Episode #189 – National Neither Rain Nor Snow Day, Secret Stamp Society, and Younger Collectors

Welcome to Stamp Show Here Today epiosode #189

Welcome to Stamp Show Here Today Episode #189 – Today we will be discussing National Neither Rain nor Shine Day, A secret stamp society that got some steel from the San Francisco Bay Bridge, and younger collectors. We also discuss starting a stamp collection at low cost and upcoming shows. Enjoy.

Episode #189 Show Notes

Hosts – Tom, Caj, Scott, Greg, Dawn

September 7th Celebrates National Neither Rain nor Snow Day

Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds ~ Inscription found over the entrance of the central post office in New York City

National Neither Snow Nor Rain Day commemorates the opening of the New York Post Office on September 7, 1914.

The James A. Farley Post Office Building is the main post office in New York City.  Built in 1912 and opened for postal business in 1914, it is famous for the inscription.  In 1982, the post office was officially designated The James A Farley Building as a monument and testament to the political career of the nation’s 53rd Postmaster General.

While the inscription is prominently featured on the building, the United States Postal Service does not actually have an official motto.  However, in 2011 the United States Post Office advertised with the song “Let the River Run” by Carly Simon. The words of the inscription ran across inspirational images of postal workers carrying out their daily duties. Other advertising campaigns have also hinted at the inscriptions motivation. The “Watch Us Deliver” campaign featured carriers delivering precious packages in harsh or awkward conditions. The narrator promises they will deliver the mail “…faster, sleeker, earlier, fresher, harder, farther, quicker, and yeah…even on Sundays.”

The inscription, which was carved by Ira Schnapp, was provided by the designing architects. It is a paraphrase of a motto from the Herodotus’ Histories which describes a Persian system of mounted messengers under Xerxes I of Persia.

Bay Bridge Steel and the Secret Stamp Society that Came Away with Some

At an event in San Francisco stands a small podium which bears an insignia. The Elsewhere Philatelic Society.

In 2015 the East span of the Bay Bridge was torn down with the steel donated to local artists throughout the bay area. The Elsewhere Philatelic Society applied for and was awarded five rivets from the bridge. One of these rivets is now fastened to the podium standing in the park.

The Elsewhere Philatelic Society is a group of folks, many of them artists, that travel around to events in San Francisco. It’s a bit of a treasure hunt where stamps are collected to commemorate your attendance, just as the post office releases stamps that commemorate events.

The stamp designs come from artists and are affixed into passports, though it is with glue and not hinges. No they are not postage stamps, but they are indeed collecting stamps.

So if you ever happen to find yourself in San Francisco then by all means look them up at stamps from elsewhere dot com. You can get yourself a map, become a member, obtain a passport and start a new stamp collection, all the while exploring the art and events of the city.

Low Cost Stamp Collecting

For the beginning collector there are several ways to start a collection on a budget.

Although mailed items are becoming more infrequent the easiest and the cheapest way to start a collection is by collecting the used postage that comes in your mailbox. This can be your own mail or a friend or relative that may be willing to save items for you. Even your job could be a source for stamps if your company receives mail.

Another way is through more advanced collectors that may be willing to help you start by providing duplicate stamps that they may have received.

A beginner collector could attend a show or join a local stamp club. There are many dealers that have bargain stamps that are good for a beginner and clubs offer a way to meet more collectors that might be willing to give you some items in order to start you off on the right foot.

These items and more are covered in more detail in the American Philatelic Society’s brochure 10 Low Cost Ways to Start Collecting Stamps, which can be found on their website stamps.org.

Younger Collectors

The recent APS Columbus show saw an effort to gain popularity with young collectors by having a topical theme of dragons in conjunction with the USPS dragon stamp release.

There were inflatable dragons on some of the dealer’s tables and medieval garbed characters to greet people as they entered. Visitors could have their photos taken with Perf the Magic Dragon who served as the show mascot.

