A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Kimble's January Postmark Calendar and Introduction

Kimble's January Calendar
Into the Deep Blue
The reader is in for a treat!

I have known Dan Kimble for many years as a colleague, as we served on the same committee at the University of Oregon, but I was unaware of his philatelic interests.

Then he contacted me several years ago, as he uses Big Blue for his worldwide collection, and he enjoyed the blog postings.

And as it turns out, Dan has a considerable collection of classical era stamps saved with various postmark dates, either accumulated by himself, or from his father.

An idea hatched - As a collaborative project, why not present a postmark calendar for all the 366 possible days of the year, represented by interesting appropriate date cancellation stamps from the Kimble collection?

The plan is to publish, for 2017, a monthly blog post with the date postmarks for that month for everyone's enjoyment.

January - this post (scroll down)

I mentioned that a number of the stamps in the collection were originally collected by Dan's father, Colonel Ralph A. Kimble,

Luff Award winner for outstanding service to the American Philatelic Society in 1944, Ralph Kimble was a very prominent philatelic editor and author, indeed.

Read Dan's comments (and dedication) that follows...


"Commemorative Postage Stamps of the United States"
 Ralph A. Kimble, Grosset & Dunlap, 1933
In putting together this stamp calendar, I thought of my father, Ralph A. Kimble (1893-1973) many times, as several of the stamps in this calendar came from him to me. I honor his memory. He was a fine man and a loving father.

In 2004, the American Philatelic Society honored my Dad and added him to the APS Hall of Fame. In an article published in The American Philatelist in February of that year, the article states “Ralph Kimble was one of America's leading editors, writers , and stamp columnists.”

My Dad edited the American Philatelist from 1935 to 1951, except for the four years 1943-1946.

During World War II, he served as the Inspector General for the 97th Infantry Division, with the rank of Colonel.  He served in Europe and also in Japan during the American occupation of that country. He was awarded the Bronze star for his service. He also served with an artillery battalion in World War I, and received three medals from the French government for his service. 

"How to Collect Stamps" Ralph A. Kimble
He authored several books about stamps. The best known was the popular “How to Collect Stamps”, which went into several printings, and can still be found in many libraries. He also wrote a more scholarly book, “Commemorative Postage Stamps of the United States”, based on a series of talks he gave on clear channel WMAQ radio in Chicago during the 1930s, billed as “the stamp man".  The transcripts of those talks have been donated to the American Philatelic Society Library. 

My Dad also formed a major collection of philatelic literature, eventually sold in three auctions over several years, by Sylvester Colby. In 1944, he received the Luff Award for outstanding service to the APS. 

My father would have loved Jim’s “Big Blue” blog! He loved to talk about stamps and was deeply interested in the stories and history behind stamps. I think he would be interested and amused by our stamp calendar.


January Postmark Calendar

January 1
Belgium 1893 Scott 64 5c yellow green 
"Coat of Arms"
Gedinne is a small town in the Walloon region on the French border in the Ardennes.

January 2
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"
The small town of Selkirk is in the Scottish Borders Council district of Scotland. The town's name means "church in the forest"(Old English).

January 3
Great Britain 1881 Scott 89 1p lilac "Victoria"

January 4
Great Britain 1912 Scott 160 1p scarlet "George V"
This has a Dublin  postmark.

January 5
Belgium 1893 Scott 64 5c yellow green 
"Coat of Arms"

January 6
Jamaica 1912 Scott 61a 1p carmine "George V"
The Scott 61a 1p carmine was issued in 1912, while Scott's major number, Scott 61, the 1p scarlet, was issued in 1916. Since this was postmarked 1914, this has to be a 1p carmine. ;-)

January 7
France 1878 Scott 92 15c blue 
"Peace and Commerce"

January 8
Belgium 1905 Scott 85 10c dull rose
"King Leopold"
"Anvers" is the French spelling for Antwerp, in Flanders, and the largest city in Belgium.

January 9
Belgium 1905 Scott 85 10c dull rose
"King Leopold"
The same stamp from the same city (Antwerp) one day later!

January 10
USA 1936 Scott 790 1c green
"John Paul Jones and John Barry"
Fourth largest city in Tennessee, and served by multiple railroads, it is best known for the 1941 Glenn Miller Orchestra tune lyrics... "Pardon me, boy, is that the Chattanooga Choo-Choo?"

January 11
Austria 1875 Scott 57 10kr blue "Franz Josef"
Fine Print
In the early 19th century, Ludwig van Beethoven would often visit his favorite pub, the Two Ravens, in Modling, 14 km south of Vienna.

January 12
Probable Ceylon 1912 Scott 201  2c brown orange
"George V"
Although the postmark year appears to be 1927, this is a Die I stamp (1912), rather than a Die II stamp (1921). The watermark should be wmk 3, rather than wmk 4.

In Lindula, the first Tea Estate for Ceylon was developed in 1867.

January 13
Belgium  Parcel Post/Railway 1902 Scott Q38 60c violet & red
Godarville is in the Walloon part of Belgium.

