Jim Linker, proprietor of Link Stamp Co. in Columbus, Ohio, marked 50 years as a stamp dealer Jan. 1.
Link Stamp Co. began in Waco, Texas, Jan. 1, 1965, when Linker was serving in the United States Air Force.
He and his wife Jan converted one bedroom of their two-bedroom home into a stamp shop, complete with a glass counter, which Jim purchased from the Air Force when the counter was no longer needed.
In 1967, Linker left military service, and he and his family moved to Columbus.
For the next few years, Linker worked in college development, as assistant director of development at Ohio Dominican University. He continued running his part-time stamp business.
Linker eventually left the world of fundraising to become a full-time stamp dealer.
Link Stamp Co. for many years has taken its famous toilet seat, covered with worldwide stamps and neatly decoupaged, to all the American Philatelic Society shows.
The photos that have been taken at APS shows, with Linker's smiling face looking through the seat, are too many to count.
Linker began collecting stamps at the age of 10, when he took care of Linn's Stamp News founder George Linn's yard in Sidney, Ohio. Linn would invite him into his home to look at stamps.
"This has been a full, wonderful ride, sometimes exciting, sometimes fulfilling, and sometimes frustrating — but always extremely interesting," Linker told Linn's.
Despite battling some health issues, Linker has no intention of quitting the stamp business.
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