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Monday Morning Brief | Northern Cardinal stamped envelope

January 16, 2017 08:08 AM

Watch as Linn’s Stamp News editorial director Donna Houseman discusses the unannounced United States Postal Service’s Northern Cardinal stamped envelope that has been purchased by collectors in post offices in Ohio and other locations.

Full video transcript:

Good morning and welcome to the Monday Morning Brief for January 16.

The editors at Linn’s Stamp News and the Scott catalogs have had fun with a recent developing story surrounding an unannounced United States stamped envelope.

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We were surprised to learn that a new Northern Cardinal stamp envelope was purchased at a post office in Marion County, Ohio. The security-lined envelope repeats the design of the Northern Cardinal forever stamp that was issued Aug. 4, 2016, as part of a set of four Songbirds in Snow stamps.

When the stamped envelope first arrived in our offices, we were puzzled. Why was there no announcement from the United States Postal Service? We contacted the Postal Service but received no answers to our questions.

The envelopes were purchased by collector John Kurtz while on a recent visit to Marion. He noticed “a couple of packs of 12” of the envelopes on a post office display rack. Kurtz took one of the envelopes to his local post office, where he obtained a Jan. 3 dated postmark on the preprinted stamp design.

In response to the Linn’s story announcing Kurtz’s purchase, other readers said that they, too, had purchased examples of the envelope, including a collector in Puerto Rico. A woman, who appeared to be a postal worker, commented on Linn’s Facebook page that her post office had this envelope.

We checked the latest issue of USA Philatelic, and there was no mention of the envelope.

The issue date of the stamped envelope remains a mystery. What we do know: The new No. 10-size envelope is sold in a pack of 12, along with 12 matching Northern Cardinal seals, for $9.95 as USPS item No. 882105. The postage rate for a 1-ounce or less first-class envelope was 47¢ when Kurtz’s pack was purchased Dec. 22, and that rate is expected to increase to 49¢ next week, on Jan. 22.

Scott new issue editor Marty Frankevicz placed an order and received this pack of Cardinal envelopes last week. The pack includes coordinating seals that show a cardinal perched on a branch.

And still we await confirmation and details from the Postal Service.

What we have learned from the Postal Service is that a postmark for the Jan. 20 inauguration of Donald J. Trump as president of the United States will be available from Washington, D.C.

The USPS will offer a circular datestamp with four horizontal bars that includes the words “Presidential Inauguration Day Station” in the middle of the bar markings.

At this time, it is not known if there will be other postmarks available from Trump’s hometown of New York City, or from Columbus, Ind., the hometown of the vice president-elect, Mike Pence.

For the most up-to-date stamp news, visit Linns.com and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. For Linn’s Stamp News and Scott catalogs, I’m Donna Houseman. Enjoy your week in stamps.