Newfoundland Antiques and Collectibles
Stamps and Stamp Collecting by Tom Homa
The collecting and study of stamps is called Philately
England issued the world's first stamp on May 1, 1840. In a few
days, people began to actively collect these 'funny little bits of
paper." Stamp collecting was born!!
Forty-seven years later, Newfoundland issued a small, square half
cent stamp featuring their native Newfoundland Dog. This was the first
stamp featuring a dog of any breed.
Where, And How Do I
Knowledge is the most important tool
for any hobby enthusiast.. Anyone interested in collecting stamps
must check their local library for books on the subject. Research
will show you the best methods to store, display, and protect your
investment. Remember, collectors are merely the caretakers of their
treasures. Collections are passed from generation to generation,
bringing joy to each new collector.
Pay careful attention to
information concerning selling your stamps. Disillusionment
with stamp collecting may set in when a collection is appraised for sale.
Often collectors believe they will make money on every
transaction. This is far from true! Stamp collectors collect stamps for the pleasure of owning a collection of
stamps. Any money realized from a collection is a true
What should I pay for a stamp?
Again, check your local library. Many libraries carry the Scott Catalog which will give you the current market retail price of every legitimate postage stamp ever issued. Scott's also warns collectors of any known counterfeited stamps. Overseas readers will also find many other fine catalogs, i.e. Stanley Gibbons, Yvert et Teller, and Michel available for research.
You will need to create a "Want List" consisting of the catalog numbers of the stamps you want to purchase. Many dealers request catalog numbers before searching their stock. Stamp shows offer collectors access to many dealers' inventories.
Where do I go to buy stamps?
Check at your local magazine dealer's for one of the many fine periodicals dedicated to stamp collecting. The largest periodical is Linn's Stamp News. This weekly newspaper is packed with vendor's advertisements. Check out the local stamp show listings for your area and attend one. Usually there is no admission fee. Small shows will probably have only a few dealers but larger shows such as the American Philatelic Society shows will have as many as thirty or forty dealers. Stamp shows offer you the opportunity to meet other collectors, to talk with dealers, to see how others display their stamps, and to learn more about your hobby. Most shows will have someone selling album pages, mounting material, and other supplies. Most will be happy to show you how to properly use them so that you will not damage your stamps.
How do I choose a dealer?
Many dealers are specialists in one or more countries. Others will be able to offer something from every country, and others will be topical dealers. A dealer specializing in United States stamps will not be able to supply you with that Monaco Newf stamp, but one specializing in French area stamps, a general world-wide dealer, or a topical dealer might be able to supply you with this stamp. Remember to shop around. Look for the best price. Most dealers will not haggle over pricing!!
What are Topical Stamps?
There are many ways to collect stamps. One is by selecting a country and trying to collect one of every stamp ever issued by that country. This is often a monumental and expensive task. Then there are the Topical collectors. Here, the collector chooses something that interests him or her. With some exceptions, topical stamps offer the novice collector more stamps for their money. READ MORE
Dogs on stamps study unit (DOSSU)
If you decide to seriously collect Newfoundland Dog stamps check out the DOSSU website (Dogs on Stamps Study Unit). This friendly group specializes in dogs on stamps. They put out a fine periodical that lists all the recently issued stamps picturing dogs. The yearly membership fee is minimal. DOSSU is affiliated with the American Topical Association.