Wilmington Philatelic Society sponsoring special Wilmington NC pictorial cancel honoring Wreaths Across America 2020 ceremony Wilmington National Cemetery

The Wilmington Philatelic Society is sponsoring a special Wilmington NC pictorial cancel honoring Wreaths Across America 2020 ceremony at Wilmington National Cemetery – this Saturday, December 19th. The special pictorial postmark is for requesting by mail. Grab a cup of hot coffee, hot chocolate, and/or your diet coke morning beverage as we go over the full details below. 

Special thanks to Wilmington Philatelic Society (WPS) members Bruce Patterson and Richard Porcelli for their volunteer time working with the WAA committee and the Wilmington Post Office, as well as Jimmy Jordan for his write-up email he sent out yesterday to all of our local stamp club members. 

As you’ll see later in this post, previous pictorial postmarks WPS has sponsored included the USS NC 10th Anniversary Cancel, and the Hanover Kennel Club Dog Show Pictorial Postmark – both of them were designed by Richard. If his name is sounding familiar, it has been my honor having him design the cachets for AnchoredScraps Milestone #1000, #1500, and #2000 daily blog posts! And my continued sincere thanks to Ellen Fuller, one of My Three Muses here at AnchoredScraps for first introducing me to Wreaths Across America. 

Wilmington Philatelic Society sponsoring special Wilmington NC pictorial cancel honoring Wreaths Across America 2020 ceremony at Wilmington National Cemetery

For our new email blog subscribers, on November 29th, my blog post was on Christmas 2020 Pictorial Postmarks. Today’s post we are looking at this special Pictorial Postmark in our own backyard as the expression goes here local to us in Wilmington, NC. 

First, I am cognizant this may be the longest blog post title to date I have written here at AnchoredScraps in over five years – almost six!

Next, as I was mentioning above, Jimmy did a beautiful job sharing the details for requesting the pictorial postmark in his email, which I’m including here quoting him.

Wilmington Philatelic Society sponsoring special Wilmington NC pictorial cancel honoring Wreaths Across America 2020 ceremony at Wilmington National Cemetery

“… Holiday wreaths will be placed on the grave during the ceremony…

As a community service, the Postal Service offers pictorial postmarks to commemorate local events celebrated in communities throughout the nation. Usually, people attending these local events may obtain the postmark in person at the temporary Post Office established there. However, there will be no temporary Post Office at this event. COVID-19 restrictions have forced the ceremony to be closed to the public and only those volunteers placing the wreaths may attend. The only way to obtain the special cancel will be by mail order request. Requests must be mailed and postmarked no later than 30 days following the pictorial postmark date.

Collectors wishing to obtain the postmark must affix stamps equal to the First-Class rate to an envelope, address the envelope to themselves or others, insert a card of postcard thickness (or folded paper) in envelopes for sturdiness, and tuck in or seal the flap. Place the envelope or postcard in a larger envelope and address it to the address listed for the cancel. This works but the cover will be returned “unprotected” and will usually receive ugly over cancels and bar codes during its trip through the mail stream. I always use the instructions in the next few paragraphs.

Collectors may also send stamped envelopes, addresses or unaddressed, for postmark as long as they supply a larger self-addressed envelope with adequate postage for their return. After applying the pictorial postmark, the Postal Service returns the items inside the addressed protective cover. This is the only way to obtain the unaddressed covers usually preferred by collectors. This also helps keep your collectable covers clean and undamaged.

Furthermore, he goes onto share his preferences for envelope sizes for requesting.

I use a number #6 ¾ envelope for the collectable cover, a number #9 for the return envelope and a number #10 for the request envelope. The #6 ¾ is the common FDC size, the #9 is the common business return mail size and the #10 is the common business mail size. They all fit inside each other and all the mailing can be done without having to fold any of the envelopes. If you do not have a #9 handy, just fold a #10 and use it for the return envelope.

Also noteworthy, he gives an example of what to write with your cover letter:

I also include a cover letter with my request:
“Please service with the December 19, 2020 Wreaths Across America Station special pictorial cancel. A postage paid return envelope is provided for the return on the cover(s). Thank you for help,”

If mailing multiple covers in one request be sure to apply sufficient extra postage to the request and return envelopes if needed.

And here he provides details on free and limit size before running into a minimal charge per cover:

Cancels are free up to 50 covers per request. There is a charge of 5¢ per cover for any over 50. Example: A bulk order of 100 covers cost $2.50 (50 free plus 5¢ X 50). Check to “Postmaster”. 

Lastly, we have the snail mail address for sending your request:

“Address your request to:

Wreaths Across America Cancel Attn: Lori Tucker
152 N Front Street
Wilmington NC 28401-9998 

Before wrapping up, thank you again to Richard, Bruce, and Jimmy for all of their work with this special pictorial postmark. Here’s to hoping you request this special pictorial postmark!

Anchors Aweigh,  


AnchoredScraps #2046

Attribution & Thanks Wilmington Philatelic Society, Wreaths Across America

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