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Volume 6781


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE
by John Martin
My "other hobby," buying, exchanging, making and mailing postal art covers,
ties in with my Edgar Rice Burroughs hobby quite a bit.
I enjoy making covers featuring Tarzan or other ERB characters,
and friends of mine have made and mailed me such covers as well.

I thought it would be fun to start scanning and sharing such covers
on the anniversaries of the dates they were originally postmarked.


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE -- No. 1
This one is from Charlie Delgado. who used his Mailer's Postmark Permit cancellation device on this cover of Jan. 4, 2010. The machine cancel near the top shows that the post office added its cancellation on Jan. 5. (The machinery also ripped up part of a stamp!) The art, on left, is an image that Charlie copied from erblist.com to make what is known in the hobby as a Local Post "stamp." He glued it on over his own art. of trees, which, he turn, he added over a collage of strips of colored paper.


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE-- No. 2

"Postal History" or "Historical Cover" is among many categories of the cover-collecting hobby. Some old covers fit into more than one category. This one was in the process of tracking down actress Enid Markey 102 years ago today, on Jan. 7, 1917.

A "Postal History" cover is one with nothing particularly special about it other than, perhaps, who sent it, who it was addressed to, how it was canceled,and if a collector likes it for some reason, etc. It is an otherwise ordinary envelope that was dropped into the mailstream.

It was originally mailed from Japan, with a Japanese stamp. The sender was Film Records, 8 Tsuramakicho, Ushigome, Tokyo, Japan. In the lower left is a logo with the letters "CSS" in the shape of a film spool with the initials revealed below the logo as standing for "Cinema S. Society."

After the stamp had been canceled in Tokyo, Japan, it was canceled again when it reached the U.S. in Culver City, Calif., with the Jan. 7 date. The new cancel obscures the date of the original cancel.
The envelope appears to be addressed to Miss Markey at "Ince"(?) Studio. The studio had forwarded it to her at "Hartman Apts, Wash. & Oaks" and it had been forwarded from there to L.A., at 1305 on a street name I can't make out, but maybe the mailman back then knew where to find her. There was no letter inside the cover when I obtained it for my collection.

Miss Markey's film career began in 1911. The Internet Movie Database credits her with four films in 1917, the year the cover was mailed. She played Jane in "Tarzan of the Apes" and "The Romance of Tarzan," both in 1918. She was active in films and television up until 1968 and passed away in 1981. ERB fans Brian Bohnett and Scott Tracy Griffin have put Enid Markey between other kinds of covers -- book covers.


ENID MARKEY: (born February 22, 1894, Dillon, Colorado - died November 15, 1981, Bay Shore, New York) ~ Tarzan's first cinema Jane 1918
Enid Markey Remembered in the Press
http://www.erbzine.com/mag29/2985.html
ERBzine's Enid Markey Photo Gallery
http://www.erbzine.com/mag29/2985a.html

Off-Site Reference
Enid Markey in IMDB


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 3

For a couple of dozen years, the U.S. Postal Service has issued a stamp each year to note the upcoming Chinese Lunar New Year. The 2009 stamp was for the Year of the Ox. However, the stamp image resembled a dragon to me so I used it to tie in with a scene of Tarzan battling a dragon-like creature. The stamp on the cover was postmarked with a Jan. 8, 2009, "First Day of Issue" cancellation, ten years ago.

The last actual Year of the Dragon was 2012 and the next one will be 2024.

The art by Joe Kubert was the cover of DC's "Tarzan" No. 228, dated February 1974. The story, "Trial by Blood," pits Tarzan against a "terrible lizard" to which a tribe of pygmies offers sacrifices. The comic can be read here:
http://www.erbzine.com/mag57/5728.html

The beast depicted by Kubert is not identified other than as "beast" and "terrible lizard." The latter term, from ancient Greece, is where the word from which the term "dinosaur" eventually came:

The year 2019 is the Year of the Pig, also called the Year of the Boar. It starts Feb. 5. The Postal Service is using the Boar designation for this year's commemorative stamp, which will be issued Jan. 17 with an official first-day ceremony in Houston. Looks as if I'll have to find a good picture of Tarzan going after Horta.


