US Stamps

APS course prior to Great American Stamp Show Aug. 24

Jan 10, 2022, 1 PM
James E. Lee will teach a course on essays and proofs in a one-day event before the Great American Stamp Show.

By Linn’s Staff

On Aug. 24, one day before the start of the Great American Stamp Show Aug. 25-28 in Sacramento, Calif., the American Philatelic Society will host a course on essays and proofs taught by instructor James E. Lee.

This preshow learning event will be held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel, 1230 J St., Sacramento, which is also the host hotel for the Great American Stamp Show.

The goal of the course is to provide an understanding of the development of United States postage stamps by private banknote companies from 1845-93.

Participants will learn about the background of the engravers and the development of designs during different periods within the time frame. Lee will discuss the experiments conducted and production methods used to produce the essays and proofs.

In addition, the course will cover issues produced by the various banknote companies during the classic U.S. stamp period from 1847 through 1893 when stamp production was assumed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.

Hands-on study of the actual material will accompany the lecture format of the course, so participants should bring stamp tongs and a magnifier in addition to tools for note-taking.

Lee has been a full-time professional philatelist since 1990, when, after 18 years, he left behind two advertising and graphic arts businesses.

“For the past 30 years his focus has been the study, acquisition, and selling of essays and proofs, postal history, fancy cancels, and philatelic literature,” according to the course description.

Lee has served on the board of directors of the United States Philatelic Classics Society, as president of the American Stamp Dealers Association, and as president of the Midwest Stamp Dealers Association.

Lee previously wrote a quarterly column on essays and proofs for Linn’s Stamp News; currently is a section editor for the Chronicle, the quarterly journal of the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society; and produces his own quarterly newsletter, James E. Lee’s Philately.

The course is limited to 20 participants, and those interested can register online until August 12. The cost is $50 for APS members and $100 for nonmembers.

For more information, contact the APS Education Department at or 814-933-3803.

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