Buffalo Cinderellas by Rick Barrett

Discussion in 'United States Stamps' started by Molokai, Mar 7, 2020.

  1. Molokai

    Molokai Moderator Moderator

    Buffalo Cinderellas by Rick Barrett. Rick Barrett Publishing, 2018. Over-sized hardback, 134 pages plus 31 page appendix. Quality paper, lavishly illustrated! Possibly a POD book.

    The subject of this book is the cinderella stamp issues of the Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. In fact, it is also the story of the two people involved in creating the cinderellas and the turn-of-the-century times.

    The book is similar to the genre created by David Edmonds and John Eidinow in Bobby Fischer Goes to War, Rosseau’s Dog and Wittgenstein’s Poker. That is, taking a specific event and weaving a tale of the times and the people involved.

    I found all of those books fascinating and very likewise Buffalo Cinderellas.

    The author's website - buffalocinderellas.com lists the book at $49.99 and a Limited Edition for $99.99. Considering the work that went into it, the quality of the production and the incredible illustrations, well worth the price, IMHO. I have a hunch these volumes will sell for higher prices down the road. If you collect U.S. cinderellas, especially from exhibitions, have an interest in United States stamp history and/or biographies you will enjoy Buffalo Cinderellas!

    The numerous visuals include color and black & white photos, pictures, illustrations, newspaper clippings, etc. The 31-page appendix offers color photos of all the Pan American cinderella material. Wow!

    An incredible amount of research went into this work! Even though very detailed, the book was something of a page-turner for me, though I had to often stop to ponder and enjoy the visuals.

    The back cover summarizes things nicely:

    “The electrifying 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, New York offered a spirited message of hope and possibility. Over eight million people flocked to the spectacular Pan Am and there were substantial possibilities for businessmen to profit.

    “Two very different people did so by creating souvenir ‘cinderella’ stamps for the event. One was a reputable man who sold over four million Expo stamps and became a respected philatelic expert, while the other was a traveling charlatan who later drifted into the darkness of forgery and swindling.

    “Their fascinating stories and adventures are inside this book. The items they created, that are an ever-increasing attraction to stamp collectors and lovers of intrigue alike are beautifully pictured and precisely detailed inside.”

    This may well become one of my favorite philatelic tomes! An interesting read with lots of eye candy!

    Last edited: Mar 8, 2020
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  2. anglobob

    anglobob Moderator Moderator

    while the other was a traveling charlatan who later drifted into the darkness of forgery and swindling.

    Very similar to Gaston Fontanille,also known as Delandre.....
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  3. Molokai

    Molokai Moderator Moderator

    William Bennett Hale was the 'huckster.'
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  4. Rick Barrett

    Rick Barrett Author, Buffalo Cinderellas, award winning book

    Yes, William B. Hale was a huckster from start to finish! He started his first stamp journal at age 15 called the Philatelic Bazar. There are only four known copies of it in existence, all in the Small Journal Collection of the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum. I sense he only produced 12 issues; this one is marked Vol. I No. XII, and Hale then started The Collector's World in November 1887.

    How interesting that the "cover article" (!) of this tiny journal focuses on forgeries and counterfeits. William had his finger on the pulse of those items even at an early age, while his back cover advertisement proclaimed that everything he sold was genuine. That wouldn't be the case soon afterwards when he began selling fakes, and he had a wild run until he was exposed worldwide in 1906. He kept up his shenanigans all the way until his death though; once a huckster, always a huckster!


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