vintage and contemporary postcards and stamps from around the world

27 December 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 54

2006, Netherlands, lenticular stamp
Speed skater Yvonne van Gennip who won three golds at the Calgary 1988 Winter Olympics. The short film on a stamp was created from a series of 12 film stills taken from the winning race and pieced together.

for a favourite stamp

20 December 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 53

1972 Great Britain,  Christmas Angles
issued 18 October 1972 and postmarked in Edinburgh from the Philatelic Bureau
designer: Sally Stiff
2 1/2p  - Angel in pink with Trumpet
3p - Angel in blue with Lute
7 1/2p - Angel in brown with Harp

For Christmas stamps with a religious theme

16 December 2015

13 December 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 52

2015, USA
designed by Antonio Alcada
A Charlie Brown Christmas was first shown on television in 1965. For the 50th anniversary, the USPS has issued a booklet of stamps with 10 still frames from the animation. This one shows Charlie Brown with Linus and his Christmas tree. The "Forever/USA" is written in the same font as the Peanuts comic strip.

for secular Christmas stamps

06 December 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 51

2015, Germany for EUROPA 'Old Toys'
designer Kitty Kahane

Germany chose a drawing of a rocking elephant with a monkey riding on its back as their old toys - historisches spielreug -  for their 2015 Europa stamp. It was inspired by toys from the 1920s and 1930s.

We are coming up to the one year anniversary of Sunday Stamps II and I hope it has been a fun and challenging and interesting year for everyone. We are a small, but dedicated group and I think we have all enjoyed everyone's contributions. If anyone has any themes that you would like to see in the coming year, don't be shy and let me know. I am more of an accumulator of stamps than a collector, but I'm sure some of you have collections on themes, or countries, that I haven't thought of, or that you'd like to see repeated.  There are no hard and fast rules - anything related to the weekly theme is welcome!

29 November 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 50

2012, Belgium  "write me"
designed by Brody Neuenschwander, Hindi script by Dharmesh Jadeja
One of a series of Calligraphy stamps issued in 2012. The others in the set were written in Arabic, Latin, Chinese and Greek. On each stamp is written "write to each other" or "write me" - in Hindi "Ek Dusre ko Likhan"

22 November 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 49

1975, Canada
Anne of Green Gables designed by Peter Swan, typographed by Bernard Reilander

Anne (with an 'e') of Green Gables was written in 1908 by Lucy Maud (without an 'e') Montgomery of Prince Edward Island. It is the first of a series of stories about a young orphan girl sent to live with a middle aged brother and sister to help out on their farm. She is a bright, imaginative and talkative girl and the book recounts her experiences in adapting to her new home in a close knit community. 

for children's stories

15 November 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 48

2012, Canada,
Design Manager, Alan Leduc; Designer, Paprika
Photography by Grace Gladhill

This stamp of Louise Arbour was issued for the series "Difference Makers" in May 2012. Before being appointed  High Commissioner for Human Rights at the United Nations, where she was a chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, Ms Arbour was a Supreme Court Justice for Ontario and Canada. She retired in 2004.

08 November 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 47

1951, Pakistan, 4 annas
designer: A R Chughtai

Pakistan continued to use Indian stamps for a few months after partition (August 1947)  with overprinted stamps in use until 1949. This Saracenic leaf pattern has Pakistan written in Urdu in the centre of the crescent with the values written in English and Urdu at the bottom left and right side plates.  It is one of a set of nine stamps issued for Independence Day 1951 designed by Abdur Rahman Chughtai (1897-1975) who is considered the national artist of Pakistan. 

for monochromatic stamps

01 November 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 46

1948, USA,
First Day Cover

The Brahma was chosen for this stamp as it is the oldest breed of chicken in the US. "The Light Brahma Hen descendant of the original introduced at the first Boston Poultry Show in 1948" Known as the "chicken stamp", 52,975,000 were printed.
for farming or farm animals

25 October 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 45

Canada, issued August 2015
Souvenir Sheet of International stamp

The HMS Erebus, built in 1826 was abandonned in the ice of the Arctic in 1848 during the Franklin Expedition. After years of searching, it was found in 2014. The stamp shows a diagram of the upper deck on the right and a sonar image of the submerged ship on the left.  We know that none of the men on board survived, but what happened to them is still a mystery.  The Erebus, along with HMS Terror, were on a search for the Northwest Passage when they disappeared. 

for stamps commemorating battles or disasters
(and, yes, I now realize that this is more a stamp commemorating the finding of the ship than the disaster of losing it)

18 October 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 44

1946 Dominican Republic, 10 centavos
An airmail stamp showing the air routes to the capitol city, Cuidad Trujillo. The city of Santo Domingo was renamed by the Dominican Republic's dictator Rafael Trujillo after himself in 1936. Following his assassination in 1961, it reverted back to Santo Domingo. 

for maps or flags

11 October 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 43

issued 2009
designed by Isabelle Toussaint.

