I’ve been perusing the first day covers I’ve inherited form Dad and they are such a range of little pieces of art and history that it seems a shame not to share some with you.
To start the process, I’ve found four that are American First Day of Issues. The earliest is from 1947 and refences the postal service, including the Pony Express by the looks of it.
The next two are from 1949. The first is so intriguing. How many of you know what the GAR references? It’s the Grand Army of the Republic and which was formed after the Civil War to honour the Union side’s soldiers, to support them and to keep alive the memory of what they fought for and why. By 1949, there were sixteen left of whom 6 travelled to the final convention. The youngest was 100, the oldest 108! Have a read here. It’s worth it to follow the story of Joseph Clovese who was born into slavery and ran away at 17 to fight with the North and made it to the final convention. And, but for a stamp, I’d never have heard of the GAR or this remarkable survivor.
and finally from 1950
A Lot of the First Day Covers reference anniversaries, of course. This one, the 50th anniversary of the creation of the Royal Air Force has a certain poignancy as my grandfather was one of those original pilots who survived the Royal Flying Corps in WW1 to become part of the RAF
I never knew him, sadly. The injuries he suffered during that appalling conflict did for him in 1940, as he reached his own 50th. See, these things have their emotional impact, don’t they?