DCSIMG

FDR’s Stamp Tools

Many professions and hobbies require special tools to accomplish the task at hand. In their hobby, philatelists use unique tools to examine, measure, test, and lift stamps. Because President Roosevelt used his tools daily, he kept them nearby at all times, including when he traveled.

  •          
    back      
           
      Flash-O-Lens Illuminated Magnifier

    Flash-O-Lens Illuminated Magnifier, 1938
    This illuminated magnifying glass was a gift to FDR from the manufacturer.
    Loan from the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, New York

     
           
      Roto-Gage Perforation Gauge

    Roto-Gage Perforation Gauge, c. 1937
    This black plastic gauge, used by stamp collectors to measure the number of perforation holes in a two-centimeter length of stamp, was on FDR’s desk in the Oval Office from 1937 until 1945. A fifteen-year-old stamp collector from Illinois had given it to him.
    Loan from the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, New York

     
           
      Watermark Tray

    Watermark Tray, c. 1930s
    President Roosevelt used this black tray with a fast-evaporating liquid solvent such as benzene to see the security watermarks in stamp paper.
    Loan from the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, New York

     
           
      Stamp Box

    Stamp Box, c. 1940s
    This rather nondescript wood and brass box was the president’s constant companion. He carried his stamps in it wherever he traveled, including his cruises on USS Houston, and worked on his collection for at least a half hour each day. The box was sent in early 1945 to Minnie Astor, who intended to commission a leather copy as FDR’s Christmas gift that year. The president died on April 12, however, and Mrs. Astor returned the box with shipping labels still attached.
    Loan from the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, New York

     
           
      Pony Express Cigarette Case  

    Pony Express Cigarette Case, 1936
    The organizing committee of TIPEX, an international stamp show held at New York City in 1936, presented this enamel, gold, and bronze cigarette case to FDR, the show’s patron.

    Loan from the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, New York

     
             
    back