Hillmans Celebrate the Year of the Boar
www.hillmanweb.com/newyear/2007.html

Off-Site References
Virtual Stamp Club
Chinese New Year Zodiac



PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 4
The Chinese Lunar New Year of the Monkey in 2004 was celebrated by Dave and Sabrina Curtis with carved block covers. David's, with a monkey, also had the Canadian Year of the Monkey stamp with first-day cancel from that nation as well.

The U.S. stamp was issued Jan. 13, 2004.

Dave and Sabrina both use linoleum blocks to carve designs. The cover shown here by David is one color; Sabrina's, featuring a silverback gorilla, is multiple colors, which is more complicated and exacting. When the block is ready, it is inked and the envelope placed on the block and pressed down with a roller. Full color covers require multiple printings with precise placement.

David and Sabrina's covers can be found on ebay by searching the stamps category with their names.


This website features a few other examples of David's work.
https://davidecurtisart.weebly.com/postal-portfolio.html

More about the Year of the Monkey on the Hillman New Year Site:
http://www.hillmanweb.com/newyear/2016.html


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 5

Tarzan of the Apes might be seen wrestling a lion, leaping at a leopard, or ensnarling a snake. But tackling a tiger? Not so likely. Everybody knows that Tarzan lives in Africa, and there are no tigers in Africa!

Nonetheless, tigers have been associated with the Jungle Lord in some ways over the years.

First, as all ERB fans know, creator Edgar Rice Burroughs mistakenly placed tigers in Africa when his first Tarzan story, "Tarzan of the Apes," was published in The All-Story magazine in 1912. It didn't take readers long to point that out. Embarrassed but not bowed, Burroughs simply changed the name of Sabor, the Tiger, to Sabor, the Lioness, when his story was printed in book form in 1914.

The word "Tiger" was to be linked with Tarzan again in 1929 when a movie serial, somewhat based on the later Tarzan novel, "Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar," was made, starring Frank Merill as the ape-man. The title, "Tarzan the Tiger," referred to Tarzan's physical prowess.

While Burroughs made the tiger mistake in his first Tarzan story, he made sure there was no mistake at all in the last Tarzan story to be published during his lifetime. In "Tarzan and 'The Foreign Legion'," Tarzan, serving as a Royal Air Force colonel during World War II, was aboard a military flight which crashed and stranded Tarzan and the crew on Sumatra. Since tigers are native to the land, it was inevitable that Tarzan would have to battle one in addition to the Japanese soldiers who patrolled the island.

There's an illustration in the first edition opposite page 77 which shows the beast creeping up on helpless Corrie van der Meer. She was doomed to die, but "...in that instant she saw an almost naked man drop from above onto the back of the carnivore." Tarzan followed his customary great-cat fighting technique from there and the ferocious beast was soon dead and Tarzan gave the victory cry of the bull ape. That was when the rest of the crew recognized him as Tarzan instead of "Col. Clayton" and Shrimp Rosetti uttered the classic line "Is dat Johnny Weismuller?"*

I made this cover for the 2010 Year of the Tiger stamp with images of DVD covers and a movie poster for the 1929 film, "Tarzan the Tiger. The stamp is canceled with the first-day-of-issue postmark on Jan. 14, nine years ago today.

The Chinese years are identified by 12 animals which take their turns at regular intervals. In addition, the Chinese years are differentiated by the elements of Metal, Water, Wood, Fire and Earth which rotate in five-year cycles.

Thus, 2010 was not only the Year of the Tiger, but the year of The Metal Tiger. The Metal element gives the Tiger its sharpness in action and speed of thought. Tigers born in the Metal year like to stand out in a crowd. With an inspiring assertiveness and competitive demeanor, they determine their goals and then do anything necessary to achieve them.
This good-looking character sometimes has mood swings and temper tantrums. The Tiger may jump to conclusions or act too quickly without weighing options or understanding consequences. This is a flaw Tigers must learn to curb.

