Category Archives: Memorials

Evelyn Bryan, 1920—2017: A Very Special Person Closes Her Album

Editor’s Note: Every stamp club has that special person who serves the hobby and her club tirelessly for many years. Her dear friend Nancy Swan sent the following to the Council Courier.

The Southern Oregon Philatelic Society is mourning and remembering our long-time cachet cover designer and chair Evelyn Bryan who passed away Thursday, August 3 at the age of 97.

Despite her failing health, Evelyn had already been planning the covers for SOPEX 2018. She will be missed for her cheery attitude, years of faithful service, artistic ability, kindness, uncomplaining determination, and community involvement.

Evelyn came to the Rogue Valley as a child and was raised in Jacksonville. She and her husband Don celebrated their 70th-anniversary last fall and were honored with a special cake at our club’s Christmas dinner. They joined the stamp club in 1968 to keep their recently drafted son apprised of stamp happenings! (He is now our longest term member.)

For years Evelyn coordinated the stamp club’s Christmas Party, and the Bryans hosted the S.O.P.S. July picnic under their shady trees. Evelyn also worked with the Cub Scouts and our club’s youth on stamp collecting. She became the club historian for years.

In 1970 Evelyn began designing the Pear Blossom Festival cachet covers. She was our club’s representative to the Pear Blossom Committee providing the liaison for our SOPEX as a Pear Blossom Event. Each year she designed the cachet covers and arranged with the post office for special postmarks. Evie’s “pear people” drawings cleverly depicted each year’s theme.

Evelyn also made special cakes and designed cachet covers for philatelic related community events such as the Jacksonville Post Office birthday, Central Point post office building dedication, the Applegate Trail Centennial, Wings Over Oregon – the anniversary of Oregon’s first airmail flight (from Medford), and the 2001 Anniversary of Commercial Air Mail through Medford’s Airport. When PIPEX was held in Medford in 1974, Evelyn designed three different cachets celebrating the area’s historical, artistic and scenic attributes. This grew into annual S.O.P.S. cachet covers, the “Southern Oregon Historical Series,” honoring some of the region’s special features.

In 1982, Evelyn was honored as a “club spark plug” in Western Stamp Collector, and in 2006 she received a Federation Club Service Award. The club’s cachet cover trophy is named in her honor. Evelyn represented the “heart of the hobby,” encouraging collector fellowship, youth service, club service, and community recognition of stamp collecting!

Jim Bryan is currently designing a cachet cover to honor his mom. She will be missed by many.

Joy is a Wonderful Legacy

joy-collectionThree incidents in the past few months have put a new focus on my philately. All are about older collections, collections that have been passed from the hands of the original collector to other collectors who are still older than the youth generation of today. There is much to be noted.

My aunt, the one who got me started collecting 60 years ago, is in poor health in Eugene, Oregon, and I have her collection as the only one who was interested. Sad. As I went through her collection, the pages and folders brought smiles and misty eyes. Smiles for the memories and for the things my aunt had put away. Tears for the memories and for the fact that I had never gone through her albums with her, never gotten to hear the excitement she had about certain items. There were envelopes with her kids’ names on them and one or two with mine or my sister’s. There were family photos interspersed, put there by my cousin who sorted things into boxes. These brought more smiles and misty eyes.

The other collection was shown to me by a man who had his father’s collection that had sat for many years well protected, but in a garage. The son assumed that the father was moving stamps from old albums and folders to a new set of worldwide albums from the 80’s. There were smiles and tears there too, and he recognized that in some things he wanted to keep. The father never got the transfer completed, but it was clear he enjoyed his stamps and cared for them, but he never got the reorganization of his beloved stamps done.

The third collection was Barbara Herbert’s, the CNCPS Vice-President who died in March. A friend bought part of it. We knew Barbara as enthusiastic, careful, caring and cheerful, but from buying her New Guinea, Brad Fritts also learned that she was studious, knowledgeable, meticulous and curious. He appreciated her more after seeing how and how excitedly she collected.

These three incidents show the essence of the hobby — the smiles, the happy hours organizing and the joy of searching, of finding and of mounting of each stamp. It is not the monetary value that is the value; it is the enthusiasm. My aunt sent me FDCs of US stamps with personal notes. What pre-teen kid didn’t like getting his own mail

Her messages were about how neat the new stamp was or how interesting the subject. It was decades later that I realized she had only seen a black-and-white newsprint in the preissue publicity. How bright and colorful the stamp she knew not, but I grew bright and colorful and interested in the stamps from her notes.

Both of the general collections contained FDCs, sparsely filled album pages except for German inflation issues and US mint stamps. These are philatelic items we do not monetarily value now. My aunt’s also included post cards I had sent her and my uncle from South America fifty years ago and even more recently. There were other post cards from other relatives and a few things I imagined her mother, my grandmother, helped her save. Barbara’s included write-ups, articles and covers, which do have monetarily value now. Hers and my aunt’s went to people who value stamp collecting.

We know the joy this older generation felt. We know the fun and excitement of collecting, and even if this joy is well protected in bins, in closets or in garages, we share our enthusiasm with others through stamp clubs and stamp shows. We will share it with even more others – younger and enthusiastic. Just give us the opportunity.

In Memory of Bob Rawlins – 1926-2015

capt.rawlinsThe above one-of-a-kind hand-painted cachet by Budd Arrington honors Bob Rawlins.
The cover appears as the lead in the April issue of CoverAge, the newsletter of the USCS USS Saginaw Chapter . Bob passed away on March 30. He was very active in local shows and local philately as well as a national medal winner.

Bob was an avid exhibitor, with collections as far afield as 19th Century Navy mail, rocket mail, submarine mail, polar exploration, the sinking of the USS Maine, and ship cancellations and cachets. He could always be counted on to help a local show find exhibits, to freely share his historical knowledge in his areas of interest.

Bob spent his lifetime in service to others, from graduation from the Naval Academy in 1947, to his many volunteer activities since his retirement from the Navy in 1977. He served the Universal Ship Cancellation Society local chapter in various leadership positions from 1977 until the day before he passed away. For the past 20 years until his death, Bob was also an active volunteer at the Healdsburg Museum. He will be missed by many.