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Budapest Au Revoir: Hungaria Stamp Exchange Retrospective

Bela Bauer in Budapest

Today, Alan is looking at cabinet drawings for the new Hungaria Stamp Exchange library which is currently under construction and planning for its opening Fall 2018. It becomes apparent it is now time to reflect on how did this little stamp trading club comprised of Budapest friends come this far? A brief journey back in time to Budapest in the late 1920’s finds Béla Bauer, Alan’s father, trading Hungarian postal stamps with members of his close circle of friends in Budapest. At that time, while not studying for dental school, Béla’s other hobbies include writing music and trips with friends to Lake Balaton.

Hungarian FDC sent to
Sec. BĂ©la Bauer in NYC

Béla Bauer married and moved to the United States in the early 1940’s. He arrived in New York City to start his new dental laboratory and get his family settled into his newfound homeland. He soon joined a local stamp club, Hungarian Philatelic Society, and filled the role of the secretary of the organization.

Once BĂ©la and his family moved from New York City to central New York State, he started a small part-time stamp business called the Hungaria Stamp Exchange, focusing primarily on Hungarian stamps and some Hungarian postal history.

As Béla’s young son Alan starts to be interested in stamps, Béla teaches Alan how to build his collection. Three decades followed, with Béla continuing to run the stamp business on a part-time basis and Alan taking care of collecting Hungarian stamps. By the early 1980’s Alan had put his own stamp collecting on hold and had taken over the stamp business from Béla. From that time forward, Alan, with his growing family and full-time technology consulting business also ran the stamp business part-time until the year 2000.

In 2005 the development of HSE’s website www.hungarianstamps.com by Alan’s son Andrew initiated a newfound source of interest in Hungarian stamps. Later with other ecommerce measures and a strong social media presence initiated by Andrew’s wife Stacie, the business is truly growing! Through this movement from a part-time mail order business to a full-time operation, we are delighted to receive the continued support of our existing customer base as well as adding new customers.  Our expanded customer base has clearly broadened the philatelic horizons of the Hungaria Stamp Exchange.

When HSE receives requests from several customers to source stamps from Eastern and Central European countries in addition to Hungary, we start to do so. Hungaria Stamp Exchange has since been building strong relationships with several Central European postal authorities.  Both new issues and older stamps are now maintained in a significant inventory. Hungaria Stamp Exchange is proud to currently offer stamps from the following Central and Eastern European countries through want lists and via our online store https://www.buyhungarianstamps.com/ :

  • Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Greece,
  • Hungary, Poland, Romania, Turkey
  • Baltics: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania,
  • Czechoslovakia: Slovakia and Czech Republic,
  • Yugoslavia: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Former Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia
  • Russia & Former Republics: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan

HSE is pleased to provide philatelic offerings from several “Dead countries” which include:

  • Central Lithuania, Cilicia, Crete, Danzig, Eastern Rumelia, Eastern Silesia, Epirus, Hatay, Istria, Ljubljana, Memel, Thrace and Trieste.

“Dead Countries” are sovereignties/countries which no longer exist and are now part of other countries. They have all issued their own postal stamps which have endured over time for collectors.

When some of our HSE customers reach a point in their philatelic journey when they need assistance in the evaluation and disposition of their collection, Alan moved into stamp appraisals and seller’s agent role, becoming a Qualified Philatelic Appraiser listed with the ASDA (Association of Stamp Dealers of America). Similarly, when some customers needed to add specialty items not readily found elsewhere, Alan called on his Eastern European relationships with philatelic suppliers so he could act as a buyer’s agent on behalf of selected customers.

Following along the meandering philatelic path of Hungaria Stamp Exchange, it is a logical step to bring increased emphasis to Topical stamps as the Central European postal authorities bring forth increased thematic offerings and the ATA (American Topical Association) facilitates their organization for topical collectors.  HSE is delighted to offer many beautiful cultural and historic thematic stamps of Central and Eastern Europe. Here are a select few of the many we would like to highlight from our extensive inventory.

Joint Issue: Celebrating the 300th Anniversary of the Birth of Maria Teresa

This philatelic issue was released in cooperation with Austria, Croatia, Hungary, Slovenia and Ukrainian Posts.

Maria Teresa Joint Issue

Maria Teresa Queen of the Hungarians, the Czechs and the Croatians, and Archduchess of Austria reigned from 1740 to 1780. As the wife of Francis l, Holy Roman Emperor she also had the title Empress and was the only female who reigned the Habsburg Monarch. She was an enlightened ruler, a great stateswoman and a reformer who expanded the kingdoms she ruled.  She modernized the judiciary, economy, education and military. Maria Teresa abolished torture, witch hunting and improved the position of the peasants. Maria Teresa’s lineage impacted many rulers of Europe. Of her 11 daughters and 5 sons, three became the famous rulers, including Marie Antoinette, Queen of France and kings Joseph ll and Leopold ll.

