US Stamps

Scouts learn about stamps at 2023 National Jamboree

Oct 3, 2023, 11 AM
Boy Scouts using the Scott catalogs and assembling collections in order to earn the stamp collecting merit badge. Photo courtesy of William Shea.

Philatelic Foreword by Jay Bigalke

In advance of the 2023 Boy Scouts of America National Jamboree held in July in West Virginia, William P. Shea, president of the Scouts on Stamps Society International, contacted me to see if we would be able to provide some support with an updated set of Scott catalogs.

I was able to dig around and put together a recent set of catalogs and sent them off to Shea.

I was thrilled to learn they were put to good use, and Shea provided some photos and statistics on the success of the stamp collecting merit badge booth at the jamboree.

Shea said that 210 Scouts completed the stamp collecting merit badge. “Traditionally 900 to 1,100 Scouts earn Stamp Collecting Merit Badge each year,” he said. “The 210 earned at the Jamboree should result in a 20 percent increase earned in 2023.”

He said that each Scout that earned the merit badge used the Scott catalogs to complete the following requirements:

“Demonstrate the use of one standard catalog for several different stamp issues. Explain why catalog value can vary from the corresponding purchase price.

And, “Explain the meaning of the term condition as used to describe a stamp. Show examples that illustrate the different factors that affect a stamp’s value.”

Seven Scouts on Stamps Society International members supported the jamboree booth efforts, and many members provided donations of stamps and supplies.

At the Great American Stamp Show, I was surprised and thrilled to receive a nice certificate of appreciation from the society.

The society’s efforts in sharing the hobby with younger collectors is the part that should get the most recognition though.

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