Precanceled Stamps

About Us

So… Who are we?

Dick & Marie Laetsch

Back in the mid 1950’s, my grandfather gave me a beginner worldwide stamp collection and my brother got a small coin collection. My philatelic interest grew from there.

By the end of the 1960’s, I had formed a U.S. Collection and had obtained most of the less expensive items. After purchasing a number of items, one at a time in the $200 to $500 range from a local dealer, I began thinking —- where’s the fun in this?

In 1970 I made a flat trade. My entire U.S. Collection for a Buro Precancel Collection. My precancel interest grew from there. In 1972, Bob Briggs sponsored me into the Precancel Stamp Society. Shortly after that I joined many of the other local clubs while continuing to build my collection.

In the mid 1970’s, my interest turned to the prolific issues of 1922, 1923 and 1926. I formed pages that would house each of these issues and built a good size 80 plus volume general collection. This was a lot of fun and I learned a lot about local precancels. Also, about 1975, I started a mail order precancel approval business, which I operated after my regular work hours.

This approval service allowed me to establish a great rapport with many collectors – most beginners in the hobby. Through the late 1970’s and 1980’s while working as Materials Manager at Data General, I was able to expand the approval service offering Buros, Locals and Perfins to many collectors.

I auctioned off my 1922-26 collections in the late 1970’s. I formed what now is one of the best Maine general precancel collections there is.

In 1990, Data General announced that they were closing 4 plants, the one in Maine being one of them. They offered me a position in North Carolina. This did not appear to be a good prospect and afforded me the opportunity to go into the precancel business full time – which I did.

Having made many contacts on a part time basis before the transition turned out to be the best thing I ever did in my business career.

My wife Marie joined me on a full time basis in 1999. The precancel approval business is extremely labor intensive and she has been able to take some of that burden from me.

In the mid 1990’s, we took on the distribution of all catalog publications put out by the Precancel Stamp Society. We also started this Internet site which has been refined several times.

Marie and I now set up at each National Convention. We also do the big show put on by the Florida Club in Orlando and the Spring and Fall round up put on by the New England Club.

Our specialty is FAST, responsive service and helping beginners get started. Any approvals being returned today will be followed up with the next lot mailed the next day. We enjoy answering any questions on the phone, via e-mail or via this site.

Best of luck in your precancel pursuit!