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Posted Aug 31, 16 11:52 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Wake up

No collection would be complete if it lacked something that would stimulate another collector to elevate his snoot and disdain. I guess this board needed a resident sourpuss. Now we have him.

Posted Aug 31, 16 11:36 by Douglas Chapman (foodrev)

My Innocence

WOW! I stay focused on getting the September issue of the ornithology journal I edit to the printer, and find that I have, in my innocence, created rancor and kerfuffle.

I am sorry for any way I have inadvertently offended.

I only wanted to know about an event I knew little to nothing about, and I know that the level of stored knowledge on this board is vast and deep. Also, WWII items are/were being discussed.

I must say though, that if we are to limit strictly to 19th Century Postal History, why must we have endless posts Re: exhibiting. I have a small, BNA/Pembina collection that one member of this board has suggested on occasion that I make into an exhibit. In a nutshell, after treading these boards over the last few months I am NOT thinking, "Boy! I better get me some of that!"

It seems to me that exhibiting has devolved into a goal in its own right--appreciating the goal rather than that which is being exhibited. I mean no slur of any sort on those that exhibit. But I can see why fewer of us who really enjoy holding and admiring a cover--rare or otherwise (how many times have I heard Ken Stach say, "It's just a really pretty cover!")--wish to put all that joy aside to enter the fray that has been discussed here.

Also, if politics is to be left out of philately and postal history, what would we have? Adhesives are pretty much ALL about faces of politicos and events important in national decisions. I wonder how many covers from the South used the new 8-cent Sherman in 1893 when the Registry rate went down. It was not THAT far from the 1860s. If there is a census I'd like to know.

Anyway, I enjoy this group and learn a great deal. From all. Not just those I agree with, or those who have no interest in what I collect.

I include the attachment I couldn't before. What is unusual is that the pair I have looks like it's from a booklet--it is SE top and bottom on the 2 stamps.

Anyway, thanks for a great board to read. I shall retreat to my cubicle again.


Posted Aug 31, 16 11:09 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)

WAKE up Cinderella

Interesting collection of collateral material; I thought we had plumbed the depths, but bubble gum wrappers? Really this goes beyond the limits of good taste. John W.

Posted Aug 31, 16 10:19 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Why exhibit?

Exhibiting is the most efficient way for a specialist to share his collecting interest with others, to learn what he does not know about his subject, and to prod others to share theirs. It's also the most effective way of acquiring new material, by alerting others that this is his subject of study.

Russ, Why do you care?

Posted Aug 31, 16 9:41 by Roger Heath (decoppet)

Why Exhibit?

To get expert criticism about one's collecting area as presented in the exhibit. The presentation makes one realize there are different ways to show your collection, and in this revelation the critique forces one to organize one's collection, rather than just accumulate material.

Through exhibiting I've learned that having a pile of stuff in my stamp room is not a collection. Collections are organized and having gone in the direction of postal history one must create the organization oneself. There are no albums in postal history, therefore, exhibiting requires one to explain the collecting area to others. It's the same as organizing a plan to debate an issue, except one doesn't end up a loser, its more about gaining knowledge about the weakness in one's collection. That's where the emphasis should be, in new acquisitions, which create a better, more complete collection.

Plus it's fun to show what one collects, especially when other collectors appreciate the effort one spends in the Stamp Room. It's rather similar to being a painter. One can dabble, one can read about painting, one can paint, and one can be "serious" and show in galleries. I consider exhibiting "serious collecting".

Posted Aug 31, 16 9:09 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: the objective of exhibiting rather than the objective of an exhibit

Morning all,

Why do you chose to exhibit?

Best regards, Russ Ryle

Posted Aug 31, 16 7:40 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Wake Island postal history

My articles here and here show how trans-oceanic record covers, inaugural flight covers, ship-cancel covers, and collateral material can shed useful light on postal history. Does anyone really doubt this?

Posted Aug 31, 16 7:32 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

What is your point? There is more to philately than postal history. There is more to air mail than flown covers. No one compels you to collect what you don't like, nor to appreciate the items in other people's collections that don't interest you.

