Home Contents Credits

REFERENCES

This list merely scratches the surface of what is available about all the aspects of stamp collecting. I have confined myself to books that I actually consulted in writing these pages. If you wish to obtain any of these for your own library, see my list of philatelic literature dealers.

General References
Catalogs and Price Guides
Periodicals
Libraries and Museums
A is for Advertising Cover
B is for Bisect
C is for Cinderella Stamps
D is for Duck Stamps
E is for EFO's
F is for Firsts
G is for "G" Stamp
H is for Handstamps
I is for Invert Error
J is for Joint Issue
K is for Kansas City Roulettes
L is for Local Stamps
M is for Mulready Envelopes
N is for Numerals
O is for Overprints
P is for Persian Rugs
Q is for Quality
R is for RPO
S is for Setenant
T is for Topical
U is for UPU
V is for V-Mail
W is for War
X is for X Cancel
Y is for Yvert & Tellier
Z is for Zeppelin Post


General References

These are general-purpose books that belong on every philatelic bookshelf.

----------------------------

This Is Philately,
by Kenneth A. Wood; Van Dahl Pubs, 1982, 882 pages, 3 vols.

The philatelic reference work I have used most frequently and productively in writing this exhibit is Keneth A. Wood's three volume encyclopedia, This Is Philately, published by Van Dahl Publications in 1982. Other books came in handy for details on many of the topics, but this is where I always started, and it seldom let me down. It is out of print, of course, but if you don't have it, and you want a concise, well-written, informative one-stop reference work on stamp collecting, I recommend you try to find a copy - one of the major philatelic literature dealers should be able to help.

----------------------------

The Postage Stamps of the United States,
by John N. Luff; Scott Stamp & Coin Co., 1902

This is one of the revered classics of the field, and for good reason. It was written by one of the greats of the hobby, at a time when stamps in this country were barely fifty years old, and the stamps we now regard as classics and great rarities were commonplace issues of recent times. One thing that makes it interesting to me is how little was known, even then, about some details of production.

----------------------------

The United States Postage Stamps of the 19th Century,
by Lester G. Brookman; David G. Phillips Pub. Co, 1989 (reprint) - 3 vols.

I have seen some reviews of this reprint of the classic Brookman work on 19th century issues, criticizing the quality of the reproductions. I doubt they could have done better without creating them from scratch, which would have made the project impossible. This is the first place to look for anything concerning the U.S. stamps of the period it covers.

----------------------------

United States Postage Stamps 1902-1935,
by Max G. Johl; Quarterman Pubs (1976 reprint)

This is the classic work on Regular Issues, Parcel Post, and Air Mail issues of the first third of the twentieth century. When I want information about a particular stamp of that period, this is where I start.

----------------------------

The United States Commemorative Stamps of the 20th Century,
by Max G. Johl; H. L. Lindquist, 1947 - 2 vols.

Like his work on the regular issues, this is the essential guide to all aspects of the design and printing of the U.S. commemorative stamps in the period it covers, 1901 to 1947. Its current counterpart is the Linn's Yearbooks, starting in 1983, which are similarly newsy and readable. Sadly, there is nothing of the sort for stamps of the interval between them.

----------------------------

Sloane's Column,
edited by George T. Turner; Bureau Issues Association, 1961

This a compilation of the columns of one of the best known and most trusted philatelic writers of the 30's, 40's and 50's, George B. Sloan. The editor arranged the columns by subject, and the result, while not always the easiest of reference works to use (there is no index) is nonetheless an invaluable resource for anyone interested in almost any aspect of philately. It is out of print, hence available only from used book sellers. See my page of major philatelic literature dealers.

----------------------------

Fundamentals of Philately,
by L.N. William; American Philatelic Society , rev. ed. 1990

This is the bible about all aspects of stamp production. I read it once over a period of a couple of weeks as I traveled to and from work on the BART system of the SF Bay Area where I live, and ejoyed it immensely, since one of the things that fascinates me most about stamps is the ways they are produced. I used to collect plate blocks, because of what they revealed about production methods, I was obsessed with the Farley special issues for a while, and I still like unusual large multiples. I think it's time I read this book again.

