Downeast Stamps is a sole proprietorship owned and operated by Gilbert M. Roderick with premises at 52 Fern Street, Bangor, Maine, USA. Originally established in 1969 as an approval service, Downeast gradually evolved through dealing at bourses and finally into a public auction house in 1975. Gil has been a member of APS since 1974.
Growing up in Rumford, Maine, a town well known for its long snowy winters and world class skiers, Gil picked two appropriate pastimes as a child: stamp collecting and cross country skiing. He collected his first stamp at age 10, won his first ski race as a high school freshman at age 13, and still gets out to cross-country ski a few times a week, despite two stainless steel replacements for his arthritic knees.
Gil started in the stamp business part-time when he was living in Massachusetts and working for Massachusetts Mutual Insurance Company. In 1969 he returned to Maine as manager of the Bald Mountain Ski Area. When the ski area closed, a victim of the variable coastal climate and a sluggish economy, he turned his part-time avocation into a full-time business.
Since then, Downeast Stamps has held more than 300 auctions over the course of 40+ years. The first catalog was 8 pages, typed by hand, run off on a mimeograph machine, and mailed in hand-addressed business envelopes for 30 cents. Times have changed. The catalog for May, 2009, comprised over 2,500 lots on 141 pages of text with an additional 67-page spread of images, and cost $2.53 to mail. It was set up on a 1.8 gigahertz desktop computer which also generated the corresponding on-line catalog with full color images for the worldwide web.
In April, 2017, we updated our website for the first time since we came online in 2003. That was before eBay, iPhones, and tablet devices, and when dial-up connections to the World Wide Web were still common. We've embraced the most modern web technologies, so our new site is more 'mobile-friendly' and easier and faster to navigate, even for desktop users. We invite your feedback.
We've come a long way. We owe it to you, our consigners and our collectors.