Overview of the Stamp Collecting Site


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Foreword

Image of a Poland stamp Being a stamp collector, I, from time to time, surf the web looking for stamp collecting sites. To my disappointment, I have observed, most of the stamp collecting sites on the web are either commercial sites or are personal home pages of those stamp collectors who collect stamps for business - to make a profit. What happened to stamp collecting that once was known as a hobby? Of course, I have seen a few home pages that attempt to discuss stamp collecting without talking about the dollar value of stamps, but then again those home pages generally have not much to say about stamps. Their emphasis is on the unusual (and generally loud) background color or image, font style and color, background music, scrolling text, animated GIF's, etc. on their pages. I, therefore, decided to put together a site by myself which will attempt to discuss stamp collecting purely as a hobby without the distraction of animated GIF's and background music. This being my first attempt to publish a website, I know it will be far from perfect. But, at least, it is a beginning. I shall try to improve on it in the future. Your words of encouragement and constructive criticism will help. Thank you in advance for your suggestions.

About Me

I have been collecting postage stamps since late 1940's. I do it for fun, for pleasure. It is just a hobby. I do not collect stamps for profit. I do not look at it as a business.

I am a world stamps collector. I do not concentrate on any particular country or any particular theme. I collect stamps of all countries. I travel around the world through stamps. I am a "stampoholic". I have thousands upon thousands of stamps. I collect used stamps, though I have a few unused (mint) stamps.

Image of a Japan stamp

Why Collect

Image of a Costa Rica stamp
Stamp collecting is a fascinating hobby. I look at stamps as miniature art objects and they are certainly collectable. Besides, stamps can enrich one's knowledge of world geography, history of different countries, their culture, natural resources, fauna and flora, etc.. Famous persons, important events etc. are often depicted on stamps. Stamps are also one way of learning about a country's system of currency. A little interest and a little looking up of reference books, maps etc. can go a long way in increasing our knowledge about the world.

I think stamps are a great educational tool. Every teacher and every parent should encourage young boys and girls to pickup this hobby. And this does not have to be an expensive hobby. It is said that stamp collecting is the king of hobbies and hobby of kings. I agree with the first part of the statement but not the latter part.

My Method of Collection

I do not buy stamps for the purpose of collecting. (Okay, may be I bought a few out of the thousands of stamps I have). I take them right off the mail. My friends, my colleagues, my relatives, my neighbors, my tailor - everybody knows that I collect stamps, and they all give me stamps, usually right off their own mail.

For a list of people who give me/ever gave me stamps click here.

Image of a Greece stamp

My Stamp Collecting Philosophy

Image of a Norway stamp
I do not spend a lot of money to pursue my hobby. I do not buy stamps or non-essential stamp collecting tools like catalogs, expensive albums, expensive stamp mounts, or stamp collecting software to keep inventory of stamps. As I said, I am not a professional stamp collector and I don't collect stamps for the purpose of building my assets. I think that takes the pleasure out of this beautiful hobby. Stamp collecting then becomes a chore, a competitive business, and quite stressful. Who wants that?

My Stamp Collecting Kit

I have a few moderately priced stamp albums, a few downright cheap stamp albums from my childhood days, a few stockbooks of various sizes and price range, a couple of drying books, a pair of stamp tongs, a couple of ordinary magnifiers, and a stamp identifier (book). That is about all the stamp collecting paraphernalia I have. Yes, I do use inexpensive hinges to place stamps on the albums. Most of my collections are in small and large envelopes and in cardboard/plastic boxes and they are all over the place - on my desk, in my drawer, in and on my dresser, in my closet, under the bed, in the cupboard, in the basement - you name the place. I almost always have some stamps in my wallet (that day's collection). Someday, when I find the time, I will organize my collection and put them all in albums for easy and systematic viewing.
Image of a Nigeria stamp

Why This Site

Image of a Republic of China stamp
Two reasons. First of all, I want to share my passion with the rest of the world. Secondly, I want to show to the young people how interesting and beautiful this hobby can be. And how easily and inexpensively one can build a collection of stamps that is worth showing off. Even if a few youngsters feel interested and pickup this hobby after visiting my site, my efforts to build this site will be worth its while.

A Few Quick Notes

1) Many of my older and hence not-so-easy-to-get (without buying them from a dealer) stamps are in albums. I am reluctant to take them off the albums in order to scan them. As a result, those will not be displayed on these pages.

2) I don't consider myself as an expert on stamps. I am just an enthusiatic collector with about fifty years experience in collecting stamps. The views expressed in this site are my views. You have the right to differ with me but I do not want to hear about it from you.

3) Since I live in the United States, some of the informations provided and prices quoted in this web site are specific to USA.

Image of a Monaco stamp

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A
Acknowledgment
(contributors to my stamp collection)

H
Home
O
Overview of the
stamp collecting site
( You are here. )
B
Basics of stamp collecting
(how to's and tips for the beginners)
B
Beyond basics
(more stamp collecting tips)
Y
Your chance to take a peek
at my stamp collection

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