Category: Collecting Topics

Stamp of Approval

By Hadley Mitchell and John Martin

In September 1929, a man from New York selling office supplies went into the Andres Co. department store in Evansville and asked if a local stamp club existed. The query apparently led two local men, Arthur Romerhaus and Henry Meyer, to publish an article in the Evansville Courier asking anyone interested in stamp collecting to come to the store.

Romerhaus and Meyer, a schoolteacher with a vast collection of Hawaiian stamps, were joined by seven others at a meeting. The Evansville Stamp Club became official on Oct. 2, 1929, and it’s still going strong 94 years later.

The club is preparing for its 91st Annual Stamp & Postcard Show Oct. 21-22, at Reed’s Auction Barn, 10233 IN-662 in Newburgh, Indiana. The free show will feature exhibits and dealers, an auction of used and unused stamps, the club’s first-ever silent auction, and door prizes.

“We encourage people to come to our show to meet interesting people, talk to other stamp collectors, learn some history, see some beautiful and interesting stamps, learn a new hobby, buy some stamps, and most of all, to have a fun experience,” says Guy Sides, the club secretary.

Sides started collecting in his youth and takes a special interest in Machin stamps, used in the United Kingdom. Others, such as club president Zach Lottes, have less-specific collections. Lottes got his first stamps in the fourth grade, and he enjoys bidding on stamps that catch his eye at auctions.

“It’s interesting, and it’s history,” Lottes says.

The club is always open to new members, says Sides, who is retired from Bristol Myers.

“Stamps are just small pieces of paper, but they carry so much with them,” he says. “They are windows into culture, history, geography, and current events and these topics are discussed at our meetings.”

First Day of Issue Ceremony: Thinking of You

Greater Mound City Stamp Club member, 14-year-old Christina Esbeck was recently a speaker at the USPS First Day of Issue Ceremony for the Thinking of You stamps released on August 11, 2023, at the American Philatelic Society’s Great American Stamp Show in Cleveland, OH.  The Thinking of You issue included the first cupcake on a U.S. postage stamp. 

From Left to Right: Dawn Hamman (President of the American Topical Association), Greg Breeding (Art Director, USPS), Cara Greene (VP, Controller, USPS), Christina Esbeck (Greater Mound City Stamp Club Member and Youth Exhibitor), Scott English (Executive Director, American Philatelic Society), Jennifer Miller (Executive Director, American Topical Association), and Nicole Harrell (Supervisor, Distribution & Operations of Cleveland, USPS).

Christina was also recently highlighted by the USPS in the “PHILATELIC” (Volume 23, Quarter 3, pg. 49) magazine, which you can see on our club website at Beyond the Perf – Christina Esbeck – Greater Mound City Stamp Club.

Christina gave an awesome speech at the ceremony! Additionally, she entered her Cupcake exhibit and was awarded the Champion of Champions in the Youth category. This is a first for the Greater Mound City Stamp Club to have a member when a Champion of Champions award.

Our club could not be prouder of her.  She is an outstanding young lady and a great ambassador for stamp collecting by our youth.

Beyond the Perf – Christina Esbeck

Greater Mound City Stamp Club’s Christina Esbeck is highlighted in the USPS Philatelic (2023/Volume 28/Quarter 3, pg. 49) based on her Cupcake Exhibit as the USPS will be releasing the first cupcake on a U.S. stamp at the Great American Stamp Show. Christina has been asked and will participate in the First Day of Issue Ceremony in Cleveland, OH on 8/11/2023.

Congrats to Christina!

USPS Rate Increase: July 9th 2023

On April 10th 2023, the United States Postal Service filed notice with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) of mailing services price changes to take effect July 9th, 2023. The new rates include a three-cent increase in the price of a First-Class Mail® Forever stamp from 63 cents to 66 cents.

If favorably reviewed by the Commission, the proposed increases will raise First-Class Mail prices approximately 5.4 percent to offset the rise in inflation. The price changes have been approved by the Governors of the U.S. Postal Service.

The price for 1-ounce metered mail will increase to 63 cents, and the price to send a domestic postcard will increase to 51 cents. A 1-ounce letter mailed to another country would increase to $1.50. There will be no change to the single-piece letter and flat additional-ounce price, which remains at 24 cents. The Postal Service is also seeking price adjustments for Special Services products including Certified Mail®, Post Office Box rental fees, money order fees and the cost to purchase insurance when mailing an item.

The proposed Mailing Services price changes include:

ProductCurrent PricesProposed Prices
First-Class Mail Letters (1 oz.)$0.63$0.66
First-Class Mail Letters (metered 1 oz.)$0.60$0.63
Domestic Postcards$0.48$0.51
First-Class Mail International Letter (1 oz.)$1.45$1.50
First-Class Mail International® Postcards$1.45$1.50

As operating expenses fueled by inflation continue to rise and the effects of a previously defective pricing model are still being felt, these price adjustments are needed to provide the Postal Service with much needed revenue to achieve the financial stability sought by its Delivering for America 10-year plan. The prices of the U.S. Postal Service remain among the most affordable in the world.

The PRC will review the changes before they are scheduled to take effect. The complete Postal Service price filing, with prices for all products, can be found on the PRC website under the Daily Listings section at The Mailing Services filing is Docket No. R2023-2. The price tables are also available on the Postal Service’s Postal Explorer website at