This arrived today:
Inside was a rather special JFK FDC, it is the very first John Ranto fdc ever made:
John Ranto was a prolific US First Day Cover collector and producer of a special line of his own hand made Postal Bulletin FDC's. He produced these covers starting in the 1964 and created them up to just a few years ago. These covers were created by hand folding US Postal Service Bulletins into a standard FDC size and then applying the current issue for the cover in addition to related combination stamps. He cleverly crafted these covers into mostly one-of-a-kind cachets or productions. In the beginning, Mr. Ranto created these covers for his personal collection, but as he enjoyed the process, he did start to create extras that he would trade or sell. Each of his covers is normally signed or initialed on the reverse side, and also coded, but not in every case.
He lived in Hamilton Township NJ & was an active member of the Hamilton Township Stamp Club as well as a Life Member of the American First Day Cover Society (AFDCS). Many of these covers are one-of-a-kind items, although typically he did prepare anywhere from 1-5 of an issue, using different combinations of stamps in many cases.
There are 5 basic types of Ranto Cachets:
1. Stamp issue FDC on the original bulletin for that specific issue
2. Stamp issue FDC on the original bulletin for a previous related topic issue
3. Stamp issue FDC on the photo copied bulletin for that specific issue
4. Stamp issue FDC on the photo copied bulletin for a previous related topic issue
5. Stamp issue FDC on other medium for that specific issue.
I note two things with this cover.
Firstly it had an address label on it, presumably addressed to John Ranto.
Secondly it has Horace D Westbrooks rubber stamp on the reverse & I can think of no plausible reason why it is there
I guess we will never know the answer to these queries.
Specialist Collector of World Horse Racing Covers, Melbourne Cup & Kentucky Derby, & JFK fdcs.