In 2005 your Board of Directors established The Chase Fund to financially support projects that would propel your Society into a digital future. Thanks to your generosity those projects have now been completed. The purposes of this letter are to review what has been achieved with your donations and to outline the project plan and costs for the next five years.
Donations from members alone were used to deliver the following results:
- Built and furnished a USPCS conference room at the American Philatelic Center: $33,000.
- Paid for a third of The 1851 Issue: a Sesquicentennial Retrospective: $10,000.
- Created a new website and kept it updated: $32,500.
- Created the “WebChronicle™”, fully searchable and containing all issues: $32,500.
- Provided online cover censuses of the 1847 issues and PM Provisionals: $24,000.
- Provided online scans of the Postal Laws & Regulations: $2,000.
- Sponsored students in the Young Philatelic Leaders Fellowship for fouryears: $20,000.
- A generous donation from the David T. Beals Charitable Trust provided these results:
- Acquired and preserved at the APRL the Tom Alexander postal history archive: $24,400.
- Provided online scans of 2,800 pages of the Travers Papers: $12,300.
These groundbreaking achievements could not have been accomplished without your financial support. Although by the end of 2013 we had depleted previous donations to the Chase Fund, there is still important work to do. Planned projects include, in no special order:
- Develop an IT infrastructure for simultaneous searching of all files and databases on our website.
- Establish a “crowd-sourcing” network for identifying and electronically tagging items in raw data files such as the Ashbrook and Knapp photos, to make these fully searchable.
- Add to our website more than two dozen books on U.S classic philately.
- Add to our website Stanley Ashbrook’s entire collection of 9,800 photographs.
- Provide online scans of 18,000 photographs of covers in the Knapp collection.
- Publish the updated American Stampless Cover Catalog.
- Provide online scans of additional Travers Papers held by the NPM.
- Acquire and preserve at the APRL another major postal history archive.
- Continue to seek and award-winning exhibits of U.S. classics on the website.
- Develop a process for creating short videos classics collectors could use to get more out of their hobby. These could include, but not be limited to identifying 5-cent 1847 printings, basics of 3-cent 1851 plating, explanation of a foreign-mail rate, etc.
- Complete scanning and uploading of the SCRAP and Lanman & Kemp archives.
The future projects listed above are estimated to cost at least $130,000. Two of the efforts (eBooks, Ashbrook photos) will be less expensive than would otherwise be the case because individual members scanned the originals at their own cost and donated the digital files to the Society.
It is again time for us to ask those of you who want to keep enjoying these successes and to consider even more great opportunities to make another gift or pledge of financial support to the Chase Fund For the Future of U.S. Classic Philately.
We have set a goal of $100,000 to kick off this second major fundraising effort. Two donors have each offered up to $5,000 to match the sums of gifts from others if received before the Boxborough show in early May, 2014. Please help your Society meet this challenge now with your own donation which could make available at least $20,000 for our ongoing, innovative projects. That is 20% of our goal to reach $100,000 by December 31, 2014.
- Platinum Level – Lead gift – $15,000
- Gold Level – $5,000
- Vermeil Level – $2,500
- Silver Level – $1,000
- Benefactor Level – $500
- Sponsor Level – $250
- Contributor Level – $100
Joe Crosby will continue to serve as our fundraising chairman.
You can set up your giving plan however it best meets your individual situation. Monthly, quarterly, annually – over one year or over multiple years – just contact the Chase Fund Chairman Joe Crosby at 5009 Barnsteeple Court, Oklahoma City, OK 73142-5405 and let us know what you would like to do.