up a notch or two.