----------------------------

U.S. Domestic Postal Rates, 1872-1999, Revised Second Edition
(The Beecher Book)
Beecher and Wawrukiewicz; CAMA Publishing, 1999

This is the bible on its subject, a ten-year labor of its chief author, completed and published after his death by his friend and co-author. I bought it more because it seemed like something I should have than because I expected to use it - the topic seemed too specialized for my needs. I've been surprised how many times I have turned to it in writing these pages, either because I actually needed its information, as on the A page (Four Times Nothing = Something?), or just because I was curious about the postage on an old cover. And the text and photographs that introduce the tables are actually entertaining. This revised 1999 edition has been praised even more highly than the original, and deservedly so.
An essential component of any serious U.S. collector's library.

There is a companion volume, U.S. International Postal Rates, 1872-1996, which provides equally indispensable coverage of its title subject.

Both books are available from philatelic literature dealer Leonard Hartmann, at http://www.pbbooks.com/rates.htm

----------------------------

Linn's World Stamp Almanac,
Linn's Stamp News (Amos Press) - 5th edition (1989), 6th edition (2000)

I have not yet seen the new edition of this book, but I use my Fifth Edition copy regularly, mainly for statistics and dates.

----------------------------

Linn's U.S. Stamp Yearbook,
Linn's Stamp News, yearly

These are great books, issued yearly by Linn's since 1983, and providing newsy, entertaining data and stories about the production of every U.S. stamp issued for the year covered. They are the worthy modern equivalent of the works of Brookman and Johl, and provide both fun reading and useful reference.

----------------------------

Linn's U.S. Stamps Facts - 19th Century,
Linn's Stamp News, 1999

This is the first collection of a weekly series Linn's has been running for several years now, giving production and use statistics for all U.S. issues from the first ones in 1847. They are not trying to duplicate the catalogs, rather to supplement them with useful information for collectors. In my ideal world, catalogs would include all this data, and even more. The statistics about numbers of surviving copies in multiples of various sizes are what I found most interesting.

----------------------------

Linn's Stamp Identifier,
edited by Donna O'Keefe; Linn's Stamp news, 1993

Sooner or later you are likely to find a postage stamp and have no idea what country issued it - this book will help you figure that out. Its two main sections are one with an alphabetical list of text used on stamps (and which country uses each), and another with photos of the toughest stamps (usually those with inscriptions in foreign alphabets)

----------------------------

The Postal Service Guide to U.S. Stamps,
USPS, yearly

This is one of my favorite reference books for U.S. Stamps, mainly for the full-color glossy reproductions of all U.S. issues since 1847. Many dealers I know condemn it, saying that the Scott or Brookman catalogs give more value for the money. I do not agree. At $17.95 (Scott is $36, Brookman $28), I think this is an excellent value, and the best tool available for identifying modern U.S. Stamps. I would not try to use it for the 19th century issues, or any of the tricky Washington-Franklins, of course. My one serious criticism of the book is the weakness of its index. Try to find all the issues of the American Music Series, for example. Some are listed under "American - Music", others under "Legends of American Music", others under "Musicians", and STILL others under "Country and Western Music", "Big Band Leaders", and "Songwriters" - I'm still not sure I have them all - so if you are trying to find all the stamps that belong to one series, the only way is to look through the pictures page by page.

----------------------------

Durland Standard Plate Number Catalog,
Compiled and edited by Kim D. Johnson; BIA, 1997

This is the bible for U.S. Plate Block collectors. With the latest edition it has been expanded to cover pre-BEP issues, and the very useful and interesting appendices continue to proliferate and expand. Even if you do not collect plate blocks, the data on plate numbers can be an essential aid to identifying tricky stamps. And if you DO collect PB's, the statistical data on scarce numbers can help you buy and sell wisely.

----------------------------

Linn's Plate Number Coil Handbook,
by Ken Lawrence; Linn's Stamp News, 1990

PNC collecting is one of the many byways of modern U.S. philately, with a few dedicated followers, and a giant ho-hum from everyone else. I was completely absorbed by it for a few years, and then lost interest, but I still enjoy reviewing my collection. This book is still the best work on the subject, and long overdue for a new edition.

----------------------------

Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries - Auction Catalogs

Many of the scans I have used to illustrate my pages were taken from Siegel catalogs (with their permission, of course). They provide high-quality photos of many lots, often in color. I consider my library of their catalogs, going back about ten years, an essential reference tool. I have excellent reproductions of stamps and covers I would never see otherwise, and have learned more from their technical descriptions than from any other source. They have an excellent web site, with a steadily-growing archive (The Siegel Encyclopedia) of scans and articles on key topics of U.S. philately.

----------------------------

Letter Receivers of London, 1652 to 1857
A History of their offices and handstamps within the General, Penny and Twopenny Posts
,
by Hugh Feldman; The Stuart Rossiter Trust Fund and The Postal History Society of England, 1998 - 2 vols

I confess that I did not consult this in writing any of these pages, but some books - and this is one of them - appeal as much for their format and design as for their content. And what a title! The topic is an interesting one, but the way it is presented here makes it far more so. The use of maps, cancels, and covers is stunning. Granted, most of the covers are not reproduced all that well, but to have done better presumably would have pushed the already high cost ($115, 2 vols, boxed) into the stratosphere.

----------------------------

Cancelled by Perkins Bacon,
by Peter Jaffé; Spink & Sons, 1999

Here's another book I didn't really consult in writing these pages, but I enjoyed it so much I have to include it. Its Introduction begins with these tantalizing words:

This book is both a memorial to Perkins Bacon, printers of fine stamps, and a tragic tale. For the want of integrity, their printing contract was lost.

Scandal in the world of stamps is seldom so entertaining, or so charmingly presented. Perkins Bacon was the firm responsible for the printing of the stamps of Great Britain and most of its colonies in 1861, when this drama unfolded. The book points out that they were already in disfavor, and might have lost the contract regardless, but one of their owners made the sad mistake of giving away sets of specially cancelled stamps to influential friends, and thereby hangs this tale. Of particular interest is the section that enumerates and illustrates all known copies of every stamp "Cancelled by Perkins Bacon". A delightful book.


Catalogs and Price Guides

----------------------------

Scott Standard Postage Stamp Catalog and Scott Specialized Catalog of U.S. Stamps,
Scott Publishing Company (published yearly)

Catalogs are essential tools for the collector. If you need up-to-the-minute data, buy a set of these yearly, and subscribe to Scott Stamp Monthly. My own set of catalogs is several years old, because I no longer collect new issues, and the prices in my set are close enough for my purposes. I use them more for general information (the Introduction often comes in handy) and identification.

----------------------------

Brookman Price Guides,
Brookman Stamp Co., yearly.

These are not catalogs, as they do not contain all the detail and additional information a catalog should have. They are intended simply as concise retail pricing guides. Some collectors scorn them, but many dealers, especially those specializing in topical issues, use them to price their stock. Their prices tend to be higher than Scott, which has the advantage of allowing a dealer to offer a discount and still make a profit. I preferred them when they were small, spiral-bound, pocket size booklets, but I understand that the number of stamps issued and the tastes of collectors and dealers make the current large format more practical.


Periodicals

----------------------------

Linn's Stamp News,
Amos Press

This is Number One in the philatelic newpaper business, which has been shrinking steadily for many years. Linn's is the only weekly left, and still has the most stuff that I cut out and save.

----------------------------

Stamp Collector,
Krause Publications

July 4, 2004 - I am sad to report that Stamp Collector is no more. The 7/5/4 issue reports that the publication was acquired by Amos Press, which already publishes Linn's and Scott Stamp Monthly, so they have terminated this one. Too bad, I liked it.

This was Number Two in the philatelic newspaper business, with number three so much smaller it's not worth mentioning. I liked Stamp Collector for its unique personality, and some of its regular features like "Meet the Designer". It tried to stir up some conflict with its arch rival, Linn's occasionally, but there's just not that much real excitemnt in stamp collecting.

----------------------------

Scott Stamp Monthly,
Scott Publishing Company

This monthly magazine contains Scott's monthly catalog update, which is what keeps it in business. The articles and features are well done, and interesting when they pertain to something I collect.


Libraries and Museums

Here's a link to a site that lists Philatelic Libraries and Museums. I recommend you use and support them, as they perform a vital service to the philatelic community.

I have been a proud supporter of the Western Philatelic Library in Sunnyvale, Ca, ever since I encountered their display at WESTPEX, the yearly APS show in San Francisco, many years ago. They have an excellent web site, and an excellent facility - visit them if you are in the area.

The Rocky Mountain Philatelic Library, in Denver, CO, is well worth a visit if you live in that area, or are visiting near there. I took a tour of their facility when I attended the ATA's Topical Show in June of 2003, and was impressed by the size of their collection, as well as the appearance and organization of the facility itself.