The Year of the Tiger stamp design by Ethel Kessler, Bethesda, Maryland, and illustrator Kam Mak, Brooklyn, NY, features a bouquet of narcissus flowers, since they are associated with Chinese New Year decorations. Kessler's design also incorporates elements from the previous series of USPS Lunar New Year stamps, using Clarence Lee's intricate paper-cut design of a tiger and the Chinese character--drawn in grass-style calligraphy by Lau Bun--for "Tiger."

(*The book misspelled Weissmuller's name, using just one "s.")


Hillman Chinese New Year :: Year of the Tiger 2010
www.hillmanweb.com/newyear/2010.html
Tarzan the Tiger
www.erbzine.com/mag5/0593.html


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE No. 6

The 23rd Olympic Summer Games was in 1984. Several months before the event, at the Orcoexpo '84 Stamp Show in Anaheim, Calif., a special postal cancellation was offered to honor the games scheduled for the local area. One of those featured on a cover was Buster Crabbe, who played the ape-man in "Tarzan the Fearless" and later went on to star as space jockeys Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon.

Larry "Buster" Crabbe got his start in Hawaii but moved to the mainland for higher education at the University of Southern California, where he was the school's first All-American swimmer in 1931.

Earlier, he had participated in the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam, where he won a bronze medal for the 1,500-meter freestyle. At the 1932 Olympics, upon which this postal cover design looks back, he won the gold in the 400-meter freestyle, winning by one-tenth of a second.

His Tarzan role, which got him his start in a film career, was in 1933.

Crabbe was also television's "Captain Gallant of the Foreign Legion" in 1955.

He did guest roles too, including an episode of "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century," in which he played a retired fighter pilot named "Brigadier Gordon" in honor of Flash Gordon. When Rogers (Gil Gerard) praised his flying, Gordon replied "I've been doing that sort of thing since before you were born."

Rogers (who was born over 500 years earlier) responded "You think so, old timer?" to which Gordon replied "Young man, I know so." In fact, Crabbe had been playing "Buck Rogers" since long before Gerard was born.

This cover was postmarked on this date, Jan. 15, 1984, 35 years ago today. The stamp is one of four issued by the USPS for the Winter Olympics. Another four stamps of similar design were issued for the Summer Olympics.

This cover also features a date stamp and an additional postmark (March 7) and stamp from the Pitcairn Islands. On the back of the envelope is stamped the words: "Via Pitcairn Longboat." Apparently, there was an opportunity for collectors to have covers carried aboard the Schooner Cornucopia (indicated by the wording on the February-April date stamp). For comparison's sake, I am including a scan of another cover (found on ebay) that was carried on the same boat, with an image of the boat itself, an additional Pitcairn Island stamp, and the boat's date stamp.

This postal cover was carried aboard the Schooner Cornucopia, which added its date stamp in lower right, and then had Pitcairn Island stamps added and postmarked March 7. Also getting a ride on the Cornucopia was a cover featuring a cachet of Larry "Buster" Crabbe (see other scan with this post). Crabbe's was also postmarked Jan. 15 in Los Angeles, with a cancellation honoring the 1984 Olympics which were coming up that summer. Crabbe had won the Gold Medal in the 400-meter freestyle in 1932.
Larry "Buster" Crabbe was featured on a 1984 postal cover for his Gold Medal performance in the 1932 Olympics. The cover also got a date stamp from a boat ride and a Pitcairn Island stamp and postmark were added as well. The 1984 cancellation was at a stamp show on Jan. 15.

PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 7

Lions seem to be the favorite beast that artists like to draw while Tarzan is killing them, and some artists follow Tarzan around and do quick sketches of him killing Bara the Deer. But pictures of Tarzan slaughtering Horta the Boar are a bit rarer. I guess there's not much really appealing to the illustrator about showing Tarzan with a lasso around a warthog or other type of wild pig. Do a search online for Tarzan and boar and you're most likely to find nothing but scenes from "The Lion King."

Today, Jan. 17, the U.S. Postal Service issued a stamp to honor the Year of the Boar, also known as the Year of the Pig. The year doesn't start until Feb. 5 but the Postal Service like to get a head start.

