The national park system of the United States comprises more than 400 separate areas under the administration of the National Park Service.
Post offices once operated, or still operate, in many of these park areas.
If you have an interest in the postal history that grew from these scenic locations, consider picking up a copy of the newest book from the Rocky Mountain Philatelic Library: Parks Postmarks & Postmasters Post Offices within the National Park System, by Paul R. Lee II.
As a retired National Park Service ranger with more than 40 years of service, Lee brings a great deal of firsthand knowledge to this useful reference.
Many collectors are familiar with the U.S. National Parks stamps issued in 1934 (Scott 740-749).
I fondly recall them, because they were among the first stamps I added to my boyhood collection.
In Parks Postmarks & Postmasters, however, Lee “focuses on current and former official post offices that now lie within the present authorized boundaries of United States National Park Service areas.”
Specifically, the book discusses areas under the direct management of the National Park Service.
The 110 parks and sites that Lee highlights are arranged alphabetically, beginning with Agate Fossil Beds National Monument in Nebraska and concluding with Zion National Park in Utah.
For each area, Lee provides a brief history, dates of establishment and discontinuance of any associated post offices, and the names of postmasters and their dates of appointment.
Almost every page features crisp color photographs of post offices and covers related to the park or site.
Collectors seeking to do additional research on this engaging topic should spend time perusing the extensive bibliography in Lee’s book. Following the bibliography is a useful “Parks By State” listing.
The book is available for $29.99 plus $3.50 shipping for softcover, $50 plus $4 shipping for hardcover from Rocky Mountain Philatelic Library, c/o National Parks Book, 2038 S. Pontiac Way, Denver, CO 80224.
For additional information, call the library at 303-759-9921 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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