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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Think Stamps For Graduation

Looking for a unique graduation gift? Give your grad a lifetime of pleasure; introduce him or her to stamp collecting. There are stamps to fit any interest from world history to geography, sports to cartoons.

Many excellent books have been written on the hobby for all ages and levels of collector. Most will will walk you through the "how to" basics:
  • Start or diversify your collection
  • Decide what to collect
  • Catalog and organize your collection
  • Handle, protect, store and display stamps
  • Identify rare and valuable stamps
  • Buy stamps online and through auction houses
"The Official Stamp Collectors Bible" by philatelic expert Stephen R. Datz is the ultimate compendium for all things philatelic. Packed with practical advice for beginner through expert on every aspect of collecting and trading, the book features more than 500 photographs and illustrations.

"Stamp Collecting For Dummies" by Richard Sine approaches the subject with humor and lots of insider tips and anecdotes gleaned from his years of writing The New York Times stamp column. Fun to read, Sine demystifies the intricacies of collecting with valuable info for beginner through intermediate collectors.

County Stamp Center carries the supplies your'll need to get your grad started; just click our blog post title. Visit our website for all your philatelic needs.


Members of the County Stamp Center staff were invited to attend the unveiling of the latest Israeli stamp issue, "American Children Draw Israel" which took place at the Washington Expo on May 29th. The national competition among American Jewish day school school to design a stamp showing their connection to Israel was the result of a joint effort by the Israeli Postal Authority, the American Jewish Relations Council, and the national Hebrew School newspaper "Baba Ganoo."

The overflow crowd surprised the event organizers. While the usual speeches and formalities of any first day ceremony were present, this ceremony was markedly different by the large number of young people in attendance, a youth choir singing Israeli songs, and the exuberance of the four winning stamp designers.

It may be somewhat trite to say that "every picture tells a story," but these four stamps featured on a souvenir sheet really tell a great deal about these children's connection to Israel. It's truly a wonderful issue, and it was a wonderful event.

We'll be featuring this stamp issue very soon along with all the world's new issues. Don't miss it!

Monday, May 29, 2006

Introducing the France Collection 1908 to 1976

You'll want to click our post title to see one of our newest feature collections, France 1908 to 1976. This is a wonderful extensive collection of stamps of the 1970s and 1980s along with expensive early century postage due stamps (mint & used).

All of these stamps are mounted on hingless Lindner pages in a green padded album. Included in the collection are earlier air mails, pre-cancels, and semi-postals. Topics include: cultural icons, large art stamps, Red Cross issues, nature, etc.

This stamp collection has a total Scott Catalogue value of over $1450. Make sure to check this one out for yourself. As always if you would like to see more images or higher resolution images of the collection, just send us a note at alex@stampcenter.com.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The Serious Stamp Collector

The Washington Post had a very interesting article today about William H. Gross one of the premier stamp investors and collectors. The article details how he has made millions by investing smartly in the right stamps for his portfolio.

William H. Gross' wonderful collection is being showcased at the World Philatelic Expo at the Washington Convention Center this next week. He is the owner of the rare 1868 1 cent "Z Grill".

William Gross is a very successful collector. His stamp portfolio has been valued at in the tens of millions of dollars. You will definitely want to click our post title to read the full article and about his tips on collecting to build your own portfolio wisely.

Thursday, May 25, 2006


DaVinci, Vermeer, Peter Paul Rubins....yes, they all have been immortalized on numerous stamps by numerous countries, but more recently, a focus on the art of children has charmed the philatelic world. Stamp design competitions for school children, themed contests (e.g. "Drawing World Peace", etc.) have drawn thousands of young artists to the attention not only to the curators of art museums, but to the stamp collecting public.

Colorful, whimsical, and thoughtful are only a few of the adjectives that come to mind viewing young artists' stamp designs on serious topics such as world peace, disarmament, and ecology and even lighter topics such as friendship, caring for animals, sports, and games.

