Sunday, October 23, 2005

The Topeka (Kansas) Capital-Journal ran a nice story yesterday about postal historian Ernest Mosher.

Mosher is the author of "Mourning Covers: The Cultural and Postal History of Letters Edged in Black." The 353-page book is an illustrated story about the history and use of mourning covers as a cultural practice or custom in the United States and in many other countries.

"Mourning covers can be briefly defined as black-edged posted letters used in many countries, especially during the 19th and early 20th centuries, as harbingers of death and messengers of grief," Mosher said. "Mourning covers were as common in the past as wedding and birth announcements are today."

A collector of stamps since he was a boy, Mosher saw his first mourning cover when he received a letter with the signature of Jacqueline Kennedy in early 1964, posted a few months following the assassination of her husband President John F. Kennedy.

According to the write-up, Mosher at one point had the largest collection of U.S. and foreign mourning covers in the world - 5,000 covers from more than 180 countries.

To read the entire article, click here.

To order "Mourning Covers" and other philatetic books, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM