Have you ever inherited or acquired a hobby from someone else? I really hadn't until now. My husband and I were going through his memorabilia trunk in the garage, and he remarked, "Oh look. My stamp collection that my dad gave me." I looked down and saw all these loose stamps, and a stamp collecting book. Then my husband remarked that there were more in the shoebox that he was holding in his hand. Now let me just say that I've never wanted to collect coins and/or stamps. I think they're neat, but I don't know. I just never wanted to collect them. However, my love for familial artifacts kicked in, and as I started fussing at my husband for keeping this collection so haphazzardly, I grabbed everything and took them in the house.
O.K. I Get It Now
Now I see why people collect them. This collection is pretty big. I'm guestimating around 500 or so. Some are attached to notebook paper. Some are attached to their appropriate spots in the album, and there's a ton of them just loose. Some of the loose ones are attached to a portion of the original envelopes. Most are cancelled, but some are not. Most are in pretty good condition otherwise. I don't think a whole lot of them are worth a lot, but because of the size and variety of the collection, looking at them is like looking through a history book. There are, of course, American ones as well as international ones. Some of the countries that are represented don't even exist anymore. Some of the international ones include, Tokyo, Honk Kong, Laos, Liberia, Czechoslovakia, Argentina, Iceland, Tunesia, Germany, India, Belgium, Australia, Great Britain, Guatemala, Turkey, Ireland, Italy, Yugoslavia, Monaco, The Netherlands, Norway, Nigeria, Congo, Togo, Phillipines, Poland, San Marino, Spain, South Africa, France, China, Canada, Bohemia, and Denmark. Some of the outstanding American ones are those that commemorate parts of American History.
So now I have a new hobby. Stamp collecting. [Who knew?] Now I need to read up on proper stamp archiving and identify and organize all the loose stamps. Also now I have something else to look for in the antique shops. I guess I could just keep the collection and not add to it, but there are quite a few empty spots in the book. They're kind of calling out to me. You know, like a challenge. Like I didn't have anything else to do. [rolling eyes heavenward] Also, when you think about it, each one of the stamps has a story about its origins. Not only that, but there was someone who bought each stamp, affixed it to an envelope, and sent it to someone else. What were their stories? I'll never know, but the best thing about it all is I now have a grand resource for images to compliment my family stories, which makes me about as happy as a pig in mud.
Here's a peek at the collection: