National Postal Museum Archives

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Design drawing of the Forever (44c) Indianapolis 500 stamp celebrating the centennial of the first running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 30, 1911. Includes design notations by Phil Jordan, Stamp Art Director on artwork by John Mattos. (Scott Catalogue USA 4530) (Phil Jordan Collection, NPMA.2023.2)

Founded in 2023, the National Postal Museum (NPM) Archives collects materials that strengthen and support the Museum's goal to be a global leader and advocate for the research, study, and exhibition of postal operations history, philately, and the mail. To this end the Archives appraises, acquires, describes, preserves, and makes accessible archival collections that document postal operations history, philately, the mail, and their roles in the United States and internationally.

Finding aids to Archives collections and digitized materials are available online through the Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives (SOVA) and the Smithsonian Collections Search Center (CSC). New finding aids and digitized content are added as they become available.

The Archives’ collections aim to represent the diversity of the lived American experience and will strive to encompass a wide spectrum of creators, collectors, subject matter, geography, time periods and media. Subject areas that the NPM and the Archives will collect include business history; civic groups and organizations history (i.e. nonprofit mailers, educational mailers, informal communities created/sustained through mail use); communications history; consumer history; diplomatic history; industries associated with the Post Office Department/United States Postal Service; labor history; letters and letter writing culture; military history; philately and the papers of philatelists; political history; popular culture history; Post Office Department/United States Postal Service operations history; stamp art, design, and production; technology history; tourism history; and transportation history.

As a newly established Archives, collections acquisitions, cataloging, digitization, and research activities are currently in their beginning stages.

Onsite Access

The NPM Archives is located within the National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. Collections may be accessed by the general public, researchers, historians, philatelists, educators, students, and for the purposes of scholarly research, staff, exhibitions, film productions, school programs and projects, and other related research and educational activities.

The Archives is open to researchers by appointment only, Monday-Friday, 10:00 am to 4:00pm. Appointments must be scheduled a minimum of five business days in advance. To schedule an in-person research appointment at the NPM Archives, email

To submit a reference inquiry to the NPM Archives, email

NPM Archives Staff

Mitch Toda, Head Archivist



National Postal Museum
2 Massachusetts Ave., N.E.
Washington, DC 20002

Mailing Address

National Postal Museum
P.O. Box 37012 MRC 570
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012


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Portrait photograph of Catherine L. Manning holding the 2nd American Philatelic Congress silver award bowl (NPM Accession 2007.2003.5) presented to her in Recognition of Her Services to Philately. (Catherine L. Manning Collection, NPMA.2023.1)

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Retirement card presented to Catherine L. Manning with signatures of her Smithsonian colleagues. (Catherine L. Manning Collection, NPMA.2023.1)

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Resketch of design for 33c Hospice Care stamp by Phil Jordan, Stamp Art Director. The 33-cent Hospice Care commemorative stamp was issued on February 9, 1999, in Largo, Florida. (Scott Catalogue USA 3276) (Phil Jordan Collection, NPMA.2023.2)

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Cover - Holiday Card from Josephine McDevitt to Catherine L. Manning. Features a figure holding an umbrella partially composed of a collage of stamps. (Catherine L. Manning Collection, NPMA.2023.1)

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Drawing of the X-1 "Glamorous Glennis" piloted by Brigadier General Charles E. Yeager with information about the position of the sun during the flight and the flight path. This information was used by Stamp Art Director, Phil Jordan and illustrator, Paul Salmon to create the 32-cent First Supersonic Flight 1947 commemorative stamp. (Scott Catalogue USA 3173) (Phil Jordan Collection, NPMA.2023.2)

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Novelty Citizens Stamp Advisory Committee (CSAC) bag - Includes the text: CSAC / Sea Sack / For use whenever things / come up again and again / MAL DE MER REGURGITATION RECEPTACLE (Phil Jordan Collection, NPMA.2023.2)