FDC Förteckning 1928-2001 (First Day Cover Catalog) by Magnus Gyllenspetz, both print (800 pages) and CD-ROM versions, Atlas Häftes AB, Lund, Sweden, 2002. Approximately $95 for CD, $140 black and white print, or $440 color print, plus postage from the publisher at Box 4185, 22722 Lund, Sweden. Get specific pricing by contacting stampscovers@atlashaftes.se

 

            This is the first detailed catalog of first day covers of Sweden that I have seen. The author has compiled a significant listing of the FDCs of this country from 1928 through 2001. The only version I have seen is the CD format, which is well illustrated in color, showing cachets, special cancels where they apply, and mentions varieties of the stamps (tagging, printing flaws, double impressions, etc.), and enclosures such as government stuffers with text about the stamp issue.

The introductory pages are quite detailed. These include a list of abbreviations used in the catalog and a brief bibliography. Among the subjects that receive special attention are the use of labels for registered and express mail, autographs on FDCs, arrival cancels, unofficial cancels, predates, and censor markings. These are pointed out as adding to the postal history aspect of the covers.

Standard cachets used in Sweden either by cachet maker or the postal service are identified, the Swedish postal service cancellations are shown with their known varieties, and the use of certain singles, pairs, and blocks are described with respect to perforation combinations for stamps that come from booklet panes.

Credit is given to George Linn for the first cachet in the United States for the Harding Memorial issue. The earliest Swedish cachet, also consisting of text only, dates from 1928. Sweden’s postal service did use special cachets for a few years from 1945 on, and then took over official use of cachets beginning in 1984. By 1986 privately printed cachets were gone.

The main listing of FDCs proceeds chronologically from 1928 through 2001. This catalog is an amazing study of Sweden's first day covers and touches on those aspects of collectability that are followed in the United States. It should set an example for others to document the FDCs of their own countries. Looking at the pricing aspect of the CD-ROM format vs. the print versions reinforces the utility and lower expense of the electronic medium.

 

Alan Warren