These stamps and can be enjoyed by young and old alike, and can bring a touch of charm, fun, and diversity to any collection! You can search with keywords "childrens' art" or "child art" at www.stampcenter.com to see these masterpieces.

Washington 2006 International Exhibition May 27-June 3

The U.S. international philatelic exhibition will be held from May 27 through June 3 at the Washington D.C. Convention Center. The opening day ceremony "will incorporate the first day ceremony for the US Postal Service's release of 39c stamps the Wonders of America, Land of Superlatives sheet of 40 illustrating the USA's largest, widest, highest, etc., " says John Moody in his preview of the show on the Stanley Gibbons website. Click our blog post to read his entire review.

Washington 2006 is the premier philatelic exhibition in the U.S. It is sponsored by the Washington Philatelic Exhibition, Inc. under the auspices of the American Philatelic Society with the cooperation of the American Stamp Dealers Association, the Federation Internationale de Philatelie, and the U.S. Postal Service. A bound, 300-page, full-color catalogue is available in a limited printing of 8000 and includes three free souvenir sheets from Liberia, the Marshall Islands and Sierra Leone.

The show features 3800 frames of competitive exhibits by collectors from around the world and includes a 500-frame Court of Honor showcasing some of the world's rarest philatelic items. Show themes are: The Role of the Post Office in Uniting the Country, Children - They Are the Future, and Moving the Mail in the 21st Century.

To learn more about the daily themes and activities, which include new stamp issues, stamp artists and designers, autograph sessions, and special events, visit the show website at http://www.washington-2006.org/wstamps.htm.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Special Offers On New Acquisitions

We have just posted the April issue of our newsletter. Check out our specials by clicking on our blog post title. The County Stamp Center has been providing stamp collectors with superior service for 50 years. Visit our website at http://www.stampcenter.com for all your philatelic needs.

This Month's Special Offers

Faroe Island: Fish Sheetlet of 10,
Breathtaking colors bring delightful detail to the images of exotic fish depicted on this 10-value souvenir sheet. Sold mint and unhinged, this issue celebrates the Danish fishery nation. The Faroe Islands are a group of 18 rugged, rocky islands situated in the North Atlantic halfway between Norway and Iceland. Settled by Norwegians in the 9th Century, the "Sheep Islands" were part of the Denmark-Norwegian Union from 1380 until 1814. Denmark retained possession of the Faroe Islands when Sweden overtook Norway and dissolved the dual monarchy. These gorgeous stamps are a fitting tribute to a nation whose economy has been dependent on the fishing industry for centruies.
Only $14.66 (free shipping)

Belgium: 20th Century Personalities & Events Sheetlet.
A celebration of the 20th Century, this complete mint sheet of 20 values features political figures, cultural icons and sports events that shaped the 1900's. Included are wonderful portraits of The Beatles, President John F. Kennedy, Golda Meir, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King and more. This pictorial history of a most fascinating period makes an excellent addition to any collection and is a wonderful first acquisition for the beginning collector. What better way to both remember and teach about the people and events that define our recent history?
Just $16.27 (free shipping)

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Austrian Postal Historicals: Hold A Bit Of History In Your Hand

The rise and fall of empires, prominent historical figures, pop culture icons-all have been immortalized on stamps. The history of a nation is mirrored on the face of its stamps. Therein lays the fascination for many collectors-the opportunity to hold in one's own hands a little bit of history.

County Stamp Center has just acquired a series of Austrian postal historicals, most from the 1800's and a few from WWI. The history behind these pieces makes fascinating reading.

Austria's first postage stamp issue in 1850 featured a series of imperforate typographed stamps bearing a coat of arms, according to a fascinating article on Wikipedia.com. First printed on rough, hand-made paper, the industrial revolution brought smooth machine-made paper to Austria's stamp issues in 1854. Varnish bars were added in 1899 to prevent reuse but were abandoned in 1908.

A series of large pictorial stamps were issued in 1908 to commemorate the 60-year reign of Emperor Franz Josef. The series included profiles of the emperor at various ages, Schonbrunn Palace and Hofburg in Vienna. In 1910, dates were added to the designs which were reused to celebrate the emperor's 80th Birthday Jubilee.

