Monday, May 15, 2017

Jim's Big Blue Checklist

I have been out of pocket for some weeks but that is little excuse for not finding a way to acknowledge earlier Jim Jackson's completion of his checklist for the Scott International Volume One. At one time I considered doing a checklist, and I hesitate to think how inferior it would have been to Jim's. Because as all of you know, the checklist is only a small part of the historical and philatelical (is that a word?) commentary that Jim researched for each country in the Big Blue. For the record, here is a link to Jim's "completion" post which includes links to a variety of files conflating the checklist:

The completion of Zululand, fortunately, does not mean the end of his blog. I know we all look forward to what Jim will post next.


Jim said...

And the occasion should not slip into the past without acknowledgement that Filling Spaces was my inspiration (literally!) and Bob was my mentor throughout the journey.

As I said on my blog post..

" And thanks specifically to Bob of "Filling Spaces" blog fame, who gave me the Big Blue checklist idea,.... Bob, look what you caused! "

A task is a lot more fun if it is shared by a fellow sojourner traveling roughly the same path.

And I look forward to Bob's insightful and clever postings to come!

DrewM said...

Both of these blogs are great. I visit Filling Spaces and Big Blue often, and both of you guys do a great job. The only way you could improve these blogs is if you'd post more often. So, could you curtail most of the rest of your life, please?

For sure, Jim's "Big Blue" (a great name I'm now using for the Scott International) with his comments about the stamps as well as the countries is one of the best things for worldwide stamp collecting since the internet. It's a great guide to what stamps fit in that album and what don't, as well as to the general oddities and limitations of the Scott International album.

It's hard to believe that album first appeared in the final decades of the 19th century. Who still listens to ragtime anymore? This was before the invention of the automobile, the car, and the internet, about the time the light bulb and phonograph "came out". Somewhere way back then, in New York City, in an office up the stairs at Scott Publications, a couple of guys in starched collars and spats were making all these album layout decisions -- page by page -- that created Big Blue for good or bad as the classic, quality worldwide album we have today. They had not the slightest idea their album would still be in print more than 125 years later. What else from back then is still in use? The lightbulb. Nor did they realize how many of the stamps they decided not to include would upset Collectors of the Future.

Scott's original layout staff: "In this set from the Bosgornian Republic, I've never seen either the blue or the yellow. Let's just leave them out. And no one wants overprints! By the way, how 'bout them Yankees?"

Collector of the Future 125 years later: "Why in the world did they leave out the common blue 3 pence and the yellow 5 groschen? They included all the rest of the damn set up to the 10 florin mauve with pink no one can seem to find! And what gives with not a single overprint? But, how about them Yankees?"

The collected posts volume -- which I'll print out once I have a big enough ink cartridge -- is a great guide.

As someone "might" have said, "An album of a thousand pages begins with a single country. That country is Aden. It used to be Abyssinia. But it's in the E's now." Not to mention in the last 50 years or so, there's about a million more completely unnecessary Elvis, Madonna, and cats stamps than any person could ever possibly collect in a lifetime. Could we get that under control, please? That fact is one of the major motivations for identifying a "classic era" of stamps and focusing collecting on it.

Thanks for all the work to both of you guys. Keep the posts coming. If you could just skip a few more hours of sleep, that would be fine.