Thursday, August 07, 2008

When Mail Goes to War

The 2008 Winton M. Blount Postal History Symposium will be held at the National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. on September 26 and 27. It is being jointly sponsored by the Smithsonian National Postal Museum and the American Philatelic Society (APS).

It will be the third annual national conference for academic scholars, philatelists, and industry experts to discuss their research into the history of postal organizations and systems.

The theme for the 2008 Symposium is war and the mail, broadly interpreted to include everything related to defense and the postal system in all countries and eras.

According to a write up in the APS August Newsletter. "Postal topics are usually framed in peaceful terms: mail "binds the nation together" by enabling commerce and encouraging technological development, while stamps are "works of art in miniature" or "little paper ambassadors" of national culture and achievement. Often overlooked is the fact that when a nation goes to war, its stamps and postal system are always an integral part of the mobilization—and the relief effort."

Shown above, 1917 2¢ ‘Powdery’ Rose Washington booklet pane of 30 (Scott #499f).

The U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing created booklets of 300 stamps (each containing ten panes like this one) for use by the World War I American Expeditionary Force in France.

To learn more about the Symposium, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM