The national collection illustrates and invites research into United States philately and postal operations. It contains prestigious postal issues and specialized collections, archival postal documents and three-dimensional objects that trace the evolution of the postal services.
The National Postal Museum is divided into galleries that explore America's postal history from colonial times to the present. Visitors learn how mail has been transported and the wondrous diversity of postage stamps.
The Museum supports a wide variety of interdisciplinary research projects which address topics of importance such as current and future postal operations, as well as philatelic and postal history. Our efforts are a resource and point of reference for research and wider investigation by historians throughout the United States and the world.
Molly Byrne is a business owner, designer, and philanthropist active in the Dallas community. She co-created Seven Bridges Foundation, a public sculpture garden and museum in Greenwich, Conn. Currently, she serves on the board of directors of the Dallas Theater Center and the Dallas Museum of Art. She is president and founder of TurningPoint Foundation, which generously supported the National Postal Museum’s new Byrne Education Loft, a space that allows the museum to provide students, educators and families with diverse programming opportunities.
Roland Cipolla has been a stamp and postal history collector since the age of five. A longtime member and officer of several local and national stamp organizations, he is also an exhibitor who has achieved the U.S. Champion of Champions award and a certified exhibition judge for the American Philatelic Society. Before becoming a dealer in art and antiquities, he was an executive recruiter and consultant who specialized in coaching small companies on how to turn around and grow their sales and marketing organizations.
Gordon E. Eubanks, Jr., currently serves on the board of the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society. He has also served on the board of the Philatelic Foundation and is a member of the Collectors Club of New York and the Royal Philatelic Society. From 1984 to 1999, he was president and chief executive officer of Symantec Corporation. He was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy, serving in the nuclear submarine force from 1970 to 1979.
Ian C. Gibson-Smith is president of Allied Defense Industries, Inc., a defense consulting company specializing in the provision of spare parts, purchasing, and logistic services. Born in England, his family moved here in his youth and he attended the College of William and Mary. He is dedicated to the arts, human rights, and community support. He is the founder and chair of the IanThom Foundation, a public charity established in memory of Thomas G. Martin. As a philatelist, he specializes in the issues of Great Britain.
Sonny Hagendorf is a dealer and specialist in rare U.S. postage stamps through his firm Columbian Stamp Company, Inc. He has been a professional philatelist for over thirty years, and during that time he has purchased or brokered many of the great United States rarities. Along with countless other philatelic treasures, he has sold five of the six blocks of the Jenny Inverts. He is an expert consultant to the Philatelic Foundation and serves on the board of several local charities in his community.
Elizabeth M. Hisey, has been involved in philately for the past 10 years. She is an APS-accredited judge and a member of the Council on the Accreditation of National Exhibitions and Judges. She is currently secretary of the American Association of Philatelic Exhibitors and treasurer of Women Exhibitors. She collects and exhibits food-related philately, turn of the century advertising covers, and early 1950s Bolivia. She was educated in England.
Vince King, serves as President of the Texas Postal History Society, and is the 2nd Vice President of the Texas Philatelic Association. As a member of the Collectors Club of Dallas, he served as the Awards Chairman and Bourse Chairman of TEXPEX, an APS World Series of Philately Exhibition. He has won gold and special awards for his exhibits “Before the Flood—The Postal History of Galveston, Texas, 1838-1900” and “Texas During the Confederate Period—How Mail Was Handled, 1861-1865.” He was awarded the Texas Philatelic Association’s “2011 Distinguished Philatelic Texan” award for service and achievements in the field. He is the president and CEO of Entech Design, Inc., and has two daughters with Becky, his wife of 36 years.
Born in Shanghai, raised in Hong Kong, and educated in the United States and Great Britain, Anna Lee founded Phila China Limited in 2001. This stamp auction house headquartered in Hong Kong went on to break numerous records for stamps sold in public auction. Inspired by her father, a fervent collector of Chinese stamps, she has built up one of the greatest China collections ever assembled and contributes immensely to the promotion of philately in the region, serving as vice president of the Hong Kong Philatelic Society since 2008 and organizer of the first-ever East Asian Philatelic Exhibition held in August 2011.
