Tuesday, May 12, 2009
US Libraries on Stamps
Postage stamps are devices for indicating prepayment of a fee for postal services. Great Britain issued the first adhesive postage stamp in the world in 1840. The United States government issued its first postage stamps in 1845. Postage stamps have developed into a method of honoring and commemorating individuals, institutions, and events. Libraries and library people have not been frequent subjects for postage stamps. This is especially true in the United States. When libraries and library people are depicted on postage stamps it is often in recognition of something that has little to do with the role of libraries or library people in our society. I have just completed a page on the Library History Buff website devoted to US Libraries on Stamps. Collecting postage stamps related to libraries and library people is one category of bibliophilately and is also a facet of postal librariana. Other pages on the Library History Buff website provide an introduction to library people on postage stamps, include stamps depicting library people from the United States and library people from the world, and include stamps that depict archives and archivists. I have been a proponent of a stamp honoring America's public libraries. I have an extensive collection of libraries on stamps from other countries and will be adding them to the website as time permits.