Besides collecting mail art and rubber stamps etc. we collect all manner of other things.  The truth is we find it hard to throw anything away so eventually these piles of detritus become little collections of things.  They say if you have just two things then it's become "a collection" . Focusing on just one of our interests - matchbox labels or to give it its proper name "phillumenism". Every years they have a wonderful Phillumenists Meet Up"  (not sure if thats the right name they give it?)  in the local hall ( the one by the swimming pool and gym ).  They usually recerve it for panto or indoor boot sales but they have all been cancelled of course due to Covid.  Sadly the Phillumenists had to cancel too but hopefully when we are all injected with the various vaccines we shall see them back again next year. In the meantime here a few samples -

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Comment by Bradford on November 27, 2020 at 10:05pm

Yes, Katerina, I forgot to mention that I also learned a new term, phillumenist, thanks to Mr. Michael Leigh.  For years I've admitted that I'm a philatelist, numismatist, deltiologist, scripophilist, and general bibliomaniac, but was unaware that I had been lacking such a descriptor for some time now.

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on November 27, 2020 at 4:08pm

Brad, that sounds like a real treasure: match boxes and postage stamps!

"Phillumenists"...looks like nice Greek word, meaning "friends" of "light".

a few Greek match boxes in a series honoring the "shadow puppets", Karagozi,

with the different characters names and images.

(oh dear, such a collector am I...and I don't even smoke :-)

Comment by Yvonne Kettner on November 27, 2020 at 2:27pm

Sounds really interesting Bradford!  I could not resist either ;)

Comment by Michael Leigh on November 27, 2020 at 10:20am

Thanks Bradford. Sounds like a fascinating collection of collections!  Since Covid we have avoided boot sales and charity shops where most of our "finds"  would turn up.  We miss all that and the thrill of the hunt!  Hopefully we have that opportunity again next year if these vaccines prove to be any good. 

Comment by Bradford on November 27, 2020 at 9:54am

Thanks for sharing those.  I never pretend I'm not a collector.  I knew that already as a very young child.  It can even get worse with time  —  one can actually collect collections. 

One of my favorite collections is housed in a red holiday gift box from Edward C. Minas Department Store in Hammond, Indiana.  It was known for household quality goods.  Someone decided that was where he would store his collection of used USA postage stamps dating from 1927 through 1956.  Each stamp issue was in a different matchbox, tiny giftbox, or stationery item box.  The matchbook labels include some common ones like Diamond-brand matches, but most are more interesting ones depicting a variety of subjects such as critters, men in tophats, etc.  Each box is dated as to year of stamp issue and what denomination/subject is depicted in a neat hand on one end of the inner sliding box.  Some are so inscribed with fountain pen ink while later ones are written in ballpoint.

While the stamps may have some value, I see the collection as a whole and what it says about the person who formed it as being of more worth than what Ebay result might be effected.  All-in-all, it's a somewhat voyeuristic peek at the psyche of a collector now long-deceased.  This deliberate searching and organizing having gone on for years is innate to many and spans long stretches of time for generations.  That's why we are but custodians of artifacts that hopefully will outlive us.

Comment by Carien van Hest on November 26, 2020 at 6:31pm

I love those designs. Collect those myself. Will take pictures to show you, William! 



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