My Comments & Publisher

Cancellations Found on 19th Century US Stamps

Kenneth Whitfield

This is the newest book on Fancy Cancels. It is the tracing complied by Mr Whitfield. The book is edited by Roger Curran for the US Cancellation Club. If you are reading this you should join.

19th Century Fancy Cancels, 1963 Redbook and 1972 as Billig Handbook Vol 33 - 1972 has updated prices.

Herst and Sampson

One of these (preferably the newer 1972 Billig's) would serve as a starter for a Fancy Cancel collector. Covers many a wide range of stamps and cancels. He used a value system of A - J and gave dollar values from $1 to $200+ (1960s and 1970s but still good for reference).

Cancellations of the Banknote Era 1870-1894

James Cole

US Classics Society (still in print $50). The current best reference on banknote era items.

United States Cancellations 1845-1869

Skinner and Eno

Still the only reference on early cancels and huge and wonderful work. Unfortunately, no indications of rarity or value. APS Handbook 1980 (out of print but still available from various stamp book dealers).

The Foreign Mail Cancellations of New York City 1870 - 1878

William Weiss

The latest and best in a series of books on this subject. My only minor complaint is that he rates rarity by C(ommon), S(carce) and R(are) and I'd like more guidance.

US Cancels 1890-1900, 1985


Sol Salkind

Don't use this one much - hard to follow and no values. Lots of pictures, but they're not great.

United States Postal Markings and Related Mail Services 1851 to 1861

Tracy Simpson

US Classics Society 1979. Old. out of print but still has some interesting information. Not really replaced by the one below.

Simpson's US Postal Markings 1851-61

Thomas Alexander

Coffee table book. Pretty, but I don't use it much. Hard to navigate. Does list rarity factors.

Cyclopedia of Postmarks and Postal History


1933 & 35 - I have Quarterman reprint of 1975. Vol 1 typewriter type set - Vol 2 typeset. Long out of print still of some use - interesting, but not needed.

Chicago Blue Markings 1870 - 1877


Very detailed listing of the Chicago Blue cancels with rarity factors. I don't use this much, but I'm not that interest in Chicago Blues.

The Two Cent Red Brown of 1883 -1887

Edward Willard

One of the most detailed book I've ever seen on a single stamp. Second volume is about cancels. Useful, but no indication of rarity (cancels) and hard to follow organization.

Pat's Paragraphs

Elliot Perry

Compilation of the ranting of Elliot Perry a noted stamp dealer. Much useful and reasonably amusing. 1981 BIA

Postmarks on Postcards

Richard Helbock

Just got this available from  Jim Lee. Lot's of very useful information on cancels not just postcards. Published 2002.

Billig's Handbook on Postmarks Vol 8

HK Thompson

This is the basic book on Doanes cancel - there are newer versions -this is the one I happen to own

Postal History and Usage of 1907 and Earlier Precancels

Charles C Souder

1989 but still useful - prices in $

A Collector's Guide to US Machine Postmarks 1871-1925

Russel Hamner

He claims this is the new Herst-Sampson, I don't find it near as useful as the old one. Mostly postmarks - no values for Fancy Cancels.

A Guide to 19th Century US Postmarks and Cancellations

Kenneth Gillman

He claims this is the new Herst-Sampson, I don't find it near as useful as the old one. Mostly postmarks - no values for Fancy Cancels.

The Postal History of Vermont

Slawson, Bingham & Drenan

1969 - moderately useful for cancels. I found it in an old book store in Newport years ago.

Postal Markings

Harry Konweiser

1980 reprint of many years of his columns -  interesting - more postal history then cancels. No pictures.

Letters of Gold

Jesse Coburn

Beautiful book - only moderately useful for cancels. Postal history of the gold rush.

The Waterbury Cancels


The definitive book on the subject - out of print for quite a few years

Many of these books are available on eBay or from stamp book dealers   One of the very reliable ones is  James E. Lee P.O. Box 36 Cary IL 60013-0036

© Mr Fancy Cancel, 143 William St, South River, NJ 08882    732-613-8093