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Package came in the mail--postage paid with a bunch of old stamps

ds_mustang

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#1
I bought something on ebay and the package came with postage paid by a variety of old stamps... most over 50 years old! I checked a few and they don't seem valuable, but it makes me sad to think someone saved these stamps for decades and now they're just being used for face value to mail random stuff. That's like buying something and paying in silver change.

stamps2.jpg
 

ttazzman

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#2
probably grandma died and kids are cleaning things up.......my kids are going to hate me .......they know never to throw anything away even clothes without checking every nook n cranny LOL
 

Fatrat

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#3
At least they got used, I understand that stamp collections are nearly worthless...
 

Buck

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#4
ORIGINAL OP...

no, not at all

fat...AGREED

it's 'use it or lose it'

few people collect stamps today and the stamps we have today are not unique, no errors, no flaws, they're all collectable or usable but call anything a collector piece and it most likely is not...

btw: if you shop it just right, you can buy good stamps for below FV on ebay
 

ZZZZZ

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#5
I get that once in a while too.

People buy old stamps at a discount at estate sales, etc. The minimal collector's value of the stamps just isn't worth the time and effort to sell them to collectors.
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Buck

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#6
probably grandma died and kids are cleaning things up.......my kids are going to hate me .......they know never to throw anything away even clothes without checking every nook n cranny LOL
Are you saying someone at Goodwill might hit 'the jackpot' if your stuff comes in???
 

D-FENZ

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#9
Sounds like it may be from a coin dealer from around these parts. A bit on the eccentric side but a good guy. I asked him once about his habit of plastering stamps all over his shipments: he tells me he buys old stamp collections at estate auctions for a fraction of face value and uses them. Most of his flat postal rate boxes have stamps over the entire box. Postal workers cringe whenever he shows up because they have to tally them up. I do know you don't want to get caught behind him in line when he's at the post office.
 

dacrunch

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#10
I bought a ton of "Forever Stamps" back in the '80s... and they lasted me for decades...
 

ToBeSelfEvident

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#12
My Dad collected stamps for many years. When he quit smoking in the early 60s, he put his cigarette money into stamp collecting. He would buy sheets of commemorative stamps as they were issued. He collected "First Day Covers", a special envelope featuring the stamp with a postmark for the first day of issue. He collected "plate blocks", blocks of four stamps with the "plate number" included - this was the number of the minted sheet which was printed along the edge of the sheet

He had a big, 6-volume set of world stamp albums, but the album I liked best was his 100% mint American stamp album. He used to order the new album pages for each year and fill them with mint stamps. I had an identical album I was filling with used stamps, and sometimes he'd give me some mint stamps for my album.

He used to order 50-lb boxes of used stamps still stuck to envelope corners. We would soak them off in the tub, dry them out and catalog them according to date or series. We found lots of older stamps that way. What a grand time my brothers and I had! I learned more from stamps than from school, I think. I was the only kid in school who could spell Dag Hammarskjöld - but that was a long time ago. His interest waned and I grew up and got interested in other things.

In 2000 he retired and cashed in some big investments. For a couple years, he tried to rekindle his interest in stamps, mailing away for rare ones to fill his collection. Then one day he just said screw it - packed up his whole collection and donated it to Penn State University. Guess he was ahead of the curve on that one. Nobody gives a crap anymore. The stamps are like kiddie stickers now - the beautiful engraving and gum adhesive went away decades ago.
 

newmisty

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#14
I bought something on ebay and the package came with postage paid by a variety of old stamps... most over 50 years old! I checked a few and they don't seem valuable, but it makes me sad to think someone saved these stamps for decades and now they're just being used for face value to mail random stuff. That's like buying something and paying in silver change.

View attachment 179522
Yeah but look, that package ended up in your hands, you acknowledged and appreciated it and then shared it with us!

In my experience that person probably has a lot of stamps. They're not worth anything to a collector so rather than then just sit there in a pile of clones, they get used for postage and the sender, carrier and the receiver usually take note and smile.
 

