International Letter Writing Week (ILWW) is the week that included October 9, the date the Universal Postal Union (UPU) was founded.
I was first introduced to ILWW through some Asian stamps from the late 1950s and very early 1960s that my Mom gave me to keep me out of trouble when I was young. She would later on give me her entire collection.
It’s hardly known at all in the US, but better known in Europe and especially East Asia. In particular, Japan and Thailand have issued ILWW stamps on an annual basis during certain stretches of time. Russia also did back in the 1960s. Beyond that, spotted issues (including US) from various countries over the years. I haven’t made a comprehensive list, but probably 5-10 dozen issues since 1957.
ILWW was started via Recommendation C13/1957, adopted by the 14th Postal Union Congress in Ottawa in 1957:
The Fourteenth Congress of the Universal Postal Union urges all member countries of the Union to consider the possibility of making the week in which 9 October falls International Letter Writing Week. It expressed the formal opinion that the United Nations and specialized agencies, whose aims and objects coincide with those to be achieved by the said International Week, should assist effectively in introducing it.
Later on, Recommendation C5/1964, adopted by the 15th Postal Union Congress in Vienna in 1964, would specify the start day for ILWW:
In view of the importance of International Letter-writing week and of the success it meets with, it is suggested that all member countries of the Union should choose the same day as the first day of the week in question, namely, the Sunday beginning the week in which 9 October falls.
Yes, Japan has issued about 2-3 dozen of them since they first started the series in 1958. I think I only have that one in used condition. I might have an FDC of one of the early ones. As I mentioned, I'll have to dig this all out from my old childhood collection. I just happened to have that page of Japanese issues in a binder on my shelf (I didn't put it back into the archived box). If I remember correctly, Japan took a break from the series, and then restarted it -- although I don't know why. I think @ioalani had most of them posted in his thread. Maybe he can upload the pictures onto another image host and re-post them again here?
Thailand and Russia also issued a few dozen over the decades between them.
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