Photographs of the rhododendrons were taken at an exhibition at the Agriculture and Agri-Food Research Centre in Kentville Nova Scotia. The flowers were in natural light with the "pastel green leaves reproduced digitally to soften the background – an effect carried onto the booklet and souvenir sheet.  275,000 souvenir sheets were printed, and 13,000,000 booklets (of 10 stamps) printed.

for flowers
oops, sorry. here is the linky!

04 October 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 42

issued June 2012 (also a joint issue with Germany, identical design)
Pfälzer Hütte – Palatine Hut (at 2108m) is near the spot where the borders of Austria, Switzerland and  Liechtenstein meet. The original hut was built in 1928 by the German and Austrian Alpine Association on Bettlerjoch, a mountain saddle in Liechtenstein. By 1950, after the hut had been uninhabited and looted for several years,  the Liechtenstein Alpine Association took over and now it is open from June to October with meals and accommodation. From here it is a moderate hike to the summit of Naafkopf (2570m) and Augstenberg (2359m)

for stamps with scenery

27 September 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 41

1981 EUROPA stamp for folklore and feasts
designed and engraved by Jean Delpech

for folk costumes

20 September 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 40

issued August, 1959
Designed by artist Robert Foster with a modern oil derrick to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the first commercial oil well drilled in the US (the Drake's Well). Despite intense lobbying by oil historians and the petroleum industry, this is the only commemorative oil stamp USPS has produced. In 1959, at the stamp's unveiling, the Postmaster General, Arthur Summerfield declared "The American people have great reason to be indebted to this industry. It has supplied most of the power that has made the American standard of living possible." Attitudes to the oil industry have changed greatly since those heady days.

for technology and industry

14 September 2015

Fistral Beach

Published by the Proprietors, headland Hotel Co., Ltd.
Newquay, Cornwall

Headland Hotel was built in 1900 to the highest standards to be the finest hotel in South West England. Every floor had two washrooms for the gentlemen and two for the ladies. Every bedroom had a fireplace, hot and cold running water, electric light, and an electric service bell

13 September 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 39

1977, joint issue Canada USA
The Peace Bridge crosses over Lake Erie at the mouth of the Niagara River and connects Fort Erie (Ontario) to Buffalo (NY). This is about 20km from Niagara Falls, and the fast moving current of the Niagara River posed a challenge to the building of the bridge. When it opened, it was the only road bridge on the Great Lakes from Niagara to Minnesota. 
Unusually for joint issues, these stamps are very different in design.


07 September 2015

meet me at the tower

circa 1955
There's a new landmark at the "Ex". It's the Shell Oil Tower, whose gleaming glass walls and giant clock add a new feature to the skyline. An elevator is waiting to whisk you to the observation platform, far above the ground, where you can look down on the breathtaking spectacle of the greatest show on earth, the Canadian National Exhibition...look out over Metropolitan Toronto. here is a unique bird's eye view which makes a trip up the Shell Tower a must for every visitor to the Exhibition. You'll find the Shell tower straight through the Princes' Gates. make it a meeting place - get into the habit of saying to our friends "meet me at the Shell Oil Tower".
source: promotional flyer

After it was demolished in 1985 to make way for a car race, many people were lost as they left instructions to meet at a no longer standing tower. It is still missed.

06 September 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 38

1976 surcharge

in 1976 the pula replaced the South African rand at par as official currency. This stamp for 1c (cent) has a 1t (thebe) overprint surcharge.
Amethyst is a purple variety of quartz and found in many parts of eastern Botswana.

a popular gemstone for rocks, gems, minerals

04 September 2015

Grand Island

unused, date unknown
Both of these bridges were opened in 1935 and are operated by the New York State thruway. The bridges extend I-90 over the Niagara River to Grand Island from Niagara Falls to the north and from Tonawanda (a suburb of Buffalo) to the south. Grand Island is the largest island along the Niagara River. The North Bridge is 4,000' in length with the South Bridge slightly shorter, at 3,400'. The South Bridge is undeniably much prettier. In 1963 a nearly identical bridge was built alongside as a northbound span with the older bridge becoming a two lane southbound span.

a pair of bridges for Sepia Saturday

30 August 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 37

issued 1969, one of a series of eight fish stamps
each of the stamps has the same shell border
The Moonfish, or Monodactylus argenteus, is a disc shaped silvery fish with a flattened body. They can reach as big as 11" (27cm). They are found in the Red Sea (and east coast of Africa) and seem to like fresh water tidal pools and inshore reefs where they are known to feed on insects, plant matter and detritus.

