National Library Week: “Libraries = Strong Communities”

As part of an annual national commemoration honoring libraries and librarians, today begins a very special week here at the American Philatelic Research Library (APRL). The American Library Association (ALA), the world’s largest and oldest library organization, highlights this week (April 7-13) as time to reflect and pay tribute to the role that libraries and librarians play in the creation, cultivation and dissemination of knowledge, research and resources. First observed in 1958 and now in its 61st year, this year’s theme for National Library Week is “Libraries = Strong Communities.” Here at the APRL we’ve taken this a step further coining the phrase “Libraries = Strong Philatelic Communities.”

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Resource of the Month – Universal Postal Union Publications

Postmaster General Montgomery Blair

This month’s highlighted resource is a series of documents housed in the Government Documents section on the first floor of the public space of the American Philatelic Research Library. By way of introduction to these important international resources, in 1863 the United States Postmaster General Montgomery Blair organized a conference in Paris to discuss the state and future of international postal relations. Delegates from 15 European and American countries met and succeeded in establishing a number of general principles governing international postal relations and services. But the scope and necessary authority of their decisions remained limited and they were not able to come to a consensus regarding an overarching and binding set of international postal agreements.

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New Resources at the APRL, March 2019

Abacus Auctions. Bernie Manning’s Queensland postal history, the “Tamiami” Colonies postal history & postmarks: April 7, 2019 (Glen Waverley, Victoria, Australia:  Abacus Auctions,  2019). [NS Manning, Bernie]

Afinsa Portugal. Especializado, Selos postais e marcas pre-adesivas Portugal, Acores, Madeira (Porto, Portugal:  Afinsa Portugal ; Instituto de Expertizacao de Filatelia Portuguesa (INEXFIP), 2011).  [G6690 .A1 A257s 2011]

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Resource of the Month – Amrhein’s Philatelic Literature

As a librarian and bibliophile who has worked in a number of different libraries in the last 25 years, one of the things that has always been of keen interest to me in this profession is exploring the history of a particular subject through its literature. Philately, more so than many other hobbies, has a rich and extensive bibliographic history of notable publications, some of which even pre-date the formation of philatelic organizations such as the American Philatelic Society.

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New Resources at the APRL, February 2019

Abacus Auctions. Abacus Auctions [auction house] (Glen Waverly, Victoria [Australia]: Abacus Auctions, [2018-2019]).[AUCTION Abacus]

Abacus Auctions. The Ginger Meggs scenic letter cards, Colin Riddell’s Cocos postal history, William Pate’s New Guinea postal history: March 3, 2019  (Glen Waverly, Victoria [Australia]:  Abacus Auctions, 2019).[NS Meggs, Ginger]

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Resource of the Month – Durland Plate Number Catalog

When first starting as a volunteer at the American Philatelic Research Library back in 2010 one of the first things that impressed me about  our APS members and visiting researchers was the depth and scope of their philatelic research interests. Their research interests went far beyond just the collection of stamps and covers in a stamp album. Before working at the APRL I knew nothing of plate blocks or plate numbers as it pertained to the hobby. Often in that first year in the library when assisting on occasion with a research request, I would be asked by a visiting researcher to look up some particular bit of plate block data in what was simply referred to as “Durland’s.”

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New Resources at the APRL, January 2019

Aloni, Zvi. The Alexander collection, Milestones in the postal history of the Holy Land  (Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv ; The Alexander Museum of Postal History & Philately, 2008).  [IP70068]

American Philatelic Research Library. Manual of philatelic headings used by the American Philatelic Research Library  ([Bellefonte, Pennsylvania]:  American Philatelic Research Library,  [2018-]). [Online]

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Book Restoration Fund and a Matching Challenge

Returned Catalog in Need of Repair

As mentioned in previous issues of the Philatelic Literature Review and this library blog, we are very fortunate here at the American Philatelic Research Library to have regular volunteers that assist us with the repair and restoration of our books and other materials. As is the case with any well-used research collection, materials that are used in the library or are sent through the mail to be borrowed by our members often sustain some wear and tear that in turn can lead to the natural deterioration of those materials.

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New Resources at the APRL, December 2018

Bodin, Richard. Swedish armed forces’ & military volunteers’ postal history in wars and abroad: a display at the Royal Philatelic Society London (London, UK: Richard Bodin, 2015). [IP69958]

Criswell, Grover C. Criswell’s compendium 1987: being a compendium of historical items and covering paper money, old stocks and bonds, autographs, postal history, army-navy-marine items, slavery material, customs items, books-reference works, CSA coins, medals, seals, & papers (Ft. McCoy FL: Grover C. Criswell III, Criswell’s Publications, 1987). [IP69959]

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Resource of the Month – Facit Specialized Scandinavian Catalog

As many collectors and experienced philatelists are well aware some of the more specialized stamp catalogues provide a greater level of detail when it comes to the stamps and other philatelic items for a specific country. Two of the most common and oft used here in the library are the Michel specialized catalogues of Germany and the Yvert-Tellier and Maury catalogues for France and French Colonies.

One of the lesser known specialized catalogues, but certainly not to the collectors of Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Iceland are the Facit specialized catalogues. Recently in answering a question regarding the specific engravers of a variety of Scandinavian issues, the Facit Frimararkskatalog Special 2015 catalog [G6910 .A1 F142s 2015] came in very handy in identifying the engravers for the requested issues.

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