Patrick Maselis is a fourth generation philatelist who has won numerous international awards for his exhibits of the Congo Free State and the 1849-1863 "medallion" issues of his native Belgium. Since 2009 he has been president of the Club de Monte-Carlo and served as general commissioner of its MonacoPhil exhibitions. He is also a fellow of the Royal Philatelic Society London and its vice president, as well as president of the Belgian Academy of Philately. In 2012, he was invited to sign the Roll of Distinguished Philatelists. A chemist by training, he is managing director of a major Belgian cereal manufacturing plant. He lives with his wife and two children in Roeselare.
An internationally known expert in otology and neurotology, Dr. Douglas E. Mattox is the William Chester Warren Jr., MD Chair and Professor of the Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. His medical research is in the fields of hearing and the vestibular system. As a philatelist, he collects and exhibits stamps and postal history of the Kingdom of Tonga, especially the surcharged issues of 1891-1896 and commercial tin can mail.
Calvin Mitchell became Assistant Curator of Philately in 2014 following a four-decade government career, most recently with the Federal Aviation Administration. From 2012-2014 he served as a research associate, writing articles and doing philatelic research in collaboration with the curatorial staff. He is a board member of NAPEX and the Ebony Society of Philatelic Events and Reflections (ESPER). His membership in other philatelic organizations include the American First Day Cover Society, the American Ceremony Program Society, the Washington Stamp Collectors Club and the American Philatelic Society. He holds degrees from the University of the District of Columbia (BA, Political Science and Economics) and Syracuse University (MPA, Public Administration).
As the Smithsonian National Postal Museum’s Chief Curator of Philately, Daniel A. Piazza selects objects and prepares text for the museum’s permanent and temporary philatelic exhibitions. His current exhibit, Freedom Just Around the Corner: Black America from Civil War to Civil Rights, opened on February 6, 2015. He also acquires items of outstanding significance for the museum’s permanent collections and frequently publishes his research into the the six million stamps and related artifacts that comprise the museum’s holdings. In addition to his professional activities, he is an active member of numerous international and national philatelic organizations.
Wade E. Saadi, a businessman living in New York City, has been collecting since childhood and specializes in the U.S. Classic Period. He is also a writer, researcher, and exhibitor of these issues and has won numerous awards for exhibits and research. His gold medal 1847 exhibit is considered one of the finest studies in the shades and cancellations of that issue ever formed. He is currently exhibiting “Struck on Stamps–1851 to 1868,” a study of the evolution of early cancellations. He is past president of the APS, USPCS, and CCNY. He has served as editor of the 1847 section of The Chronicle of the U.S. Classic Postal Issues since 1997. He is the chair of the World Stamp Show-NY2016 Organizing Committee and president of the NY2016 International Exhibition.
Charles Shreve has been involved professionally in the rare stamp auction business for over thirty-five years. He took a position in 1977 with Sotheby's in the rare stamp auction department. In 1980, he joined Steve Ivy of Heritage Coin Galleries, Inc., Dallas, to establish a rare stamp auction company, Steve Ivy Philatelic Auctions, Inc. In 1994, he established Shreve Philatelic Galleries, Inc. He is a member of the Royal Philatelic Society London and is also a member of the board of governors and fund raising chairman of CCNY. He is an expert consultant and member of the board of trustees of the Philatelic Foundation in New York City, the largest philatelic expertizing service in the United States.