A is for Advertising Cover

----------------------------

The American Illustrated Cover Catalog
The Collection of John R. Biddle, (auction catalog) David G. Phillips, 1981

Auction catalogs are a major source of information in philately, since they are often the only published records of great collections. This one was unusual for its time in its effort to go beyond being just an auction catalog to provide an overview of its topic. In the past few years the idea has been taken up and developed further, resulting in the already classic catalogs produced for sales such as the Ishikawa Collection, the Honolulu Advertiser Collection, and the Robert Zoellner Collection.

----------------------------

Private Die Proprietary Medicine Stamps
by George B. Griffenhagen; pub. by the American Topical Association (Handbook No. 66), 1969

This was the source of my basic information about Seabury & Johnson (see A is for Advertising Cover), and is an indispensable reference on its main topic, the Medicine proprietary revenue stamps of 1862-1883.

----------------------------

Collecting United States Covers and Postal History
by William R. Weiss, Jr.; pub. by the author, 1987

I consulted this book in connection with several of the letters - it certainly pertains to all of A, H, F, W, and R. I recommend it as a good introduction to many aspects of cover collecting.


B is for Bisect

----------------------------

Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries - Auction Catalogs

One of the areas where I most needed to borrow images for this web site was the page on Bisects, since there are no affordable examples of the early ones. The beautiful, full- color auction catalogs of Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries (and their gracious permission to reproduce the images here) made it possible for me to show some of the best examples that exist. I am most grateful for their kindness.


C is for Cinderella Stamp

----------------------------

Cinderella Stamps,
by L.N & M. Williams; William Heinemann (London), 1970

The Williams brothers are among the most prolific and talented of philately's authors, with many excellent titles to their credit. Writing from the perspective of true philatelists, they hardly mention Poster Stamps in this work, focusing on stamps issued for purposes closer to the mails, such as locals, railway stamps, revenues, etc. It is a useful introduction to that part of the subject.

----------------------------

Ludwig Hohlwein - The Poster Stamps,
by Charles Kiddle; World Poster Stamps, 1998

The author of this work has undertaken to issue a catalog of all poster stamps up to 1945 for which the artist can be identified, and promises to publish the entire work by the end of this year! This was the first part, issued as a separate volume with full color, full size illustrations (the rest will be in black and white), since Hohlwein is generally acknowledged as "The King of the Poster Makers", and many of his designs were reproduced as poster stamps. I wish they were all to be as good as this, since it is so good I feel no need to own the actual stamps! Not cheap, though - $43 from The Printer's Stone, who have a good stock of titles on Poster Stamps.

----------------------------

Lick 'em, Stick 'em, The Lost Art of Poster Stamps,
by H. Thomas Steele; Abbeville Press, 1989.

This is the best general work on Poster Stamps that I have seen, certainly for its text, which is excellent, but even more so for the many high-quality, full-color illustrations, many at several times the size of the originals, so every beautiful detail is crystal clear. And, to top it all off, there's a sheet of poster stamps advertising the book itself included.

----------------------------

The Philatelic Truck,
by James H. Bruns; BIA, 1982

The Postal Truck is one small, slightly eccentric chapter in the history of U.S. postal vehicles, made especially charming and memorable by the Souvenir Sheets that were printed for distribution from the truck. This book is an entertaining and informative investigation of the truck's brief history.

James Bruns has an engaging obsession with postal vehicles, and has written several excellent books on the subject. As former Director of the National Postal Museum, he also made them a key part of its exhibits.


D is for Duck Stamps


E is for EFO's

----------------------------

Errors, Freaks, and Oddities on U.S. Stamps - Question Marks in Philately,
by S. B. Segal; BIA, 1979

This is a very informative pamphlet on its topic, with plentiful illustrations which, though in black and white, add greatly to its interest and value. It focuses on how the various kinds of errors occur, rather than scarcity or value, and is an excellent reference in that respect.


F is for Firsts

----------------------------

Collins Hand Painted First Day Covers, the First 20 Years - 1978-1997,
by Fred G. Collins

As I have mentioned several times in these pages, Fred is my favorite FDC maker, and this recent book about his experiences in the field has just made me like him even more. The only thing that would make it better would be larger, full-color reproductions of every cover (there is a small section of color images, but the rest are small, black-and- white pictures that don't do justice to his work at all).

----------------------------

Turk Bird - The High-Flying Life and Times of Eddie Gardner,
by James H. Bruns; National Postal Museum, 1998

Jim Bruns has a genius for imagining what other people might have been like, and it is what makes this book so entertaining. His topic is interesting - the life of one of the most talented and daring of the first air mail pilots - but he has little more than a few photos and the historical record to work with, and from that he manages to create an exciting and intimate look at a life and time that ended before most of us were born. Highly recommended.

----------------------------

Aerial Mail Service - A Chronology of the Early United States Government Air Mail, March-December, 1918,
by A. D. Jones; American Air Mail Society, 1993

I had bought and tried reading this book several years ago, thinking it would be interesting, but I found it too dry and impersonal at the time. Then I picked it up again after reading the book listed above (Turk Bird), and it came to life! What I had needed was that vivid introduction to the times, in order to picture what I was reading about clearly enough to enjoy the sometimes technical-seeming details of this book. Now the era is as exciting and immediate to me as the first moon landing.


G is for "G" Stamps


H is for Handstamps

----------------------------

The Cancellations of Waterbury,
Mannel Hahn, editor; William R. Stewart, Chicago, 1940

This is a brief (30 pp) but excellent little pamphlet about the fancy cancels created by the Postmaster of Waterbury, Conn between 1865 and 1890, with drawings of all known cancels and statistics about their use.


I is for Invert Error

----------------------------

The Inverted Jenny: Money, Mystery, Mania,
by George Amick; Amos Press, 1986

This is a great book about the most famous pane of stamps in U.S. postal history. It reads more like an adventure mytstery novel than a historical account.


J is for Joint Issue


K is for Kansas City Roulettes

----------------------------

The Stamp Machines and Coiled Stamps,
by George P. Howard; H. L. Lindquist Pubs., 1943

I have mentioned the imperforate issues of the early 20th century twice in these pages - under K is for Kansas City Roulettes, and E is for EFOs. In both cases, the Howard book had provided key information I was unable to gather elsewhere. The paper of my copy is brittle, but then so am I (we are the same age). I suspect it suffers for the acid paper syndrome of many books printed in those years. Excellent illustrations, though too few of them.


L is for Local stamps

----------------------------

The Private Local Posts of the United States, Vol I, New York State,
by Donald Scott Patton; Robson Lowe, 1967

This was intended as the first of four volumes on Locals, Independent Posts, and Carriers, but apparently the author died soon after its publication. It is still the key reference work on the topic.

----------------------------

The Identifier for Carriers, Locals, Fakes, Forgeries, and Bogus Posts of the United States,
by Larry Lyons; the author, 3 vols, 1998

This is a magnificent work, whose chief drawback is the marginal quality of some of the reproductions. Still it is well worth the cost as the best reference on the topic. It does not provide historical information on the topic, just the illustrations and text descriptions needed to distinguish the real from the fakes.

----------------------------

Byways of Philately,
by H. W. K. Hale (compiled and arranged by Elliott Perry); J. W. Stowell Printing, 1966

One of the finest works ever published on Privately Owned Posts and Early Locals of the U.S., this book represents the life's work of its author, who was one of the most knowledgable men of his era on the subject. There are other, more comprehensive works available now, but this one still stands, especially in its treatment of Hussey's Post.


M is for Mulready Envelopes

----------------------------

British Pictorial Envelopes of the 19th Century,
by Ritchie Bodily, Chris Jarvis and Charles Hahn, The Collectors Club of Chicago, 1984

Almost everything you could want to know about the Mulreadys and their offspring. My only gripe is that, like everything else I have found on the topic, this book tells us that the meaning of the parodies is obvious. Not to me.


N is for Numerals

----------------------------

U.S. Postmarks and Cancellations,
Edited by Scott R. Trepel, The Philatelic Foundation, 1992

This is designated as "Textbook No. 3" of the Philatelic Foundation Seminar Series, and consists of eight or ten articles about various aspects of postal markings. The article I found most helpful in writing these pages was "Exchange Marks on Trans-Atlantic Mails," by Richard F. Winter, which helped me begin to understand all the numerals scribbled on foreign mails of the pre-UPU period.


