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German Christmas Tree Ball Stamp: rarer than the Blue Mauritius?

(Wiesbaden) Due to a two spelling mistakes, the original German "Christmas Tree Balls" stamp was withdrawn by the German post in November 2016; at that moment it seemed that no copies of the faulty stamp had been for sale. A corrected version of the stamp was issued, but then some of the stamps with the spelling errors surfaced: among others a complete mint never hinged sheet containing ten stamps, a pair of the stamp and a sheet containing nine Christmas trees. The stamps were produced on foils that were printed at the backside. So why is the stamp that will be auctioned by Heinrich Köhler in Wiesbaden (Germany) during the 366th Köhler auction on 23 March 2018 (lot no. 2478) so special or even unique? The answer is: because this stamp was produced as one of the very few on plain white carrier film. This type of production is normally reserved for individual (‘loose’) self-adhesive stamps. Or - as in this case - as a sample for a very small number of preferred recipients. Due to the fact that the mistakes in the stamp design were also present on the distributed sample stamps (‘Muster’), all these stamps were recalled too. All sample stamps were returned – apparently with the exception of one – to the German Post.
According to the certificate of the renowned German stamp expert Hans-Dieter Schlegel, it concerns the only known misprint of the ‘Christmas Tree Balls’-stamp that shows a backing foil that has been left completely blank, i.e. without any printed text or illustration on it. On the front of the stamp the vague remnants of the word ‘MUSTER’ are visible.
Many philatelists and stamp collectors will be curious what will happen on 23 March, when this unique stamp will be auctioned. Will it surpass the record price that the famous ‘Audrey Hepburn’ stamp yielded a few years ago? Then, the hammer fell at 150.000 euros.

NEW: Post & Geschichte Magazin, Nr. 16 (December 2017)

(wm) Especially among journalists writing about specialised topics from Switzerland and Liechtenstein, the magazine ‘Post & Geschichte Magazin’ (‘Post and History Magazine’) has a good reputation. It is perfectly made and designed publication and its Editor, Christian Geissmann, always succeeds tot find new, interesting and varied topics to write about. It proves that even a small country can leave a big mark on postal history – which is the case with ‘Post & Geschichte Magazine’).
The main topics of the latest issue of the magazine (December 2018) have the following titles: "The autumn manoeuvers of the III. Army Corps from 3 to 19 September 1900"; "The censorship of Swiss Post in South Africa during the Second World War" and “The launching of the Focke Wulf FW 200 Condor Friesland on 29.11.1944 and the adventurous journey of a postcard from Switzerland to Algeria". Remarkable are not only the presented documents, but also the numerous contemporary historical photos, which Geissmann cleverly fits into the articles written by him. The 48-page brochure in DIN A5 format costs 18 Sfr. and is available from Post und Geschichte GmbH, Postfach 56, CH-5612 Villmergen/Switzerland. Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Source: AIJP News

Delcampe Website: Two Awards for its ongoing efforts

The Delcampe collectibles purchase and sale website is on a roll. FeWeb just awarded the website its Excellence Award Silver in the e-Commerce category and the French magazine Capital awarded its ”Palmarès Capital” award for the best quality of service for a company selling used items online. Two very nice awards for this international company.
With over 17 years of experience in its market, the Delcampe website ( now has over 1.2 million members. Hundreds of thousands of transactions are completed on the website every month. Delcampe holds leading positions in the categories stamps, coins and postcards. Apart from that, it alsohosts many other kinds of collections; they will be expanded in the near future. The company’s goal is to be the leader in collectibles buying and selling.
For Delcampe members there are two considerable assets, the first one being the fact that the firm wishes to remain in a niche of truly passionate collectors: Delcampe’s approach is based on collection items. The second asset is Delcampe’s Customer Service Department that helps to find personalized solutions for any problem that member might encounter. This personalized service has enabled Delcampe to become a preferred website of collectors around the world.
2018 will be a challenging year for the firm, which will launch its own secure payment method on the website called Delcampe Pay.
Sébastien Delcampe, company CEO of Delcampe comments as follows: “I would like give my sincere thanks to the people who selected Delcampe as their favourite partner for the purchase and sale of their collection items. The awards that we received mean a great deal to us. They ensure that we will do our utmost to maintain and improve the quality of our services.”


Source: AIJP News

Award of the European Parliament for Prince Albert II of Monaco

Photo: Prince Albert II of Monaco receiving the prize of the European Parliament from the parting President of the European Academy of Philately (AEP) Bruno Crevato-Selvaggi, in the presence of the Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign Trade Pieter De Crem.


Source: AIJP News

Christoph Gärtner Awards 2017

(wm) For the fifth time in succession the well-known CG-Awards of the German auction house Christoph Gärtner were handed over to the winners during the opening day of the MonacoPhil event. It concerned ten prizes that were awarded to study groups and associations from all over the world, for publications of these clubs, like magazines and books. This time, there were two special prizes: one for ‘Digital Literature’ and one for ‘Youth’. The exhibits were assessed by a number of well-known jurors, such as Richard Johnson (South Africa), Patrick Maselis (Belgium) and Rainer von Scharpen (Germany). Each juror entered his votes in a computer, which then calculated the respective final score.
The winner of the main group was once again the Collectors Club of Chicago (USA) that received a prize € 2,000 for its publication "U.S. Contract Mail Routes by Railroad (1832-1875).” The second place was for the German thematic club ‘Motivgruppe Musik’. The study group ‘ArGe Krone/Adler’, also from Germany, captured the third place.
The special prize for digitally produced literature went to "PHILA HISTORICA", a free digital periodical about philatelic history and philatelic literature, edited by Wolfgang Maassen. The magazine can be downloaded free of charge on the Internet ( The decision was very close: the Italian publication ‘Vaccari News’ was only half a point behind the winner. In the category ‘Youth’ the prize went to the German stamp collectors association ‘Meininger Briefmarkensammlerverein‘.

Expectant faces among the visitors of the CG-Awards presentation in the ‘Top Car Museum’ of Prince Albert II in Monaco. Photo: Wolfgang Maassen

Source: AIJP News