February 05, 2016 05:51 PM

Cherrystone auction Feb. 23-24 offers worldwide stamps and covers

Cherrystone Philatelic Auctioneers will present a two-day sale at its 57th Street gallery in New York City. The public auction sessions will take place Feb. 23-24, with online bidding available.

World Stamps

February 05, 2016 05:35 PM

Four countries feature exotic mineral specimens on stamps

France’s La Poste issued a booklet of 12 stamps Jan. 7 called Mineral World. The stamps picture minerals from the collection of the Mineralogy Museum at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Mines de Paris. This engineering school is often referred to as MINES ParisTech.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 05:12 PM

APS board approves five-year strategic plan

The plan, described in detail by APS Executive Director Scott English during the Jan. 28 APS board meeting in Atlanta, Ga., begins with a significant $10 million target.


February 05, 2016 03:45 PM

Back-of-the-book items and much more at Feb. 20-21 Rasdale auction

The Feb. 20-21 public auction by Rasdale at its Illinois gallery west of Chicago provides a lot of opportunities for collection builders, with an extensive selection of dealer stocks, accumulations and collections, as well as cover collections from the United States and other countries.

Postal Updates

February 05, 2016 03:26 PM

End to emergency rate increase could drop first-class stamp to 47¢

When the Senate Homeland Security Committee got around to holding a hearing on the future of the United States Postal Service on Jan. 21, Postmaster General Megan Brennan spoke of a “broad consensus” that could resolve the Postal Service’s financial woes.

World Stamps

February 05, 2016 01:43 PM

Jordan’s UPU issue overprinted ‘Palestine’ has many varieties to pursue

On May 14, 1948, following the proclamation of the state of Israel, the armed forces (the Arab Legion) of Jordan entered Palestine and occupied an area of the Palestinian territories. Jordan was able to seize the old city of Jerusalem, Jericho, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Jenin, and Tulkarm among others.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 01:34 PM

‘The Million Dollar Duck’ a hit at Slamdance Film Festival: Linns Buzz

Directed by Brian Golden Davis, The Million Dollar Duck profiles the highly competitive Federal Duck Stamp Contest, the only juried art competition run by the U.S. government.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 11:13 AM

January cartoon caption winner has a ‘karat’ nose

The Pinocchio effect energized many of the Linn’s readers who entered the January cartoon caption contest featuring the carrot-nosed snowman on the 1993 29¢ Christmas stamp (Scott 2793).

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 10:52 AM

Clown Lou Jacobs inspiration for 5¢ American Circus stamp

Cover collecting has many facets, and one of the ways that United States stamp collectors can dip into that well is to find covers from companies that relate to stamp issues.

World Stamps

February 05, 2016 08:38 AM

Australian 'emergency' stamps hot on eBay, well-known artist's stamp designs profiled: Week's Most Read

Also this week, we preview an Eastern Auctions sale that covers the world, John Hotchner gets a belly laugh from a reader's expertizing inquiry, and the late prolific stamp artist Howard Koslow is remembered.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 08:57 AM

The case of the inverted and reversed 1¢ Washington coil stamp

I enjoy “How did this happen?” questions from Linn’s readers. Sending in what looks to be a production flaw on a U.S. stamp, the reader sometimes seems to be asking, “Can I stump you with this?”

World Stamps

February 05, 2016 08:26 AM

Revised edition of ‘UPU Specimen Stamps 1878-1961’ a must have

The 2015 revised edition of James Bendon's UPU Specimen Stamps 1878-1961 will be the go-to reference work on this subject for decades to come.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 08:00 AM

How to spend $50 for a 10¢ stamp, courtesy of the USPS

Collectors of coil stamps and plate-number coils will get sticker shock when they order the 2016 10¢ Red Pears definitive coil stamp issued by the United States Postal Service Jan. 17.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 08:00 AM

Online voting open for 2015 U.S. stamp popularity poll

Online voting is available for Linn's 2015 U.S. stamp popularity poll. In 2015, the United States Postal Service issued 100 face-different stamps and postal stationery items. It was the smallest annual total since the 60 produced by the USPS in 1990. However, the year’s count rises to 162 when it includes imperforates — stamps without die cuts — from uncut press sheets of conventionally issued stamps, which the USPS offers for sale on a limited basis at face value.

US Stamps

February 05, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Feb. 5: Robert Peel

Born Feb. 5, 1788, Robert Peel would serve as prime minister of the United Kingdom on two occasions. He is featured on a 2014 stamp honoring 10 British prime ministers.


February 04, 2016 04:08 PM

Gaertner auction in Germany includes 1863 Wurttemberg Coat of Arms block

The auction firm Christoph Gaertner will hold a series of sales beginning Feb. 22 and running through Feb. 27 at the Gaertner auction hall in Bietigheim-Bissingen, near Stuttgart, Germany. The auction of worldwide stamps and postal history includes dedicated catalogs for Germany, Europe, and Asia, as well as thematic and topical material, and general worldwide.