January 14
Trinidad 1883 Scott 69 1p rose "Victoria"

January 15
Hungary 1916 Scott 123 2k olive brown & bister
"Parliament Building in Budapest"
A Budapest postmark.

January 16
USA 1933 Scott 728 1c yellow green
"Restoration of Fort Dearborn"
South Orange, New Jersey is a small village (population 13,000 in 1930) within commuting distance of New York City. It still retains gas light street illumination.

January 17
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"
A Glasgow, Scotland postmark.

January 18
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"

January 19
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127a 1/2p blue green "Edward VII"
Evesham is a small market town (20,000) in the district of Worcestershire.

January 20
Belgium 1893 Scott 68 25c ultramarine "King Leopold"

January 21
Belgium 1927 Scott 192 10c on 15c plum, red surcharge
Ghent is in Flemish Belgium, and the second largest city.

January 22
Great Britain 1887 Scott 114 2 1/2p violet/blue "Victoria"
London postmark.

January 23
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"

January 24
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"

January 25
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p gray green "Edward VII"
Several "New Brighton" places in England and Wales.

January 26
Great Britain 1881 Scott 89 1p lilac "Victoria"
Newcastle upon Tyne is a university city on the River Tyne in northeast England.

January 27
Belgium 1893 Scott 65 10c orange brown
"King Leopold"
This is probably Flemish Zolder (They merged with Heusden in 1977) in the province of Limburg. There was a coal mine in Zolder.

January 28
Great Britain 1902 Scott 127a 1/2p blue green "Edward VII"

January 29
Sweden 1874 Scott O8 24c yellow
Kalmar is in southeast Sweden by the Baltic sea. The Kalmar Cathderal was completed in 1703.

January 30
Belgium 1900 Scott 66 10c bright rose "Leopold"

January 31
Canada 1899 Scott 77 2c carmine "Victoria"
Toronto postmark.

Introduction - "Commemorative Postage Stamps of the United States"
Ralph A. Kimble
Out of the Blue
The January stamps come from eleven countries, with the Great Britain 1902 Scott 127 1/2p  "Edward VII" representing eight dates.

Note: All of the stamp scans are from the Kimble collection.

Comments appreciated!


  1. Great addition the the blog! I'm a sucker for date and town visible cancels and pick them up when they're available. Probably some dates are difficult to find, e.g., January 1. Ralph Kimble's comments read very much as if he were speaking to us on the radio.

  2. This is a wonderful article for this blog. The introduction of one of the quiet giants of philately, Ralph Kimble and the unique calendar collections that can be formed with postmark dates on stamps of the world. Great way to start the New Year.

  3. What a great post! Great coincidence for me too, since just last week I decided to put together a similar collection. Honest true.

    Ok, so far I only have a few dozen dates, and most are 1950's era Danish stamps, but the same concept.

    I'll keep at it even though I'll never get 366 "classics"; it's fun even with minimum value stamps. But I'm eagerly awaiting your February post.


  4. And the thing is, Dan has multiple copies of many dates. !!

    Thanks Mark, Jerry, and Bud for validating a fun project!

    I think, too, Dan's project gives him special pleasure, as it allows him to honor his father, one of the seminal popular authors of Philately.

  5. Hi there, I have really been enjoying your blog! I am 30, this is my first year of reviving my childhood stamp collection. I just bought the 4 volume Scott International (Got a fantastic deal on Ebay - New version pages and binders w/2500 stamps for around $400!) If you were starting over with the Big Blue - where would you start? Would you do any thing different? What pit falls would you watch out for? Are there any guys that are a part of this community that like to trade stamps? I am excited, happy for any pointers you (or the community) has to offer : ) Thank you! - Kyle

    1. Fantastic Kyle!

      You should be happy with the four part Big Blue - that is one thing I (and others) would recommend - to start out with good pages to house the collection.

      Those that are happiest with Big Blue "collect to the album". Yes, there are 35,000 spaces - which is a lot - but there are at least twice as many stamps issued during 1840-1940.

      But there have been some great collections formed with BB- witness "Bud's Big Blue" that is getting published here. He puts any additional stamps without spaces on a supplement page.

      This blog is not set up to trade stamps. But I'm sure, you will find ways to get stamps - buying country collections is a good way to go. I personally think joining a local stamp club often opens up many possibilities, especially for WW collectors, as about anything is of interest to them.

      The links and resources listed along the left column of this blog will also open up a lot of possibilities.

      Good luck Kyle!

  6. There are a couple editions of the Kimble HOW TO COLLECT STAMPS book and I wonder which you have shown. I searched around for your email address but was unable to find it on these blogspot pages.

    1. Hello James.

      I will forward your question to Dan Kimble ( Kimble’s son) and see if he can answer your question here ( below). It might be a week before this occurs.

    2. Dan sent me a note which says there are at least twp editions. But all of his “How to collect stamps” book copies, as well as the one I illustrate for the blog post are first editions.