A 1916 series depicted Franz Josef, the Austrian crown and coat of arms. Emperor Charles I was briefly featured on stamps from 1917 to 1919 before the republic was established, which brought the issuance of new designs.

For a complete philatelic history, click on our blog post title to read the entire article on the postal history of Austria at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stamps_and_postal_history_of_Austria. Visit County Stamp Center at http://stampcenter.com to view our complete offering of Austrian historicals. Many are highly affordable, even for the novice collector. Hold a bit of history in your hand.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Stamp Collecting Posts High Gains As Long-Term Investment

Stamp collecting can be a safe investment that grows in value over the years. According to London stamp dealer Stanley Gibbons, postage stamp prices have doubled since early 2000, showing an average 9.5% gain per year over the past 50 years, as noted in a May 16, 2006 article by Tony Levene (London) for the Australian publication The Age.

With the stamp market heating up, it's prudent to do business with a reputable dealer to protect your investment. Levene imparts the cautionary tale of two huge Spanish philately companies, Afinsa and Forum Filatelico, that were recently closed by authorities amid accusations of pyramid selling, false pricing, and fraud. Click our blog post title to read the entire article.

According to an unnamed dealer quoted by Levene, "We've seen this before in the 1980s when investors bought overpriced portfolios from firms which then disappeared. But they have to ask themselves why, if prices are 'guaranteed' to rise, anyone should be selling to them."

At County Stamp Center we pride ourselves on our integrity and superior customer service. We guarantee 100% satisfaction with any items we sell. Peruse our web site at www.stampcenter.com/index.php to see what we can offer you.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Have You Seen the Luxembourg 1852-1957 Stamp Collection

This stamp collection is absolutely beautiful and a wonderful investment as well. This collection is comprehensive and spans the years of 1852 all the way to 1957.

Our price for this collection is $1,900 but has a Scott Catalogue Value of over $3,400.00.

All stamp and souvenir sheets are mounted on hingless Lindner album sheets. Earlier sets may be hinged. The catalogue value of this collection is evaluated as hinged.

Highlights of the Luxembourg Collection include: 1956 Europa Mint NH 318-20; 1957 United Europe 329-331 MNH; 1951 United Europe MNH 272-77; 1926-35 Grand Duchess #159-185; 1906 Grande Duke William #82a s.s.; 1921 Duchess Charlotte sheet of 5 #125a; B65a-B65Q 1935 Professionals Set Mint Hinged. View more photos online today.

The colors and assortment of topics are wonderful. You'll find this country collection plus many more in our Country Collection section online. Just visit this link and review the other great country collections under the heading "We Recommend". You'll find great country collections from France, Poland, Switzerland, Norway, Finland, and many more.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Poland Stamp Collection 1962 to 1969

You want to miss adding this great collection of the stamps of Poland from 1962 to 1969 to your collection of European countries. Just click our blog post title to get more information and to see pictures of the collection. With a Scott Catalogue value of $480, you'll save big with the County Stamp Center price of $280. All stamps in this collection are mint.

This collection contains art, sports, prehistoric animals, sealife, Olympics, space exploration.

Beautifully colored and wonderfully designed, these stamps are a wonderful edition to any collection.

If you haven't visited our website, we invite you to check us out at www.StampCenter.com. Here you'll be able to browse our wide selection of collectors stamps, collections, souvenir sheets, and rarities online. When you're ready buy your selection online securely in our online Stamp Store.

We are buying collections! If you have a collection that you would like to sell, contact us first. We'll treat you fairly and find a new appreciative owner for your valuable collection.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Welcome to Our Blog

Welcome to our new blog. The staff at the County Stamp Center is working hard to keep you informed and up-to-date on the happenings in the stamp collecting community, and the reason for our new blog.

We will post links to our news letters, new collections, and interesting articles about stamp collecting that you are sure to enjoy. Stay tuned, and don't forget to subscribe to our blog's atom feed and receive our news each time we do an update automatically.