Before confederation in 1870, Italy was made up of many independent states. Among the most prominent of these was the state of Tuscany which is the state where the city of Florence is located. Many of the world’s greatest rarities come from Tuscany, but a collector can obtain many of these stamps at a very modest price. These scans are from a $160,000 collection of Tuscany which we have broken down and which we have for sale on our website.
Monthly Archives: September 2015
- Posted September 29, 2015Read more »
- Posted September 28, 2015Read more »
In the 1950s and 1960s, large stamp auctions were held much more often than they are today. Stamp dealers could count on a two thousand lot Harmer's sale every month along with a good half dozen other decent monthly stamp auctions. And that was only in New York City. Well capitalized dealers would often buy big box and carton lots, often at very favorable prices because there was so much on offer. Often they could work out only a portion of the lot to get out their cost plus a small profit and have no time to do more before the next auction took place. So all the unlooked at material would get boxed back up and shuffled off to the back room. Over and over this happened, and this is what accounted for the wonderful "back rooms" of old time dealers (that and the "aging effect"—collections that have been put away for forty years have stamps that you just don't see today). Dealers of
- Posted September 25, 2015Read more »
Pope Francis’s visit to the United States has drawn attention to Popes and papal history. Francis himself has been pictur
- Posted September 24, 2015Read more »
Philately is a hobby where you can turn off the modern world. And the collector who made the collection we are offering intact did just that. He collected by this edition of the 1897 Scott catalog.
WONDERFUL NINETEENTH CENTURY COLLECTION of well over ten thousand different stamps in a pristine 1930 edition of the Scott brown hardbound International album. The collection has strength in all phases, especially British Commonwealth, French Colonies, German Area,
- Posted September 22, 2015Read more »
Millions of stamp collectors worldwide maintain new issue subscription services. Postal agencies avidly promote such subscriptions, where a collector signs up, lists his credit card, and then receives all of the new issues of the agency as they are issued. The price is usually face value plus a service fee and often, for foreign stamps, a shipping charge. The advantage of buying stamps this way is that you never miss a new issue; the disadvantage is that you almost immediately see a 50-75% reduction in the value of your stamps. This is because almost no one ever uses newer issues, at least not in the quantity that they are bought. When these newer issues are traded, they sell usually for half the postage value or less. So a wise collector would endure a lit
- Posted September 21, 2015Read more »
Stamp separation isn’t something that most people, even philatelists, think much about anymore. But in its day it was a hot topic, combining technological concerns with ease of use and cost of production. The first stamps had no easy way to separate them. They were printed and not perforated, and scissors were needed to cut them apart. Rowland Hill, the inventor of the postage stamp, had no interest in stamp separation in his first design. The reason is that no one, Hill included, had any idea what a revolution in communication and postal use stamps would cause. This revolution was the result of the reduction of postal rates that prepaid postage allowed. Before stamps, postmen had to stop at each address to collect the money for letters delivered there.
- Posted September 18, 2015Read more »
Countries have been issuing postage stamps for over 175 years. The classic period of stamp issues are from 1840-1900. And the modern period is from 1960 until now. The Golden Age of philately encompasses the issues from 1900-1960. These are, for most countries, the most popular issues and usually the most interesting as well.
By 1900, phil
- Posted September 17, 2015Read more »
Whales are near the top of everyone’s list of favorite animals. They’re beautiful and graceful, don’t bother humans, and, if they needed anything to enhance their appeal, they’re endangered. Smart and savvy, whales had been at the top of their food chain until about 1800 when humans developed the technology to keep sailing ships at sea for months at a time, and whaling began. (Whaling is a euphemism for the deliberate kil
- Posted September 15, 2015Read more »
There are two main ways to collect stamps—by country or by theme. Until about 1960, collectors nearly always collected by country. The reason was simple: In the era before widespread commemoratives, there were few themes that had enough philatelic material to make collecting them enjoyable. Early popular thematics were Scouting, Red Cross, children’s welfare, and sports. As worldwide stamp issues have morphed from tens of thousands of varieties to millions of varieties, the opportunities for thematic collecting have expanded.
- Posted September 14, 2015Read more »
Many of the things that make philately the world’s best hobby—attractiveness of the stamps themselves, international markets, very high values for easily transferrable pieces of paper—have made stamps one of the preeminent bribery tools of the twenty-first century. Because bribery of government and business officials is not all that pervasive in the United States (though still, unfortunately, too common), we tend to overlook the amount of bribery around the world and its impact on stamp prices. In the US, very few people would try to bribe a judge or an IRS agent or customs official. In many countries, such bureaucrats look at bribery income as part of their pay.
- Posted September 11, 2015Read more »
The belligerents during WWII spent enormous effort trying to
- Posted September 10, 2015Read more »
The first stamp in the world was issued by Great Britain in 1840, and ever since British Area philately has been the most popular specialty worldwide. By 1900, over 300 entities owed allegiance to the British Crown and had issued postage stamps. Some, such as Canada, were significant major first world countries. Others, such as Tasmania, New South Wales, or Jammu and Kashmir were component states of larger countries such as Australia and India which hadn’t confederated yet. Still others were smaller colonies that had British government such as Antigua and Seychelles. And lastly, there were the numerous colonies that represented political statements by the British foreign offic
- Posted September 08, 2015Read more »
To be an attractive specialty, a country should have many different things. The stamp issues should be well designed and have a strict postal purpose and not be designed for collectors. The Goldilocks’ theory should be in play: there should not be too many stamps issued, and there should not be too few stamps issued—rather, it should be just right. The stamps have to lend themselves to specialization by issue, and there have to be detailed catalogs to let collectors know what is available and what is needed. And the stamps have to be affordable.
Probably the country that meets all of these criteri
- Posted September 04, 2015Read more »
Before the late 1970s (and the advent of Federal Express and overnight delivery), the only way to move documents from one place to another was by post. Throughout the late nineteenth and twentieth century, the post was not only the fastest way to move documents; it was the only way. Ordinary postal delivery was fast. By 1900, mail from Toronto to Ottawa or Montreal was usually accomplished overnight. But businesses required even faster communications, and the Canadian Post Office (and other postal agencies worldwide) usually provided it.
- Posted September 03, 2015Read more »
WONDERFUL COLLECTION OF OVER 20,000 DIFFERENT TO 1940 IN A PRISTINE PAIR OF GIBBONS NEW IMPERIAL ALBUMS
This wonderful completely intact collection was put together over decades and is in a pair of the best albums for British Commonwealth. The collection has strength in all phases from British Europe, Asia, Africa, Oceania, and America with good to very good sections of every country. The two volume collection has a thousand pages and most are as well filled as the ones we scanned (picked to give you a flavor of the collection). We carefully went through the collection for genuineness and quality. We cro
- Posted September 02, 2015Read more »
It’s hard to explain to those too young to remember the excitement of the space program of the 1960s. When the Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957 as the first man made orbiting satellite, there was a minor panic which soon developed into a space race. The rush to put people into space and onto the moon became tied up in national pride. But in a very real sense, the ten year mission that was an original part of the Kennedy presidency to put a man on the moon by 1970 was a wonderfully invigorating national goal.