Apfelbaum’s Corner – Volume 4

“Mr. X” is collecting Missouri postal history. “Mr. Y” is keen for Montana. Then there is a long line of people after everything from Hong Kong to Tenerife. Our hope is to always have as much available in each of these lines as our friends have money to spend for their specialty. Alas, in philately it cannot be done.

There is no philatelic field other than the new issue business (and even that has exceptions) where the supply of merchandise is unlimited. Some subjects are so limited as to have practically no commercial supply except when a former collector places his material on the market. Needless to say, this is gobbled up in a short time and once again the market is dry.

There is a group of specialties that have a more generous floating inventory in dealer’s hands. Generally they are from countries or areas that have had high economic and cultural development during the time of that specialty. England and France during the Nineteenth Century and parts of Italy during the Eighteenth Century are examples. While there are many scarce items from each of these countries, so much was created that a huge reservoir of material currently exists.

Collectors who seek specialties should give long consideration to their choice of subjects. Most important should be whether they want to fish in a well-stocked lake or cast their line in a stream that only occasionally has a fish.