Henry Scheuer was our speaker for October, on “Pre-1920 U.S. First Day Covers.” As a recognized expert on first day covers, Henry gave us both an overview of this field of cover collecting and much detail regarding some of the specific items in his talk.
He first reviewed the terminology such as “designated first day of issue”, “first day of sale”, “earliest documented use (EDU)” and “pre-dates.” He then discussed the many challenges in this area, particularly when EDU dates change over time.
Much of his talk centered on the three Jamestown issues, with illustrated examples of their FDCs and EDUs. In particular, he described how he purchased a purported second day of use cover for the two cent Jamestown which, after some research, was determined to be a first day cover! He also showed several examples of the one cent Jamestown on various post cards. Henry pointed out the strong need for expertization with any of these rare items.