We would be poorer if not exposed to the collateral material. Jon Krupnick's books about Pan American Airways illustrate more non-postal material than covers, but because of that they include more complete documentation of some important PAA trans-Pacific history than can be found in the Miami archive.

I personally enjoy viewing collections that are more expansive than mine. For example, my LATI collection consists exclusively of flown or intended-to-be-flown covers (including some inaugural flight souvenirs), but I enjoyed everything in Cusworth's presentation, including etiquettes, promotional materials, and so forth.

In recent years, as an incentive to encourage creativity in exhibiting, APS has welcomed the addition of deltiology as an element of philatelic exhibiting. I think it's a good idea. Your dissent is duly noted.

Posted Aug 31, 16 5:22 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)

Nigeria forgeries

Nigeria forgeries

Is this ‘Postal History’? Since the particular cover passed through the mail system as proved by its arrival in Shanghai, I would suggest that it is. By contrast, here is a telegram from the PanAm Archive (Accession II, Box 132, Folder 12 regarding 25,000 First Flight covers to be carried from Bolama on the inaugural flight of the FAM-18 southern route in 1941. We all know these covers; pristine and unaddressed. They are like noses; everyone has one. Are these covers ‘Postal History’? Not in my book. They are attractive souvenirs, in the same way that covers carried by a flight crew member addressed to his wife and mailed on the flight return are souvenirs. They are NOT Postal History.

Now take a look at Steve Walske’s ‘Pony Express’ display. See my point? Now that is Postal History. Mint unused postcards and manufactured flight covers are not.

Farley K; I will send you the Nigeria cover as a gift if you let me have your postal address.

John W.


Posted Aug 30, 16 20:41 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)


This cover from my PDR 2016 exhibit is also ex Paul Filipkowski. Box 180 Santa Fe was the undercover address for the Special Engineer Detachment at the Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, the Army men who assisted the scientists in designing and building the atomic bombs. The addressee, Staff Sergeant Alvin D. Van Vessem had been a member of the group that assembled the Trinity Test plutonium bomb. He was then sent with the Fat Man components to assemble the Nagasaki Bomb at Tinian. He had been forbidden to disclose the details of his work, or even the true location, to his wife. But on August 6 she would have learned the Los Alamos secret from President Truman's announcement of the Hiroshima Bomb, and again on the August 9 news of the Nagasaki bomb. When she wrote him on August 10, she probably had a good guess as to his involvement. But Alvin was on a Navy ship returning from Tinian, which did not arrive at California until August 14, so this cover awaited his return.


Posted Aug 30, 16 19:57 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Filipkowski's 1988 NAPEX exhibit page

cropped to eliminate wasted space


Posted Aug 30, 16 19:46 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Bockscar covers?

I know of no August 9 covers. Walter Goodman, who flew on the observation plane Great Artiste, carried three envelopes addressed to his wife on that flight, which he mailed later in the week. Filipkowski owned two of them.

Posted Aug 30, 16 19:43 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Atomic Bomb cover


Canceled at Tinian, not San Francisco. (All Pacific Theater army post offices were c/o the San Francisco postmaster; that was the embarkation post office.)

That cover had been the centerpiece of Paul Filipkowski's 1988 NAPEX exhibit, but Paul also owned the rest of the Caron covers to his wife. Until the day before, the APO canceler had the APO 247 number in the dial. But that day the APO for the 509th Composite Group changed to APO 336, presumably to impose a tighter censorship control on those men. But there was no dial slug for 336, so the post office used a generic U.S. ARMY POSTAL SERVICE APO cancel.

Caron must have given that letter to the censor on August 5, probably in violation of Tibbetts's order in the pre-flight briefing that the crew not send letters home. The flight departed Tinian after midnight that night.

Posted Aug 30, 16 18:55 by Scott Trepel (strepel)

A Bomb

Having just finished Command and Control by Eric Schlosser (recommended by Steve Walske on this board), the comments about use of the atomic bomb are interesting, although not necessarily appropriate for this board, as Gordon pointed out.

