This page last updated: 30 November 2012


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* Meyer, Henry A., and Harris, Rear Adm. Frederic R., et al., Hawaii, Its Stamps and Postal History, The Philatelic Foundation, New York, 1948. The standard reference work on Hawaiian philately. Although important research discoveries since this book was published render some of the material out of date, any serious student of Hawaiian philately needs to invest in this book. It is out of print but can be picked up at auction for about $150 if in good condition. Admiral Harris was one of the great collectors of the first half of the 20th Century. Following his death, the auction of his collection by Harmer Rooke & Co. (auctions numbered 776, April 27, 1954 and No. 793, October 4, 1954) brought world-wide attention to Hawaiian stamps and postal history.

* Richards, Charles F., A Checklist of the Stamps of Hawaii - And More, published by author, New York, 1916; reprinted in part at Po'Oleka O Hawaii, No. 43, p. 2-7, April, 1986; No. 44, p. 1-16, July, 1986; No. 45, p. 13, Oct., 1986. Also, Additions To A Checklist Of The Stamps of Hawaii-And More, published by author, Linprint, Inc., Columbus, Ohio, 1938. Together, a key reference work by the preeminent dealer of Hawaiian stamps from about 1910 to about 1940. Watch for these books in auction.

* D'Assis, Joe, the I.D.C., An Informative and Descriptive Catalogue Of Hawaii Stamps and Related Issues, published by author, San Leandro, 1988, with periodic page revisions to February, 2000. An excellent and comprehensive list of each issue and varieties. The author attempts to assign a rarity factor to varieties; the final page is a chronological listing of stamps and related issues; at pp. 3-6 there is a detailed explanation of the unique numbering system used in the catalogue; the preface lists other collectors and dealers who collaborated and a bibliography. D'Assis himself built a considerable collection of Numerals and Provisional Government Overprints and worked closely with the leading collectors of the latter half of the 20th Century. This book thus captures some of the significant research discoveries since Meyer and Harris was published. Postal history is not addressed in this catalogue. The catalogue is out-of-print but might be found in auction catalogues. Be careful to obtain a volume with the latest updates. Each page has a date at the bottom right corner to show when it was last updated (e.g. 9/83 on page 99 or 2/00 on page 55). To my knowledge, no comprehensive list exists showing when each page was last updated - a good project for someone.

* Brazer, Clarence W., "The E-P Society Catalogue of Essays and Proofs", The Essay Proof Journal, Vol. 6, No. 3 [23], p. 161-170, July, 1949; Vol. 9, No. 2 [34], p. 113-115, April, 1952. Detailed listing of Hawaiian proofs; essential reference for proof collectors. Brazer was the leading dealer in proofs of United States stamps and included Hawaii within his area of expertise. He contributed frequently to the Essay Proof Journal and other articles shed light on the names and skills of various engravers employed by the National Bank Note Company and American Bank Note Company, including some of the people who engraved stamps for Hawaii. Members of the American Philatelic Research Library (APRL) can borrow the Essay Proof Journal from that source. Members of The Collectors Club, New York, can borrow it from that source.

* Gregory, Fred F., Hawaii Postal History to 1870, The Philatelic Foundation, New York, 2012. This three volume book explains foreign mail postal history rates, routes and means of transportation from the start of foreign mail sent to or from Hawaii to the end of the Treaty Period on July 1, 1870. The book illustrates all postal markings, gives the latest census data on key covers and provides the most comprehensive list to date of vessel arrivals and departures at Hawaii from 1800 to 1870.

Auction catalogues to secure include:

* The Honolulu Advertiser Collection, Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries, auction number 769, November 7-8, 1995, three volumes. Certainly the most amazing collection ever assembled. The Advertiser Collection was formed from key parts of earlier collections by Henry J. Crocker, Frank Atherton, A. H. Caspary, Admiral Harris, George Worthington, Jno. Seybold, Al Ostheimer, Thurston Twigg-Smith and others. It is easier to count the key pieces that were not part of this collection than to count those that were. The auction catalogue does a magnificent job with the Missionary, Boston Engraving and Numeral Issues as well as with the postal history to 1870 and contains several important articles in these areas. Treatment of the later issues and later postal history is sometimes disappointing.

* The Charles J. Pietsch III Collection of Important Hawaiian Stamps and Postal History, Shreves Philatelic Galleries, Inc., September 27-28, 1996. Pietsch created a significant collection containing a number of the key pieces missing from the Advertiser Collection. The auction catalogue contains some important articles.

* Hawaii Collection Assembled by the Late Frederic R. Harris, Rear Admiral, U.S.N., Harmer, Rooke & Co. Inc. April 27, 1954 and October 4-5, 1954. In terms of the stamps and covers offered and illustrated, the catalogues of these two sales are key resources.

* The Thurston Twigg-Smith Collection of Hawaiian Stamps and Postal History, Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries, Sale 931, March 6 – 7, 2007. “Twigg,” as publisher of The Honolulu Advertiser offered The Advertiser collection for sale in the 1995 auction listed above. This sale was of his outstanding personal collection of Hawaii.

* The David Golden Collection of Hawaiian Stamps and Postal History, Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries, Sale 1009, May 24-26, 2011. The Golden collection was the most significant offering of stamps and postal history since The Advertiser Sale in 1995. This collection contained items never previously offered at public sale and many other key items that were owned by Mr. Golden for fifty years or more.

Other auctions of important Hawaii collections include:

  • The Ishikawa Collection, Sotheby Parke Bernet Auction Co., Inc., November 18, 1980. This catalogue is devoted to Ishikawa's Hawaii collection, which was considerable.

  • Ferrars H. Tows Collection of Hawaii, Carl E. Pelander, October 7-9, 1948.

  • Maurice Burrus Hawaii, H. R. Harmer, Inc., May 27, 1962.

  • The Christian H. Aall Collection of Hawaii Stamps and Covers, Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries, sale 805, November 11-12, 1998.

  • The Dr. Gilbert N. Plass Collection Of United States Possessions, Ivy, Shreve & Mader, July 10, 1993.

  • The "Champion" Collection of Hawaiian Postal History, Shreves Philatelic Auction Galleries, Inc., June 6, 1997.

  • The Alfred H. Caspary Collection, Sale 10, H. R. Harmer, Inc., October 8-9, 1957.

  • Guido Craveri/Harmers Auctions SA, Hawaiian Missionaries, June 4, 1994, reportedly a sale of Hawaiian Missionaries from the David Golden collection.

  • The “Laila” Collection of Hawaii and United States Possessions, Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries, Sale 974, June 16, 2009.

  • The Floyd E. Risvold Collection, Spink Shreves Galleries New York, January 27-29, 2010 (three volumes).

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