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August 21, 2017

Comments

Angela Cracchiolo

This just "ups" the coolness factor of the Eclipse stamps!

Joe F.

Please pardon my dimness (and I swear that's not an eclipse joke), but am I to understand that *all* of the post offices that offer an eclipse postmark should have the cover sent to PO Box 9998? As in:

Eclipse Postmark
PO Box 9998
Lyons, OR 97358

It's possible I need more sleep.

Amara

The instructions on how to do this correctly are here, in the USPS Postal Bulletin:
https://about.usps.com/postal-bulletin/2017/pb22474/pb22474.pdf

p. 73 begins the full list of participating stations and the instructions.

A new postal bulletin comes out every 2 weeks, and always contains this information for every special postmark available in the country (usually toward the back of the publication)
- lots & lots & lots all the time; follow their instructions and it will change your mail-art life.

Happy Dark Side of the Moon Day!

Donovan Beeson

Those numbers are just a stand-in, Joe. Use the addresses as listed. Eclipse Postmark, Post Office Address Amaras comment is also really helpful.

Joe F.

Many thanks to all. Looking back: yes, I was *definitely* low on sleep. =)

Karen B

It looks like yours is from DC? Also, I had read online sometimes it takes years for these special postmarks to come back?

Donovan Beeson

Sharp eye, Karen. This one is from D.C. and was sent to me before the eclipse. I think years is an outlier, but a few months isnt out of the question.

Danielle Morris

If anyone is trying to figure out which post office they want to request one from, consider Hopkinsville, KY (included in the link from Amara) because it was "The point of greatest eclipse is where the axis of the Moon’s shadow passes closest to the center of the Earth."

Hopkinsville, KY Station Postmaster
105 South Main Street Hopkinsville, KY 42240-9998

https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2017/greatest-eclipse-and-greatest-duration-what-s-the-difference

Amara

Thanks Danielle, YES I want that... and...how about one/some from every state in the path of totality? They're free, except for postage of course... and we all bought the stamps, right? If not yet, they're still available from USPS.com in case your local station has sold out. Remember the Global Forever Moon... just saying, if you're taking the moon theme stamp collage to the extreme.

BTW, 9998 is the nationwide zip suffix & PO Box specifically for the Postmaster of whatever zip code you're sending to. Suggestion: send some happy mail art to the postmaster of your own zip code thanking them for great service using this box & zip specification = good mail karma. I became friends with a postmaster and those people really do have an incredibly stressful job and work hard, all day every day... not everybody is nice to them; they get lots of complaints and deeply appreciate thank yous. There is no easy job at the post office; with good reason, "going postal" is in the dictionary now.

also... the full color digital FDOI (first day of issue) postmarks are available at USPS.com in the collector's shop:
https://store.usps.com/store/browse/productDetailSingleSku.jsp?categoryNavIds=stamp-collectors&categoryNav=false&navAction=push&navCount=5&atg.multisite.remap=false&categoryId=stamp-collectors&productId=S_475321

we missed the window for getting them directly, unless they give it an extension, which could happen in the next postal bulletin (fingers crossed):
http://about.usps.com/postal-bulletin/2017/pb22474/pb22474.pdf
p.82 for full instructions and selection of first day of (stamp) issue postmarks currently available.

Timing of getting postmarks back (or fwd) from eclipse stations depends on the demand & volume they have to process; think about the yearly valentine & Christmas postmarks and how some stations get extra people to help with the volume - it just depends - but in general the PO wants to give timely service. The longest I've waited is 3 weeks; that was not for an event just a general mailing; most have come back - or arrived @ destination - in under or @ 2 weeks; maybe my experience is unusual. My Pony Express mail came back in 10 days sharp, which is ironic, since it was actually carried on horseback for part of the distance (but it didn't have to go out of my state). So, be optimistic... I'm thinking they will be able to handle this special postal event and all our mail efficiently!

Donovan Beeson

Wonderful and helpful advice! Thank you

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