H E Harris -America’s Greatest Stamp Dealer

Most of us grew up collecting stamps that were sent to us from the H. E. Harris company. Henry Harris founded his business in the 1920s and was a tireless promoter of philately. During the Great Depression, he sponsored radio shows and advertised extensively, introducing a generation of collectors to his approval method of buying stamps. Collectors signed up for Harris approvals, and stamp selections were sent to their homes for them to peruse and purchase what they wished. By the 1960s, Harris was still a huge approval dealer and was advertising extensively in Sunday newspaper comics sections and in youth magazines such as Boys Life. Harris had an extensive publishing arm, and most of you reading this probably had a childhood Harris album, be it The Statesman Deluxe (which I first collected in) or the Citation Album (to which I aspired) and which boasted space for “over 25,000 different stamps”). Harris had a line of packets, sold supplies, and maintained a stock of better United States stamps.
The rise and fall of H. E. Harris perhaps best illustrates the changes in American collecting over the last seventy years. Harris spanned virtually the entire market

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