Specializing in Philately – An Introduction

If philately can command one’s attention into the second year, probability is high for the collector to be on course into specializing in some way. The rationale being it is overwhelming to collect everything. Countries have steeply increased stamp issue rate - from tens of different stamps per annum in the early part of the 20th century, to be in the hundreds now - a rate that makes it trying for philatelists to keep up for various reasons. Philatelists on their part started specializing. The types of specializations a philatelist can branch-out into are:

Thematic: These are collections based on some theme. Catalogs and albums geared towards thematic collectors abound. Thematic can be classified broadly into :
  1. Topicals: They are categories based solely on the design in stamps. The most common topical categories are Agriculture, Aviation, Birds, Carriages, Castles, Children, Coat of Arms, Dance, Defense, Fairs, Flags, Great People, Insects, Kings, Maps, Marine Life, Nobel Prize, Olympics and other International Games, Philately, Queens, Railways, Red Cross, Religion (Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Ramzan, etc), Ships, Sports, and Stamps on Stamps.
  2. Other themes: Varied areas as First Day Covers of specific countries and/or sub-themes such as Airmail FDCs, UNICEF, UN, Plate Blocks, Sheets, Europa, Classic (stamps issued prior to 1940 only), Covers of specific countries and/or sub-themes, Overprint, Interesting cancellations, UPU (Universal Postal Union) collections, etc belong to this category.

Country: Specializing by country is high in the popularity list. Usually, gathering stamps from one’s native country or countries to which an individual has some connection (adopted country, a country in the same region as you reside, country where you work or have worked before, country whose causes you support etc.) are obvious choices. Another alternative is to accumulate stamps from countries that are a challenge to come by due to political or other grounds. Those include collecting stamps from areas that ceased issuing stamps. Some of the more popular areas for serious collectors include:
  1. German States (Baden, Bavaria, Bergedorf, Bremen, Brunswick, Hamburg, Hanover, Lubeck, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Mecklenburg-Strelitz, Oldenburg, Prussia, Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, Thurn and Taxis, Wurttemberg, and North German Confederation),
  2. Canadian Provinces (British Colombia and Vancouver Islands, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island), etc.
  3. Australian States (New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, and Western Australia),
  4. Indian sub-continent (Chamba, Faridkot, Gwalior, Jind, Nabha, Patiala, Alwar, Bamra, Barwani, Bhopal, Bhor, Bijawar, Bundi, Bussahir, Charkhari, Cochin, Dhar, Duttia, Faridkot, Hyderabad, Idar, Indore, Jaipur, Jammu and Kashmir, Jasdan, Jhalawar, Jind, Kishangargh, Las Bela, Morvi, Nandagaon, Nowanuggur, Orchha, Poonch, Rajasthan, Rajpeepla, Sirmoor, Soruth, Travancore, Wadhwan, and Bahawalpur).
  5. South African sub-continent areas of Cape of Good Hope, Transvaal, Natal, etc.
Other options include collecting occupation issues, offices abroad, etc.


Last Updated: 09/2015.

29 comments :

Anonymous said...

hope to win

attorneyatwork@hOTMAIL.COM

nonator said...

great article

nonator@uchastings.edu

Anonymous said...

nice! ITS A GREAT IDEA TO SPECIALIZE

resterbackup@Hotmail.com

samsakara said...

I would love this!

samsakara@twcny.rr.com

techyone said...

More great information. Thank you.

techyone at gmail dot com

MaggieM said...

I use foreign country stamps in my art work. I have gathered a few by trading Artist Trading Cards with site members around the world, by cutting the stamps off the envelopes I receive! I'd love to receive a true collection. Great giveaway!

maggie@mannwieler.com

Pablo (yo) said...

As always, a great philatelic's post.

Laura said...

I've already started a small stamp collection for our son, just for fun. Would love this. Thanks!
laurachilton {at} hotmail.com

Keijo from stampcollectingblog.com said...

Interesting post...

Others forms of spezialisation (not mentioned in the article) is to collect by timeline or by issue type.

For example I try to limit my collection on worldwide issues before the millenium (year 2000), and only used stamps. I also know some worldwide collectors who have limited their collection to porto / postage due stamps only.

-keijo-

Anonymous said...

I collect historical events, nature, and Boy Scout stamps.

Thanks for entering me in the give-away!

Calvin

suzanneloch@visi.com

Laney said...

Great giveaway : )

savethemasses@hotmail.com

She Became A Butterfly said...

i qualify to win! thanks for this great contest!

she
pookielocks at ymail dot com

Heather D. said...

I could really put this to use with postcrossing!

noreen said...

stamp collecting is such a great learning experience

Moni said...

I would love to win this. Thanks!
Monica
moni-777@hotmail.com

DG said...

I like the idea about specializing. I began this by actually collecting stamps from a specific country. Great fun :)

dreamzz12{at}aol{dot}com

Joyce said...

when i was younger my grandma and i used to collect stamps together. she would love this! thanks again for this!

lau1cc at yahoo dot com

Erica Rooks said...

Thanks so much!

ATGifts[at]aol[dot]com

Peace and Plenty said...

I'm just getting my children (ages 3 and 5) into stamp collecting. I did it as a child with my grandfather (used to be a post master on Long Island) and it's one of the best memories I have with him). I would love this to get a larger jump start on the collecting for the kiddos.

thejacobs713@roadrunner.com

Leah said...

what a GREAT giveaway!

samandsassy AT gmail DOT com

MaddyRu said...

I would love to start a stamp collection for my son, I haven't collected in years and I miss it!

Shem said...

Would love to get back into stamp collecting, seems like a wicked cool way to do it!

Anonymous said...

yay I love your blog!
j0ty@ hotmail (dot) com

Rajee said...

Love the idea of teaching my son.
rajikarthik@hotmail.com

JULIE said...

I got interested in stamps as a girl when I got some stamps thru a philately club for kids. My mom then gave me all her stamps she'd collected as a kid...and later as a teen a friend's dad in a formerly communist country gave me some of his that he'd had as a teen (ones you don't typically find in US collections). I still have a few unidentified stamps and would love to start collecting again...as it is something fun I could do with my kids in the future.

free indeed said...

I collected stamps as a kid, and now that I'm a grandmother, I've started collecting stamps from all my mail to keep for whichever grandchild shows an interest. I love all the graphics and especially the historical stamps to whet their appitite for learning. This would be a wonderful win for them!

Gertie said...

Thanks

garlandofroses@gmail.com

Shelly said...

This is fun!

LINGO FAMILY said...

atrain365@hotmail.com

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