History of Esperanto

What are Esperanto poster stamps?

Poster stamps for:

 -  International Esperanto events
 -  National, regional & local
 -  Esperanto promotion - in Esperanto
 -  Esperanto promotion - in other languages
 -  Esperanto summer camp!
 -  Non-Esperanto events
 -  Related Organizations
 -  The Founder
 -  The Green Star - Verda Stelo
 -  A flag story
 -  Rose Island
 -  Miscellaneous
 -  Ido - Esperanto derivative


Sheetlet of 8 Esperanto poster stamps, circa 1932


What got me started collecting Esperanto poster stamps was that sheetlet above.
Pretty cool, eh?

It occurs in at least 12 languages* - each in a different color - and was issued around 1932, in conjunction with the 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games. Or at least that's the claim of the DuBois Catalog of Olympic Labels, which says "they were printed in Germany by a semi-monthly paper of the Esperanto movement, HEROLDO DE ESPERANTO." One of the eight stamps does have a sports theme, and the text on that stamp - AT OLYMPIADS and international sport meetings SPEAK ESPERANTO - supports the claim, but there are no Olympic rings, so it's not an official connection. The style is very 30's-ish, so the date seems right.

The reason I acquired the sheetlet was the train on one of the stamps, since I was collecting trains on stamps at that time. When I ran out of enthusiasm for trains, Esperanto occurred to me as a replacement.

Through eBay and stamp dealers I have acquired an assortment of additional Esperanto items and images, and finding little else on the subject on the www, I decided to produce these pages to share my collection. Follow the links on the left to view its components.

NOTE: This is not intended to be an exhaustive display of Esperanto poster stamps, nor to constitute a catalog.
There are many more such stamps than I show here. I am just trying to give an idea of the breadth of topics one can find on Esperanto poster stamps, and to share some images and stories I enjoy.

* The 12 languages of the sheetlet at the top are English, French, Italian, Swedish, Dutch, Spanish, Czech, Esperanto, German, Hungarian, Polish, and Serbo-Croat. I would have expected to see Russian as well, since it was still a bastion of Esperanto at that time. And why not Danish, Portuguese, Japanese, or Chinese?

Whatever. Below are examples of all 12 languages.

czech - dutch - english - esperanto - french - german

hungarian - italian - polish - serbian - spanish - swedish


These pages were inspired by a talk on the same topic presented by Bill Dwyer at the 2014 Westpex show in San Francisco. My thanks to him for showing me the subject could be so compelling.

All text and images are the property of the author. Any errors are his.
If you have better or additional information about anything shown or discussed here, please email the author.


All text Copyright © 2014, William M. Senkus

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Created -- 05/25/2014
Revised -- 05/25/2014