In September 1929, a man from New York selling office supplies went into the Andres Co. department store in Evansville and asked if a local stamp club existed. The query apparently led two local men, Arthur Romerhaus and Henry Meyer, to publish an article in the Evansville Courier asking anyone interested in stamp collecting to come to the store.
Romerhaus and Meyer, a schoolteacher with a vast collection of Hawaiian stamps, were joined by seven others at a meeting. The Evansville Stamp Club became official on Oct. 2, 1929, and it’s still going strong 94 years later.
The club is preparing for its 91st Annual Stamp & Postcard Show Oct. 21-22, at Reed’s Auction Barn, 10233 IN-662 in Newburgh, Indiana. The free show will feature exhibits and dealers, an auction of used and unused stamps, the club’s first-ever silent auction, and door prizes.
“We encourage people to come to our show to meet interesting people, talk to other stamp collectors, learn some history, see some beautiful and interesting stamps, learn a new hobby, buy some stamps, and most of all, to have a fun experience,” says Guy Sides, the club secretary.
Sides started collecting in his youth and takes a special interest in Machin stamps, used in the United Kingdom. Others, such as club president Zach Lottes, have less-specific collections. Lottes got his first stamps in the fourth grade, and he enjoys bidding on stamps that catch his eye at auctions.
“It’s interesting, and it’s history,” Lottes says.
The club is always open to new members, says Sides, who is retired from Bristol Myers.
“Stamps are just small pieces of paper, but they carry so much with them,” he says. “They are windows into culture, history, geography, and current events and these topics are discussed at our meetings.”