Europa 

Each year the members of the Association of European Postal Operators issue stamps from their respective countries based on a common theme which emphasizes their common roots of European history and culture. The 2018 Theme of Europa is bridges.

Thematic Stamps

The religious theme of 2017 is represented in Central European philately by the 500 Year Anniversary of the Reformation.

Reformation

In 2017 the continuation of the Saints and Blesseds magnificent issuances, issuance Saints and Blesseds commemorative honors Saint Margaret, Saint Kinga and the Blessed Yolanda. All three are the daughters of King BĂ©la IV second founder of the state who rebuilt it after it was devastated by the Mongols 1241-42. Each of their lives were influenced by the ideal of poverty.

Religious topicals for Slovakia New Issues of 2017 include: 100th Anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima Apparitions, Holidays Easter and Christmas 2017.

Most Central and Eastern European topical issues also include Sports, Famous People and National Heroes.  More recent new topical issues include social awareness  causes such as Croatia’s social awareness stamp “Autism – Living in Their Own World “ and “Say No to Hate Speech” which are truly unique issuances.

Croatia Social Awareness stamps
Synagogues and
Saints & Blessed

Cultural and Historical Travels

In 2017 Magyar Posta is celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Harvester and Parliament stamp series, which is considered a classic by philatelists.

The Hungarian Parliament building is the third largest Parliament building in the world and one of the most beautiful. 

In May 2017 Alan and his wife Diane were delighted to enjoy a trip to Hungary, viewing many historical and cultural sites depicted on Hungarian stamps and renewing relationships with friends, family and business colleagues.

Fisherman’s Bastion, Mystical Turel, Nemzeti Galeria, St. Stephen Statue & Chain Bridge
Szegedy Dom, Diane’s view of Parliament from Buda side, Budapest Opera House, Philatelists of Hungary, Enjoying a Slovakian Pub with friends Judit & Tibor, Alan & cousin Gabor

MAFITT (Hungarian Society for Philatelic Research)

During this trip, Alan had the wonderful opportunity to present his research paper in person to MAFITT (Hungarian Society for Philatelic Research) to culminate his acceptance into this prestigious international philatelic research organization.

Alan is also a member of American Philatelic Society (APS), America Stamp Dealers Association (ASDA), American Topical Association (ATA), Poland Philatelic Association (Polonus) and president of Society for Hungarian Philately (SHP).

So, what is on the future horizon for Hungaria Stamp Exchange?

An increase in community programming such as the event that was run by Alan and Diane a year ago at the Oak Bluffs Massachusetts library. The program focused on the enduring stamps of the “Dead Countries of Central Europe” and was enlivened by audience participation and interest in the ebb and flow of the borders of these countries that no longer exist.

Andrew, Stacie, Alan  & Diane, Alan & “Jenny” at World Stamp Show 2016 NYC
.

Increased participation at national and international stamp shows such as the World Stamp Show in New York City in 2016 and to begin  to develop community based intergeneration new collector development programs.

And of course, to finish the construction and fit up of the Hungaria Stamp Exchange library and office in the Fall 2018!

Most important to continue to enjoy working with all of our philatelic  customers and to hear of your  philatelic journey.

Fanciful Flights & Hungarian Airmail Vision of Vic Berecz

Hello Friends and Philatelic Collectors,

Here in New England we are welcoming summer with our first heat wave of the season. So, what better time to take a pause and share some of our recent events and conversations.

In May, after Alan presided over the annual meeting of the Society for Hungarian Philately, the Hungaria Stamp Exchange team had the privilege of hosting a scrumptious Eastern European dinner for members of the Society for Hungarian Philately at the Cardinal Spellman Stamp Museum in Weston, Massachusetts. The staff of the Museum kindly offered  their community room for the meeting and dinner as well as displaying many frames of their extensive Hungarian collection. The collection even includes a rare Inverted Madonna! Equally amazing was the special exhibit of the US Inverted Jenny that was open at the same time.

Thank you to Joe, Jeff & George for sharing their wonderful Museum with us.

The Philatelic Journey of Vic Berecz

Before the start of these festivities, Stacie and Diane had the privilege of interviewing Vic Berecz, an icon of Hungarian philately and one of the founders of the Society for Hungarian Philately. We are delighted to share with you here, highlights of Vic’s view on his specialty The Pioneer Period of Hungarian Airmails, his vision for the creation of the Society for Hungarian Philately and advice for collectors starting their philatelic journey.

