Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Kennedy Family On A Controversial Philippine Stamp Issue

I seem to remember acquiring some unissued Philippine stamps featuring the Kennedy family some years ago.

The Kennedy family is presently in the limelight with the death this year of two of their prominent members, Eunice Mary Kennedy and Senator Edward Moore Kennedy.

I never bothered to check the stamps again until today. The last time I held the stamps was twelve years ago when I wrote a three part series in my Sunday column "Stamplines" in Cebu's Freeman Newspaper. I titled it "The Controversial Mosden Stamps" (The Freeman August 17, 1997; August 24, 1997 and August 31, 1997).

The Kennedy stamps called the "International Civil and Human Rights Year Issue" along with the "1968 Mexico Olympics Issue" printed by a company set up by Ezzet Mosden, an American stamp dealer created a big controversy here in the Philippines with President Ferdinand Marcos ordering Secretary Antonio Raquiza to stop the release of the stamps in 1968.

The controversy began when Secretary Antonio Raquiza of the Public Works, Transportation and Communications went into a contract with Ezzet Mosden without the knowledge of the Postmaster General Enrico Palomar. It was a simple overlapping of functions by government agencies. It is always the Postmaster General who has the authority to enter into any contract that deals with the printing and/or sale of Philippine postage stamps, not the Secretary of Public Works, Transportation and Communications.

"The International Civil and Human Rights Year Issue" consists of a 1-cent stamp depicting the entire Kennedy clan composed of fourteen family members that includes the patriarch Joseph P. Kennedy and Peter Lawford, a movie actor and brother-in-law; the 2-cents features the brothers John and Robert Kennedy; the 3-cent stamps shows the family of Robert Kennedy; the fourth, a 5-peso stamp highlights President John Kennedy delivering his presidential speech with President Lyndon R. Johnson seated beside him; the last of the set with a ten-peso value shows foreign dignitaries at the funeral procession of John Kennedy. Two souvenir sheets complete the set. The first is valued at 5 cents with a similar design of the 10 peso stamp while the second one is valued at 10 pesos with the 1-cent stamp design.

The Kennedy stamps along with the Mexico Olympic issues popularly called the "Mosden Stamps" were never issued as postage stamps in the Philippines. But it is interesting to note that a lot of these stamps went to the hands of stamp collectors worldwide.

The Philippine Postal Administration never granted recognition to the Mosden stamps as bonafide postal papers. They claimed that the stamps were printed without the approval of the postal administration, no official personnel was present to check and oversee the printing of the stamps, and the quantity of the stamps printed was not known to the postal administration.

Click here to see the Kennedy family tree.

1 comment:

  1. gday mate. i have the 1c 2c and 3c of these kennedy stamps in mint condition unused, any idea if they are worth anything?
    cheers. could u email me