US Stamps

Inside Linn’s: Blue Origin keeps busy flying postcards into space

Mar 11, 2022, 8 AM
This postcard is one of thousands that Blue Origin has flown into space during the past couple of years. Charles J. Vukotich Jr. discusses this innovative philatelic effort in Exploring Astrophilately in the March 28 issue of Linn’s Stamp News.

By Charles Snee

The March 28 issue of Linn’s Stamp News just landed on the presses and goes in the mail to subscribers Monday, March 14. And if you subscribe to Linn’s digital edition, you’re at the head of the line with early access Saturday, March 12. While you wait for your issue to arrive in your mailbox, enjoy these three quick glimpses of exclusive content available only to subscribers. 

Blue Origin keeps busy flying postcards into space

In 2021, Blue Origin flew a number of people into space. “Somewhat less well known is Blue Origin’s effort to create thousands of flown postcards as part of the Club for the Future, a foundation created by Blue Origin in 2019, whose mission is to ‘inspire future generations to pursue careers in STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] and to help invent the future of life in space,’” writes Charles J. Vukotich Jr. in Exploring Astrophilately. Vukotich explores the evolution of the cards and tells readers how they can get in on the fun of acquiring a piece of postal history that journeyed into space.

Scouting behind the Iron Curtain

In Stamps of Eastern Europe, Rick Miller introduces readers to stamps celebrating the Young Pioneers, “a rival scouting organization in many communist countries,” according to Miller. Membership in the Young Pioneers was open to boys and girls ages 9 to 15. “Although membership was theoretically voluntary, in practice all children who were eligible joined to avoid the consequences of failing to do so,” Miller explains. He illustrates a total of 16 stamps to tell his engaging story of the Young Pioneers. Most of these issues are from the former Soviet Union, but Young Pioneers participating in various activities are also seen on stamps from Albania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland Romania and Yugoslavia.

Tips for servicing first-day covers

The United States Postal Service recently raised its prices for digital color postmark FDCs for nondenominated first-class stamps. In light of this, Lloyd de Vries, in his First-Day Covers column, serves up handy suggestions that you can use to service your own FDCs. While options for FDCs are limited at Stamp Fulfillment Services, de Vries reminds readers that “the USPS allows us to put the stamps on our envelopes where and how we want them and specify where we want the postmark to be placed.” This is particularly helpful for se-tenant (side-by-side) issues. To ensure that a cover is serviced to one’s specifications, de Vries recommends providing a mock-up. Be sure to read the entire column to make your FDC servicing experience rewarding and satisfying.

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