There was also the youth area where you could learn about stamps, as well as receive free stamps to start a collection.

Several dealers also had smiley face signs on their tables advertising “beginners welcome”.

So what else can get a younger person do to start collecting stamps, or anything else for that matter these days? With this question in mind we will discuss what other shows are doing as well as some ideas that may help attract younger collectors.

I recently viewed a video put up by David Hall of Collectors Universe promoting the upcoming Long Beach Expo which features coins, cards, and a few stamp dealers.

Some of the youth activities that are included are a treasure hunt for kids with prizes such as graded Pokemon cards.

There is an America the Beautiful quarter trivia area where kids can win quarters by answering questions about the designs on them.

A currency matching area where kids can match currency to the correct country where it was issued for a chance to win the bills and a currency collection starter kit.

A prize wheel kids can spin for a chance to win anything from a ball or t-shirt to pirate sword, all the way to a half dollar coin or even a rarer item, and a youth Set Registry booth where kids can learn how to start an online registry of coins or cards that they have won at this and past events.

The Long Beach stamp club will be in attendance and has giveaway prizes that include stamp books with two countries with descriptions of those countries, and a stamp drawer with free stamps for kids 6-17.

With these two shows trying to make stamp collecting more interesting to kids what else can be done to attract a more youthful audience to these types of shows?

Scrapbooking has become a popular hobby for many and if combined with stamp collecting, I believe that you could create an album that is very out of the ordinary for what you are used to seeing. Imagine a kid’s album page adorned with stickers, designs, and rubber stamps of dinosaurs alongside hingeless mounted dinosaur stamps. Continue this over several pages of topics and you have an album that many kids would probably start showing off to their friends. Most of the items for scrapbooking are designed around the mounting of photos and as such should be safe for stamps as well.

What can the individual dealers do at their booths to be more inviting to younger collectors and kids? I know that many dealers have a stock of items that they can give to kids for free, but what about a small stock book or album that is just for kids. What if show organizers could provide this if dealers didn’t already have them? My daughters, at shows, have been given bags of 100 stamps at the sign in table or a particular area, but that does not help relieve the boredom once an adult starts looking at items for themselves. If these items were available, a dealer could have a youth or beginner sign at their table in order to signify participation.

With the Columbus show the emphasis put on the topical aspect could be a great way to get new collectors involved in the hobby. Many kids have different interests and there is almost guaranteed to be a topic that that they can relate to in stamps.

Many of the larger show contain auctions held during the show. How about having a kid’s auction? The kids could be given play money to purchase actual stamp that they could keep. They could get a souvenir to bring home and possibly learn about auctions and money management at the same time.

If these types of activities became a way of life at stamp shows, perhaps it might encourage the older generation to bring their grandkids with them to shows. With a potential to learn about history and geography while kids and grandparents share a hobby together.

It has long been said that stamp collecting is a dying hobby. Is it possible that the coin industry is beginning to face the same fears? With the continued rise of credit card usage and cryptocurrency such as Bit Coin cash transactions are becoming fewer and fewer. Could the use of currency in the modern technology driven world be dwindling just as we have seen the reduction of stamp usage due to e-mail and social media?

Show Schedule

41st Annual Stamp and Coin show
September 7th and 8th
Mountain Home, Arkansas

MSDA Fall Show West
September 8th and 9th
Oak Brook Terrace, Illinois
Website: www.msdastamp.com

Long Beach Expo
September 6-8 Thurs – Fri 10AM – 7PM Sat 10AM – 5PM
Long Beach Convention Center Hall A
Long Beach, California
Website: http://www.longbeachexpo.com/

The Fall Stamp Show
September 8th
Waterford, Michigan

The Omaha Stamp Show
September 8th and 9th
Omaha, Nebraska
Website: www.omahaphilatelicsociety.org

Outapex Stamp Show
September 8th
Appleton, Wisconsin

The Fall 2018 Capex Show
September 9th
Middletown, Pennsylvania

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