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

Philosateleian Blog

Titanic museum boasts titanic postal history

A few weeks ago, we spent a week in eastern Tennessee during the Feast of Tabernacles. While there, my wife and I paid a visit to Titanic Pigeon Forge, which if for no other reason stands out in the Pigeon Forge/Sevierville area simply for not being a dinner show.

When you enter the museum, you are handed a random “boarding pass” that has the name and a short bio of one of the individuals who was on board the Titanic on its fateful voyage. I’m sure you can imagine my delight at being handed a card for Oscar Woody, one of the mail clerks who worked on board the ship!

Titanic Pigeon Forge museum 'boarding pass' containing brief bio of mail clerk
Titanic museum “boarding pass” for Oscar Woody

The museum has hundreds of artifacts ranging from photos to bits of wood from the ship that were found floating on the surface of the ocean after it slipped under the waves. Of particular note to philatelists, however, are a number of letters and post cards mailed by various passengers either just before or in the days immediately following the Titanic’s sinking. The museum unfortunately forbids photography, so I don’t have any pictures to share, but seeing some of that material firsthand was quite an experience.

Sarah and I had only a little more than an hour to explore, but we enjoyed our visit. The presence of philatelic material was the cherry on top!

First Coast Fall Stamp Show scheduled for October

The Jacksonville Stamp Collectors Club recently distributed flyers promoting the upcoming First Coast Fall Stamp Show & Exhibition. The event is being held at the Northeast Florida Safety Council Building on Art Museum Drive in Jacksonville, Florida, on Saturday, October 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The flyer I received states that “light refreshments will be served”—an interesting amenity that I don’t usually associate with stamp shows.

(As I’ve noted in the past, I won’t be at the show because it’s on Saturday, but if you go, I hope you have a good time.)

In transition

A little over a month has passed since my last entry, but I do at least have an excuse. My little family and I recently moved! It was a short move from a one-bedroom unit two to a two-bedroom unit in the same apartment complex, but if you’ve ever moved, you know that even that was a big undertaking.

You probably also realize that it takes some time to get everything put away and put in order after a move, and that has certainly been the case for us. On my desk, I have a couple of stock sheets full of landscape stamps just waiting for me to make album pages for them, but I simply haven’t had time! It is on my radar, though, and I’m hopeful I’ll be able to take care of at least a few of those this weekend.

The fall update for The Philosateleian is ready to go, and should be available for you to download on Sunday, September 6. The next issue of the Post Horn is due out that day, too, so September is going to be a big month. Stay tuned!

Sick cover made well

Although I’ve been collecting stamps for well over 20 years, it has only been within the past two or three that I’ve had any contact at all with the mail art community. I do not think of myself as an artist; even my Philosateleian Post creations I refer to as local post stamps, not artistamps. There is a fine and sometimes blurred line between the two, but that is perhaps a subject for some other time.

Just because I’m not an artist myself, however, doesn’t stop me from being impressed and sometimes amazed at some of the pieces that individuals in the mail art community create. For example, consider this cover that I received in the mail last week.

Cover bearing portion of old envelope and illustration of woman on sickbed
Infirmary cover

The cover’s designer, Linda W., took a fragment of an old envelope which was addressed to a patient at an infirmary in Louisville, Kentucky, and combined it with an illustration of a woman on her sickbed, along with an illustration of a human skeleton and several medical-themed stamps.

I’m not even sure how to describe this any further other than to say it is awesomeness. I certainly wouldn’t endorse the destruction of a valuable cover, but the fragment with which Linda started was so ragged that it had no value in philatelic terms. Because of that, it is a joy to see that it could be reused and repurposed to create a work of art.

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