US Stamps

February 04, 2016 09:11 AM

USPS issued Flag stamps in multiple formats Jan. 29

New United States nondenominated (49¢) Flag definitive (regular-issue) forever stamps were issued Jan. 29. Although no first-day ceremony was held, the stamps were officially issued in Washington, D.C. The stamps are offered in five different formats, resulting in what appear to be four major varieties.

World Stamps

February 04, 2016 08:30 AM

Bolivia 1912 Justice revenue inverted overprint error in demand

In 1912, Bolivian postal authorities overprinted in red and surcharged a 1-centavo blue Justice transactions revenue stamp to 10c for use as a postage stamp.

US Stamps

February 04, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Feb. 4: Tadeusz Kosciuszko

A freedom fighter in America and in Poland, Tadeusz Kosciuszko has been honored by both countries for his many significant contributions.

US Stamps

February 03, 2016 09:12 PM

Tip of the week: United States 1893 $3 Columbian stamp

Unused stamps in no-gum condition or stamps that have been regummed and are valued as having no gum can be a real bargain.

World Stamps

February 03, 2016 05:57 PM

Should Canada drop Queen Elizabeth from its stamps?: Linns Buzz

The Toronto Sun is reporting that a group called Canada’s Republic Now, is insisting that the Royal Canadian Mint and Canada Post remove Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning monarch in modern history, from the country's stamps and coins.

World Stamps

February 03, 2016 05:43 PM

1950-58 Italy at Work series: timeless stamps honor ceaseless toil

The Italia al Lavoro series of pictorial definitives came upon the scene Oct. 20, 1950, as a series of 19 vertically formatted, monochrome pictorial definitives (Scott 549-567). Denominated from 50 centesimi to 200 lire, the 24-millimeter by 40mm stamps were initially printed in sheets of 50 on paper with one of three Winged Wheel watermarks at the State Printing Institute Office of Securities in Rome.

World Stamps

February 03, 2016 01:26 PM

Papua New Guinea surcharges appear in 2014-15 for new rates

In early January 2014, Papua New Guinea’s Post PNG decided to increase the supply of its 1.30-kina local rate postage stamps by revaluing obsolete 1.20k stamps. While there were 5-toea and 10t stamps from previous issues, some post offices had already run out of these denominations due to previous increases, thus the decision to surcharge stamps.

World Stamps

February 03, 2016 01:26 PM

Monkey King to shine on Canada Lunar New Year stamps

The Year of the Monkey is the eighth issue in Canada Post’s current 12-year Lunar New Year series, which began with Year of the Ox stamps in 2009 (Scott 2296-2297). The 2016 Year of the Monkey issue has two separate release dates: Jan. 11 for the permanent domestic letter-rate stamp (85¢), and Feb. 1 for the $2.50 international-rate stamp.

US Stamps

February 03, 2016 01:25 PM

Marijuana tax stamp escapes fate of going up in puff of smoke

Matthew Healey’s January Auction Roundup column reported that a $100 federal marijuana tax stamp of 1937 was brought to auction in the Nov. 21-22 sale conducted by Regency-Superior at the Chicagopex show. The marijuana tax stamps were produced by overprinting United States documentary stamps of 1917 and were intended to enforce regulation of cannabis.

US Stamps

February 03, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Feb. 3: Sidney Lanier

The third stamp in the U.S. American Poets commemorative series honored Sidney Lanier, who was born in Macon, Ga. Lanier was also a musician and Confederate Army veteran.

US Stamps

February 02, 2016 08:00 AM

Expertizing something that doesn’t exist

Over the years, expertization certificates have been issued for color shades and paper varieties that later were deemed never to have really existed and were delisted by catalogs.

US Stamps

February 02, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Feb. 2: George Halas

A 32¢ stamp honoring George Halas was issued in 1997 as part of a set of four stamps commemorating famous football coaches. Halas led the Chicago Bears through 40 seasons.

World Stamps

February 01, 2016 12:34 AM

East Midlands members entertain at the Royal

Fifteen members of The Royal Philatelic Society London, all living in the East Midlands, presented the displays shown to members during the afternoon of 28 January.

US Stamps

February 01, 2016 10:35 AM

Seeded program distributed at first-day ceremony

A special variety of the first-day program for the United States Botanical Art forever stamps was given to everyone attending the ceremony in Atlanta.


February 01, 2016 09:00 AM

24¢ steel blue Washington block surpasses $86,000 in Siegel auction

A “European connoisseur’s collection” of classic United States that crossed the block Dec. 15 held a number of gems resurfacing on the market for the first time since being sold as part of the collection of Alfred H. Caspary in 1956.

US Stamps

February 01, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Feb. 1: Victor Herbert

Victor Herbert made his mark as a musician, as a composer, and as the leader of some of America's prominent music ensembles. He was also a founder of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).


January 31, 2016 09:00 AM

Spectacular ‘Missing Virgin’ error sells for $170,000

Topping off the Feldman auction highlights was a “Missing Virgin,” a spectacular and seldom-seen error from among the early issues of the British Virgin Islands.

