Joe Frasketi's Space and other Topical Covers
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Hello! Let me tell you something about myself, my background, and how I got involved with space covers. Joe Frasketi Jr, Himself I am now retired, sixty+ years and enjoying my senior years living in south west Florida, a semi-tropical paradise called Fort Myers. This was also Thomas Edison's winter home for many years and he also had a laboratory here too!

My background is in the space tracking field. I went to work for the RCA Service Company on the Missile Test Project back in 1956 before the first man-made satellite was ever launched, so I guess I could be called a space pioneer. I even have a certificate somewhere that attests to that fact!

I specialized in telemetry (back then no one knew what that was). Today telemetry is used in everyday life, especially in the medical field such as hospitals and ambulances. Telemetry is simply the relaying of information from one point to another via electronic transmitted signals. For example: A spacecraft would be launched and by tracking it and receiving its transmitted signals, we could tell exactly what was happening up there. On a manned flight, we could monitor the astronaut's respiration, heart beat, pulse, etc.

My job was to track missiles and spacecraft and that's what I did for 16 years. I was fortunate to have visited many countries and islands in that period of time while working for RCA. This included the Dominican Republic, St. Lucia Island, Puerto Rico, Grand Turk Island (in the Turks and Caicos Islands), Antigua Island, and Grand Bahama Island plus a few months working on one of the smallest tracking ships, the FS Golf. My last tour of duty was on that tiny volcanic island in the mid Atlantic ocean called Ascension Island. (If you worked on tracking stations or ships, see bottom of page for more information).

I began to collect space covers in 1961 and even issued space tracking station covers back then for myself and a few friends. Later I started servicing space tracking station covers for collectors world-wide when the manned Apollo Program was in full swing. Many longtime collectors have covers that I serviced in their collection. And on occasion, I hear from one of them who remembers the free service I provided.

I first started to sell covers when the U.S. Gemini Space Twin Stamps were issued in September of 1967. I issued in quantity a special souvenir sheetlet honoring all of the Gemini astronauts on the first day of issue of these stamps.

Since then, I have issued other U.S. space first day covers (FDCs) and on occasion, other topical first day covers that interest me, for sale to collectors and to add to my own collection, such as an Apollo 11 moonlanding certificate for the U.S. Apollo 11 First Step on the Moon stamp. Other topical FDCs were issued for the centenary of the sound recording stamp (a Tom Edison invention), Emily Bissell/TB stamp, Christmas stamps, sea shell stamps, just to name a few. Also I have issued covers for special events such as presidential inaugurations, space anniversaries, and commemorating local history of Fort Myers, Florida, where I reside.

I issue my FDCs and commemorative event covers under a few different names such as FMF cachets, JJF cachets, and FMF local post. I prefer to use a variety of different methods to produce my cachets that include printed cachets, hand painted cachets, collage cachets, rubber stamped cachets, label cachets, etc. Perhaps one of my covers is in your collection right now.

A detailed article about me and my cachets was published in the First Days Magazine, issued by the American First Day Cover Society in the July/August 1981 issue. If you would like to have a reprint of this article that has many illustrations of my cover productions, I would be glad to send you a copy. Please request a copy when placing an order.

If by chance you know of anyone who worked on the Eastern Test Range Space Tracking Stations in the Bahamas; West Indies and South Atlantic, I would be pleased to correspond with you. (Or maybe you worked on the range yourself, if so, see below), I have lost contact with many of the friends I worked with and it would be nice to hear from them or make contact with them.

Click here to send mail to Joe

I have now started two special pages for all range rats!
A General Information page for range rats
A sign in book for range rats!

  • This General Information page gives some news of range rats which I have accumulated over the years. If you have range information that you think would be of interest to other range rats, send it and if appropriate it will be published as time permits.

click on the below link to view this General Information page:
Range Rat Introduction Page

  • This Range Rat Sign In Book is for the use of range rats, their families, and those who worked at Cape Canaveral/KSC/Patrick AFB and the down range stations and ships (AMR/MTP/ETR). You can include info about where you worked, years you spent on the range, what you did after you left the range, what you are doing now, people you worked with, etc. etc.
    Visitors who do not fit in the above catagories will have their entries deleted, however you are invited to sign our regular website Guestbook.
  • click on the below link to view this book and also to make an entry:
    Range Rat Sign in Book

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Today is Monday, 23-Apr-2018 09:08:02 EDT
Last updated: Sun Sep 28 11:18:24 2008 - [_user_tony,1] Send Email to Joe