Home » Comments about Shep » JEAN SHEPHERD Phake Philately

JEAN SHEPHERD Phake Philately




I just encountered this Google  facepage today, and wouldn’t ya know, I was planning on posting my Shep postage stamp today!

So here it is ↓

I was this Shep-researcher, see.  I encountered two matters

of interest. And I stirred them together.

1. An extraordinary photo of young Shepherd, obviously taken in his earliest days in New York, previously unknown to me, photographed by Roy Schatt (Who took the faux F. R. Ewing shot of Shep in 1956). This is one of the best pictures of him I’ve ever encountered.

He seems at ease and innocent (?) and happy, and he’s dangling the glasses that he probably just took off for the photo, which makes me wonder if this is not a transition stage toward his choice to appear nearly consistently without them. Note my reference in EYF! page 164, quoting his friend Helen Gee: “And he also didn’t see too well. He was wearing contacts. He was one of the first people, I think, to wear contact lenses–or so he told me…He kept boasting about his contact lenses. Vain. Oh, very vain…”

2. I encountered companies on the Internet that offer authentic U. S. postage stamps with one’s own choice of image.

I contacted Schatt’s widow, who gave me permission to use the Shep photo for the stamp. I designed and submitted the layout. The company’s response was that an image of a celebrity can’t be used.


What we have below are the two samples of my fake stamps.



zazzle 1zazzle2                                         Young Shep

    I, Libertine Shep





Do not use these phony stamps.

(Do not try these in the real world.)

Only in yer dreams!

     FAKE!    NOT REAL!    FAKE!

(But wouldn’t it a been neat if they were really fer real?)




  1. mygingerpig says:

    Gee, are these genuine real fake stamps?

  2. is there a process to make them real?They make stamps for everything- why not Shep?

    • ebbergmann says:

      The stamp-making page insists that one can’t do it of a “celebrity.” But isn’t it nice to know that they consider Shep a celebrity! I don’t know how the U S Postal Service chooses subjects. Maybe some day!

  3. Stu Tarlowe says:

    I remember hearing Shep talk about how we should have stamps depicting cartoon characters (e.g., he envisioned a Smokey Stover stamp that even included “Notary Sojac”). Once again, Shep was prescient; while there still hasn’t been a stamp depicting Smokey Stover, since 1997 we’ve seen stamps depicting Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse and others.

  4. Lou says:

    TO: Gene:
    FROM: Lou Miano

    All the Fat Heads would need to make a united, concerted effort to get this done. (Like a sudden deluge of requests via cards and letters and/or petitions.) However, t needs to be planned and well organized well in advance with a specific date in mind.

    Here’s a bit of info from the US Postal Service Citizen’s Stamp Advisory Committee website. Go there to read the whole fascinating process. For now, here are a few important highlights :

    The Stamp Selection Process:
    Stamp proposals are to be submitted in writing to the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee. This allows everyone the same opportunity to suggest a new stamp subject. Subjects should be submitted at least three years in advance of the proposed date of issue to allow sufficient time for consideration and for design and production, if the subject is approved. All eligible subjects are reviewed by the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee regardless of how they are submitted, i.e., stamped cards, letters or petitions.

    Stamp proposals are to be submitted in writing to the following address:
    Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee
    c/o Stamp Development
    U.S. Postal Service
    475 L’Enfant Plaza SW, Room 3300
    Washington, DC 20260-3501

    Stamp Subject Selection Criteria
    The U.S. Postal Service and the members of the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee have set certain basic criteria that are used to determine the eligibility of subjects for commemoration on all U.S. stamps and stationery.

    These are the 11 major criteria now guiding subject selection:

    [Note: the first 3 would definitely apply to a Shep stamp!]

    1. It is a general policy that U.S. postage stamps and stationery primarily will feature American or American-related subjects. Other subjects can be considered if the subject had significant impact on American history or culture.
    2. The Postal Service will honor men and women who have made extraordinary contributions to American society and culture. These remarkable individuals through their achievements in their respective fields have made enduring contributions to the United States of America.
    3. Commemorative stamps or postal stationery items honoring individuals usually will be issued to celebrate births, anniversaries, and significant contributions.


    from Lou

  5. Lou says:

    Here’s the link to the US Postal Service Citizen’s Stamp Advisory Committee website:

  6. mygingerpig says:

    Not related to stamps, but related to Stu’s comment about cartoon heroes on stamps, I recall a show Shepherd did about how every era has an animal that people go nuts over, and he ran down the list of the “pets” of different periods: I am too tired to recall them now, but I thought it was one of those insights into social phenomena that Shep saw so well.

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