Collection of Howard A. Krumwiede

Manuscripts Collection 47

Overview of the Collection

Repository: G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport
Creator: Krumwiede, Howard (d.1954)
Title: Collection of Howard A. Krumwiede
Dates: 1800-1953
Extent: ca. 3000 items
Abstract: Approximately 850 letters, covers, and other papers carried by ships in the late 18th and 19th centuries, nearly all with ship stamps and/or other postal markings, including letters (1840’s-1850’s) relating to the opium trade and China trade. Also includes Krumwiede’s philatelic correspondence (1943-1953) and letters, covers, prints of postal markings, and ship covers; notes and indexed for mail-carrying ships’ philatelic clippings; photographs and ship pictures; clipping and articles from Steamboat Bill, Sea poster, and Stamps; and monographs and clippings relating to ocean mall.
Identification: Coll. 47

Biography of Howard A. Krumwiede

Mr. Howard A. Krumwiede (d. 1954) was a devoted collector of stamps who eventually developed a scholarly interest in the study of postal markings used on board ships, as well as other aspects of trans-ocean mail. This collection of letter covers (and the research and ships data included with it) was a product of Krumwiede’s twenty-six year interest.

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Scope and Content

The Howard A. Krumwiede Collection totals nearly 3000 pieces. It is essentially a philatelic collection in the specific area of ship covers and other aspects of 19th century ocean mails.

In boxes 1 through 4 the researcher will find nearly 850 letters, covers, and other papers carried by various ships in the late 18th and 19th centuries. Nearly all the covers have ship stamps, and/or other postal markings. Arrangement for the most part is alphabetical by ship name, an important exception, however, being the opium and China trade letters found in Box 4. These are filed chronologically and together provide and important view of trade with China during the 1840’s and 50’s.

Box 5 contains 500 pieces of Krumwiede philatelic correspondence, 1943-1953; and letters, covers, and prints of postal markings, etc., primarily during the period 1880-1950. This is followed by Box 6 containing Mr. Krumwiede’s typed research relative to the ships represented in the collection, and to postal markings and clippings, and ship lectures. Box 8 contains clippings and articles from “Steamboat Bill”, and “Stamps”. In Box 9 there are 8 monographs and several clippings relative to ocean mail.

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Restrictions on Access

Available for use in the Manuscripts Division.

Restrictions on Use

Various copying restrictions apply. Guidelines are available from the Manuscripts Division.

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Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of the G. W. Blunt White Library. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.


China–Commerce–United States
United States–Commerce–China


International trade
Opium trade
Postal service
Ships–Pictorial works
Stamp collecting

Document Types:

Covers (Philately)
Ocean mail stamps
Postage stamps


Stamp collectors


Sea poster
Steamboat bill

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Coll. 47, Manuscripts Collection, G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport Museum, Inc.

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Detailed Description of the Collection

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

  Papers carried by vessels; 19th century. Items of special significance; 19th century. Letters regarding the opium trade and China trade; ca. 1840-1850. 20th century covers; 1880-1950. Krumwiede correspondence; 1943-1953. Krumwiede research, notes and ship data; 19th century. Philatelic notes, clippings, and pictures. Newsletters; 1940-1953. Articles and monographs. Top →

Box Folder
1 1 Vessel names beginning with A.
5 Vessel names beginning with B.
7 Vessel names beginning with C.
11 Vessel names beginning with D.
12 Vessel names beginning with E.
14 Vessel names beginning with F.
Box Folder
2 1 Vessel names beginning with G.
3 GREAT WESTERN (cont.).
4 Vessel names beginning with H.
5 Vessel names beginning with I.
6 Vessel names beginning with J.
7 Vessel names beginning with K.
8 Vessel names beginning with L.
9 Vessel names beginning with M.
10 Vessel names beginning with N.
11 Vessel names beginning with O.
12 Vessel names beginning with P.
Box Folder
3 1 Vessel names beginning with Q.
2 Vessel names beginning with R.
3 Vessel names beginning with S.
4 Vessel names beginning with T.
5 Vessel names beginning with U.
6 Vessel names beginning with V.
7 Vessel names beginning with W-Z.
8 Papers carried by French transatlantic vessels; ca. 1850.
9 Disinfected mail and fumigated letters; ca. 1800-1840.
10 Disinfected mail and fumigated letters, (cont.); ca. 1800-1840.
11 Miscellaneous letters and covers (with postmarks).
12 Miscellaneous letters and covers (no postmarks).
13 Miscellaneous ship and steamboat papers (no postmarks).
14 Miscellaneous Bills of Lading.
15 Bill of sale, schooner NAUTILUS; 1866.
16 Sailing advertisements, broadsides, etc..
17 Letter written at sea aboard ship BRUNETTE; 1836.
Box Folder
4 1 Opium trade letters (Captain Prescott). Images
2 Messrs. Augustine Heard & Co., Canton and Hong Kong; ca. 1845-1858.
3 Messrs. Frederick Hurth & Co., London; from Canton; 1849.
Box Folder
5 1 Covers and letters; ca. 1880-1900.
2 Covers; ca. 1880-1900.
3 Covers; ca. 1900-1920.
4 Covers; ca. 1940.
5 Covers; ca. 1950.
6 Covers; ca. 1940-1950.
7 Covers; Newfoundland; ca. 1940-1950.
8 Covers; New Zealand, 20th Century.
9 Covers; (copies) USS CONSTITUTION.
10 Photos of ship covers.
11 Howard A. Krumwiede correspondence; 1943-1948.
12 Howard A. Krumwiede correspondence; 1949.
13 Howard A. Krumwiede correspondence; 1950-1953 (and undated).
Box Folder
6 1 “Data on Ships Covers Collection”, A-I.
2 “Data of Ships Covers Collection, part II”, J-Z.
3 “Index-Ship Data, vol. II-B, Great Britain”.
4 “Index-Ship Data, vol. III, United States”.
5 “Ship Data, vol. III-B, United States”.
6 “British Transatlantic Markings”.
7 Biography of Dr. William S. W. Ruschenberger, and miscellaneous ship cover information.
Box Folder
7 1 Notebook with names and information on ships (in alphabetical order).
2 Notebook of ship names, re. stampless ship covers.
3 Notebook re. California mail information.
4 Notebook re. “Forwarders”.
5 Notes re. ship prints from National Maritime Museum (England).
6 Miscellaneous notes.
7 Articles and clippings from “Stamps”.
8 Clippings from “Stamps” (continued).
9 Clippings from “Marine News” (with index).
10 Miscellaneous clippings.
11 Ship pictures, prints, etc..
12 Ship pictures, prints, etc. (continued).
Box Folder
8 1 “Steamboat Bill”; April 1940-December 1941.
2 “Steamboat Bill”; April 1942-August 1943.
3 “Steamboat Bill”; December 1943- August 1944.
4 “Seaposter”; 1946-1950.
5 “Seaposter”; 1950-1953.
6 “Seaposter”, and “Stamps” (& others); ca. 1950.
7 “Seaposter”, and “Stamps” , and other clippings, notes, etc.; ca. 1950.
Box Folder
9 1 “Romance Along the Alabama Rivers”.
2 “U.S. Shipmarks”.
3 Ocean Mails.
4 “The Shipletter Stamp of London”.
5 The Cancellations of French Stamps of the Classic Issues; 1844-1876.
6 The Canada & New Foundland Stampless Covers Catalog.
7 Iron & Steel Hull Steam Vessels of the United States; 1825-1905.
8 “Steam Navigation on the Carolina Souns & the Chesapeake in 1892”.
9 “Elijah Ormsbee”.
10 Packets.