The cover shown here is appropriate. From my collection. Addressed and mailed by George Carron, the tailgunner on the Enola Gay when the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. The historic date it was postmarked in SF is August 6, 1945.

Lesser known than the Enola Gay is the plane that dropped the "Fat Man" bomb on Nagasaki.  Bockscar. I'd like to find an August 9, 1945, cover from one of the crewmen (or pilot) on that plane. They are:

Crew C-15 of the Bockscar

  • Major Charles Sweeney, Commander
  • Captain Charles Donald Albury, Co-Pilot
  • 2nd Lieutenant Fred Olivi, Third Pilot
  • Captain James Van Pelt, Jr., Navigator
  • Captain Raymond “Kermit” Beahan, Bombardier
  • Master Sergeant John Kuharek, Flight Engineer
  • Sergeant Raymond Gallagher, Assistant Flight Engineer
  • Staff Sergeant Ed Buckley, Radar Operator
  • Sergeant Abe Spitzer, Radio Operator
  • Staff Sergeant Albert Dehart, Tail Gunner

Additional Mission Crew on board August 9, 1945

  • Cmdr. Frederick L. Ashworth (USN), Weaponeer
  • Lt. Philip Barnes (USN), Assistant Weaponeer
  • 2nd Lt. Jacob Beser, Radar Countermeasures


Posted Aug 30, 16 18:21 by Gordon Eubanks (gordon)

I do not think this is the forum to discuss the merits of using nuclear weapons.

This year is the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. This is most likely the last time there will be a major remembrance where veterans of the war will be participating. There will be a small but meaningful philatelic presence. More to follow.


Posted Aug 30, 16 17:04 by steven frumkin (sfrumkin)

Atomic Bomb in WWII

To opine that political correctness was the reason for the 1995 stamp design change is nothing less than smug revisionism. The acclaimed 1952-53 WWII television documentary Victory at Sea devoted less than five minutes of its nearly 13 hours to the atomic bombings. Was that on account of political correctness?

At that time, the postwar occupation of Japan came to an end. Then and since, Japan has been our most important ally in East Asia, and our military bases there have remained of paramount importance. I would suggest that the 1995 stamp design change was strictly a matter of 50 years of cooperation and diplomacy, coupled with a desire to avoid glorifying the use of the atomic bombs.

Had the allies' planned invasion of Japan taken place, my father definitely would have been in it. A number of years ago, I happened to meet the man who had been chief mechanic for the Enola Gay on Tinian. As I shook his hand, I thanked him for bringing my father home. I mention this to clarify that I'm not into political correctness in any sort of knee-jerk way.

For more than 70 years, we've all had the luxury of pondering the ethics and even the military necessity of using the atomic bombs in August 1945. During that time period, very little was taught and discussed about the subject in US schools. While I agree with PB that we should move on, the lack of awareness of important events and subjects, both past and present, continues to cost our nation dearly. Revisiting the history of the atomic bombings can have great value, especially for today's younger generations who, more than ever, need to be taught critical thinking.

Posted Aug 30, 16 16:10 by paul bourke (paulb3)

Japan and Word War II

My father (mercifully not my biological father) was a navy veteran of WWII, serving in both theaters but primarily in the Pacific. His ship was at Okinawa when the war ended although he was not there when the battle was on.

Years of reflection have led me to some certainty that the atomic bombings directly caused the Japanese to surrender. The damage caused by the bombs, as we know, was utterly horrific. I long have felt that President Truman did the right thing by ordering the attacks but only in the context of what he knew then. The very notion of lighting up a nuke today for any reason, in light of what we have learned, should be utterly inconceivable.

There is another reality, that being the march of time and the death of the brave men who fought the war. I have a dear stamp pal, aged 88, who technically is a WWII veteran although he never saw battle but rather served in the occupation force in Japan, point being that the men who actually fought are elderly, in their late 80s and 90s, and quickly leaving us.

