by Alex Weiss
In the early 1950’s I was a young collector and wanted to have all the new issue stamps from the British Empire. My father collected this area and I wanted to be just like him. I recall wandering down to Nassau Street in lower Manhattan and seeing all the new issue stamps in the store windows. Frank Warner was my favorite shop and inside Frank had small black books with samples of every stamp that he had in those massive drawers behind and underneath the counter.
Alex Krauss had City Hall Stamp Shop and he always had the latest stamps at the lowest prices. However, he frequently ran out of stock. So he would go over to 116 Nassau Street and replenish his inventory from Fatoullah and Lazar, the main wholesaler on the street and the owner of that famous stamp building.
Francis Parker was running Tribune Stamp Company in those days but there was no store. He ran a mail order business out of a suite of medical offices on the upper west side. He and his wife Marianne were very solitary. I would call them, but they would never let me come to their of buy new issue stamps.
Jack Rubin was a new issue dealer in Queens. He and his wife ran a very nice new issue service. Later they sold to Herrick Stamp Company of Lawrence out on Long Island. There were other new issue dealers scattered around the New York area and trade was brisk. I would say there were almost fifty different new issue dealers active at the time.
Perhaps the most famous of this era were J & H Stolow and Gimbels department store. Julius Stolow ran the New York office and his brother Harry was in Germany. Julius had been a behind the lines OSS operative in WWII and he had plenty of contacts and energy. With the assistance of Finbar Kenney he built the commanding retail and wholesale new issue firm. Like many others, it is no longer in existence. It too was sold to Herrick Stamp Company of Lawrence New York.
Jacques Minkus ran Gimbels stamp department and along with Julius Stolow and Manfred Lehman of IGPC introduced the idea of Philatelic Agencies into the USA. Minkus was an ardent Zionist and brought the stamps of Israel to the market in 1948 as their official agent. Later he added China, Germany and a number of other countries. But Israel was always his philatelic love. He and his wife Mary were pioneers in philatelic promotions and eventually he had his own magazine and stamp album line.
Upon retirement both the Stolow and Minkus new issue businesses were sold to Herrick Stamp Company. Herrick remains today the dominant player in the new issue stamp field. Founded in 1946 by Arthur and Dorothy Herzig, Herrick also operates under the trade name of Tribune Stamp Company New issue stamp dealing is not as popular as it was in the 1950’s. There are more stamps and fewer collectors. But the Internet saved new issue stamp collecting. There are just not enough customers in the New York or any other metropolitan area to support a number of new issue stamp dealers today. Only through world wide Internet stamp offers of new issues can enough people be reached to get a critical mass where a dealer can have the following to offer all of the stamps at affordable prices for collectors.
Herrick Stamp Company has the most comprehensive website at www.herrickstamp.com . Other new issue dealers can be found through a Google search. Post Office links for buying new stamps can be seen at www.Interpostusa.com