O is for Overprint


P is for Persian Rugs

----------------------------

The Legendary Persian Rug,
by Thomas C. Kingsley, Castenholz & Sons, 1993

This book is the next best thing to owning one of the fabulous stamps it describes and illustrates. U.S. law prohibits illustrating revenue stamps in color, so the stamps themselves are in black and white. Fortunately the law does NOT apply to proofs, essays, and specimens, so there are ample color phots of those.


Q is for Quality

----------------------------

The Buyers Guide,
by Stephen R. Datz; General Philatelic Corp.

This book is an essential reference if you are buying or selling valuable U.S. stamps, i.e. any single stamp or set worth more than $100, which includes most 19th century and many early 20th century issues other than the most common ones. The author analyzes stamps either independently or as sets, with detailed information in four categories - scarcity, premium characteristics, comments, and caveats. Armed with this data, you should be able to make intelligent bids on these stamps at auctions, or to set reasonable prices on ones you wish to sell.

----------------------------

The Expert's Book,
by Paul W. Schmid, Palm Press, 1990

If you are trying to identify any of the U.S. Washington-Franklin issues of 1908-1923, this is the book you need. A high-power magnifier, or a good scanner will help too. The book tells you what else you will need, and exactly how to sort out all the confusing issues and design types. The notes about how often particular stamps are faked are extremely useful, since they help guide one in where to be most suspicious.

----------------------------

Top Dollar Paid,
by Stephen R. Datz; General Philatelic Corporation, 1989

If you are considering becoming a stamp dealer, or just want to sell your collection, this book is an excellent place to start. It's somewhat out of date, now that the Internet has become such a major factor in stamp buying and selling, but it's still quite valid in the lessons it teaches, and it's entertaining to boot. The chapters on Condition and Valuation are brief but especially useful.

----------------------------

How to Detect Damaged, Altered, and Repaired Stamps,
by Paul W. Schmid; Palm Press, 1979

If you are building a serious collection of classic stamps, you need this book - it is small, but every word is gold. Its examples are exclusively U.S. material, but much of what it explains applies to all stamps. And while it is useful for the purposes listed in the title, it has tremendous general value in helping you understand how to evaluate stamps for purchase and sale.


R is for RPO

----------------------------

United States Postal History Sampler,
by Richard B. Graham, Linn's, 1992

This is an excellent overview of its topic, and provided information about postal markings that helped me with several topics, including Handstamps and Numerals, but it was especially informative about railroad markings.

----------------------------

Mail by Rail, The Story of the Postal Transportation Service,
by Bryant Alden Long and William Jefferson Dennis; Simmons-Boardman, 1951

This is a wonderful old book, with great photos of how it all worked, and very entertaining text. Everything you could want to know about RPOs.

----------------------------

A History of the Railway Mail Service,
Mobile Post Office Society reprint (1977) of 1903 monograph

A bit quaint, but full of interesting information about the history of the postal service and the RMS.

----------------------------

The Railroads and The Mails,
Souvenir pamphlet distributed by Chespeake & Ohio Lines at the Centenary International Postal Exhibition in NYC, May 17-25, 1947

This is a very brief, well-written little pamphlet - no photos - describing the history of the mails in general, and of the RMS in particular.

----------------------------

Railway Mail Service,
by Clark E. Carr; Lakeside Press (reprint of 1909 publication)

This is a first-hand account of a man who worked with the RMS from its birth and during the critical early years of its development. Brief, conversational - the style is a bit old-fashioned, and charming for it.

----------------------------

United States Highway Post Office Cover Catalog,
Mobile Post Office Society, 1987

This is the definitive work on collecting HPO covers and cancels - it lists every route and illustrates every cancel, and includes an excellent history of the service.

----------------------------

The First Highway Post Office,
by James H. Bruns; Mobile Post Office Society

Here's another of Jim Bruns' excellent works on postal vehicles, this time the HPO buses and their development on the line from Washington, DC to Harrisonburg, VA.


S is for Setenant


T is for Topical

----------------------------

World Railways Philatelic,
by Norman E. Wright, Sr.
Handbook 138 of the ATA, CD-ROM Edition, 2002

If you collect Trains on Stamps, this is the Bible. This CD-ROM edition is not only fully integrated for all isssues through June, 2002, it contains a lot of new material as well. For more information see the web site of the Casey Jones Rail Road Unit of the ATA.


