Notes from the Past

Columbian Envelope Dies

So much philatelic reading matter is published that many of us never digest it all and oftentimes a valuable article is apt to be overlooked.  I have just gotten around to a remarkable study of the die varieties of U. S., 1893, Columbian Envelopes, published by F. L. Ellis, in the Stamp Specialist "Chartreuse Book," June, 1948.  He goes far beyone the old "four die" types of meridians and periods, but what amazes me is that these die varieties were always there but no one seems to have bothered working them out.  I can't see how anyone interested in the Columbian envelope dies can can manage without recourse to this wonderful article.  An accolade is due and I hope these notes will contribute to the bouquet F. L. Ellis deserves for Accomplishment Par Excellence.
- George B. Sloane
Sloane's Column
March 22, 1952

Posted July 22, 1999

Editor's note: F. L. Ellis and William H. Maisel updated the original Ellis study in serial form in "U.S. Commemorative and Special Printed Envelopes: 1876-1965" published in the April through July, 1974, issues of  The American Philatelist.  This study was subsequently published as a monograph.  The Ellis study was further updated and expanded by Lawrence A. Schei, "A New Classification of the Columbian Envelopes," published in the May, 1992, American Philatelist.

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