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Stamps for the Wounded

Stamps for the Wounded has a new website.
Please refer to the new website for current information.

Every U.S. President,
since the organization was
founded in 1942, has
supported the work of
Stamps for the Wounded.


What's New?  Lots of things, but not this job.

   It is a vital job that must be done.  It's a job for the PEOPLE, for men and women, thousands of them, to whom you and I owe a debt that can never be repaid.

Who are They?

   They're the men and women in more than 130 Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) facilities (hospitals and convalescent centers located all across the country). How did they get there? In the course of protecting OUR security, in World War II , in the police action in Korea, Viet Nam, Middle East, and in trouble spots all over the world.

What is the Job?

Doing whatever we can to stamp CANCELLED across the face of the deadliest foe the hospitalized service personnel must fight - ENFORCED IDLENESS and its deadly allies: boredom, loneliness, frustration, futility, and despair.

Doing whatever we  can to relight the spark of interest and life in the weary eyes of wounded or convalescent veteran...eyes that without such help would stare at nothing but what one G.I. called "White ceilings...and dark futures."

This is the job.  How can we do it?

That's right...ordinary postage stamps, even the kind that are tossed unheeded into the trash everyday!

What can stamps do?

   Miracles, almost.  Stamps can give bedridden patients, long-treatment patients, and convalescent  patients, a consuming interest.  They can sort and mount stamps without effort as they lie in bed.  If they are ambulatory, or even in a wheelchair, they can pass happy hours soaking stamps and mounting them in albums.  Even the far withdrawn, mentally disabled patient takes pleasure in using the more common stamps to make fanciful greeting cards, or to cover decorative boxes in organized therapy sessions.

Stamps for the Wounded (SFTW) is a 100% volunteer organization.  Founded early in 1942  in response to an appeal from the Armed Forces Hospitals, it was extended to nationwide scope  in 1944 with the aid of the country's leading stamp societies. SFTW members are philatelists who voluntarily collect for  and distribute to hospitalized service personnel the tools they need to engage in this vital therapy.  None of them has even been paid a single penny for their services.

Is SFTW affiliated with the government?

   No.  However the American Red Cross, the Department of Veterans'  Affairs, and other Veteran groups recognizes STAMPS FOR THE WOUNDED as an organization accredited to serve the philatelic needs of hospitalized service personnel.

Are contributions to SFTW tax-exempt?

    Yes indeed they are! (See Internal Revenue Code, 1943, Section 501 (c)3.) Donations of cash, stamps, covers and stamp supplies are deductible at Fair Market Value for firms or individuals.  Although stamps and covers are the raw material of our work, CASH DONATIONS are also needed to bur albums, hinges, magnifiers, catalogues and accessories.  Job-lots or remnant  stocks are for free distribution to hospitalized service personnel.  Cash donations also help in mailing our packages of philatelic materials to the DVA facilities where they are used.

What stamps does SFTW want?

   All philatelic material - stamps and covers - U.S. and foreign, in any quantity.  Envelopes with special postmarks, first-day covers, first air-mail flights, and so on can be used.

What stamps doesn't SFTW want?

   Torn, damaged or defective modern stamps.

Where can I find SFTW?

   Your own mail.  Friends, business firms with overseas correspondence.  Attics, trunks, closets, where they are, at a guess, more than a million discarded or forgotten stamp collections, that could be a Godsend to SFTW.  Look.  Ask.  Investigate.

Now You've Decided to Help...May we venture a few suggestions for packing and mailing your precious gifts?

  1. Be SURE to leave at least a quarter-inch margin or paper around stamps you tear off envelopes or packages, on a single side of envelope paper.  This saves time and money in postage.  Please DON'T try to peel or steam stamps off!  Don't soak stamps or sort them into packets.   This work is much of the fun for the hospitalized collector!  Please do not cut stamps from old envelopes or more modern envelopes if they are special, with such things a First day cancels, forwarding markings, etc.

  2. If you possibly find time, separate the stamps into 3 groups: cancelled U.S., uncancelled U.S. and foreign stamps.  You can ship them together but this preliminary sorting will be a great help to us.

  3. Do not include postmarks (except first-day covers or other special events).  Do not send metered mail.

  4. Use postage stamps on all shipments rather than meters.  You must request Post Office Clerks to put stamps on shipments.

  5. Rather than send a few stamps at a time, wait until you have enough for a large envelope or small box.  Send no more than one package per month.

  6. Pack stamps well.  Don't use something that will break in transit.

  7. If you are requesting a tax receipt, please include an estimate of value citing your reference source (stamp catalogue, dealer buy or sell lists, auction realizations, etc.), an inventory list and an appraisal is needed in some cases.

  8. Cash donations are always needed to offset mailing costs.

  9. We can use stamp collecting supplies, albums, catalogues later than 2000, other philatelic literature, covers, picture postcards and other related material.  We can use other collectibles such as sports cards.

  10. PLEASE print your name and complete address on your parcel, so we'll know who it's from!  We do our best to acknowledge every shipment, but some donors inadvertently make it impossible for us to say "Thanks You!"

Where can I find out more?

   Write directly to:

Stamps for the Wounded
P.O. Box 297
Dunn Loring, VA 22027
John Hotchner
Vice President, SFTW
P.O. Box 1125
Falls Church, VA 22041

   We try to answer all queries and acknowledge all donations promptly, but please be patient if our VOLUNTEER staff sometimes falls a bit behind with the mail.  The first order of business at SFTW is getting the stamps to the veterans who need them!