RPSL acquires ‘invaluable archive’

The Royal Philatelic Society London (RPSL) has acquired an “invaluable archival resource” from the late Edward “Ted” Proud.

Proud, who died earlier this year, was a prolific writer, researcher and collector who published nearly 70 books on the postal history of the British colonies. This valuable source of philatelic information was recently transferred to The RPSL, which will make the collection available online, “cementing the incredible legacy and lifetime of dedication to the unique history of the postal service,” according to a statement made by the society earlier this month.


Proud was a trustee of the International Postal Museum, which he developed over many years with the late Professor John West.

Proud’s son and surviving trustee, Christopher Proud, has, according to his family’s wishes, donated the entirety of the museum to The RPSL. The International Postal Museum owned the copyright to Proud’s extensive philatelic works, including electronic editions of all 68 books as well as hundreds of hard copies, a fastidiously constructed online archive and the copyright of the philatelic publications of R. C. Alcock.


Proud’s books will all be available to purchase on the society’s website with all proceeds going to The RPSL. The extensive online archive will be an “incredibly important asset” for the society by making a wealth of information accessible for the first time, according to the Nov. 6 statement issued by the society.

“Much of this newly uncovered data from Colonial postal administrations was unpublished and will now be indexed and made accessible. This will enable a wealth of data to be shared and explored on the relaunched RPSL website in 2018.”

In 2008, Proud was invited to sign the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists after a lifetime of researching and dealing in stamps while procuring an encyclopaedic knowledge of philatelic matters.

Initial inquiries for Proud’s books should be made to adminmanager@rpsl.org.uk.

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