Full week of lectures, seminars coming to Canada for Stamp Collecting Month

Professor Henrik Mouritsen and his wife Iva Mouritsen, of Germany, will be the keynote speakers at the Harry Sutherland Philatelic Lecture as well as the Canadian meeting of the Royal Philatelic Society London on Oct. 11 and Oct. 12, respectively.

Toronto’s Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation is sponsoring and organizing a week of lectures and seminars to celebrate Stamp Collecting Month this October. From Oct. 11-20, working alongside the Fédération Internationale de Philatélie (FIP), Royal Philatelic Society London (RPSL) and Philatelic Specialists Society of Canada (PSSC), the Greene Foundation will offer a range of must-see philatelic events with a resounding international flavour. “There will be souvenir covers for each event franked with Picture Postage,” said Charles Verge, who’s a member of the invite-only PSSC and a Fellow of both the RPSL and Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC). Continue reading →

RPSC facing a catch-22 as membership dwindles

Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) Treasurer Stuart Keeley (left) said the society's increase in life and honorary members is 'a strain on the financial.' He is seen here at the society's annual general meeting with President Ed Kroft (right).

With paid memberships in an ongoing decline but honorary and life memberships holding strong, The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) is in peculiar financial straits. With about 300 honorary and life members throughout the past three years and another 1,200 paid members – a number that’s “slowly sinking,” according to RPSC Treasurer Stuart Keeley – the society isn’t bringing in any money from 20 per cent of its membership. This is at a time when The RPSC is reporting a $3,968 loss, although nearly $3,000 of that is from a recent inventory write-down. “Our membership is slowly declining, and those are the people who are paying,” said Keeley, who recently retired as a director of the society. “For life members and honorary members, we still have to send them The Canadian Philatelist and everything else, so it puts a strain on the financial.” Continue reading →

Well-attended AGM a welcome sign for RPSC

Royal Philatelic Society of Canada President Ed Kroft talks with Garfield Portch, of the West Toronto Stamp Club, one of three co-hosts of this year’s Royal Convention in Mississauga.

It was standing-room only this June for the annual general meeting (AGM) of “Canada’s national stamp club,” whose membership came out in droves to witness firsthand the recent changes to their group’s strategic plan. Tying into the plan’s underlying theme – “It’s Your Royal,” which was also one of the themes for this year’s convention – members of The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) were invited to ask questions, raise concerns and voice their opinions at the June 22 meeting. “My mandate, amongst others, has been to advocate for an inclusive society,” said RPSC President Ed Kroft, who came to the helm of the organization in 2017. Continue reading →

Royal 2019 exceeds expectations in GTA

Cutting the ribbon to open Royal*2019*Royale is award-winning Toronto exhibitor Jack Nixon, 10, winner of the 2017 American Philatelic Society 'Champion of Champions' youth event.

A yearly harbinger of summer, the annual convention of The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) welcomed back both sunshine and stamps this June. Beginning June 21 – the first day of summer – hundreds of collectors gathered in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) for the massive three-day show and exhibition co-hosted by the Bramalea Stamp Club, West Toronto Stamp Club and CSN. “This Royal had the best vibe of all the Royals I ever attended,” said Ingo Nessel, a member of The RPSC and Bramalea Stamp Club and president of the Philatelic Specialists Society of Canada (PSSC). Continue reading →

Long-time RPSC, Greene Foundation executive assistant retires

Lee Ann Stewart (left) is taking over as executive assistant of The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada and Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation after Margaret Schulzke’s retirement on July 1.

After 13 years as executive assistant of The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) plus another five with the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation, Margaret Schulzke has retired from her roles effective July 1. Held by Schulzke since 2006 and 2001, respectively, the positions will be taken over by Lee Ann Stewart, who has spent 20 years as the senior executive assistant to the CEO of the Alzheimer Society of Ontario. “I decided to move forward into retirement so that I can give more time to the major values and interests in my life,” said Schulzke, who’s also a Fellow of The RPSC, adding “there’s always a need for volunteers; perhaps I’ll still be able to give a little help along the way.” Continue reading →

‘Symposium’ connects historians with history

From left: Postal History Society of Canada Symposium co-chair Bill Longley, dealer Shirley Coates and collector Jerry Piotrowski enjoy the bourse at the Fall 2018 National Postage Stamp and Coin Show.