23 August 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 36

issued 1990, the first of the lighthouse series
designed by Howard Kuslow and Howard Pain
Admiralty Head Lighthouse is found on Whidby Island and was in use from 1903 until 1922 when it was deactivated. Standing 120' above sea level, the  conical tower is 30' tall and has a Spanish style two-storey residence attached. The 18" brick walls are covered in stucco and was the last brick lighthouse designed by Carl Leick. It has been restored by the Washington State Parks and is open year round for visitors, tours, and special events (it is apparently popular for weddings).

16 August 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 35

issued in 2011 for Travel in Taiwan under the theme of Celebrations/Greetings.
designed by Lin Hsiao-han
This is Kenting, 'a hot tourist destination in the summer. Lazily sunbathing under the blue sky or sitting under an umbrella is a perfect way to enjoy a hot summer day on the beach' (ChunghwaPost)
Kenting is a National Park, established in 1984 and is Taiwan's oldest and most southern national park. It is well known for its tropical climate and sunshine, scenic mountain and beach.

And by the time you read this I will be off to a beach (not one in Taiwan where it is monsoon season anyway) and will be offline for a few days. So I'll visit you all at your summer theme when we get back.

09 August 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 34

issued October 2014
designed by Sami Saramäki to celebrate 'changes in everyday life', this particular set shows culinary culture and how eating habits have changed over the years to include fast foods (pizza) and imported foods (olives) to ethnic foods (sushi) along with the staples of potatoes, breads and fish and shrimp.  This is part of a series of stamps begun in 2013 for Finland's 100th anniversary of independence in 2017.

for food and drink

02 August 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 33

This baby echidna stamp was issued in 2013 as part of Australia Post's Bush Babies II series and looks completely adorable in this illustration by Elise Martinson (who also illustrated the first Bush Babies series in 2011). The other stamps in the series show a kookaburra, possum, platypus and wombat (none of which I have)

below is the complete bush babies from Australia Post

for animals in the wild

in two weeks, you are encouraged to show off any stamps you have that make you think of summer. it may be as obvious as summer flowers, activities, or a holiday destination, or subtle like colours, or an author, or maybe planes/trains/automobiles/boats of summer travel. let your imagination free.

01 August 2015


The Statler Hotels were founded by E. M. Statler, with the first one being built in Buffalo, New York (the first major hotel with running water and a private bath in every room). This card shows the second Hotel Statler that was built in 1923 and closed in 1984 although the ballrooms remained in use for catered events. It became the Statler Hilton in 1954 and some of the hotel rooms converted to offices by 1948 by the time WBEN Channel 4 had their television studios on the 18th floor. I seem to remember staying here as a child in the mid 60's and being excited that we were so close to the Saturday Night Dance Party that was still televised from the ballroom.  A failed renovation left the building abandonned and into bankruptcy and it might have been doomed for demolision had not a private developer took over in 2011 and it is now known as Statler City, a 'premier' wedding and event destination. 

an hotel illustration for Sepia Saturday

26 July 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 32

Wild Orchids of Canada issued 27 April 1999 
for the (15th) World Orchid Conference held for the first time in Canada
The four stamp set was reissued in August 1999 marking the '99 World Philatelic Exhibition in Beijing
The stamps are from paintings by Poon-Kuen Chow (white background) 
and Yukman Lai (purple background)
clockwise from top left:
Large Yellow Lady's Slipper
Small Purple Fringed Orchid
Dragon's Mouth Orchid
Hulten Roundleaf Orchid

24 July 2015

Torquay for sun

Torquay,  the English Riviera in South Devon
sent 21 July 1965, Torquay, Devon to Kilbirnie, Ayrshire
with a particularly fine cancellation
Enjoying ourselves, jolly company, food fabulous, and altogether most enjoyable, lots to see and do.
We have been a number of runs all most interesting. You would enjoy it, but too busy for a car.
A & B Wallace

a summer holiday with a beach or two, some sun and the sea for Sepia Saturday

19 July 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 31

A fritillary butterfly on a thistle. This was a stamp design winner for 1990.
The fritillary gets its name from the checkered pattern on the wings (fritilus is Latin for dice box or chessboard). This particular one is possibly a silver-washed fritillary that feeds on brambles and thistles. The males are smaller and paler than the female.

