First Day and Other Covers

 There were many covers in the stamps both my husband and I inherited.  Although we never got to sort them or really look at them, after we got married in 1972 we decided to collect South African and homeland covers. The reason for this was that the South African Post Office had an arrangement whereby you could pay money into your account and they then automatically sent the Covers when they were issued.  Although there were covers from many countries, our supply of South African and African covers increased during the years after 1972.  

Italy-Covers-a-1953My grandfather Marco Giordano was born in Italy in 1896. He was an avid cyclist and completed many Tours de France and in his early 40’s became a director of the RAI (Radio Audizioni Italiane),  today known as Radiotelevisione italiana. From 1954 until 1965 when he died, he and my grandmother lived in South Africa in our summer and in Italy for the other months. When I left home and subsequently got married, my brothers suggested that I take over the collection as they were not interested. This was quite surprising to my husband who moved to SA from the Netherlands in 1965 as he had brought with him his father’s stamp collection because his siblings had also shown no interest in stamps.

Italy-Covers-bThere are two Italian covers from 1953 addressed to my grandfather. For me these two covers are very special. My most lasting memory is of his lounge (in the flat my Dad built on to the house for my grandparents), full of tables, full of stamps which he had soaked off the paper. While he was doing this, he was listening to Opera on full volume because he was rather deaf. We walked home from school in those days and when we were still about 500m from our house we could also listen to Opera. Needless to say I have never became a fan of Opera music.

It has only been since about 2015 when we joined the local Philatelic Society that we have been adding to our collection of covers. We have added many old covers, but obviously there will also be some more modern covers.

There are many types of covers, the main ones being

Event Covers which cover a specific event (e.g. the Olympics)


Philatelic Covers which are covers with a stamp sent through the mail

The postmark is a very important. This shows that the stamp has been used and cannot be used again. Since the 1970’s it has become possible to sponsor a postmark and as a result there are often pictures and/or logo’s on the postmark.   Once covers became more popular, the postmark featured the theme of the stamp (this was called a cachet). This is not actually a postmark but rather a rubber stamp.  The cachet helps to tell the story of the stamp.  I think that is why collecting First Day and other covers has become so popular.  The cover actually tells you a story. 

I am going to list the countries where we have covers below and hope that you enjoy looking at our covers:

Africa   Asia   Europe
Basutoland   Aden   Albania
Bechuanaland   Iran   Austria
Bophutatswana   China   Belgium
Botswana   Hong Kong   Czech Republic
Ciskei   India   France
Congo Kinshasa   Indonesia   Finland
Egypt   Israel   German Fed. Rep.
Ethiopia   Japan   German Dem. Rep.
Kenya, Uganda, Tang.   Laos   Germany W. Berlin
Lesotho   Malaysia   Gibraltar
Malagasy Republic   Nepal   Great Britain
Malawi   New Guinea   Greece
Mauritius   Papua New Guinea   Guernsey
Mozambique   Philippines   Hungary
Namibia   Qatar   Isle of Man
Nigeria   Singapore   Italian Colonies
Rhodesia   Taiwan   Italy
Rhodesia & Nyasaland   Thailand   Jersey
Seychelles   Vietnam   Liechtenstein
South Africa       Lithuania
South West Africa   South America   Monacp
Southern Rhodesia   Argentina   Netherlands
Swaziland   Brazil   Norway
Transkei   Colombia   Portugal
Venda   Netherlands Antilles   Poland
Zambia       San Marino
Zanzibar   Islands in the Oceans   Slovenia
Zimbabwe   Ascension   Spain
    Br. Antarctic Terr.   Sweden
Central & N. America   Br. Indian Ocean Terr.   Switzerland
    Cocos Islands   Trieste
Antigua   Kiribati   Turkey
Grenadines of St. V   Tristan da Cunha   United Nations
Montserrat       Vatican
St Vincent        
USA   Australia   New Zealand
Virgin Islands        





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