Al Kugel of Hinsdale, Ill, died May 10, 2022 at age 87. A Life Member of the MPHS, Al served our Society as a director, vice-president and president. At the time of his death, Al had the lowest membership number (434) of any active member.
Al was associated with many philatelic organizations, but especially Chicagopex, the Military Postal History Society, and the American Philatelic Society. He served as a director of the Chicago Philatelic Society, and as exhibit chairman and general chairman of Chicagopex. The CPS honored Kugel with its Saul Newbury and Aubrey Berman awards.
With his experience in the investment field Al brought financial stability to Chicagopex considered to be one of the best World Series of Philately venues. As a member of the American Philatelic Society’s finance committee he advised the APS on its investment portfolio.
Al was an expert on military postal history and had over one hundred single and multiframe exhibits in this field. He contributed scores of articles in this area, many of them in the Military Postal History Society Bulletin. He also contributed to The American Philatelist, Collectors Club Philatelist, Postal History Society Journal, Rossica journal of Russian philately, German Postal Specialist, Fil-Italia, News of Hungarian Philately, American Philatelic Congress Book, and The Posthorn among others. Al and co-author Ed Dubin received the United States Stamp Society’s Barbara Mueller award for the best article in the 2017 issues of The American Philatelist.
Al was an APS accredited philatelic judge and served on CANEJ. In 2005 he was awarded the John N. Luff award for distinguished philatelic research and in 2011 he was elected to the APS Writers Hall of Fame. He was a council member of the American Philatelic Congress, an officer in the Collectors Club of Chicago, a Fellow of the Royal Philatelic Society London, and he served on the Smithsonian National Postal Museum’s council of philatelists.
To say that Al will be missed by many of us in the MPHS is a gross understatement.
Al graciously supplied this Society with copies of his many exhibits and presentations.
They can be found on the website. Just a sampling includes:
Allied Plebiscite Activities in Germany, 1920-1921
The First Marine Defense Battalion at Pearl Harbor
Austria-Hungary's Vistula Flotilla in World War 1
In 2017, Al co-authored an award-winning article in the American Philatelist on 100th anniversary of the United States involvement in the First World War (April 2017 Issue)
The photo at the top of this web page shows American Philatelic Society President, Dr. Peter McCann (L), presenting the APS research medal to Al Kugel(R) at NAPEX 2001.