U is for UPU


V is for V-Mail


W is for War

----------------------------

The Standard Catalogue of Encased Postage Stamps,
by Hodder and Bowers; Bowers and Merena Galleries, 1989

Prior to the publication of CivilWar Encased Stamps, this was probably the best work on the topic, with informative historical background, excellent (though B&W) illustrations, and good pricing information. It is still very useful for its clear, concise format.

----------------------------

Civil War Encased Stamps,
by Fred L. Reed III; BNR Press, 1995.

If you are interested in any aspect of the Civil War, you will enjoy this amazing book, a true labor of love, with as much detail as one could possibly want on the topic, copious illustrations and statistics, and an extensive bibliography. It could profit from the addition of some color plates, and is a bit too thick for convenient use as a handbook, but the Hodder and Bowers work still serves well enough for that.

----------------------------

United States Postage Currency,
by F. A. Limpert; the author, 1946

This is an interesting little monograph, just a pamphlet, really, whose primary interest is more the men pictured on Fractional Currency than the currency itself. Still, as one of the few books on the topic, it belongs in the library of any collector of this material.

----------------------------

A Guide Book of United States Fractional Currency,
by Matt Rothert; Whitman Pub. Co., 1963

This is an excellent resource on the topic, whose two chief weaknesses are poor quality illustrations and its age (rendering its prices of little use). But the text is very interesting and informative.

----------------------------

United States Postage & Fractional Currency,
by Art Christoph and Chet Krause; Numismatic News, 1958

This is my favorite reference on the topic, mainly because all the illustrations are 150%" actual size! The only thing better would be if they were in full color as well.

----------------------------

The A.M.G. Stamps of Germany,
by F. Hugh Vallancey; Herman Herst, Jr., 1958

This is probably the earliest scholarly work on the subject, and while more recent books may be more complete or accurate, this one is still valuable and interesting for its perspective so soon after the end of WW II. It has extensive data on varieties for the specialist. (click here to view my separate page of information about the AMG stamps.)

----------------------------

The AMG Story,
by Harry W. Wilcke, M.D.; The United States Possessions Philatelic Society, 1994

This is an excellent recent work surveying all aspects of AMG philately, with good illustrations and historical information. It makes interesting reading, and provides an excellent overview of the topic. It is not, however, a catalog, and does not provide data on printing, varieties, errors, etc. (click here to view my separate page of information about the AMG stamps.)


X is for X Cancel


Y is for Yvert & Tellier

----------------------------

Yvert & Tellier catalogs,
published by Yvert & Tellier, Paris and Amiens, France.

Y&T are to France what Scott is to the U.S. They publish generalized French-language catalogs for the world, and a specialized catalogs for France.


Z is for Zeppelin Post

----------------------------

Zeppelin Post Katalog,
Sieger-Verlag, Germany, 1995

Excellent, but it's in German, which I read just well enough to make the book useful. It contains complete details on all Zeppelin flights and the mail they carried, with cancels used, number of pieces carried, dates, times, etc. plus statistics on all the Zeppelin stamps issued.

----------------------------

The Zeppelin Stamps,
by Donald J. Lehmkuhl; Winter Park Stamp Shop, 1992

This is the best English language book on Zeppelin philately, though it focuses mainly on the stamps issued for Zeppelin post. The historical account was very useful, though, and the stories about Hugo Eckener and how the various stamps came about make entertaining reading.

----------------------------

Handbook of Zeppelin Letters, Postal Cards & Stamps 1911-1931,
by Berthold and Kummer, 1931, reprinted by Postilion Pubs

This is an excellent (English) reference for the period it covers, but as the title indicates, it goes through 1931 only.

----------------------------

The Alan L. Belinkoff Collection of Zeppelin Post Mail of the World,
Steve Ivy Auctions, 1989

This is another auction catalog, and well-illustrated for when it was produced. Few collectors can afford to publish books about their great collections except in this form. Too bad.

----------------------------

Hindenburg Crash Mail - The Search Goes On,
by Arthur Falk; the author, 1976

This is the only in-depth study I have seen of what mail was being carried on the Hindenburg the day it crashed, and what survived. In addition, it has a brief and informative history of the Zeppelins.




Home Contents Credits


All Letter images Copyright © 1997, 2000, SF chapter of AIGA
All text Copyright © 2000, William M. Senkus

Send feedback to:

Revised -- 09/02/2004