Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The Album vs. The Catalogue

After 15 or so hours of comparing the 1943/47 editions of the Scott "Blue" with the Scott Classics Catalogue, I think I'm finally getting a handle on the coverage question. The next few posts will work through three areas: 1) countries/political entities in the album but not the catalog; 2) countries in the catalog but completely missing from the album; and 3) a key to the countries in both. The idea of the first two is to help the "Blue" International collector identify areas where the album might usefully be supplemented.

It is important to remember that the album being used for the comparison, the 1943/47 editions of the Scott International, is more complete than the 1997 four part version available today. But I thought it better to start with the most complete version of the album and then see how coverage changed in subsequent versions.

The easiest place to start is to ask whether there are any countries in the 1943/47 "Blue" International that aren't in the Scott Classics Catalogue. I would have thought the answer would be "no," but the correct answer is "one": White Russia. Making this a little more mysterious is that country is in the regular Scott catalog under its current name, Belaruss, just not the Classics volume. The reason is that the ten issues from 1920 in the "Blue" are no longer recognized. According to the catalog, these "five denominations, perf and imperf...were not put in use and were probably propaganda labels. They are common." However, Scott does recognize Belarus issues beginning in 1992 which is why these country is in the current annual catalog.
White Russia is unique in that it isn't anywhere in the catalog, including the index. However, there are countries that used to have their own entries and have since been subsumed. For example, the Carthinthia Plebiscite of Austria. In the album, Carintia has its own pages. In the Scott Classics Catalogue, it is split between Austria B11-B29 and Yugoslavia 4LB1-6.

In my next post I will look at the political entities in the Scott Classics Catalogue but not the "Blue" International.

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