Stamp Mystery Bag

20200518_144126

The envelope the stamps came in.

I have been reading that Covid 19 and the lockdown has been a boon to stamp collecting.  I am not sure whether that is true or not, but I do know that I have ordered more stamps than usual, and that I am spending more time with my collection.  However,  maybe cabin fever has gotten to me.  I am not really sure.  I did something I had not planned to do.  I bought a stamp mystery collection from Ebay.  I don’t know whether it is because of Covid 19 or because the stamps that I ordered for my collection were taking a long time to arrive.  I have been working from home and needed something to do.  So I took a chance because I saw the advertisement while I was playing one of those flash games.

I have seen these advertisements in stamp magazines for the years that I have been interested in this hobby.  I would love a huge box of 20 thousand stamps to explore, but I don’t know what I would do with them afterwards.  That being said, I decided to make this blog (though I considered making a YouTube video first) to show you what I got and maybe you can make your own decision about this.

So, I chose the least expensive lot.  It was listed for 11.99 Canadian and shipping within Canada was included.  I put it in my watch list and was going to come back to it later.  I recieved an email the next day offering me a ten percent discount.  So, now the price was listed at 10.79. (7.73 US today)   I decided to take the gamble.

So this is what I got, and the prices people are trying to get on Hipstamp.  Of course, you can find better deals, but we need some baseline.  The prices I am  listing are sometimes approximations and are in US dollars and do not include a shipping fee.

All stamps were MNH except one of the Canadian stamps and the package was secure.

  • Norway 318 -320 (4 to 5 dollars)
  • Norway 363  ($0.25)
  • Armenia 452-456 ($1.32)
  • Armenia 464-471 ($0.90)
  • Tanzania 816-822 ($7.00)
  • Canada 191 ($0.75)
  • Canada 215 (heavily used)  ($1.50)
  • San Marino 39  I could only find a used version, perhaps a little more than a dollar
  • Iran 1967 (0.75)
  • India C7 ($2.00)
  • Mexico 392-392  I couldn’t find an example of this one, but I consider this a decent find.

So, how did I do?  I think I came out ahead.  At the very least, I don’t feel like I was ripped off.  I have watched a few videos on YouTube which seem to suggest that is a likely scenario.  More importantly,  I enjoyed the thrill of opening the package and discovering what was included.  I appreciate that these stamps came as if I were at a show and going through the index boxes rather than a pile of stamps on paper in a box.

Would I do it again?  I think I would.  I might even go for the bigger batch next time.  If you are interested the headline was “Huge Dealer Liquidation.” and the seller was dr.note. I paid for these stamps myself and I am in no way affiliated with the seller.  I just appreciate not being taken and I enjoyed the experience.

I would love to hear your comments on the stamps and how you think I did.  I would also love to read about your experiences buying mystery bags.

Finds from the Box of Stamps (one)

20190817_121745.jpg

Having received a box of stamps from a friend, I have decided to write a little bit about what I find in the box.  This idea is similar to the fantastic YouTube channel Exploring Stamps–if you have never seen it, you should definitely check it out–but won’t be as extensive or nearly as well researched.

I haven’t gone through the box, really.  I have taken a cursory glance and pulled out a couple of interesting things that I want to share with you.

The first is the 1972-73 Harris Catalog.  I love looking through catalogs of models, toys, book clubs and pretty much anything else.  Coming across this catalogue was quite awesome.  The black and white pages are filled with fantastic adds for collections by country at what seem like fantastic prices now.  The book also has individual stamps and small sets as well.

I especially appreciate how inexpensive the accessories (binders, magnifiers, stock books, and tweezers.  In retrospect, these cheap prices probably weren’t cheap back then, but considering how much things cost today, they are totally interesting.

20190817_121801.jpg

The second item is a lovely credit voucher for a Canadian stamp company that lasted until 2017–at least the last of its stock was auctioned off then.   From all accounts, at one time, this was a company that mailed out tonnes of stamps every day and employed more than 100 people.  Amazing!

The box has many more stories to tell.