Congratulations to APS members John Barwis and Yamil Kouri from the United States and Charles Verge from Canada, three of the five individuals who have been invited to sign the Royal Philatelic Society of London’s Roll of Distinguished Philatelists.
John Barwis signed the Luff scroll in 2018 at the APS summer show.
Barwis was the recipient of the APS 2018. Luff Award for Distinguished Philatelic Research and won the 2011 multiframe Champion of Champions competition. He co-founded and serves as president of the Institute of Analytical Philately, is past president of the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society, and has served on the APS Finance Committee.
The 2019 APS multiframe Champion of Champions, Kouri was a member of the APS Board of Vice Presidents from 2013–2016 and won the national level Nicholas Carter Volunteer Award in 2018. He is the president of the Postal History Society, Board chair for the Spellman Museum of Stamps and Postal History, was president of the Cuban Philatelic Society of America from 1998–2006 and is a director for Boston 2026 World Expo.
A past president of the Royal Philatelic Society of Canada, Verge is currently vice chairman of the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation. In addition to being involved in their expertizing efforts, Verge is the curator of the Ron Brigham Collection of Canada and is well known as a philatelic judge and exhibitor on the national and international levels.
Yamil Kouri at APS StampShow 2019, having won the Champion of Champions award.
APRL Director Scott Tiffney with Charles Verge at the VGG Foundation in 2017.
The other two recipients of the 2020 award are former APS member James L. Grimwood-Taylor of the United Kingdom and Michael M.Y. Ho of Taiwan.
Barwis was also the multiframe Grand Award winner for his exhibit Maritime Mail Routes from Colonial Victoria, 1837–1901 at the 130th Garfield-Perry Stamp Club March Party which was held March 6–8 in the Cleveland, Ohio area. Pat Walker won the multiframe reserve grand for her Baltimore: Postal History from Colonial Times until June 30, 1851. The Single Frame grand went to Boston’s Use of the 1847 Issue by Mark Schwartz.
The Garfield-Perry Show hosted the annual meeting of the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society, a group of collectors who specialize in the study of U.S. stamps and postal history dating from the 19th century and earlier. At the awards dinner Saturday night, Bill Schultz entertained the crowd with stories about his stamp collecting life and how he was able to survive his first two Latin classes in college because of a stamp collecting instructor. The connection, Schultz recalled, didn’t work when he had to enroll in a third Latin class. In between his stories Schultz auctioned off several items, including two APS wrist watches, netting the Garfield-Perry Stamp Club more than $250.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Garfield-Perry Show will be the last world series of philately (WSP) show for a few months as the remaining March show (St. Louis) and all April and May shows (Westpex, Plymouth, Philatelic Show, PIPEX, ROPEX and Rocky Mountain) have been rescheduled or canceled. The Philatelic Show in Boxborough has been rescheduled for July 24–26, and the St. Louis Stamp Expo for August 14–16.
Most local stamp clubs have also had to cancel their meetings because of the virus. Kudos to the Wyoming Valley Stamp Club, which had its first online meeting using Zoom on March 28. Ron Breznay shared a PowerPoint presentation. It was successful enough that they are planning their next online meeting only nine days later.
Kudos also to the Cedar Rapids Stamp Club. Their member Steve Kossayian notes that “Our children need activities now more than ever with schools closed throughout the nation.” Their local Eastern Iowa newspaper, The Gazette, announced a new kids’ page to appear three times a week, as well as a hobby feature on Sunday. Two of their members, Tom and Lara Thomaszek, have hatched a children’s first day cover and cachet contest around the upcoming Earth Day stamp release.
The Quad City Stamp Club had announced its 43rd and planned-final Stamp Out Cancer Auction in Moline, Illinois, for May 16. At the time of this writing it is uncertain how the event may be impacted but regardless the club is owed congratulations for the $297,500 towards cancer research raised by their previous auctions.
Long time Columbus (Ohio) Philatelic Club member and COLOPEX show volunteer Walton Beauvais passed away in late March. A member of the APS for 52 years, Beauvais received the first stamp for his collection from his grandmother, the postmistress in Binnewater, New York, when he was seven years old. Beauvais was active in the Christmas Philatelic Club and frequently exhibited Christmas V-mail. He was also a dedicated blood donor, donating more than 32 gallons.
Another recent passing was James Boyden, author of the AEF in the BEF: a postal history of the American Forces that used the British mails during World War I, 1917–1923 and U.S. Air Service in the British Isles 1917–1919: a military postal history of the U.S. Army Air Service units and personnel who were stationed in the British Isles during World War One. A 47-year APS member, Boyden was active in the Military Postal History Society.
We are also sorry to report the passing of Betty Walther of Vacaville, California. Betty was the widow of Ralph Walther who served as an APS Vice President from 1986–1989. She had been an APS member for 43 years.
Obviously there is concern regarding the possible effect the COVID-19 pandemic may have on the August 20–23 Great American Stamp Show (GASS) in Hartford, Connecticut. However, from the information we have today, we hope that Great American Stamp Show will be an opportunity for societies, exhibitors, dealers and collectors who are currently unable to participate in other shows this season. While the deadlines to host a meeting, enter an exhibit, or take a booth may officially be passed by the time you receive this issue, please contact us regardless; we will try to make accommodations in light of the extenuating circumstances.
Readers are encouraged to share their local philatelic happenings. E-mail me at email@example.com.
Editor's Note: The Philatelic Happenings column, "A Season of Difficulty and Perserverance" was published in the May 2020 issue of The American Philatelist, available exclusively to members of the American Philatelic Society. Click here to view the full issue.