Welcome first timers to a new web site that celebrates stamp collecting. Whether you are a veteran collector or just interested in learning what is up with the hobby, I hope you will find what I do interesting. Every business day a new stamp will be featured and there will be much to learn as we dig deep into the story of the stamp. Every stamp will be a fairly random selection from my personal, worldwide collection.
My collection, I have been collecting for nearly forty years, is not particularly distinguished or valuable. That is the point. As we go along, we will discover together what kind of story of history, politics, geography, economics, natural wonders, and art can be learned from participating in the hobby of stamp collecting.
I can’t claim that reading about stamps on this site is as fulfilling as the actual hobby. The handling of the stamps, the fragility of the paper, the smell of the old gum and ink is just not something that can be duplicated over the internet. To my style of collecting, there is nothing more fun than opening up a new box of stamps, full of mystery. Them stirring the pot until a stamp turns over and catches your eye. Often it will then capture your imagination. Others within the hobby are more excited about rarities’ and uncovering values and that is fine. It is possible that as we go along we will find some like that. The mystery of the next stamp I hope will be exciting not just to me.
There is a larger purpose to this site. I am trying to do my part in saving the hobby of postage stamp collecting. I have seen materials from the 1930s that called the hobby, “The hobby of Kings and the King of hobbies,” or “The biggest hobby in the world.” I suspect there was much hyperbole and puffery even in those days. The fact is though that fewer are stamp collecting and that is a shame.
With the breakdown of the family unit and economic dislocations, there are a lot of men over 40 with a lot more time on their hands. In their lives they are more likely to have traveled and seen far off places than the same person in the 1930s. I don’t believe that many of them are aware how well stamp collecting would fit in their lifestyle. It is something that can be done alone for the most part. It also requires little investment. A diverse stamp collection can be put together for as little as $100 and it can provide hours of enjoyment. The new collector can be on the lookout for more stamps having already learned a great deal about faraway places and different periods of time.
After each new entry at this site there will be a comment section. As we together build a worldwide stamp collecting community, we will hopefully have access to experts that can add to our knowledge of the day’s stamp. That is one thing that the internet is great about and why a website today may be more than a magazine from a generation ago.
In my daily articles, I will describe my rituals of stamp collecting. I do not expect anyone to copy mine but I would request that you develop your own stamp collecting rituals. What you are doing is special and the regular practice of such can do much to prepare yourself mentally for being open to the experience.
The reason I chose the name The-Philatelist is not be mysterious personally. Rather it is so an individual can see himself as The-Philatelist discovering a stamp, learning about it, and then passing it on to a group of like minded Philatelists. The term comes from the ancient Greek and means a lover of prepaid fees. It was taken to refer to stamp collecting in the 19th century. What a silly but wonderful term.
The issuance of new stamps is not something that has much of a future with the change in the way people send messages. It would be ashamed if the hobby were to fade away afterword. The 20th century saw an explosion of new countries with decolonization. These new countries did much to figure out who they were, where they came from, and where they hoped to go with their stamp issues. These stamps tell a powerful story.
I will not be trying to sell you something or be charging you to read on this site with pay walls. Given this, the few banner ads will not be particularly lucrative for me. I understand my main reward will be in the knowledge I gain and the community we have a chance to build. Stamp collecting is worth doing and it is my hope that The-Philatelist.com will be the internet home for stamp collectors.