Paving the Way for the Future of Philately

November 8, 2013…The U.S. Philatelic Classics Society is pleased to announce that 61 years of The Chronicle of the U.S. Classic Postal Issues, are now available to the public at no cost. The Chronicle, the Society’s quarterly journal, is full of cutting edge research relating to the stamps and postal history of the classic period of United States philately.

Each issue of The Chronicle from 1948 through 2008 is available for all to view as the “WebChronicle™” on the Society’s website. All issues are fully searchable by author or keyword.

Issues from the past five years are available only to members. Those interested in becoming members which be given full access to not only past five years of The Chronicle but also access to the Members Domain where full archives of select exhibits, membership directories, EDU database, among much more.

Join Up now!

Furthering Philatelic Research Online with the Travers Papers and the 1847 Census

September 3, 2013…The U.S. Philatelic Classics Society is pleased to announce two new online resources. Continuing with the Society’s goal of enhancing the website and providing vital resources for collectors and researchers alike, the Society has decided that these two new online resources should be in the public domain:

The Travers Papers – Consisting of 2,787 typed and handwritten pages. These documents were held by Arthur Travers, Chief Clerk of the Third Assistant Postmaster General, and cover the period 1851-1912. The documents provide an inside view with vital clues about the production of early postage stamps, stamped envelopes, and postal cards from the United States, Cuba, The Philippines, Puerto Rico and Hawaii. None of the documents now presented on the Classic Society’s website were included in the two volume set of books on the 1847 issues recently published by Alexander, Mueller, Brett and Hulme. The material now made available has never been seen by the public, so offers an unparalleled research opportunity. A direct link can be found HERE.

1847 Cover Census – Complete with full search capabilities and over 14,000 covers, this census will provide vital information to collectors of this issue, to postal historians, and to Classic U.S. Philately in general. The census also includes photos, provenance, auction descriptions, certificate information, and much more. The Society welcomes any additions, scans or corrections to listings. A direct link can be found HERE.

American Philatelic Research Library Receives Gift of Postal History Research

May 3, 2013…Thomas J. Alexander has donated his postal history research archive and library to the American Philatelic Research Library.

The donation includes Alexander’s entire philatelic library, consisting of many hundreds of books, along with copious notes, clippings, and research files. The materials reflect his broad range of interests, including but not limited to the early United States postal issues, steamboat mail, western forts, and the postal history of Kansas and Missouri. Also included are many photocopies of collections and exhibits, both his own and those of other now-departed postal historians. Over the coming months, the assemblage of materials will be inventoried in detail, cataloged, and stored for use by philatelic scholars.

“Mr. Alexander is a highly regarded scholar,” said librarian Tara Murray. “I am delighted that he has the foresight and generosity to preserve his research material and make it available to future generations of philatelists and postal historians through the American Philatelic Research Library.”

The gift was facilitated by the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society Inc., of which Mr. Alexander was President in 1981-1984. The USPCS provided a grant to cover shipping the 326 bankers boxes to Bellefonte, and the hiring of a library intern to process the collection and create a finding aid.

“Our Board of Directors had recognized that the Classics Society has a responsibility to preserve research materials from the classic period of U.S. philately,” said John Barwis, current USPCS President. “So we were very pleased to have the opportunity to help make Tom Alexander’s lifetime of philatelic work available to future students. We will serve Tara Murray and her staff in an advisory capacity as they evaluate and store Tom’s wonderful donation.” Barwis continued “This project was made possible by a grant to the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society from the David T. Beals III Charitable Trust, Bank of America, trustee. David Beals preceded Tom Alexander as president of the USPCS, and made important contributions to American postal history. We are pleased to honor both David Beals and Tom Alexander by helping to preserve their work.”