Because I couldn't find a good illustration of Tarzan slaying Horta, I had to settle for one of Melvin going after N'Gunga the pig in the Mad parody "Melvin of the Apes," one of two such parodies done by John Severin for Mad.

So this is my first Melvin postal cover, canceled with a Jan. 17, 2019, first-day postmark for the Chinese Lunar New Year stamp at Galvin, Wash.


Find both of John Severin's ape-man parodies here:
http://www.erbzine.com/mag29/2997.html
Hillman Feature on the previous Year of the Boar: 2007
(Edgar Rice Burroughs was Born in the Year of the Boar)
http://www.hillmanweb.com/newyear/2007.html


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 8

Fifteen years ago today, on Jan. 21, 2004, this cover was dropped into the mail in Cleveland, Ohio, and flew with a Wright Brothers stamp to me in Washington. Disney’s Tarzan flew along on a convenient vine, perhaps taking a longer ride than the one Alexander Skarsgard took to catch a train in “The Legend of Tarzan.”

PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 9

The U.S. Postal Service commemorated the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, B.C., with a stamp showing snowboarding, a sport with roots in skiing, skateboarding and surfing. This cover was canceled nine yeas ago today, on Jan. 22, 2010.

When Disney released its animated Tarzan feature in 1999, it included a jungle sequence of Tarzan sliding along moss-covered limbs in scenes intended to draw interest from boarding enthusiasts of all kinds.

According to Beth Rowen, on the website infoplease.com, "The directors of Tarzan, Chris Buck and Kevin Lima, spent countless hours watching videos of skateboarding guru Tony Hawk in an attempt to create a character that would appeal to kids. Their efforts paid off; Tarzan not only swings, he deftly surfs the lush vegetation of the African jungle as he seeks out his place in the world."

The straight-to-video followup film, "Tarzan and Jane," pictured on my First Day of Issue cover, shows Tarzan and his mate taking the skateboarding technique out of the trees and turning it into a surfing encounter on the back of a crocodile.

Tarzan never boarded on the snow, but the stamp brings the ape man to mind, not only because of the acrobatics but also because there have been several actors in Tarzan movies who have first won their spurs in The Olympics.

Most famously known as an Olympian is Johnny Weissmuller, who is probably also the most famous screen Tarzan, playing the title character in 12 Tarzan movies from 1932 to 1948. Weissmuller won a total of five Olympic gold medals in the 1924 and 1928 Olympics and set multiple world records in the freestyle at four different distances. It is said that Weissmuller never lost a swimming race. His swimming prowess was a regular feature of his Tarzan films.

While Weissmuller was king of the silver screen jungle, it didn't stop other Tarzan films from being made. Clarence Linford "Buster" Crabbe won the gold in the 400-meter freestyle in the Los Angeles Olympics in 1932, and went on to play jungle men in 1933. First, he appeared in a Tarzan imitation called "King of the Jungle" and then portrayed the ape man himself in "Tarzan the Fearless," a serial which was later shortened to be a full-length motion picture.

Next came Glenn Morris. He won the decathlon at the Berlin Olympics in 1936, setting a world record for points. He starred as the ape man in "Tarzan's Revenge," a 1937 Tarzan vehicle.

Not every Tarzan with Olympics experience was a gold medal winner, though. Herman Brix, who later changed his screen name to Bruce Bennett, won the silver medal in the shotput in the Amsterdam Olympics in 1928. In 1935, Tarzan creator Edgar Rice Burroughs hand-picked Brix for the starring role in a serial called "The New Adventures of Tarzan," also shortened to a feature film known as "Tarzan and the Green Goddess." Though Brix was "only" a silver medalist and the film he was in was mediocre, the man himself won plaudits from Burroughs fans as one who looked as they thought that Tarzan, as portrayed in the original books, should look and act -- an intellgent, well-spoken man who also happened to have amazing jungle skills.

Brix was the longest-lived Tarzan (so far), finally passing away in 2007 at the age of 100.

