Philately, this is the stamp collecting term. If you collect stamps then you are a philatelist. In the 19th century a French stamp collector, by the name of M. G. Herpin, came up with the name using the Greek language. Philo means “the lover of” and atelia means “free of payment of tax”.
Stamp collecting is a hobby that has been around for many, many, years. There are stamp form all over the world with their own unique pictures, writings, and style that can be quite intriguing. For all those who share a passion for this hobby this article can not only give you a history lesson but give you a sense of meaning or purpose for the craft.
Stamp Collecting: A Look Behind the Art
There are many ways you can collect stamps. For instance, you can be one who specializes in collecting commemoratives, thematic, FDC’s (first day covers), EFO’s (error freak and oddity) and even non-profit.
For a little bit of history let’s take a closer look into the first stamp. The first stamp was invented and made by the British. 1840 was the year the mailing system had all changed. Prior to stamps you simply paid for delivery. Rowland Hill who was a former school teacher, wanted to change the postal system forever. He wanted to be able to mark every delivery by way of a sticker of sorts that the mail had indeed been paid for. Pretty soon politicians across the world implemented this practice.
Stamp Collecting: What to Look For
There are a few things that you need to look for if you are stamp collecting. Take a look at some suggestions below to make sure that you are collecting the best.
The coloring, first of all should look exactly like it did the first day it was purchased. Although most stamps from years ago don’t retain their original colors due to the elements. But, the ones that still have pretty good color will be worth the most.
The adhesive on the back of the stamp is also a major point of interest. Some of the glues that have been used over the years have been known to dry and crack, this damages the paper itself. Other glues can discolor the paper. It is important to collect stamps where the glue has been removed. These are known as the “NG” (no gum) stamps.
You might notice that in post offices they display “hot off the press” stamps that will be limited editions. These stamps are prime pickings. Once a stamp is canceled and only a few have been released in the public that stamp will be worth something down the road. By putting them directly into a mounting book, you will ensure their safety and mint condition in the years to come.
So how do you find out your stamp’s grade? Well, this part of collecting is all about common sense. If your stamp is well centered, colors are clear and bold, all perforations are intact, and there are no scuffs or tares, then you have got a wonderful piece.
Stamp Collecting: Enjoying the hobby
Even if you start stamp collecting now it is a hobby that can be passed down within your family and can really be an asset to your grandchildren or great grandchildren. It may be a bit of work, but then again what hobby isn’t? The point is to enjoy it