Continue reading “Fanciful Flights & Hungarian Airmail Vision of Vic Berecz”

Greetings for the New Year 2018

Dear Friends and Philatelic Collectors,

2017 was such a special year for us at the Hungaria Stamp Exchange. We thank all of our existing customers who have supported us for so many years, colleagues and friends for making 2017 an amazing year for us at the Hungaria Stamp Exchange. And we welcome all our new customers and colleagues joining us at the start of 2018!

On a personal note, Alan and Diane had the fantastic opportunity to travel to Hungary in the late spring to visit with family, friends and colleagues in Budapest and Szeged. Culminating the trip was Alan’s presentation to MAFITT. If you happened to miss that blogpost highlighting the trip here are a few photos to enjoy.

Scenes from Budapest

In November our family celebrated the happy occasion of Andrew and Stacie’s wedding at the New England Aquarium in Boston. It was such a beautiful event that we were able to celebrate together.

All good wishes from our family to yours for a Healthy and Peaceful 2018!

The Bauer Family,

Alan, Diane, Andrew, Stacie and Diana

Moving on to the Philatelic portion of our newsletter, Hungaria Stamp Exchange is pleased to offer 2017 New Issues from Hungary, Kosovo, Croatia, Bulgaria, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. We have highlighted the themes and images of these New Issues here for you and are sure they will be enjoyed by country and topical collectors alike.

Finally, for those of you that enjoy browsing in our online store we hope you will check out our expanded Topical Philatelic Collections which now includes a delightful Holiday Philatelic Collection from many Eastern European countries and a fantastic Landmarks Collection. In honor of the 20th memorial anniversary of Princess Diana we are pleased to launch the HSE Princess Diana Collection.

The 2017 Europa Stamp Theme is Castles

Each year the members of the Association of European Postal Operators issue stamps from their respective countries  based on a common theme which emphasizes their common roots of European history and culture.
The castles depicted on the Hungarian release are the Andrassy castle in Tiszadob and the Nadasdy Castle in Nadasdiadany. Kosovo Europa depicts the Castle of Prizren, located above the old city of Prizren that has special scientific, environmental and tourist value. It was inhabited from Prehistoric time until the time of the Ottoman Empire.

Europa Collection includes  Castles of Hungary, Croatia, Kosovo, Moldova, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovenia, Ukraine, and more.

Joint Issue Celebrating the 300th Anniversary of the Birth Of Maria Teresa

This philatelic issue has been released in cooperation with Austria, Croatia, Hungary, Slovenia and Ukrainian Posts. Maria Teresa Queen of the Hungarians, the Czechs and the Croatians, and Archduchess of Austria reigned from 1740 to 1780. As the wife of Francis l, Holy Roman Emperor she also had the title Empress and was the only female who reigned the Habsburg Monarch. She was considered regarded as an enlightened ruler, a great stateswoman and a reformer who also extended the kingdoms she ruled. She also sought modernization and formulated reforms in the judiciary, economy, education and military.  Maria Teresa abolished torture and witch hunting and improved the position of the peasants.  In her legacy, Maria Teresa’s lineage impacted many rulers of Europe. Of her 11 daughters and 5 sons three became the famous rulers, including Marie Antoinette, Queen of France and kings Joseph ll and Leopold ll.

 

New Issues of Kosovo

The 2017 Issues are truly eclectic and exciting with philatelic offerings ranging from Cities of Kosovo, Folk Costumes of Medvegja, Famous People and Heroes, Domestic Animals and native plants, Supporting Breastfeeding

 

to the fourth Century Baptismal pools of early Christianity in ancient Ulpiana and the 500 year anniversary of the Reformation.

 

For the more adventuresome the year set includes a stamp celebrating “High Diving from the Fshejte Bridge”. This very popular water sport in Kosovo is returning after a three year hiatus. The sport is held on the bridge which is 20 meters (65 feet) above the River Drini.

 

New Issues of Croatia

These continue to be truly wide ranging and artistically distinctive. The stamps range from the commemoration of traditional holidays of Christmas, Easter and Valentine’s Day to the War of Independence: Puma Brigade to the 25th Anniversary of the Accession of the Republic of Croatia to the United Nations. The social awareness stamp Autism-Living in Their Own World is a truly unique issuance.

Other issues include famous Croats: Zinka Kunc Milanov soprano and renown  opera
performer, Frank Supilo politician and journalist and Faust Vrancic mathematician, inventor, linguist; as well as Flora and Fauna,  Children’s stamps and Bridge Across the Lika River and the 100th Anniversary of the Premiere of the first Croatian Motion Picture.

