The American Philatelic Society has inducted three eminent philatelists into its hall of fame: Earl P.L. Apfelbaum, Richard B. Graham and David L. Straight.
The hall of fame recognizes deceased individuals who made outstanding contributions to the advancement of national or international philately during their lifetimes.
Earl P.L. Apfelbaum (1905-85) established his stamp business with his father, Maurice, opening a store in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1930. The business grew to offer auctions and mail sales, and included Apfelbaum’s son Martin as part of its expanding staff.
Apfelbaum’s comments and observations of the stamp hobby, Apfelbaum’s Corner, were published weekly in Linn’s and eventually compiled in book form.
Apfelbaum was in demand as a speaker to stamp clubs and organizations, and contributed papers to the American Philatelic Congress books as an APC founding member.
He also served as secretary and vice president of the APS and helped organize the National Philatelic Museum in Philadelphia, now part of the Spellman Museum in Massachusetts.
Apfelbaum received the prestigious APS Luff award for exceptional contributions to philately in 1962.
Richard B. Graham (1922-2012) was an eminent researcher and authority on postal history and a longtime Linn’s columnist on the subject.
He served as contributor, associate editor and editor of the 1861-69 section of the United States Philatelic Classics Society journal, The Chronicle of the U.S. Classic Postal Issues.
His 1992 book United States Postal History Sampler compiled approximately 60 of his Linn’s columns. His articles also appeared in the American Philatelist, Confederate Philatelist, Postal History Journal, the American Philatelic Congress books and elsewhere.
His many accolades from the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society included these prestigious author awards: the Elliot Perry cup in 1965, the Dr. Carroll Chase cup in 1969, the Stanley B. Ashbrook cup in 1975, and the Susan M. McDonald award in 2005.
He received the Lester G. Brookman cup for outstanding service to the society in 1979 and in 1994.
In 1989, Graham received the distinguished philatelist award recognizing exceptionally meritorious service to U.S. philately through published research. He was named to the APS Writers Unit 30 Hall of Fame in 1991 and received the APS Luff award in 1992.
A prolific writer and researcher, David L. Straight (1955-2012) enjoyed a range of collecting and exhibiting interests that included postage due, pneumatic tube mail, post office forms and St. Louis postal history.
“David was quite vocal about making technology work for philately,” the hall of fame announcement states, “at the same time realizing that files must be constantly upgraded to new technologies to keep them viable. He was one of the organizers of the Winton F. Blount Symposium on postal history and the impetus behind Volunteer Work Week at APS Headquarters. He was also the driving force behind the Philatelic Union Catalog, the Philatelic Librarians Roundtable, and Stamp Camp USA, serving as its first Chairman.”
Straight served on the APS board, as a trustee of the American Philatelic Research Library and as vice president of the Postal History Society.
He was a curator of the Hawaii exhibit displayed when the William H. Gross Stamp Gallery opened at the National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C., in 2013.
Straight was presented the Elizabeth Pope award for lifetime contributions to philately by the St. Louis Stamp Expo.
Each year the APS hall of fame committee selects nominees and reports its recommendations to the APS president.
The APS board of directors then elects the new hall of fame members.
APS members can suggest nominees for the hall of fame by sending the name of the nominee with reasons for the suggestion to chairman Randy Neil, Box 8512, Shawnee Mission, KS 66208. n