Stamp Collecting in the 1950’s

The 1950’s were the beginning of the modern period in philately. The overarching history of our hobby is a triad-the classic period from about 1850 to about 1910 defined by world wide collectors studying and accumulating their stamps with scant regard for quality (and even little attention to genuineness). Then there was the middle period, 1910-1950, defined by increasing philatelicazation of the hobby (with items created solely for collectors, such as First Day Covers, becoming popular), increasing specialization and the beginnings of a philatelic “establishment” (ie societies and national news magazines). And finally, there is the modern period which began about 1950 and continues today and has seen increasing specialization (most collectors collect only one country or even part of a country).

 Our hobby has become less social, originally because of magazines and direct mail, and now because of the demise of clubs and stores and rise of the Internet. The modern period of Philately which began in the 1950s coincided with and was influenced by the baby boom. The decade saw millions of young collectors enter the hobby with their Harris world wide albums and at the higher end collectors like Alfred Caspary assembled one of the finest collection in the history of the world. The 1950s were the decade when stamps made it from the back alleys to the front pages when Life magazine did it’s 1954 cover article on stamps that was seen by millions of people. Philately began to be seen as an academic and educational hobby that most young children in the 1950s were encouraged by parents and teachers to enjoy. It is these baby boom collectors who, as they are getting back to their hobby today, are giving philately it’s current strength.

Share on:
Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top