American Philatelic Society
Donation Processing

The donations we receive allow us to share the joy of stamp collecting. We rely on volunteers to prepare philatelic material that has been donated to the APS for use in programs with children and beginning adult stamp collectors. Here are ways that you can help.

Trimming Stamps from Paper

Postage stamps are used on paper that we call covers, whether it is an envelope, package, or postcard. Once we sort the covers and extract those of any value to collectors, we trim the stamps away from the cover paper making them easier to store and then to distribute. A collector receiving these stamps may choose to soak the stamp off of the paper.

Sorting Stamps and Philatelic Material

Stamps come to us in boxes, tins, envelopes, glassines, plastic bags, and loose. Some are presorted and others are not. Depending on current projects, we ask volunteers to sort boxes of donations. Stamps that need to be trimmed away from paper are mixed in with stamps already soaked off of paper, so they need to be separated. Topical stamps are mixed in with definitives and we like to have certain topics sorted, such as animals, space, or transportation on stamps.

Removing Stamps from Albums

We sometimes give donated albums away to children, stamps included, to get them started in the hobby, but more often we need the stamps in the albums for projects. Volunteers help us by carefully detaching the stamps, usually hinged, from album pages. Some albums are in rough shape and we find that we are rescuing the stamps when they were poorly stored.

Interested in Helping?

If you are willing to pay for the return postage, donations can be processed from your home. If you are interested, contact Education, by email or phone 814-933-3803 ext. 239.

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