The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum announces the formation of a partnership with preeminent philatelic libraries around the world to provide a centralized gateway to the greatest philatelic research in existence. Founding partners in the initiative include the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum and Smithsonian Libraries in Washington, D.C., the Royal Philatelic Society London and the American Philatelic Research Library in Bellefonte, Pa.
The goal of the project is to establish a single destination—a 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, will soon be one click away, providing an invaluable resource to those doing philatelic research. Major pre-1923 publications, including The Stamp-Collector’s Magazine, Illustrated, London, from 1865–1874, have been digitized and will be made available at no charge.
Other resources considered proprietary by partnering libraries may also be accessed through membership programs and other avenues via the centralized gateway, which is planned to launch in June.
“This is a fantastic program that will benefit philatelists around the world,” said Allen Kane, director of the museum. “I would like to thank Alan Holyoake for championing the effort and helping to make it become a reality.”
Other partners participating in the project include Rocky Mountain Philatelic Library in Denver; Slusser Memorial Library, Postal History Foundation in Tucson, Ariz.; The Collectors Club Library in New York; Harry Sutherland Philatelic Library, Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation in Toronto; and Western Philatelic Library in Sunnyvale, Calif.
“All philatelists should welcome the introduction of a centralized information gateway, a project that could never have been undertaken without the active participation of its preeminent founding partners, all of whom should be thanked,” said Alan Holyoake, internationally known philatelist. “In particular, I wish to thank those involved at the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum and Smithsonian Libraries, together with my colleagues at the Royal Philatelic Society London, for their hard work in turning a concept into what I am sure will prove to be a major philatelic reality and, in time, grow to become a worldwide gateway.”
The National Postal Museum is devoted to presenting the colorful and engaging history of the nation’s mail service and showcasing the largest and most comprehensive collection of stamps and philatelic material in the world. It is located at 2 Massachusetts Ave. N.E., in the Old City Post Office Building across from Union Station. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For more information visit the museum’s Web site at postalmuseum.si.edu.
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