The American Philatelic Research Library has one of the world’s largest and most accessible collections of philatelic literature. It also holds several unique archives, including the Daniel Hines Air Mail Collection. The APRL is a public nonprofit that relies heavily on donations of materials. Members of the APRL and the American Philatelic Society may borrow materials directly through the mail and others may access the collections through interlibrary loan. The APRL is open to the public and scholars are always welcome to do research on site. For more information, visit the APRL on the web at or call 814-933-3803 and select option 3 for the library.

U.S. Philatelic Classics Society Cup and Award Winners

May 3, 2013…The 2012 Annual Meeting held by the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society at the St. Louis Stamp Expo from March 22nd-24th was a great success with a wonderful showing of exhibits and visitors.

The USPCS is proud to name the following Society Cup and Award winners for this year. Each has made a significant contribution to both the USPCS and philately as a whole. These awards are a special recognition to those who have furthered our knowledge in different fields:

– The Susan M. McDonald Plaque – David D’Alessandris for his article, Mail Between the United States and Newfoundland in Chronicle 236 (November, 2012)
– The Tracy Simpson Cup – Greg Sutherland
– The Dr. Carroll Chase Cup – James E. Kloetzel for his sustained effort in improving and modernizing the Scott Specialized Catalog of U.S. Stamps and Covers
– The Stanley B. Ashbrook Cup – Fred Gregory for his book, Hawaii Foreign Mail to 1870
– The Distinguished Philatelist Award – Dwayne O. Littauer

Description of the awards and winners of each are listed below:

The Susan M. McDonald Plaque is awarded for articles about U. S. Classic Postal History published in a given Chronicle Volume. About the winner of The Susan M. McDonald Plaque: This prize, awarded annually by the Section Editors of the Chronicle of the U.S. Classic Postal Issues, recognizes the author’s wide-ranging and richly-annotated survey article, examining letter-post correspondence between the United States and Newfoundland (in both directions) from the pre-stamp beginnings up to the Universal Postal Union. In the course of a broad and sweeping analysis, the article presents some fascinating and colorful covers, a useful map and a tabular representation of the highly complex rate components that characterized these mails, all in the process of explaining postal markings and handling practices that until now have mystified most collectors.

The Tracy Simpson Cup is awarded only to a member of The U. S. Philatelic Classics Society for outstanding service to the society. About the winner of The Tracy Simpson Cup: Greg Sutherland joined the Classics Society in 1988. He is well known to students of American postal history, who usually saw him at the bourse table of Freeman’s, of which he was the owner. Requests for Greg’s help in locating a special item always got his focused attention, a reflection of the value he placed on serving others. That value was evident in Greg’s service to the Classics Society. Greg served on the Chronicle’s editorial board since 2005. Since then he served as Section Editor of The Cover Corner, a popular gathering place for members to learn about rates, routes, postmarks and postal regulations, and to test their interpretation skills. In that role he exhibited diligence and integrity in solving philatelic problems on behalf of his readers. Since 2010 Greg chaired the society’s Cup Awards Committee, a group of five fellow members who decide the winners of the Ashbrook and Chase Cup awards. His enthusiastic, reliable support embodies what all volunteer organizations need in order to thrive. Our society has been fortunate to have the gifts of his talent and dedication, and are grateful for his service.

The Dr. Carroll Chase Cup is awarded to authors of articles, books, or other studies concerning any U. S. Stamp issued to 1894 including postmaster’s provisionals, locals, carriers, and back-of-the-book material. About the winner of The Dr. Carroll Chase Cup: Between 1994, when he joined Amos Press, and 2012, when he retired, Jim Kloetzel contributed profoundly to the improvement and modernization of the Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers. Not since John Luff and Jim Hatcher has any individual made such a substantial contribution to this key resource, on which so much of our hobby depends. Among many other achievements, Kloetzel was instrumental in making major improvements in the listings for Confederate postmaster provisional stamps (2000), the listings for Carrier and Local stamps (2001) and for the types of the 3¢ 1851-57 stamp (2008). The addition of color stamp images to the catalog, and the development of entirely new sections devoted to essays and proofs, U.S. Registry Exchange Labels 1883-1911, and a new subsection covering the use of U.S. stamps and postal stationery within the seceded independent states, all took place under his supervision.

