New catalogue illuminates little-known issues

by Ingert Kuzych

"Ukrainian DP Camp, POW Camp, Government in Exile, and National Council Issues" (Second Edition) by Borys Fessak. Springfield, Va.: Ukrainian Philatelic and Numismatic Society, 2003. Cost: $15.

This splendid new catalogue chronicles all of the four stamp-issuing entities of the Ukrainian diaspora whose stamps were legally used to deliver mail. Some of the information in this volume has appeared in other (mostly Ukrainian) publications. This book, however, updates and expands existing information and admirably fills a long-neglected void.

The first edition, published in 1992, sold well and Mr. Fessak's opus has been unavailable for a number of years now. Continued requests and inquiries from not only U.S. collectors, but from abroad, became the catalyst to undertake a new updated version. This second edition corrects several minor errors discovered in the earlier version and incorporates new material not previously known or only recently discovered. As in the first edition, all stamps are illustrated and all pertinent information - issue date(s), designer(s), color(s), perforation data, and subject description - is included.

The four parts of this catalogue are each introduced with historical background explaining why and how these unique postal materials came to be produced. The first part of the catalogue covers the 18 stamps issued by the Ukrainian government in exile between the years 1923 and 1939. The second part describes the 29 stamps and single souvenir sheet prepared at the Ukrainian POW camp in Rimini, Italy, in 1946-1947. Also covered in this section are stamp essays, postal cards and postal markings (cancellations and identifications).

The third part lists all 66 DP camp stamps (and four souvenir sheets) issued in the four Ukrainian DP camps that prepared such postage: Regens-burg, Bayreuth, Neu-Ulm and Ulm/Donau. Also included in the complete write-up are the many stamp color varieties, camp cancellations and special souvenir folders. In addition, the little-known camp of Ellwangen-Jagst is described. Although no stamps were issued at this smaller camp of some 2,000 people, a special handstamp was used to mark incoming and outgoing mail, and this is also illustrated and described.

The final part of the catalogue presents the 49 postage stamps, 11 revenue stamps and four souvenir sheets of the Ukrainian National Council (UNC) issued between 1948 and 1976. The UNC was an umbrella association that consolidated the many Ukrainian political organizations in Europe (outside of the Soviet Union) after World War II.

Included in this section are descriptions of the watermarks that appear on certain stamps, special UNC envelopes and postal cards, postal markings used by UNC "postal stations" in various cities and postal tariffs.

The cost of this handsome, profusely illustrated, 90-page volume is $15 (U.S.) plus $2 postage to (U.S.) destinations, $3 to Canada, or $4 (surface) for overseas shipment. The catalogue may be ordered from: UPNS, P.O. Box 3, Springfield, VA 22150.

Copyright © The Ukrainian Weekly, August 3, 2003, No. 31, Vol. LXXI

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