The same is true in Japan. The veterans are old men and the youngest people who actually remember the attacks must be close to 80 and also leaving one by one. In my tortured mind, there no longer is any value to even mentioning the attacks except as a warning of what could happen if a nuclear war ever were to be waged. With all due respect, I think we should work toward that goal rather than relive the bloodletting, especially as it took place on August 6 and 9, 1945

Posted Aug 30, 16 14:30 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016 Update

I just linked and added exhibits of Mark Schwartz and John Wilson (3). Thanks!

Posted Aug 30, 16 11:14 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Nigeria counterfeit

The cover.


Posted Aug 30, 16 11:13 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Nigeria counterfeit

The stamp.


Posted Aug 30, 16 9:58 by Farley Katz (navalon)

Nigeria forgeries


Unless there are 8 days a week in China, I'm guessing that one of the numbers in 1998.07.10.09 refers to the time of day.

BTW, I like these Nigeria forgeries. If anyone has some covers for sale, please contact me off list.

Posted Aug 30, 16 9:49 by Larry Bustillo (suburban)

A Bomb

Political correctness changed the design of a postage stamp but not history. The U.S. did not start the war but sure did end it.

Posted Aug 30, 16 9:35 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)

The Board

Richard, Chastisement accepted, but it's easy to let matters spiral downwards. However, even I have succumbed to temptation but at least my example did travel through the mail system. I'll keep watching and learning. John W.


Posted Aug 30, 16 9:17 by Phil Rhoade (rugface)

Atomic Bomb Protest Labels

Here's a page showing most of the protest labels privately produced after the atomic bomb stamp was removed from the 1995 WWII 50th anniversary sheetlet.


Posted Aug 30, 16 9:16 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

The Board

John - I think people come here for as many reasons as there are visitors. Tolerance (to a degree) is welcomed. Your "cinderella" may be my 20th century "XXXXX".

Here is a link to the first frame of my "mock" locals as shown in NYC several years ago.

Posted Aug 30, 16 7:44 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)


Dear God, how low can we go? I suppose if we are to have Cinderella we may as well have the ugly sisters... I joined this board to learn something about US postal history, not about supermarket trading stamps.


Posted Aug 30, 16 6:58 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

Images for the Board

Douglas - I suspect that your file was either not a "JPG" format file or the file name contained characters other than alpha / numerics which are the only characters allowed.

Posted Aug 30, 16 6:01 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Not the surrender, the atomic bomb. In the 50th anniversary of WW2 panes, the final pane in the series had originally included a stamp showing the atomic bomb, but that was changed so as not to offend Japan (or so the news reported). In response, several individuals printed and sold cinderella labels that resembled the unissued stamp.


Posted Aug 29, 16 21:50 by Douglas Chapman (foodrev)


Will try later. My attachments won't post now.

Posted Aug 29, 16 21:45 by Douglas Chapman (foodrev)

WW II Cinderellas

I know that the controversy over the planned designs for the Japanese Surrender 50th resulted in several cinderella (or is this myth too?--I have no first hand knowledge).

But I have never seen these before. I found them in a collection I bought. The attached note follows.

Posted Aug 29, 16 18:51 by Rob Faux (robfaux)


For someone who has sworn off exhibiting and decided not to participate (even in the online version Richard is providing) you sure have a lot to say about it.  Jump into the pool.  Wear your waterwings if you wish.  Then, use your experience to refine your opinions and adjust them to what is happening right now.

my tuppance.


Posted Aug 29, 16 16:27 by Gordon Eubanks (gordon)

Please support the National Postal Museum by voting for the best underrated tourist attraction in DC. Link to ballet is here. They do not ask for any information other than your vote. Note there are a lot of categories so scroll down to this category. Or vote for others you might know about. THANKS!!

Nominees were selected by Express and the Washington Post. Voting closes Sept. 16 at 11:59 p.m.

Posted Aug 29, 16 15:04 by David Benson (dbenson)



The difference in what Ken is talking about is maybe 1 or possibly 2 points, not enough to make a revolt about it,

In 1995 FIP evaluation may have been up to 3 or 4 points but things have changed since.

David B.

