Kevin Blackston
PO Box 17544
San Antonio TX 78217-0544
United States of America

Philosateleian Blog

Coronavirus leads to cancellation of SAPA meetings

I had hoped to avoid mentioning COVID-19 here on my blog; after all, it’s difficult to find news programs or people talking about much of anything but that disease. Nevertheless, it seems to be impacting most everyone’s life in one way or another, and that includes us stamp collectors.

The San Antonio Philatelic Association earlier this week sent an email notifying members that the club’s final two scheduled March meetings have been cancelled because the church at which the club meets will be closed through the end of the month. Based on what I’ve been hearing on the news, I wouldn’t be surprised if SAPA meetings may be cancelled for longer than that. That’s as much of an update on the local stamp club scene as there is to pass along at this point; I suspect the same may be true in your area.

Meanwhile, the American Philatelic Society and others are urging people to take advantage of the opportunity to spend more time working on their stamp collections. That sounds like a lovely idea, but at least at this time I’m still working, albeit from my garage instead of the office. My employer asked everyone who could work from home to do so, so here I am, and that means I don’t have more time than usual for stamps. Nevertheless, if you do, enjoy, and be safe!

Update (2020-03-26)

The San Antonio Philatelic Association today notified members that all of its meetings through the end of April have been cancelled. A new meeting schedule will be announced once the church where the club holds its meetings resumes normal operations.

Just how did I overlook that?

When I announced on Sunday that the Spring 2020 supplement for The Philosateleian U.S. Stamp Album was available, I thought I had everything squared away. It turns out I was wrong.

Steve R. wrote earlier today asking if I was aware that the Wild Orchids stamps issued last month were released in both booklet and coil formats, and I have to admit that I had completely overlooked the coil stamps. The update published on Sunday did not include spaces for those stamps, but I’ve prepared a two-page patch that includes spaces for all 20 of the orchids stamps (10 booklet singles plus 10 coil singles), and that’s now available on my updates & supplements page.

This is not the first time that Steve has spotted an omission or typo on my pages, and I doubt it will be the last. I’m very grateful to have an extra set of eyes catching mistakes like this!

Spring 2020 update for The Philosateleian

I’ll soon be starting on spring cleaning, and in part that entails getting organized. Maybe you need to do the same with your stamp collection; if so, you’ll be happy to know that the Spring 2020 Supplement (164 KB, 3 files, 6 pages) for The Philosateleian U.S. Stamp Album is now available for you to download and print. This update includes spaces for all of the United States postage stamps issued so far this year plus the PTSD semipostal released last December.

I hope you enjoy these new album pages and appreciate your continued interest in my project!

Boys Town mailing reuses hydrangea cinderella artwork

It was just under a year ago that I received the first of many Boys Town mailings containing business reply envelopes bearing either cinderella stamps or pre-printed stamp-sized images. Late last week, I received the cover pictured here in Boys Town’s latest such mailing, and in a way it feels as though things have gone full circle.

Boys Town business reply envelope bearing pre-printed hydrangea designs
Boys Town business reply envelope bearing pre-printed hydrangea designs

If you’ve been following along, you may recognize the pre-printed designs on this BRE because they utilize exactly the same artwork as the labels on the very first envelope that I mentioned here on my blog!

Although this is not the first time that Boys Town has reused artwork, it’s interesting to see that first hydrangea design put to use once again.

Pabay local post stamp celebrates Brexit

When I pulled today’s featured cover out of my post office box over the weekend, my first thought was that it was in pretty rough shape. My second thought was that it had a mighty large local post stamp affixed to its upper left corner. This £2 cinderella and a sampling of other stamps tucked inside are the first in my collection from Pabay, a tiny dot of land off the coast of the Scottish isle of Skye.

£2 Island of Pabay Brexit local post stamp on cover
£2 Island of Pabay Brexit stamp on cover

The stamp features a map of the European Union with the wording “Treaty of Brussels” and the date “31/01/2020,” an obvious reference to the so-called “Brexit,” Britain’s exit from the European Union. In the design, Britain is marked with the colors of the Union Jack, while the EU flag is overlaid on the countries remaining in the European Union.

The sender, Jeff H., writes that he and his son have been producing local post stamps since 1993, while cinderellas for Pabay date back as far as 1962.

As for the envelope itself, my best guess is that it got stuck in a sorting machine somewhere along the way, and whatever was in line behind it caused the accordion folds. Despite its battered appearance, it seems like a nifty cover to add my collection.

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