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Early US Submarine Covers

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Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 09/17/2021   02:52 am  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add GregAlex to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I'm having a hard time finding any info on the forum for another topic: submarine covers. Particularly the earlier ones, pre-WWII. I picked this one up as a representative example, because I had nothing like it in my collection. Porpoise Class vessels were the first modern subs, as I understand it, but were out-classed by German subs when the war began and the design required a major overhaul.

I'd be interested in seeing and learning more about submarine covers from this era (or earlier).



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Posted 09/17/2021   1:46 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
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Posted 09/17/2021   7:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
From the USCS above is available a catalog of US Navy ship cancels Catalog of United States Naval Postmarks. Cancels are given number types based on the Locy system.

There is also:
https://www.navalcovermuseum.org/wi...Cover_Museum
based on the MediaWiki design (i.e., looks like Wikipedia). It is based on independent submissions so is not anywhere complete but still has quite a bit. You can find info by ship, by ship type (subs for you) with cover and cancel images, and short capsule histories.

My interest is in Locy F-types, the fancy cancels, plus oddball types. Here are some submarine covers:

The S-class were the sub types built after World War I. Many were decomissioned before WWII but some were recommissioned just before. This cancel was (I think) made with a carved linoleum block, text between bars in regular printing type and the date added by standard rubberstamp.


actually a recommissioning cover. Undated but that date was September 6, 1940. There are a number of cancels like this or roughly similar for other submarines in the S class, used at decommissioning or recommissioning, which were mostly improvised from rubberstamps used for documents.

The handpainted cachet is by the prolific Mae Weigand. This cover was part of a patriotic series of Revolutionary War era flags. Not all are from naval ship events.


There was more than one submarine Argonaut over the years. A hand-colored thermograved cachet here for the first day of the Hawaii stamp (Scott# 799)


A true F-type cancel showing a birthday cake. You don't get that too often even in later US pictorial cancels. Another excellent thermograved cachet.


A more typical event cover with a more typical naval cancel. Yet another hand-colored thermograved cachet, again done by Richard Buchwald as was the one above. There are collectors of US Navy cachet artists.
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Edited by hy-brasil - 09/17/2021 7:40 pm
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Posted 09/18/2021   03:16 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GregAlex to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Those are all terrific covers, Hy, thanks for posting them. I especially like the cachet on that last one. So, 263 feet was considered a deep dive. Modern Los Angeles Class subs are 1,500 feet long and can reach depths of 2,250 to 3,000 ft. We've come a long way!
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Posted 09/18/2021   03:39 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I do like the Buchwald designs. You have to be careful about cachets as there are fairly recent posthumous painted or hand-drawn cachets added to existing uncacheted covers. Some people like them, others don't.

Can someone show a Crosby or similar submarine cover?
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Posted 09/28/2021   2:15 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PKsPassport to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

GregAlex,

Are you still looking for submarine covers, l believe I have a few German covers if interested. My Grandfather was in some of the first subs. Don't have any posts from him but have a little history if interested too.
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Posted 09/28/2021   2:43 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add classic_paper to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Modern Los Angeles Class subs are 1,500 feet long and can reach depths of 2,250 to 3,000 ft. We've come a long way!

Lon Angeles class SSN's are apprixately 362 ft long, with an unclassified test depth of 950 ft (290m). To get your numbers, my guess is someone mistook feet for meters in their measurements.
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Edited by classic_paper - 09/28/2021 2:44 pm
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Posted 09/28/2021   9:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Parcelpostguy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
There are also related early sub cover material, such as from Mare Island, CA, first west coast naval ship yard, submarine repair and later the second submarine building yard (beginning circa 1920s, Puget Sound Naval Shipyard the first). Mare Island opened in 1854 after a couple of years of building.

There are also covers for which the return address for the person is a US Submarine while in port. I hesitate to mention one such cover I own as I do not have a really photo for posting and I am too busy currently to locate and photograph it for posting. It is from an east coast shipyard, I don't remember if an L-, O- or S- Class Submarine nor the year (pre-1920), but I have it due the postage being paid by a parcel post stamp which is why I know anything at all about early US Subs.