MrLucky

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#15
My father like ToBeSelfEvident's father was a stamp collector. He started in the 30's. I also have full sheets with the number, first day issues by the hundreds, etc. I have sheets & sheets of new stamps. Use them? Not likely, no envelope is big enough. They are mostly 1, 2, 3 cent stamps.

On the other hand, I do have a $5 gold coin his mother gave him when he turned 21. He kept it in a tobacco pouch until he died. I had it graded, AU58.
 

mtnman

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#16
Used to, you could cash stamps in at the post office. Those days are gone. I too use old stamps I acquired when I had my Antique store.
 

EO 11110

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#17
I bought a ton of "Forever Stamps" back in the '80s... and they lasted me for decades...
the int'l banker fears the forever stamp. immune to their inflation
 

newmisty

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#19

OverOver

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#20
Am I the only stamp collector here at GIM2?? Whoever mailed that package must know about 'Discount Postage' You can buy gobs and gobs of mint stamps at discounted prices. The lower the denomination the better the discount. I normally buy at auction when I get low but here's just one link.

Discount Postage
 

edsl48

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#21
As a youngster I used to collect plate blocks that are the corner of a stamp sheet with the number on it from back in the days the post office was not in the business of printing stamps just like the fed does with money. The post office was on my paper route and things fell into place. So a few years back when the wife and I were downsizing our residence I decided to sell my collection. I hadn't even looked at it in years but it did bring back some pleasant memories of my youth. Anyway I go to the local collection places that sell coins, buy gold so on and so forth and was offered 80% of face value on all of them. I had this happen at multiple places so I figure it is a norm rather than an exception when trying to sell yesterday's collectibles. Using them for mail gets 100% of face value and prevents one of the usual hucksters from profiting off of my obvious financial mistake of buying them years ago. I will admit though I did get some enjoyment collecting them back in the day so that has a value of 20% of face I assume.
There is a moral to this story. When you see the latest limited edition blah blah blah coin I would not be expecting it to rise in value more than its melt value. To be sure I see some high prices on some of these instant rarities but I have a strong suspicion that somewhere along the line they will change hands at a percentage of melt value just like the stamps seem to be based upon my experiences.
None the less they are fun to show the grandchildren and look much better on the envelopes when received; just don't expect to make a financial killing on them.


Here is an envelope I received with an order last week. It looks so much better than those red ink printings in my humble opinion as I recollect the days as a youth collecting the things.
stamps resized.jpeg
 

Casey Jones

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#23
I've done the same. When I cleaned out my father's office, 14 years ago, I found a supply of postage-paid envelopes, as well as stamps, some commemorative, some clipped off mailings - not cancelled, he was cheap when he was older.

I put it all into storage; and five years ago, unpacked everything. I used those envelopes and stamps - the were useless for anything else.

FWIW, using those price-denoted stamps for postage is only getting a FRACTION of the value of them out - when purchased, most of them were good for First Class postage. Now they're only good for a third or less of postage.

At least the Post Office finally went beyond price-denoted stamps. I had recommended this several times to my Congress-cretin, twenty years ago and longer - before I understood he, and all of them, didn't care. But the savings in printing were so obvious, I cannot understand why it took over 200 years for them to figure out: Just put FIRST CLASS POSTAGE (or "Forever") on a stamp, and when it's used, it pays for the postage, for cripes' sake.
 

ZZZZZ

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#24
I have a 75 year old stamp collection that I am getting ready to sell. My father started it and I picked it up when he handed it down to me. I haven't touched it in 30 or 35 years, so I really don't know what I have. I do know that the collection has a lot of foreign stamps. A lot of our relatives worked overseas and my father saved all the foreign stamps from their letters and packages, circa 1950-1960.

I just dread the possibility that I take it to a shop and the guy says, pay me $25 and I'll take it off your hands. :rotf:
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Krag

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#26
I would recommend going on a stamp collecting forum and get the ideas of dealers and collectors.

A local barber thought he had some valuable baseball cards until some who know what they are worth opined. I hate to deflate hopes about value of carefully saved collectibles.

You have to ask yourself where are the collectors? What are they really paying? The younger generation seems to be running in the direction of internet based idiocy.