Collector Resources

Confederate Stamp Alliance and Smithsonian National Postal Museum Scholarship

The Smithsonian National Postal Museum (NPM) and the Confederate Stamp Alliance (CSA) are pleased to announce a scholarship for original research and analysis relating to the design and/or printing of a specific Confederate stamp issue(s), the Confederate Post Office Department, or an aspect of Confederate postal history.  The scholarship is available for all academic, scientific and philatelic scholars.  It is designed to enable one to spend an uninterrupted block of time doing research in the NPM library, other Washington DC libraries, or libraries with Confederate States archives on their projects and discussing their work with others.

Applications are now being accepted for this scholarship. The scholarship, for a sum of up to $2,000, will be a contribution towards expenses including travel costs for a trip(s) to Washington DC or library with Confederate States archives.

The result of the research will be publication either as an original article published in The Confederate Philatelist, chapter in a book or dissertation, or a monograph.
Applications should include:

  • an outline of the subject to be studied and how it relates to the applicant's previous philatelic, scientific, postal operations or postal history research;
  • intentions as to publication of the results after completion of the project;
  • an accurate costing of the trip(s), including places and organizations to be visited and collections to research; and, 
  • a short curriculum vitae (including personal details, collecting interests, previous publications and philatelic achievements).

Additional information on each scholarship can be found at or email .

In evaluating submissions, the NPM and CSA award committee will rely on the following criteria:

  • What is its significance for our understanding of the history of Confederate postage stamps or the Confederate postal system?
  • How original is its argument?  Is the proposal well written?
  • How imaginative is its use of primary sources (e.g., archival materials, trade and professional journals)?

The application should be sent or emailed to:

Thomas Lera
Winton M. Blount Chair in Research
2 Massachusetts Avenue NE
MRC 570 PO Box 37012
Washington DC 20013-7012 


National Postal Museum Announces Launch of Centralized Gateway to World’s Greatest Philatelic Research

The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum announces the launch of the website, a centralized information gateway to the world’s greatest philatelic research. Founding partners include the National Postal Museum and Smithsonian Libraries in Washington, D.C., the Royal Philatelic Society London and the American Philatelic Research Library in Bellefonte, Pa.

On Feb. 15, 1888, American Philatelic Association President John K. Tiffany wrote to Edward Denny Bacon, secretary of the then Philatelic Society London, regarding a joint indexing project. He said, “…I consider the project as utterly impossible of any practical execution...” One hundred and twenty-four years later the project has become a reality.
This ambitious project has become a present-day reality thanks to the inspiration and dedication of the founding partners. The website establishes a single destination—a responsive centralized gateway—by which philatelists around the world can search, locate and access philatelic research from partner libraries in real time, from any computer. Searchable listings of books and publications, as well as resource locations and access, are now just a click away, providing invaluable resources to those doing philatelic research.

• World-class collection of printed, electronic and other media
• Access and support for beginners, hobbyists, specialists, writers and postal historians
• International collaboration and cooperation with philatelic libraries and museums around the world
• Anthology of fascinating, informative and sometimes even scandalous articles written throughout the past century about philately and some of the people involved in its history

“A large part of the philatelic information I have acquired was discovered incidentally while searching for something else,” said Thomas Lera, Winton M. Blount Research Chair at the National Postal Museum. “  I hope other philatelists, scholars and researchers will push open the doors of the new global philatelic library to find the answers to their questions and uncover new ones in the process as well.”

Other contributing philatelic research libraries include The Collectors Club Library in New York, Greene Foundation (Canada), Oslo Filatelistklubb Bibliotek (Norway), Philatelistische Bibliothek Hamburg (Germany), Postal History Foundation in Tucson, Ariz., Rocky Mountain Philatelic Library in Denver, National Philatelic Society (United Kingdom) and Western Philatelic Library in Sunnyvale, Calif.

“All involved with this project should be congratulated,” said Alan Holyoake, internationally known philatelist. “  The introduction of a centralized gateway must be one of the most important developments ever to have taken place within the ‘philatelic’ world. I fully expect this centralized gateway to rapidly allow philatelists from around the world to not only enhance their knowledge but also establish relationships and friendships with others around the globe.”


Links to Collector Resources
Here are some quick links to facts, articles, research and all sorts of information that relate to Confederate philately.
  • Library of Congress -  follow instructions for researchers

  • U.S. National Archives and Records Administration -  follow instructions for researchers

  • Smithsonian National Postal Museum Arago Project, a resource for the study of philately and postal operations as seen through the national collection. The Confederate section was edited by Trish Kaufmann and Jerry Palazolo.

  • The Resources of Leonard Hartmann, Bibliopole - Click to go to Leonard's series of articles on the Lithographed Issues and numerous other resources (as well as books for sale) relating to many facets of Confederate philately. If you're looking for books on our subject, this is the place.

  • Soldiers & Sailors System website is a cooperative project of the National Archives and the National Park Service and puts Civil War Service Records online.

  • "In the Valley of the Shadow" was created by the Virginia Center for Digital History has history of Franklin County, Pennsylvania and Augusta County, Virginia including newspaper articles, census data, photographs, service records, diaries and much more.