Stars of Tarzan films weren't limited to playing the ape man himself. When Morris played Tarzan in 1935, his co-star was also an Olympian gold medal winner, Eleanor Holm.
She learned swimming very young and won her first national championship at the age of 13. In the 1928 Summer Olympics, she finished fifth in the 100-meter backstroke. Prior to the next Olympics, she won several U.S. titles in the 300-yard medley. At the 1932 games in L.A., she won the backstroke gold medal after Marie Braun, defending champ, had to forfeit due to an insect bite.

Yet one other Olympian played in two Tarzan movies. Rafer Johnson was the 1960 decathlon champion and played Barcuma, the leader of the leopard cult which opposed the ape man in 1967's "Tarzan and the Great River." The followiing year, he played Nagambi, an evil chief in "Tarzan and the Jungle Boy."

Playing Tarzan, obviously, required someone with either a lot of athleticism or a lot of stunt doubles!

Early Tarzan Frank Merrill won 58 national gymnast titles; Denny Miller, featured in a remake of "Tarzan the Ape Man," was a basketball stalwart at UCLA, and Gordon Scott, called by many fans the greatest Tarzan, was an all-around athlete who was discovered by Hollywood moviemakers while working as a lifeguard.

Mike Henry who, as Tarzan, defeated Rafer Johnson's characters, played professional football for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Los Angeles Rams.


This first-day cover features a croc-surfin' Tarzan and Jane to tie in with a snow-boarding Olympics stamp.
It was canceled on Jan. 22, 2010.


Denny Miller and brother Kent played for UCLA.
Shown with legendary coach John Wooden in this 1958 photo.
A year later, Denny would be Tarzan.
See www.erbzine.com/denny


Before coming to the Los Angeles Rams, from whence he made the leap to Tarzan,
Mike Henry was No. 37 for the Pittsburgh Steelers. He wore No. 53 for the Rams.
See his trading card and more in ERBzine:
www.erbzine.com/mag2/0210.html


Rafer Johnson was featured on the cover of Time. He won the decathlon in the 1960 Olympics.
Johnson played a foe to Mike Henry's Tarzan in two movies.


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 10

This special commemorative cover was canceled Jan. 27, 2018, on the 100th anniversary of the premiere of the first Tarzan movie, "Tarzan of the Apes." This was a blockbuster in its time. The most recent Tarzan movie, "The Legend of Tarzan," was released about 98 years and five months later, on July 1, 2016. Attendees at the 2016 gathering of the Edgar Rice Burroughs Chain of Friendship in Woodland Hills, Calif., were privileged to see "Legend" a few days earlier, on June 28, at the Warner Brothers Studio in Burbank.

The elements of this cover were assembled on my home computer and canceled at a local post office.


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: 11
The Covermonster in Elyria, Ohio, sent this mail 10 years ago today with a cachet featuring art from Neal Adams's cover for the Del-Rey edition of "Tarzan of the Apes." The cover is postmarked Feb. 1, 1999.

In the letter inside, Phil the Covermonster wrote: "You said you like Tarzan covers so I looked in my library. I have the complete paperback set of Tarzan....I scanned them and you will be getting them. The only problem is matching the stamp with the pictures. Any suggestions?"

I wrote back to Phil and suggested that the dinosaur stamps issued by the USPS would work great on Tarzan covers. Actually, as I hope I am demonstrating in this "Pushing the Cover" series, a lot of stamps can work pretty good with Tarzan or other ERB characters.

Whatever the stamp, though, it's just all in fun. With the "Uncle Sam Hat" stamp on this cover, we can say that the U.S. icon is tipping his hat to Tarzan!


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 12
To celebrate the two Tarzans who were born this date, Feb. 7, I made two covers, one for Jock Mahoney and the other for both Mahoney and Buster Crabbe. I made one for Crabbe alone in 2018 on the 110th anniversary of his birth.

I used foreign movie posters on the “not-quite-twins” cover, Crabbe’s “Tarzan the Fearless” (Intrepide) and Mahoney’s “Tarzan Goes to India.” That cover features the “Celebrate” 41-cent U.S. Postal Service stamp issued several years ago along with the Uncle Sam Hats makeup rate stamp to bring the total postage to an amount sufficient to meet the current 55-cent first-class rate. Postmarked on the birthday of both.

