Stamp collector promotes hobby for youths

December 22nd, 2013

William Melver has been involved in stamp collecting for more than 50 years, since he was a 13-year-old growing up in Texas.

Now the West Hill resident would like to see more young people pick up the hobby that he said has enriched his life so much.

"Stamps are such great media for teaching or relating stories, from historic events to geography and culture," said Melver, who is a member of several stamp organizations, including the Rubber City Stamp Club.

During that group's recent stamp exhibition, Melver entered a framed display he put together of stamp covers with the image of Akron native and Challenger Space Shuttle crew member Judith Resnik. He earned a silver medal for the exhibit, he said.

After that, he decided to donate the framed exhibit to the Judith A. Resnik Community Learning Center in West Akron. The school was named for Resnik after it was rebuilt because Resnik attended the school when it was named Fairlawn Elementary School.

During a holiday assembly at the school Dec. 3, Melver presented the exhibit to Resnik Principal Tammy Brady, who said she plans to have the display hung in the school's learning resource center.

Melver said he has approached Brady and officials at other local schools to see if any teachers are interested in curriculum materials available from stamp organizations. The American Philatelic Society, of which he is a member, has a program called Stamps Teach available for educators.

"We've got some curriculum designed in conjunction with the Smithsonian," he said.

"We have members of our club just dying to be mentors to kids and put together exhibits. Kids love to collect things, so if we present it right, maybe we can get some kids interested in it. There are tons of materials free for the asking."

Melver said the Rubber City Stamp Club meets the first Friday of the month at 8 p.m. at Montrose Zion United Methodist Church, 565 N. Cleveland-Massillon Road in Bath.

Sourced by West Side Leader