 

New Issues of Hungary

Hungaria Stamp Exchange is delighted to offer the fabulous 2017 new issues of Hungary as complete year sets both mint and pre-cancelled, with supplements or as individual stamps and specialty commemorative booklets. We are sure Country collectors as well as Topical collectors will appreciate the depth of topics ranging from celebrations of flora and fauna, traditional holidays of Easter and Christmas to celebrations of the birth of fine artist, cinematic artist and director, writer, composer and mathematician.  There is memorial stamp in memory of the Gulag Gupti Victims, Hungarians imprisoned by the Soviets at the end of World War II and sent to forced labor. Postal commemoratives are well represented in this year’s issuances. In addition to the 90th Stamp Day, there are stamps celebrating Magyar Posta being 150 years old, a Definitive Stamps series and a joint issue with Austria celebrating the first Hungarian postage stamp.

The religious theme is represented by the 500 Year Anniversary of the Reformation, Saint Ladislaus 940th ascension to the throne of Hungary, and the series of stamps presenting the synagogues of Hungary. The 2017 set of two stamps shows the altar and details of the interior of the synagogues in Győr and Pécs.

 

Also there is a continuation of the Saints and Blesseds magnificent issuances. This year the Saints and Blesseds commemorative honors Saint Margaret, Saint Kinga and the Blessed Yolanda. All three are the daughters of King Bela IV second founder of the state who rebuilt it after it was devastated by the Mongols 1241-42. Each of their lives were influenced by the ideal of poverty prevalent at the time.


Sports issuances include a celebration of the efforts of Florian Albert when he won the Ballon D’Or 50 years ago as well as the stamp celebrating the honor of hosting the World Aquatics Championship (FINA) held in Budapest-Baltonfured 2017.  We were so excited to have had the opportunity to visit this amazing aquatics center during our May trip to Budapest!

And to those collectors that enjoy art stamps, the stamp features the painting Nagybanya Landscape with the Gutin Mountains by Béla Iványi Grünwald. Grünwald who was a leading Hungarian artist of the late 19th and early 20th century and was influential in the Plein-Aire movement at Nagybanya artist colony and later as a leader in Kecskemet.

 

New Issues of Slovakia

Hungaria Stamp Exchange is delighted to offer the complete Year Set of Slovakia in a lovely presentation booklet or as exquisite individual stamps that are of interest to country as well as topical collectors.

Topicals for Slovakia New Issues of 2017 include: 100th Anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima Apparitions, Holidays Easter and Christmas 2017, Tribute to Victims of the Holocaust, Famous People: 19th Century Writer Jozef Miloslav Hurban and Andrej RadlinskĂ˝, Tribute to Technical Monument Orava Dam and the 25th Anniversary of Art Film Festival.

Princess Diana Topical Collection from Hungaria Stamp Exchange

We are delighted to share some of our enchanting images of one of the most beloved princesses in European history. We hope you will enjoy viewing them as much as we do. See more of the Diana, Princess of Wales Collection in our online store.

Each of us at the Hungaria Stamp Exchange hope you enjoy viewing this sample of some of the most fascinating and exciting Eastern European new issues of 2017. As always we continue to enjoy making these and many other offerings available to you and look forward to hearing from you during the new year!

Riding in the Pan-Mass Challenge 2017!

Alan will be riding in the Pan-Mass Challenge (PMC) for his 15th year!

🚴 The PMC is an annual charity cycling event held to raise money for the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Dana Farber is a a world-leading cancer research and treatment center in Boston, MA. 100% of every rider-raised dollar goes directly towards research, in the form of an unrestricted grant.

đźš´ A portion of online orders at HSE will be donated to the PMC from today, July 25th to Sunday, August 13th.

🚴 Below is a link to donate directly and support Alan’s ride. The rides take place on August 4th & 5th but you can donate until late October

http://profile.pmc.org/AB0109 Continue reading “Riding in the Pan-Mass Challenge 2017!”

Budapest Travels 2017

Heading off to Budapest

The sun is sliding down the horizon at Logan airport, Boston USA, as we, Alan and Diane, wait for the Lufthansa plane which we will board to start our journey. We will travel  to Frankfurt, Germany and then on to Budapest, Hungary.

We look forward to an invigorating ten days spending time catching up with friends, colleagues, and family members. Alan will present his research paper in person at the MAFITT (Hungarian Society for Philatelic Research) meeting in Budapest on Saturday and then he plans to spend time browsing local stamp shops. We are very pleased to be meeting with representatives of Magyar Posta regarding our expanding business relationship and the artist stamp proposal. We also plan to meet with both an internationally recognized art historian and an art curator. Between all that, we look forward to enjoying tasty meals at local bistros and cafes, doing some sightseeing, and visiting with family and friends.

Continue reading “Budapest Travels 2017”

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