The Stanley B. Ashbrook Cup is awarded to authors of articles, books, or other studies concerning U. S. Postal History from the Colonial Period to 1894. About the winner of The Stanley B. Ashbrook Cup: Fred began his studies of Hawaiian philately in the late 1970s, and the initial fruits of over thirty years of study are presented in the magnificent three-volume set published last year by the Philatelic Foundation. This will be the standard reference work on Hawaiian postal history for decades to come. In his work, Fred weaves the three complicated threads of Hawaiian history, changing transcontinental routes and shifting postal rates into a compelling story of Hawaiian postal evolution. Because Hawaii’s postal history was closely tied to the U.S. postal system, much insight into our transcontinental rates and routes is also contained in the work. Lavishly illustrated with cover illustrations, the book also contains many tables that clarify the sometimes bewildering array of composite postal rates. No fewer than seventeen appendices provide extensive cover censuses, postmark illustrations, rate information and, most importantly, a listing of vessel arrival and departures from 1800 to 1870. This last appendix, which fills most of Volume III, is essential in identifying which ship might have carried a cover to or from Hawaii, and represents a staggering amount of archival research. All philatelists with even a passing interest in Hawaiian postal history now have a thoroughly researched and illustrated source to consult for authoritative information.

The Distinguished Philatelist Award recognizes exceptionally meritorious service to U. S. Philately through published research, award-winning collections, active participation in the organization & promotion of philatelic exhibitions, & sustained administrative service to the national or international organizations which furthered United States Philately. About the winner of The Distinguished Philatelist Award: Dwayne O. Littauer has been active in all areas of organized philately for over twenty-five years. His interest in philately began forty years ago as a youth when he made his own album pages for United States stamps and grocery store trading stamps. He soon learned about printed stamp albums and the proper way to mount stamps. By then, he had become interested in both United States and German mint stamps. The cost of classic mint stamps forced Dwayne to consider used stamps and, fortunately for philately, he reasoned that the original covers would be more interesting to him than the stamps. He decided to combine his interest in United States and German stamps by collecting covers between the two countries. Eventually he expanded his collecting interests to include all foreign mail to and from the United States before the U.P.U./G.P.U. began, focusing on transatlantic steamship mails 1838 – 1875. Dwayne began exhibiting his United States – German transatlantic mail first, winning international gold and large gold medals in 2001 and 2006 and the Grand Award at Texpex 2006. His United States – France transatlantic mail exhibit was begun later, but it won a Grand Award earlier, also at Texpex, in 2002. As before, this exhibit also won a gold and a large gold internationally in 2005 and 2007. In 2009, Littauer began winning gold medals with his United States – United Kingdom transatlantic mail exhibit. As with his two earlier exhibits, this newest exhibit has also won an international gold medal, this time at Indipex 2011 in New Dehli. It is only a matter of time before it also wins a Grand Award domestically. Not surprisingly, Dwayne has been an American Philatelic Society (APS) accredited philatelic judge since 1991. While doing thorough research for his transatlantic mail exhibits, Littauer has shared his knowledge in articles and other print media. His topics have included the Anglo-Prussian convention, part-paid Prussian closed mail, and the twelve cent Bremen-Hamburg rate to Oldenburg. The Chronicle of the U.S. Classic Postal Issues has been his favored journal. He is currently the section editor of the Foreign Mail section, after having been the assistant editor for many years. Littauer has held important positions in philatelic organizations over the last three decades, particularly the U.S Philatelic Classics Society (USPCS). In 1988 he founded the very popular exhibition photocopy service for the USPCS and operated it until 1990 when he became a society director and treasurer. Dwayne served as treasurer for twenty-two years. Other treasurers have served the classics society with distinction, but it is safe to say Littauer was one of the best, converting many of the financial records to electronic documents, publishing and monitoring annual budgets, as well as a host of other meaningful metrics. He is currently vice-president of the society. Littauer received the society’s Susan M. McDonald Award in 2007 and the Tracy Simpson Award in 2005. Also on the national level, Dwayne chaired the election ethics committee for the APS in 2007-2008. He is currently a member of their finance committee. On the local level, Dwayne has held positions in the Crescent City Stamp Club of New Orleans, including president and director. He has been chairman of their Special Events Committee since 2005, which is responsible for organizing and holding the annual event in New Orleans fondly known as The Happening. Dwayne has given numerous talks at APS shows and local stamp clubs on various foreign mail topics. When he is not speaking, judging, or analyzing a cover, Dwayne is probably practicing law at The Kullman Firm in New Orleans, which specializes in employment law.