A sign of summer holidays for some philatelists, the annual Postal History Society of Canada (PHSC) Symposium is now in its third year. Once again, this year’s festivities are set to kick off this July in Hamilton, Ont. From the 15-dealer bourse and 120-frame exhibition hall inside the Hamilton Sheraton Hotel, the symposium – in the truest sense of the word – will venture out beyond Hamilton and into the Greater Toronto Area and Niagara Region. “It helps to put the smaller aspect of what we do in postal history within the entire context of the history and development of our country,” said PHSC Symposium co-chair Bill Longley, owner of Longley Auctions. Continue reading →

Maresch bringing auction action back to Royal Convention

An 1870 Large Queen cover paying 10 times the domestic rate is expected to bring $1,500 as Lot 1595 of the Royal Auction on June 21.

For the first time in years, an auction will be held this June at the annual convention of The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC).It will be R. Maresch and Son Auctions’ third sale at a show, its previous two being the Capex shows in 1987 and 1996, according to auctioneer Peter Maresch, the grandson of philatelic collector and dealer Richard Maresch. The elder Maresch was a collector since 1904 before establishing the business in Vienna, Austria, in 1924. His son, Bill Maresch – Peter’s father – joined in on the business in the ’50s before entering the auction business in 1957.“It’s been a while – we haven’t done any shows for quite a while – but we’re starting to get back to it,” said the younger Maresch, who was about 10 years old when he began collecting stamps under the guidance of his father. Continue reading →

Orapex unimpeded by record flooding

Bagpiper and Vietnam War veteran Vance McDougall kicks off Orapex 2019 with the sound of music as the doors open on May 4 of the two-day show.

It was a bright and sunny weekend in Ottawa following a week of record flooding, and with the water receding, it was collectors who began flowing uncontrollably into the city – in search of stamps.The philatelic festivities at the 2019 Ottawa RA Centre Philatelic Exhibition (Orapex) kicked off on May 4, one day after the Ottawa River reached its peak amid record flooding in the capital city. Days earlier, organizers reaffirmed it would “have zero impact on Orapex,” which is held about six kilometres south of Parliament Hill.“The Ottawa River is a totally different story,” said Doug Lingard, member of the Orapex 2019 organizing committee, on May 1. Continue reading →

‘Must have’ 1870 Small Queen die proof to highlight Sparks sale

An 1870 one-cent Small Queen large black die proof is expected to bring $10,000 as Lot 67 of Sparks Auctions’ four-session ‘Sale 30’ on May 22-25.

Described by auctioneers as a “must have for any serious Small Queen collector” and a boon to exhibitors of the long-running series, an 1870 one-cent Small Queen large die proof is expected to bring $10,000 at auction this May.To be offered as Lot 67 of Sparks Auctions’ four-session “Sale 30,” the black die proof is sunken in and pasted to a card measuring 51 millimetres by 77 millimetres with 10 guidelines around the design and lathework at the bottom.“This is a very rare item, and anyone who puts it in an exhibit is surely to have better results,” said Stéphane Cloutier, director of lotting and consignments for the Ottawa-based auction house. Continue reading →

‘Young Collectors’ turn up in full force at Trajan’s ‘National Show’

About $600 worth of material was offered to dozens of young bidders in the 36-lot Young Collectors Postage Stamp and Coin Auction this March.

Bidding was fierce between dozens of eccentric juniors vying for nearly 40 lots of material in the Young Collectors Postage Stamp and Coin Auction this March.Organized by Lisa McPherson, national youth co-ordinator of the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association (RCNA) and first vice-president of the Ontario Numismatic Association (ONA), the auction offered 36 lots of material donated by hobby organizations such as Trajan Publishing, The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) and the RCNA as well as individual dealers and collectors.“There’s about $600 worth of material being offered today, and everybody will get something,” said McPherson, who served as the auction runner and added every participant who didn’t win a bid would receive a gift bag. Continue reading →

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