General Stamp Collecting

History of U.S. Stamps


Roger Brody

The first U.S. postage stamp began a revolution in communication!  And the postal service has been closely tied to our nation’s history ever since – through wars, technological advances and much more.

Now you can trace its evolution in this video of Roger Brody’s presentation at the 2005 Maynard Sundman Lecture.  Click here to begin.

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How to Measure Stamps for Mounts

Getting the right sized mount for your stamps is easy with the guides shown below.  You’ll learn how to measure accurately and find the correct mount size for traditional, water-activated and self-adhesive stamps on backing paper.

Mystic offers various types of mounts and mount sizes.  Choose from Black Split-Back Mounts, Clear Drop-End Mounts, or Scott Mounts.  We even have a special Mount Kit to provide you with a variety of options to get started.

Don’t want to measure your stamps?  Mystic makes it easy to order the correct sizes.  Simply enter a Scott number into the search bar and click on the stamp you’d like to buy mounts for.  Underneath the conditions offered, click the blue “Mounts” button and the correct sizes will appear!


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The Jenny Invert Plate-Number Block

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Discover America’s Greatest Stamp Rarity With Mystic’s Exclusive Booklet

The Jenny Invert Plate-Number Block is America’s greatest stamp rarity.  It has always been the most sought-after and valuable of the six inverted Jenny blocks.  It’s the only Plate-Number Block from the legendary 1918 24¢ Airmail stamp error sheet, which makes it unique.

The Jenny Invert Plate-Number Block was auctioned in 2005 for $2.97 million, setting a record for a U.S. philatelic item.  Less than two weeks later, it was in the news again – traded to Mystic President Don Sundman for the unique 1868 1¢ Z Grill.  Now you can learn the story of the Jenny Invert PNB and the historic one-for-one stamp trade in our free booklet.  Just click here.

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Mystery of the Grinnell Missionaries

The story of the Grinnell Hawaiian Missionaries reads like a mystery, but it’s a true story, full of real-life drama.  For nearly 100 years, their genuineness has been debated.  Are they really scarce Hawaiian Missionary stamps… or some of the greatest forgeries ever created?

The saga of the Grinnell Missionary stamps is a long and dramatic one.  From the pages of an old prayer book locked away in a battered trunk to a courtroom filled with witnesses for the prosecution and a judge’s verdict of “forgeries” to a high-tech laboratory in the UK, the Grinnells have journeyed a very long way.  And many believe they had already survived an even longer journey – one that began over 150 years ago in the Kingdom of Hawaii.

Now you can explore the Grinnell Missionary stamps in Mystic’s series of booklets.  Then watch David Beech, Curator of the British Library Philatelic Collections, deliver his presentation about the Grinnells during the National Postal Museum’s 2003 Maynard Sundman Lecture.

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In The Grinnell Missionaries, you’ll discover the history of the Hawaiian Islands, the role the missionaries played in it, and how the kingdom’s postal service began.  Then you’ll read George Grinnell’s story of how he found the stamps and read articles from both sides of the case.



Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 12.46.57 PMThe Case for the Grinnell Missionary Stamps presents the facts gathered by the descendants of the original players, who have spent a lifetime believing in the stamps’ authenticity.  You’ll learn little-known details about the stamps, their discovery, and the research that has been ongoing for nearly a century.


Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 3.10.28 PMResponse to the 2004 Royal Philatelic Society Opinion on the Grinnell Missionaries refutes the findings of that organization by presenting rational and logical counter-arguments.  Patrick Culhane, great-great grandson of the original owner, also wrote the response in the hopes it would foster further research on the stamps’ genuineness.



And finally, watch as David Beech of the British Library Philatelic Collections discusses the Grinnell Missionaries. Will all of this evidence help you solve one of philately’s greatest mysteries?  Probably not, but you’ll sure enjoy trying!

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12 Best Reasons to Collect Stamps

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 10.47.18 AMYou know stamp collecting is fun, but did you also know it’s good for your health?  Learn how, plus more of the great benefits of being a stamp collector!  Click here for Mystic’s free booklet, 12 Best Reasons to Collect Stamps.

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Your Complete Guide to Stamp Collecting

Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 10.46.49 AMGet collectors tips and more from the stamp experts at Mystic!  You’ll learn how to start or build a collection, how to identify your stamps, collecting tools, a stamp glossary and much more.

Browse through Mystic’s Guide to Stamp Collecting now… and bookmark it for later reference.

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