US Stamps

January 31, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Jan. 31: Franz Schubert

Born Jan. 31, 1797, Austrian composer Franz Schubert was prolific during his short life, which ended in 1828. His fame grew monumentally after his death.

US Stamps

January 30, 2016 02:00 PM

First Bureau Issues on cover can be collected in many ways

In 1894, the government decided to have the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing print U.S. postage stamps. The first issue of stamps from the BEP came to be called the First Bureau Issue.


January 30, 2016 12:17 AM

5¢, 13¢ Hawaii Missionaries go for almost $53,000 in Harmer-Schau sale

A 5¢ Hawaii Missionary (Scott 2), one of the legendary 1851-52 first issues made by white missionaries living in what were then called the Sandwich Islands, was offered as a handsome example of the mere 39 used survivors.


January 30, 2016 10:25 AM

State Dept. Official ‘Specimen’ sells for $17,250 in Bennett sale

The standout item, depicted on the front cover of Linn’s issue of Dec. 14 previewing the sale, was an 1875 Special Printing of the $2 Department of State Official stamp.

World Stamps

January 30, 2016 09:21 AM

France column makes debut in Linn's

Larry Rosenblum returns to Linn’s with a bimonthly column dedicated to the stamps and postal history of France.

World Stamps

January 30, 2016 09:04 AM

Identifying Belgium’s first stamp issue: the Epaulettes of 1849

In the December 21, 2015, Linn’s monthly, I mentioned determined officials in London — early exponents of the adage “what is good for business is good for the country” — who put through a bold and astonishing postal reform that brought down rates, sometimes as high as 16 pence, uniformly to a single penny.

US Stamps

January 30, 2016 07:00 AM

Howard Koslow, prolific artist of U.S. Lighthouse series, dead at 91

Howard Koslow, one of the United States Postal Service’s most prolific stamp artists and painter of its 30 classic Lighthouse stamps, died Jan. 25 at his home in Toms River, N.J.

World Stamps

January 30, 2016 06:11 AM

Alphonse Mucha: art nouveau stamp designer extraordinaire

Alphonse Mucha is perhaps the best-known artist of the art nouveau movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries and a great stamp artist as well.

US Stamps

January 30, 2016 03:30 AM

Born Jan. 30: Franklin D. Roosevelt

Franklin D. Roosevelt was elected to four terms as president of the United States. He was a dedicated stamp collector, and has been featured on many stamps since his death in 1945.


January 29, 2016 03:49 PM

‘Double pony express’ cover fetches $9,775 in Rumsey sale

Schuyler Rumsey held three sales of United States classic and Western postal history and private die medicine stamps on Dec. 11-12 in San Francisco. The Western postal history sale included abundant covers documenting the private couriers and express companies that carried mail in the pioneer days of the western United States.

World Stamps

January 29, 2016 03:00 PM

Australia 2016 ‘emergency’ set sells for more than $1,000 on eBay

Australia Post’s recent rate increase has created a new rarity ̶ specially-printed 30¢ stamps available only for a short time in the Adelaide area.

World Stamps

January 29, 2016 01:42 PM

Love letters: hearts on stamps

Recent stamps conveying themes of love or commemorating events have featured a heart as their main design or are shaped like a heart.


January 29, 2016 01:27 PM

Austria stamp overprinted 'Poczta Polska' tops $13,000 in Cherrystone sale

Cherrystone Auction Galleries held a sale of worldwide stamps and covers on Jan. 12-13 at its offices in New York. Two scarce early stamps of Poland were among the highlights.


January 29, 2016 12:54 AM

1882 Bangkok-to-London cover fetches more than $25,000

An 1882 cover sent from Bangkok to London was franked with Straits Settlements 2¢ bister brown and 8¢ orange Queen Victoria stamps (Scott 40, 49) tied with a rare oval “British Consulate Bangkok” marking rather than the normal Bangkok circular datestamp. Though somewhat rumpled, this recently discovered cover, one of just a handful known, brought more than $25,000.


January 29, 2016 11:19 AM

Two Bermuda postmasters' provisionals top $175,000 in Feldman sale

Among British Empire stamps in the Feldman sale, top realizations went to a couple of early provisional stamps of Bermuda and a rare Official stamp of India.

US Stamps

January 29, 2016 09:31 AM

ArtCraft FDCs discontinued, U.S. stamp eclipses $20 denomination: Week's Most Read

Also popular this week were a post about the APS election in May that features multiple candidates in every race, a tribute to the late Paul Newman on his birthday, and the news that the USPS abandoned its attempt to end Saturday delivery.


January 29, 2016 08:50 AM

‘Lady Louis’ Mulready cover realizes $94,000 in Feldman sale

David Feldman in Geneva offered a sale of British Empire on Dec. 11 that included the second part of the Tatiana collection, with some famous gems as well as humbler items that simply tell a great story. Standing out was one of the most famous and spectacular pieces of British postal history in existence.
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