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Article updated: 3/7/2013 5:29 AM

Lombard convention features love-in for stamp collectors

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A rare stamp might be worth thousands of dollars, but most old stamps sell by the pound in these cartons at Rasdale Stamps in Westmont. Kim Kellermann, grandson of the founder, says Rasdale typically moves between 8 tons and 10 tons of stamps a year at each of their four auctions.

Scott Sanders | Staff Photographer

As an 8-year-old boy, Kim Kellermann got his start in the Rasdale Stamps family business by sorting and bundling these stamps from the 1870s.

Scott Sanders | Staff Photographer

Rare stamps that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars grab all the attention. But these modern stamps are so plentiful, they can be purchased at less than face value.

Scott Sanders | Staff Photographer

Printed in 1847, this first United States stamp with the likeness of Benjamin Franklin will be on display this weekend at a stamp dealers convention in Lombard.

Courtesy of American Stamp Dealers Association

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A printing error makes this stamp far more valuable than its 2-cent price tag. One of only seven in the world, it sold for $7,500 in 1978 and now is valued at $46,000.

Courtesy of American Stamp Dealers Association

The upside-down flame in the lower right corner makes this $1 stamp honoring the CIA worth $20,000.

Courtesy of American Stamp Dealers Association

Stamp collecting is about more than stamps. Kim Kellermann, an owner of Rasdale Stamps in Westmont, says these display books of stamps used by a salesman to drum up printing business during the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago are worth five figures.

Scott Sanders | Staff Photographer

Sometimes the stamps aren't as special as the envelopes, notes Kim Kellermann, one of the owners of Rasdale Stamps in Westmont, as he displays a collection of mail addressed to his grandfather, who started the business in 1932.

Scott Sanders | Staff Photographer

About this Article

Once upon a time, stamp collecting was cool -- Beatle John Lennon and President Franklin Delano Roosevelt cool. Now the hobby has gone cold. On the eve of a stamp collectors convention in Lombard, local stamp enthusiasts are out to save a dying hobby. "We lost a generation," says Kim Kellermann, the 55-year-old grandson and part of the third generation of family members running Rasdale Stamps in Westmont.
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    • A rare stamp might be worth thousands of dollars, but most old stamps sell by the pound in these cartons at Rasdale Stamps in Westmont. Kim Kellermann, grandson of the founder, says Rasdale typically moves between 8 tons and 10 tons of stamps a year at each of their four auctions.
    • As an 8-year-old boy, Kim Kellermann got his start in the Rasdale Stamps family business by sorting and bundling these stamps from the 1870s.
    • Rare stamps that sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars grab all the attention. But these modern stamps are so plentiful, they can be purchased at less than face value.
    • Printed in 1847, this first United States stamp with the likeness of Benjamin Franklin will be on display this weekend at a stamp dealers convention in Lombard.
    • A printing error makes this stamp far more valuable than its 2-cent price tag. One of only seven in the world, it sold for $7,500 in 1978 and now is valued at $46,000.
    • The upside-down flame in the lower right corner makes this $1 stamp honoring the CIA worth $20,000.
    • Stamp collecting is about more than stamps. Kim Kellermann, an owner of Rasdale Stamps in Westmont, says these display books of stamps used by a salesman to drum up printing business during the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago are worth five figures.
    • Sometimes the stamps arenít as special as the envelopes, notes Kim Kellermann, one of the owners of Rasdale Stamps in Westmont, as he displays a collection of mail addressed to his grandfather, who started the business in 1932.
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