Posted Aug 29, 16 12:07 by Chip Gliedman (cgliedman)

Importance in FIP exhibits

For a change in scenery, you can continue the discussion of "Importance" to Stockholm next April and have two full days to hash it over: Stockholmia 2019 Pre-conference

Posted Aug 29, 16 10:19 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016

I just uploaded and linked a very nice exhibit from Dan Knowles.

I also put out the "Holey Fortune Cookie" that I forgot on the General's Nepal exhibit.

Also added an 1843 PL&R contributed by Russ Ryle to the "resources" page. Thank you!

Posted Aug 29, 16 9:05 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)


If you can't see the objective importance, both postal and military, of Wake Island compared to Palmyra Island in World War II, the term has no useful meaning.

None of the scoring criteria are applied in isolation, so there is no answer to your question. The exhibitor chooses her/his subject. The jury must evaluate the exhibit to see if it presents a suitable challenge to merit a high award in the event the exhibitor has met the challenge. One criterion to measure the challenge is to find out how many scarce and rare items exist for the chosen subject, and one way to measure the exhibitor's success is to see how many of those scarce and rare items are included and how many are missing.

Most successful exhibitors tell the jury these factors in their synopses, and provide references that the judges can study to learn for themselves.

Posted Aug 29, 16 8:27 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: The importance of discussions on importance

Morning all,

This conversation is exactly what is needed. May not change anyone's opinion but, hopefully, will add to everyone's understanding of the subject. Whatever your thoughts are it is clear there is no objective criteria for the term from which to judge exhibits.

If rarity is the total number of examples known to exist for an item and scarcity is the total number of examples available (on the market?) today, how should a judge approach competitively scoring two or more exhibits on this factor? Should high points be awarded for having the one and only example more than one of five known but the only one available on the market?

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Aug 29, 16 7:48 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Reforming judging criteria

The trend is toward more freedom and innovation. In that regard, the criterion of importance is an impediment and could well be eliminated. However, as in any competitive endeavor, the biggest need is for the contestants to know and obey the rules, whatever they happen to be. Changing them won't help unless the exhibitors and juries have identical understandings of the scoring system. During my years as a judge, my most familiar encounters were with novice exhibitors who had elevated expectations and were disappointed (sometimes resentful) at their results, followed by guidance to improve, followed by gradual improvement in medal levels. But a minority always argued that the rules are unfair and lobbied for change. They too won on many points. The rules in WSP competition today bear scant resemblance to the rules when I became a judge in 1992. Even so, diehards like Rob Bell persist. In my judgment his demands can't really be met, because setting exhibits apart by time period might reasonably offer excellent exhibits of recent traditional and postal history material opportunities to win high awards, but that would cut the heart out of thematic exhibiting, which at best shows material from every period. Even accepting that consequence, I seriously doubt that anyone will esteem a post-1980 Champion of Champions trophy equally with a pre-1900 winner, so I think the campaign, if it prevails, will fail to achieve its desired goal.

Posted Aug 29, 16 6:45 by David Benson (dbenson)


I am beginning to form an opinion that Importance should be dropped in a points judging system.

There has been many changes since it was introduced at FIP level especially since the introduction of Traditional breaking into various period allocations and Postal History breaking into various sections.

Rarity can much more easily be evaluated than before especially if the same judges, some of which were highly biased towards the classical period of Traditional and certain types of Postal History which did not include Marcophily.

Just by using Rarity only in the various sections should be much more acceptable to the majority of exhibitors (including myself).

David B.

Posted Aug 29, 16 6:31 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)

Importance in exhibiting

Hi Ken, Your response neatly illustrates my point. 73

Posted Aug 29, 16 6:05 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Importance in exhibiting

Who has argued that the Manhattan Project is important in a philatelic sense? Certainly David Benson has not. I have not. My atomic bomb exhibit is, as I wrote earlier, an experimental (hybrid) exhibit that crosses two APS national exhibiting classes (postal history and picture post cards). It seems perfectly appropriate as an entry in the no-rules PDR 2016 competition, which probably will not be won by exhibits that are crafted to meet WSP and/or FIP scoring criteria.