The Mahoney solo cover features the “Save Vanishing Species” stamp with tiger, which has a value of 49 cents. It was originally sold for 60 cents, though, with the extra 11 cents going to funds to protect endangered species. The other stamp, “The Age of Reptiles,” is a six-cent stamp issued a few decades ago. Mahoney’s two Tarzan movies were in countries where roamed the tiger and in one of them Mahoney had to face off a reptile, in the person of a cobra. Postmarked on Mahoneyi's birthday.

I took the Mahoney covers to the big post office with the small round cancellation in Centralia, Washington, and then had the “Twins” cover canceled at the little post office with the big round cancellation at the nearby community of Galvin.

I made the twins cover on a slightly larger envelope than the Mahoney-solo cover.


PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 13

Charlie Delgado, known as ACE 20, is a member of the Art Cover Exchange, as am I. He mailed this cover and canceled the Christmas stamp with his own personal postmark from Ace, Texas. The Postal Service issues Mailer's Postmark Permits to anyone who is willing to do the paperwork to get one authorized, and Charlie has several from different cities, as do many other aficiandoes of the Mailer's Postmark Permit hobby.

On this particular postmark there was no date used. However, the letter inside was written Feb. 10, 2012, and thus the cover was most likely entered into the mailstream on Feb. 11, seven years ago today. To make this cover, Charlie printed and folded a Sunday comic feature called Biographic. Steve McGarry, the creator, often features Tarzan and other movie themes in his Sunday Biographic and daily TrivQuiz comics. This particular Sunday comic also features several other Tarzan actors so I'm showing the backside of the cover as well. The whole feature was first published Feb. 5, 2012, and is viewable off-site at:
https://www.gocomics.com/biographic/2012/02/05



PUSHING THE ENVELOPE No. 14

As every school boy and girl knows, John Carter on March 4, 1866, was astrally projected out of an Arizona cave to the surface of the planet Mars, where he continues to reside today. A few decades later, round about that same time of year, the Arizona Territory was admitted to the Union, becoming a state on Feb. 14, 1912.

One hundred years later, another time-space convergence took place. On Feb. 14, 2012 (seven years ago today), the U.S. Postal Service issued a commemorative stamp honoring Arizona's first century. Just over three weeks later, on March 9, 2012, Disney's "John Carter" was released in theaters. But, a few days before that, on March 3, 2012, during the ECOF in Woodland Hills, Calif., the ERB fans would be treated to an advance showing of the film at the Disney theater on its Burbank lot.

When I learned the Postal Service was planning to issue that stamp, my first thought was to make a John Carter-themed envelope design as a cover for the First-Day-of-Issue postmark. My second thought was that it would be nice to make enough of these to pass out to the ERB fans at the ECOF.

But it would be a close call. In order to obtain the first-day postmark, covers had to be mailed to Stamp Fulfillment Services in Kansas City, which was the only place besides the Phoenix, Arizona, post office where one could obtain the first-day cancellation. And it usually takes about 14 days total for the covers to get to K.C., get the postmarks (there is a grace period for obtaining first-day postmarks), and then be returned to me. I had to have my envelopes ready to go before the stamp was issued. Then I went to my local post office on the first day and purchased the stamps, stuck them on the envelopes, and wrapped them all up in a box to send them Priority Mail to Kansas City. Then, all I could do was wait and hope they would get back to me in time.

Things worked out just right. I received the package back from Kansas City the day before I was to board Amtrak's Coast Starlight for the 32-hour ride from Centralia, Washington, to Woodland Hills. When I arrived at the ECOF, I turned the covers over to Billy York and crew and they put one into each of the packets to be handed out to ECOF registrants. The timing for the Arizona statehood stamp, the John Carter first-day cover and the movie itself had all come together just right. The stars were correctly aligned.

The covers that were handed out featured an image of "A Princess of Mars," the first John Carter story written by Edgar Rice Burroughs.