Donald Sundman is president of Mystic Stamp Company and serves on the Philatelic Foundation’s Board of Trustees. He co-sponsors the National Postal Museum's Maynard Sundman Philatelic Lecture series. His Freedom of Information Act request unraveled the mystery of the legendary “CIA Invert” stamps, and he donated one to the National Philatelic Collection. To protect collectors from a controversial U.S. Postal Service decision, Mystic filed suit to prevent the destruction of the recalled 1994 Legends of the West error sheets. In 1998 Mystic purchased America’s rarest stamp, the 1868 1-cent Z Grill, for a record price of $935,000. In 2005, the 1-cent Z Grill was traded in an even exchange for the unique 1918 Jenny Invert Plate-Number Block, valued at $2.97 million. The historic exchange of America’s most famous and valuable rarities was covered by the worldwide media, captivating the imaginations of collectors around the globe.
Like many philatelists, Alan Whitman began collecting as a child but let the hobby drift to the back burner during his young adulthood. A subscription to Linn’s Stamp News—purchased to help his daughter’s school magazine drive—rekindled his interest in 1993. Now a serious collector of United States pre-1930 issues, he is a member of the APS, CCNY, USSS, and USPCS. A graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, he is employed by Morgan Stanley where he is Managing Director.
Retired lawyer and banker Thomas J. Alexander collects nineteenth-century U.S. and British postal history. His research and publications include the 1847 Cover Census, Simpson’s Postal Markings: 1851-1861, and numerous articles appearing in The Chronicle, Congress books, and the American Philatelist. Alexander is ex-officio director and former president of USPCS and served as editor of the 1851-1857 section of The Chronicle for twenty years. He has served on the APS board of trustees and on the ethics, insurance, and Luff Awards committees. Alexander is a recipient of the Luff Award for distinguished philatelic research and the Smithsonian Philatelic Achievement Award.
Guido Craveri initiated meaningful change to the National Postal Museum’s philatelic vision. In the mid-1990s he encouraged the creation of the Council of Philatelists and served as its first chair. His ideas led to an exhibit space for great philatelic collections and the establishment of the Smithsonian Philatelic Achievement Awards. His experience, expertise, and passion as a collector, mentor, dealer, auctioneer, and philanthropist have set new standards in philately. In 2006 he was honored with the Smithsonian Philatelic Achievement Award. He is president of Investphila SA, a philatelic auction house based in Lugano, Switzerland.
Hubert N. (Jay) Hoffman III is the Chief Executive Officer of the Hoffman Company, a firm that oversees the acquisition, management, development, construction, and leasing of office, retail, hotel, and multi-family properties. He enlisted in the United States Army upon graduation from high school and served three years assigned to the 11th Armored Calvary (a combat unit) in Europe. He attended the University of Maryland, and he currently lives in Alexandria, Virginia, with his wife, Arline. He is an avid stamp collector.
John M. Hotchner has collected postage stamps for nearly sixty years. He particularly enjoys U.S., EFOs, Christmas seals, counterfeits, worldwide covers showing delays in the mail,and about twenty other country collections. He is a philatelic society and club activist, including having served sixteen years on the APS board, including a term as president. In addition, he is a philatelic writer and editor, exhibitor, judge, researcher, expertiser, and former member of the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee. He is a forty-two-year veteran of the US Department of State.
David M. Sundman’s philatelic collections focus particularly upon the postal history of New Hampshire’s White Mountains, and his philatelic interests range across the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, both U.S. and international. He is a partner in Mystic Stamp Company in Camden, New York, and president of Littleton Coin Company in New Hampshire. Sundman co-sponsors the NPM Maynard Sundman Philatelic Lecture Series.
May Day Taylor is a native of Washington, D.C., a stamp collector since age 10, and a Sustaining Fellow of the Smithsonian Institution. An historian by education, a business consultant by profession (establishing United Buying Service in 1967 and Consulting, Advertising and Research Services in 1984) she has moved from a worldwide stamp collector to a topical collector with interests that include new U.S. issues. For the Washington 2006 international exhibition, she arranged the Alexandria Blue Boy exhibit, which resulted from her research and subsequent writings on that famous local stamp. She has two sons and four philatelic grandchildren.