Kevin Blackston
PO Box 217
Floresville TX 78114-0217
United States of America

Blog archives (February 2021)

Fundraising cover’s use of braille feels effective

Following a week of what was for San Antonio miserably wintry weather, I was able on Friday afternoon to venture over to the post office to check my box there, and was quite interested to find a fundraising mailing from the International Eye Foundation.

Nonprofit mailings in general are not all that noteworthy from a philatelic point of view, but this particular cover caught my attention because of the braille embossed on the cover’s front below the space reserved for the patriotic star stamp.

International Eye Foundation cover with braille on front
International Eye Foundation braille cover

I can’t argue that this isn’t something of a gimmick, but it’s a neat gimmick, and I think an effective way of drawing attention to what might otherwise be immediately tossed into the waste bin as junk mail.

Whether or not the embossing has a positive effect on the IEF’s response rate, I have no idea, but kudos to the marketing person who came up with the idea.

Purgatory Post commemorates Apollo 14 with pair of new stamps

Purgatory Post this month continued its series of stamps celebrating the 50th anniversaries of America’s space missions with a pair of 14-sola stamps commemorating Apollo 14. The stamps were issued on February 3.

Pair of 14-sola Purgatory Post stamps commemorating Apollo 14
Purgatory Post Apollo 14 stamps

One of the stamps pictures Apollo 14 crew members Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa, and Edgar Mitchell, along with the mission’s launch. The second stamp depicts Shepard with an American flag on the surface of the moon, plus the Apollo 14 mission patch.

Scott A., Purgatory Post’s operator, points that this is a special issue for the New Hampshire-based local post because Shepard himself was a New Hampshire native.

Como Park Post issues new stamps in 2021

I recently received a small packet of stamps from Como Park Post in the mail, and wanted to share them here.

The mailing from the Minnesota-based private post contained little in the way of details, but includes a 1¢ design in red, a 3¢ design in what appears to me to be green or copper, and what looks to be a 1¢ overprint on an earlier 5¢ stamp. It could be a 2¢ overprint, but I’m going to decline to make a definitive statement either way.

Three Como Park Post stamps
1¢, 3¢, and 1¢ on 5¢ Como Park Post stamps

The stamps were mailed to me in an envelope with an example of the red 1¢ stamp tied by a January 23, 2021, Como Park Post handstamp. I suspect January 23 may have been the first day of issue, but again, in the absence of specific information, I can only speculate.

Como Park Post’s operator, Tom B., has long produced local post stamps from delightfully hand-carved blocks, and although the style is very different than that of my own Philosateleian Post stamps, I can certainly appreciate the time and effort that he puts into his creations.

Bat’s Private Post issues set of four for WLPD 2021

While I’ve previously mentioned this year’s World Local Post Day stamps issued by Philosateleian Post and Purgatory Post, those are not the only private local posts to prepare stamps celebrating the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables. Bat’s Private Post on January 25 also released four different designs for World Local Post Day 2021.

Section of envelope bearing four Bat’s Private Post World Local Post Day 2021 stamps
Bat’s Private Post World Local Post Day 2021 stamps

The $5 Thai eggplant, $8 mangosteen, $35 horned melon, and $45 prickly pear cactus stamps shown in the above photo are actually cutouts from freightsheets prepared by Bat’s Private Post. According to a press release, “freightsheets are used by the local post to deliver unsealed articles in BPP’s designated delivery area and adjacent areas.“

The press release goes on to state that usage of the postage on regular envelopes like the one shown in the image above is perfectly acceptable. “Unlike postal stationery issued by the USPS, BPP permits the use of cut squares to pay postage on letters and parcels.”

Besides postage, each of the four freightsheets includes space for the sender’s and recipient’s addresses, plus a description of the fruit or vegetable pictured thereon. An example of the $8 Mangosteen freightsheet postmarked on January 25 is pictured here.

Bat’s Private Post $8 mangosteen lettersheet
Bat’s Private Post $8 Mangosteen lettersheet

Commercial usages of modern private local post stamps are extremely difficult to find on cover. Can you imagine trying to track down examples of these lettersheets used in the normal course of business? I have to say, they are a very interesting concept, and something that I haven’t seen from any other local post.

August Wilson FDC features American playwright

As a general rule, I’m not all that into first day covers. That’s not to say they’re unattractive—some cachets are very nice indeed—it’s just not an area in which I have a great deal of interest.

The foregoing does not, however, mean that I don’t appreciate a nicely prepared FDC when it shows up in my post office box. The August Wilson FDC shown here was serviced in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, on January 28, 2021, and sent my way by a generous reader.

First day cover bearing Forever August Wilson stamp
August Wilson FDC

I wasn’t familiar with August Wilson (1945–2005)—I’ll freely admit I’m not the popular culture expert in my household—but a quick search revealed that he was a successful American playwright whose works have been performed by actors ranging from James Earl Jones to Samuel L. Jackson. That sounds like a pretty good legacy!

Thanks to K.M. for sharing.

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