Nominations sought for RPSL Crawford Medal

The prestigious Crawford Medal of The Royal Philatelic Society London (RPSL) will be awarded in 2018 “for the most valuable and original contribution to the study and knowledge of philately published in book form during the relevant period.”

It’s open to all authors, whether RPSL members or not. The silver-gilt medal features a portrait of the Earl of Crawford—bibliophile extraordinaire—and was instituted in 1914 but not awarded until 1920 owing to the First World War.


The medal is open to worldwide competition. In the case of joint authorship, the RPSL council may award a medal to each author; however, in the case of books compiled as a result of collaboration on the part of more than two authors, the council may award a medal to the sponsors or editors of the work instead of to the authors.

Nominations are invited of books published in 2016 or 2017 to be considered by the selection committee, who will make a recommendation to council. Nominations close on Feb. 1, 2018.

Brief details should be submitted by email to or by letter to the RPSL at 41 Devonshire Place in London using the subject “Crawford Nomination” or marking the envelope in the same way.

The RPSL solicits nominations from as wide a selection of books as possible and would expect to have a copy in the RPSL Library. If the book is not in the library the nominator will be requested to supply a copy for the committee to consider. The RPSL would appreciate if such copies be donated to its library after adjudication.


In 1962, Nicholas André Argenti (1896-1961) was posthumously awarded the Crawford Medal for his work, The postage stamps of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which was published after his death.

Argenti was a British stockbroker who served as a captain in the British Army during the First World War and a Squadron Leader in the Royal Air Force in the Second World War. In 1963, two years after his death, Argenti’s collection was sold by Harmer, Rooke & Co., realizing £42,214 altogether.

In 1947, Winthrop Smillie Boggs (1902-74) was awarded the Crawford Medal for his work, The Postage Stamps and Postal History of Canada, which was published to much acclaim in 1945. Another of Boggs’ works, The Postage Stamps and Postal History of Newfoundland, was published in 1942.

Boggs was a long-time member of the Collectors Club of New York, which he served in a variety of roles. From 1945-61, he also served as the first executive director of the Philatelic Foundation.

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