Bitter Grounds - espresso fueled ramblings

Monday, December 18, 2017

Over 100 Zeppelin LZ 127 covers coming up for auction this month

I spotted a couple of interesting covers up for auction. If you’re a Zeppelin collector, Daniel F. Kelleher auction house might be worth a quick look. Hell, even if you aren't looking to buy, go look anyway. 

The first one is a nice US Lakehurst to Lakehurst cover with an excellent US airmail/ Zeppelin cancel and Eckener cachet.  The current bid is sitting at $100 with the estimates between $200 and $300. The cover lacks Zeppelin stamps but the cachet and cancel make it worth a bid. If you're just starting your Zeppelin collection, this would be a great starting point. 

Zeppelin cover US Lakehurst to Lakehurst - image Daniel F. Kelleher Auctions

Read more: Over 100 Zeppelin LZ 127 covers coming up for auction this month

A Canadian stamp that collectors dream of having - rare stamp emerged for auction

Canadian stamp collectors had a rare chance to see the first British Columbia & Vancouver Island stamp go to auction last week. Daniel F. Kelleher Auctions, a US house, handled the sale of 21/2 pence imperforate stamp. The catalogue price lists it for $25,000 Cdn. It was described as F to VF condition with “brilliant, deep color”.  Kelleher Auctions estimates were far more conservative than the catalogue price – placing estimates between $10,00 to $15,000.    

Some interesting things about the stamp:

Vancouver and British Columbia stamp that went to auction May 2017

Read more: A Canadian stamp that collectors dream of having - rare stamp emerged for auction

Nifty present for stamp collectors - mail them a balsa plane

Have any airmail stamp collectors on your Christmas list? I've been lurking on the Suck UK website again and found the ultimate philately related gift.

Airmail balsa plane from Suck UK mail order

Is this cool, or what? Write a brief message, throw on the appropriate postage on and pop it in the mail. The actual item, before it's constructed is an decent replica of an old style airmail envelope - when airmail was an exciting thing to receive. The design is charming, right down to the iconic red mail box on the front:

Balsa plane mail pack front

If you're interested in buying one, Suck UK ships around the world. They're a pretty inexpensive gift for any philately fan. But, I'd get 2 because one would be for the display and one for play: No idea who Suck UK is, but they have the funkiest gifts I've seen in a long time.

Awesome balasa airmail plane pack


Before there were drones .... oat driven parcel post

We read, almost daily, about plans to deliver everything from pizzas to parcels via drones. Forecasters see the skies filled with drones dropping off orders. I find it all a bit amusing. Back in the heyday of the big super malls, people crowed home delivery is dead, there's no need for it. Just hop down the road to the nearest mall and everything will be there - one stop shopping. Mail order catalogues, a staple in every house, struggled to find a niche, with many folding by the end of the 1970s. Funny how things didn't work out the way people envisioned. It's also surprising how many malls are now abandoned and rotting away and there's been a resurgence of catalogue driven purchases. Companies like Etsy, Amazon and Ebay ushered in a second life for catalogue shopping and the internet changed how we look at catalogues and the convenience of shopping. Until there are enough drones to fill the gap, old fashioned mail delivery will remain alive and well, despite the futurists predicting its demise. Eaton's Christmas catalogue cover 1903

Read more: Before there were drones.... oat driven parcel post

Canada's 1969 sad little stamp commemorating first nonstop transAtlantic flight

Canadian stamp: First Transatlantic flight celebration 1919 issued June 13 1969

.15c Scotts #494 / SG #636 #494i (dull florescent paper)
Perf. 12  X 12.5

No watermarks          

Designer: Robert William Bradford
Printer: British American Banknote Co.

In the early days of flight, there was a mad scramble to be the first at just about everything – first across the English Channel, fastest, highest, longest flight. You name it, pilots pushed the limits. After Bleroit's successful crossing of the English Channel in 1909, the Daily Mail newspaper in the UK offered £10,000 to the first person(s) to fly the Atlantic nonstop. That was the sticky part – it had to be non stop in under 72hrs. No serious attempt was made until after WW1 which produced big advancements in air technology making the possibility of an ocean crossing feasible. 

A number of attempts were made but Captain John Alcock and Lieutenant Arthur Whitten Brown, flying a Vickers Vimy, claimed the prize. Photo of Alcock and Brown in front of Vickers airplane 1919

(Alcock and Brown are on the left and right. The archive doesn’t note who the man in the middle was.)

Read more: Canada's 1969 sad little stamp commemorating first nonstop transAtlantic flight

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And here I sit with my stamps in a complete muddle, and nobody has bothered to tell me what it's all about."
"Listen now, Hemul," said Snufkin slowly and clearly. "It's about a comet that is going to collide with the earth tomorrow."
"Collide?" said the Hemulen. "Has that anything to do with stamp-collecting?”

- Tove Jansson, Comet in Moominland   

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