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APRL Receives Gift of Postal History Research July, 2013
USPCS Society Cup and Award Winners Announced June, 2013
Collectors Club of Chicago Pratt Award to David D. D’Alessandris March, 2013
Meet USPCS at St. Louis Stamp Exposition February, 2013
USPCS Launches Newly Designed Web Site November, 2012
USPCS Annual Meeting at NAPEX March 1, 2012
USPCS Sponsors YPLF Fellow for 2011-2012 – September 27, 2011
Classics Society to Revise Brookman’s influential literature and APS StampShow – July 18, 2011
USPCS Announces Cup and Award Winners – May 19, 2011
USPCS Annual Meeting at TEXPEX – March 23,2011
USPCS Announces the Birth of the Web Chronicle – July 29, 2010
Saadi Commissioner to PhilaNippon 2011 in Yokohama – July 28, 2010
USPCS Announces the Society Cup and Award Winners for 2009-10 – April 29, 2010
U.S. Classics 2009 APS Headquarters – Bellefonte A Spectacular Success – Nov 25, 2009
USPCS Announces Classics 2009 – October 14, 2009
USPCS Announces Sponsorship of The APS’s Young Philatelic Leaders Fellowship, Ashbrook Cup Winner & New Chatter Editor – September 21, 2009
Classics Society Announces Events For APS StampShow – July 01, 2009
USPCS Announces Annual Meeting At Garfield-Perry March Party – January 25,2009
USPCS Announces Chase, Ashbrook & Perry Cup Winners – September 02, 2008
USPCS Announces Successful Annual Meeting At NOJEX – June 24, 2008
USPCS Announces Annual Meeting At NOJEX – April 14,2008
USPCS Announces First Full-Color Printing of Chronicle – March 06, 2008
USPCS Announces New Additions to Official Family – November 19, 2007
Summer Meeting At Portland A.P.S. Stampshow Fast Approaching – July 19, 2007
USPCS Announces Annual Meeting Plans – February 26, 2007
USPCS Announces Annual Meeting Plans – April 15, 2006
USPCS Announces Change in Chronicle Leadership – February 20, 2006
USPCS Funds Seminar Room at APS Headquarters – November 15, 2005
USPCS Announces Major Enhancements to Website – October 15, 2005
USPCS Announces $100,000 Capitol Campaign – October 01, 2005
USPCS Announces New Book on 1851 Stamps – September 20, 2005
USPCS Announces Winners of Distinguished Philatelist Award – August 16, 2005
USPCS Annual Meeting Plans Firming Up – March 17, 2005
USPCS Announces Annual Meeting – January 18, 2005
Rare Natal Cover Found Among S.C.R.A.P. – January 03, 2005
USPCS Announces Sale on Back Issues of Chronicle Journal – January 03, 2005
USPCS Purchases Rights To American Stampless Cover Catalog – January 03, 2005

Promotions and Advertisements

Below is a scan of an article that appeared in the Glassine Surfer in the April 2003 Edition of the American Philatelist published by the A.P.S. A great plug and we thank Michael Mills for the mention!

Below is a scan of our ad in the Scott Specialized Catalog of U.S. Stamps & Covers.