I usually can't stop at making just one cover design. So I made a few more of another design, one with a picture of John Carter and Tars Tarkas from the movie itself. Those were not among the ones I took to the ECOF but have just been handed out here and there to some of my fellow collectors.

What if the first-day covers had not come in time to take to the ECOF? I had a backup plan. That would have been to take them with me to the Dum Dum in August of 2012, where another stamp was to be issued -- the one honoring Edgar Rice Burroughs himself. So, with the Arizona statehood stamp and the Edgar Rice Burroughs stamp, 2012 was a great year for ERB fans who also like pushing the envelope.


First-day cover for the 100th anniversary of Arizona's statehood, with cachet honoring "A Princess of Mars" by Edgar Rice Burroughs,
who wrote the story about how John Carter was projected from an Arizona cave to the planet Mars.

Covers like these were put into the "goodie bags" of attendees at the 2012 ECOF in Woodland Hills, Calif.,
where fans got a preview of the "John Carter" movie.

PUSHING THE ENVELOPE: No. 15
Early in the year 2000 I noticed in the Postal Bulletin that the Rochester, N.Y., post office had a special cancellation “Saluting Kings & Queens of the Past and Present” with a map of Africa. I don’t know what the occasion was for that postmark, but that wasn't what appealed to me. What was important was that it was an opportunity for me to make some Tarzan-related covers to send to the Rochester post office for the special cancellation.

This was before I had a computer and learned to make and print covers that way. My method back then was to find images where I could, photocopy them, and glue them onto 8 ½ by 11 sheets of paper, designed with an envelope template. I’d go to the photocopy shop and make several of each design and then bring them home, cut out around the template marks, and fold the paper and glue the envelope into an envelope shape.

I made three designs for these “Kings and Queens” of Africa, photocopying images from comic books. Although La’s title is really High Priestess of the Flaming God, she certainly exercises queenly powers.

The stamps are the Tropical Flowers 33-cent stamps issued by the Postal Service in 1999.

These were then canceled with the Feb. 17, 2000, postmark, offered 19 years ago.

More recently, 10 years ago today on Feb. 17, 2009, the Covermonster of Elyria sent me a Disney Tarzan cover he made on his computer. To meet the 42-cent first-class rate of that year, he used a 32-cent Brachiosaurus stamp from the World of Diinosaurs stamp sheet issued in 1997, and a 10-cent Amethyst stamp from the Mineral Heritage set issued in 1974.




1. Tarzan, King of the Apes, gets a salute with a special cancellation from the Rochester, N.Y., post office.
The stamp is a 33-cent “Bird of Paradise” image from the Tropical Flowers stamp booklet issued by the USPS in 1999.
2. La, Queen of Opar (technically, High Priestess), gets a salute with a special cancellation from the Rochester, N.Y., post office.
The stamp is a 33-cent “Royal Poinciona” image from the Tropical Flowers stamp booklet issued by the USPS in 1999.
3. Nemone, Queen of Cathne, gets a salute with a special cancellation from the Rochester, N.Y., post office.
The stamp is a 33-cent “Gloriosa Lily” image from the Tropical Flowers stamp booklet issued by the USPS in 1999.
4. The Covermonster of Elyria, Ohio, used a Disney Tarzan image to make this cachet for a cover mailed Feb. 17, 2000,
with a World of Dinosaurs stamp and a Mineral Heritage stamp combining to meet that year’s 42-cent first-class postage rate.
 

STAMP FEATURES IN ERBzine
The Story Behind the Stamp by John Martin
http://www.erbzine.com/mag64/6483.html
John Martin's Fun with First Day Covers
http://www.ERBzine.com/mag64/6484.html
The Stamp Story by John Martin
http://www.erbzine.com/mag43/4395.html
ERBzine Stamp Dedication Ceremony Coverage in Tarzana
http://www.erbzine.com/mag41/4106.html
First impressions of the Stamp
http://www.erbzine.com/mag37/3718.html
Tarzan Stamp Previews
http://www.erbzine.com/mag36/3611.html

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