18 July 2015

floral pig

2007, Canada for Lunar New Year
Year of the Pig

The gold foil in the stamp is meant to reflect the ancient art form of cloisonné that originated in Beijing in the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368). The stamps were issued on Jaunary 5, 2007 but within a month around 250 of the stamps were found to be missing the gold and silver foil so that the enhancements of the floral design is not seen. Those .52¢ stamps are much more valuable to collectors as a result, some selling for as much as $1,000 each! My sheet are all nicely foiled.

12 July 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 30

1965, Mali for the 1st All Africa Games held in Brazzaville Congo

The All Africa Games were held from July 18 - July 25th, 1965 40 years after Pierre de Coubertin originally proposed the idea. In 1925, the Games to be held in Algeria never materialized. In 1929, the Games in Egypt were cancelled weeks before they were scheduled to begin by the colonial powers who feared they might "unite Africans" and help them break free from colonial rule.
The IOC granted the Games official recognition as a continental multi-sport event (just as the Asian Games and the Pan American Games) and were to be held the year before the Olympics. The 2nd Games were awarded to Mali in 1969, but these were cancelled due to a military coup. Nigeria stepped up to host in 1971, but were delayed until 1973 due to the Biafran War. The Games were plagued by further setbacks and it wouldn't be until the 5th Games in 1991 that they would be held for the first time on the four year cycle. This year the Games will again be held in Brazzaville, Congo, from September 4 - 19.
Mali won a silver in soccer in 1965 and two golds in unidentified events.

for sporting events

next week, as requested by Bob Scotney, we have a butterflies theme

05 July 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 29

one of a series of 5 Finnish mailboxes issued in 2011

for postal themed stamps

28 June 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 28

issued in 2012 for Europa series 'Visit'
this is one in a series of six minor lighthouses on the Isle of Man designed by local artist Tracey Dean

Douglas Harbour is located on the southern end of the capital city of Isle of Man, Douglas, and is the main commercial shipping port. The outer harbour has two jetties, four piers, eleven berths and an area designated for lifeboats.

for ports and harbours
In honour of the UK's 160th anniversary of the first pillar box, Joy has chosen our theme for next week - post/mail boxes, or anything postal themed.

27 June 2015

100 rooms air conditioned

unsent, circa 1949?
Miami Colonial Hotel
Facing Beautiful Bayfront Park,
Miami 31, Florida

Centrally located - Modern - Fireproof - Steam Heat - Air Conditioned Coffee Shop and 
Cocktail Lounge - Public Space - Sun Bathing on Roof Garden - Open All Year - 200 Rooms 
(including 100 air conditioned)

Centralement localizado - Moderno - Edificado contra fuegos - Califacción - Aire acondicionado Comedor y Cotel Lounge - Espacio para el publico - Soleadores en el Roof Garden - Abierto todo el ano - 200 Quartos (incluyendo 100 aire acondicionado)

a Genuine Curteich Chicago "C.T. Art-Colortone" Post Card

a Hotel for Sepia Saturday

21 June 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 27

The Mole and the Rocket (Krtek a raketa) 2013
Designer Zdenek Miler and Otakar Karlas (who adjusted the original design to fit the stamp)

Krtek, or Mole, is a cartoon character originally created by Zdenek Miler in 1956. Miler wanted his mole to be understood all over the world, so the cartoons have a distinct lack of dialogue, using instead non-figurative exclamations to express Moles's feelings and perceptions. Miler's own daughters did the voice-overs. The Mole and the Rocket was a 9 minute film made in 1965 where Mole crash lands on a deserted sea island and makes friends with a crab who helps him find the lost parts of his rocket. There have been around 50 of these short (approximately 5 minute) cartoons made with the last one in 2002. Miler died in 2011 at age 91.

for cartoons, or children's drawings

20 June 2015

a giant

unsent, 1939

Operates daily at the Underwood Elliott Fisher Exhibit in the Business Systems and Insurance Building at the New York's World's Fair. This huge machine, weighing 14 tons, is 1,728 times larger than the regular Underwood Master. It required 3 years to build. Each typebar weighs 45 pounds and the carriage alone weighs 3,500 pounds. letters are typed on 'stationery' measuring 9 by 12 feet, and the ribbon in the machine is 100 feet long and five inches wide. two box cars were required to transport the Giant to the World's Fair.

Sepia Saturday for typewriters

14 June 2015

Sunday Stamps II - 26

issued 1973,
featuring instruments and musicians for the series of Musical Instruments of Central and West Africa

13 June 2015

The Fleetway

unused, 1930's
The Detroit Windsor Tunnel is the second busiest crossing between The US and Canada. The first is the Ambassador Bridge - which is also between Detroit and Windsor. The bridge was completed in 1929 and the tunnel in 1930. Construction took about 26 months and was completed almost a year ahead of schedule and cost $25 million.

a tunnel for Sepia Saturday