The Redwood Empire Collector's Club in Petaluma, CA had a retired navy officer member who collected early pre-postage stamp ship mail before he passed a few years back. For FUN he also collected submarine covers with cachets and ship cancels, especially the modern nuclear powered submarines. That interest was driven by the fact he used to Captain such before retirement. While sub covers may be plentiful at stamp clubs, Sub Captains are difficult to find at one. Miss him.

The cachets found on the USS Argonaut can be rather impressive.
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Posted 09/28/2021   9:14 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GregAlex to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Los Angeles class SSN's are apprixately 362 ft long, with an unclassified test depth of 950 ft (290m). To get your numbers, my guess is someone mistook feet for meters in their measurements.


Okay, that sounds more realistic. The numbers I found seemed surprisingly deep. Serves me right for trusting the internet.
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Posted 10/06/2021   4:18 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add patg23 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
About Mare Island Naval Shipyard (MINSY).

I have an interest in the subs built at Mare Island, and a long history of family working there. My father served on and worked on subs from 1946 to 1977.

I have the launch programs of all the subs built there, and am working to complete the covers to match.

Here is the "first" after they got going for WWII (really second after nautilus in 1930) in a long line of subs built there.

Much info to be had:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mare_...val_Shipyard

http://www.militarymuseum.org/SubMareIsland.html

http://www.pigboats.com/subs/181.html

https://uscs.org/resources/exhibits...ard/frame-1/

https://theleansubmariner.com/2018/...-submarines/

If you're in the SF bay area and want to visit a real WWII "pig Boat":
https://www.burlingamepezmuseum.com...nito-ss-383/

USS Pompano (SS-181) in San Francisco Bay, California, 1938







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Posted 10/08/2021   02:43 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add patg23 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Saw they didn't have that one, so I sent it in; now part of the collection. Quick look shows I have others to add & will be sending.
pat

https://www.navalcovermuseum.org/wi...overs_Page_1

P/S - Greg - I see they don't have your USS Porpoise (Deep Dive).
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Posted 10/08/2021   4:32 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GregAlex to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Terrific information -- thanks for compiling those links, Pat. I'll see about sending an image of my Porpoise cover.
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Posted 10/08/2021   5:05 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rismoney to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Apfelbaum has a lot with 1000 of these on his site with 60% off... wouldn't go near him, but figured I'd put that out there. https://www.apfelbauminc.com/catalo...vers-417730/ - would be ~$2-3 a cover...

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Posted 10/08/2021   8:16 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add patg23 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Greg - The real thanks go to the people and groups who spent the time and effort to put those sites together.

rismoney - That is a lot of covers (I'll check the couch for loose change)
May be a good deal, all depends on the inventory.

As you've probably seen, after keel laid, launch, commissioning, shake down, first dive, various port visits, holidays and decommissioning, there will be a cachet or cancel for just about anything. So the majority would probably have a low premium.

Even so, it would be fun to go through.
pat

https://www.linns.com/news/postal-u...lection.html


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Posted 10/08/2021   8:40 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Parcelpostguy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
Can someone show a Crosby or similar submarine cover?


Does this satisfy?






I play with the 4.5 Prexies, so I grabbed this off eBay recently, out of the hands of just one other bidder. It was listed as, "USS CACHALOT SS-170 Registered Cover Aug. 15. 1938 Crosby Picture Cachet"

Fully Commissioned 10-17-1934, she was undergoing an overhaul on December 7, 1941 in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She was undamaged in the attack but one crewman was wounded. The overhaul completed, she returned to sea sailing on her first patrol January 12, 1942. She returned with information regarding Japanese bases in the Pacific. Her second patrol was to the home islands of Japan where she damaged an enemy tanker. Her third and final patrol beginning September 23, 1942 supported the Aleutian Islands operations after the Japanese had already been driven from Attu and Kiska Islands. Her age being recognized, she was transferred to be a training submarine for the balance of the war.

[Edited for capitalization and tense]
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Edited by Parcelpostguy - 10/08/2021 9:28 pm
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Posted 10/08/2021   9:03 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Parcelpostguy, you have exceeded all expectations. Many thanks!

Registered usage with White House stamps on a Crosby? Wow. And the addressee Richard Buchwald may be the artist mentioned earlier in the thread.
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