I have written that for the World War II period Wake Island mail was important in both the philatelic and conventional meanings. I asked Richard to post my synopsis to illustrate how an exhibitor addresses that element. The synopsis is not pertinent to the PDR 2016 competition, but in the event I enter that exhibit at a WSP show, it will be a necessary requirement to accompany the entry form.

Added: Importance is not the only important thing in WSP exhibiting success. Wayne Youngblood's "Lost Almost" single-frame Manhattan Project exhibit consistently scores gold.

Posted Aug 29, 16 5:16 by John Wilson (vladivohaken)


David B, The discussion again demonstrates the impossibility of describing “importance”. Perhaps there should be a discussion on “self importance”? Where is the philatelic importance in the history of the Manhattan Project illustrated by picture postcards and business mail to the Book of the Month Club? It’s much easier and worthwhile to read the many books on the topic, particularly “The Road to Trinity” by Gen. Nichols, or the Gen. Leslie Grove account published in the “United States Army in World War 2” available as a free download… I’m not sniping from the bushes here; my own display on “Trading with the Enemy” is what I would call a “Rotary Club” presentation. The “Atom Bomb” display will make a good article in Readers Digest but “important” in a philatelic sense???

Now the “Blockade Mail”. That is seriously important both from a philatelic and a historical viewpoint. No doubt where my vote will be going. John W

Posted Aug 28, 16 22:35 by David Benson (dbenson)



Importance is for the Philatelic importance of the exhibit, not the historic importance,

David B.

Posted Aug 28, 16 18:43 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)



You have misunderstood the meaning despite all we have written. Importance is not a comparative term between Civil War and World War II subjects, it's a relative term within the class and period of the exhibit. For example, Wake Island WW2 mail is more important than Palmyra Island or Johnston Island mail, though both of those are scarce, for the reasons set forth. You could get high marks for scarcity or difficulty with the other two, but not for importance.

Posted Aug 28, 16 17:11 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

New Exhibits Added to PDR

Thanks to Roger Heath and Greg Shoults for their new exhibits just uploaded and linked.

Also one "fun" exhibit from "Genl. Erit"

Posted Aug 28, 16 17:01 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: Importance with respect to what?


Very nice exhibit. Interesting synopsis. Yes, importance is high with respect to how and why the battle of the pacific in WW II unfolded the way it did. But from a philatelic point of view, how does the handling of mail in that era and area rank compared to blockade mail from the Civil War, etc.; or, with respect to the overall history of mail handling?

Importance will always vary depending upon the opinion and point of view of the viewer. Makes for some great (hopefully friendly) discussions but not a good comparative evaluation criteria.

Best regards, Russ Ryle

Posted Aug 28, 16 9:13 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Importance, again

Richard has generously added a link to the synopsis of my Wake Island in World War II exhibit entry. Members of the Board who have engaged in the discussion of importance as a scoring criterion in judging competitive exhibits might want to take a look, to see how I have expressed the meaning of the term for my single-frame exhibit.

Posted Aug 27, 16 22:53 by A. Lavar Taylor (lavart1)

Hong Kong postage due

Well I'm wrong. My memory was not accurate. Webb mentions the mark but does not show it. Chiu shows the mark and says it came into use circa 1923. The good news is that the due stamp was issued in December of 1923. Now need to check if this is an EKU.

Posted Aug 27, 16 22:21 by A. Lavar Taylor (lavart1)

Hong Kong Postage Due

Below is a close up of the HK postage due stamp.  FIrst, this is a very early usage, as the first HK postage due set was issued in 1923.  More significant, however, is the difficult to read "Charge Not Collectted in Hong Kong" boxed marking.  I have to pull out  my reference books, but this may be a discovery copy of this marking.


Posted Aug 27, 16 22:16 by A. Lavar Taylor (lavart1)

Hong Kong Postage Due

One of my sub-collections is Hong Kong Dues on cover.  I recently acquired he cover below. It It is interesting, even in not so good condition, but there is a something in particular about this cover that caught my eye.  I will show that in the next post.


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