Stamp Collection
larsdog

 
Airmail

"Airmail" began with early domestic U.S. Airmail stamps - issued specifically for the premium airmail service (versus standard surface mail). Eventually, International Airmail became available, so stamps were also issued at International Airmail rates. In 1979, domestic Airmail as a separate service ended. All domestic mail was being sent via the fastest route anyway, so a separate designation for domestic Airmail was no longer needed. Airmail stamps were issued from 1980 through 1991 (plus a redesign issued in 1993) for International Airmail. Although International Airmail officially ended in 1995, the United States began issuing stamps specifically for the International LC (letters and cards) rates. Beginning in 1999, most of these stamps were marked with the silhouette of a jet airplane, and those stamps with a jet silhouette were designated with an "Airmail" prefix in the Scott Catalog. However, there were several stamps issued between 1991 and 1999 that were clearly intended for International letters and cards use. Even thought they were not designated with "Airmail" or a jet silhouette (and therefore given an "Airmail" prefix for their catalog number), they clearly belong in a comprehensive "Airmail" collection.

There have also been at least two issues since 1999 that were clearly intended for International use: #3771 Special Olympics and #4123 International Polar Year. If we are to adopt the logical progression for "Airmail" stamps as beginning with domestic airmail, progressing to domestic and international airmail, then just international airmail and finally - simply - International LC (letters and cards) mail, then there are several stamps without a "C" prefix in the catalog that should be included.

One notable exception is the 46c Ruth Benedict stamp (#2938) issued October 20, 1995. Even though there is no logical reason for the issue of that stamp other than fulfillment of the then current letter rate to Canada, definitives that are part of a long-running series are not included here.

See page 25 for a chart of domestic and international rates that was useful in determing if a stamp that doesn't have a "C" prefix belongs in the Airmail album.

Highlights

  • Used some early White Ace pages, but mostly made my own pages.
  • All major catalog numbers included, including the re-designed William Piper stamp (C132).
  • Wet and dry printings shown since it indicates a different press (Stickney v. Huck). Plate singles and partial plate booklet panes are used since they are self-authenticating.
  • Plate singles may also be used as self-authenticating varieties.
  • Selvage can sometimes show the perforation variety (e.g. Bull's Eye v. EE perf) and differentiate two varieties without having to measure perforations.
  • C105-108 has two perforation varieties, but that block is displayed in both the Airmail section and the Commemorative section, so one perferation variety is shown here and the other is shown in the Commemorative album.
  • Booklet panes include all slogan varieties. I generally don't collect slogan varieties, but this was a good opportunity to show most of the various slogans. The only slogans missing are slogans 6, 7, and 9. Examples of those can be found on page Z123 in MISC volume 1.
  • Coils are in pairs since that's how they are depicted on pages. All coil pairs are joint line pairs
  • White Ace included #1341 on page 13, which is where I think it belongs, so I removed the duplicate copy from the Regular Issue album.

Missing

  • 100% Complete.

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END OF COLLECTION (12-31-2014)