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Press Release

November 23, 2009

Media only: Marty Emery (202) 633-5518; emerym@si.edu
Media website: http://newsdesk.si.edu


William H. Gross Auctions Collections to Benefit the National Postal Museum

William H. Gross, the founder of PIMCO, sold two of his impressive stamp collections to benefit the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum. Gross’ collections of civil war and British North America postal history sold for a total of $3.2 million at public auction this week in New York City. The sale proceeds help fulfill the $8 million donation Gross made earlier this year to create the William H. Gross Stamp Gallery.

The William H. Gross Collection of “Confederate States of America: Postmasters’ Provisionals and The War Between the North & South” is a powerful assemblage of mail highlighted by several famous Confederate postmasters’ provisional covers. The second auction, “British North America: Important Postage Stamps and Postal History” consists of seldom seen rarities of the area.

“The Gross family is pleased with the results of the auction and is honored to be able to donate the proceeds to the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum to help fund the museum’s expansion,” said Mark Porterfield, Gross family spokesman. “Since 2007, Gross has sold many foreign collections for the purpose of donating the sales proceeds to charity. It is the hope of the family that future generations of stamp collectors will be created and introduced to the hobby by visiting the museum.”

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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