THE GEORGE OVERTON “FAGA” AUTOGRAPHED POSTCARD COLLECTION
Some years ago, I think 18 to 20 to be honest, I was offered a collection of FAGA postcards, an artist I have long specialised in collecting. This collection had belonged to George Overton, who had been a friend of the artist and who had built up a considerable, and highly interesting collection. I made an offer, but someone offered more, and I thought I had lost out (I could not offer more as I just did not have the money). Many months later I got another chance because the original buyer had not paid the money. So, I bought this extensive and colossal collection. I had been interested because the collection included a copy of the one postcard design which I did not have a copy of in my own collection, so my collection was now complete with single copies of every issued design. The collection also included some unique one-off FAGA card items as well. There was also a box of signed postcards which I put to one side whilst I spent six very enjoyable months sorting through all the other postcards etc.
Eventually, one day I pulled out the box of signed postcards. Surprisingly, I recognised some of the signatures, especially the film and TV related ones, but there were others which seemed to be pilots, including many Battle of Britain pilots and others. So, I decided to do some research on these cards and slowly the enormity of what I now had started to sink in. George had either written to all these requesting an autograph, or in the case of some celebrities had waited at the stage door after shows. Goerge had built up an extensive and unique collection. I decided to mount these signed postcards up for a display at my local club, without really understanding how much research I was about to get myself wrapped up in or how much this collection would take over my life for over a year, and how much the stories I uncovered would fascinate me and change my whole opinion of this signed collection. In the end I wrote up every sheet, mounted every card and letter that had been included, and in many cases found appropriate photographs of either the person or something related to that person, often both and more. Their stories came alive for me, especially the war pilots and the Victoria Cross medal winners, a selection of which were included as well.
In the end I realised that this was a superb collection made up from a World War II pilot signed collection, an Arnhem signed collection, Victoria Cross winners, Explorers, and other celebrities. I obtained this collection because George had sadly died (I had had some correspondance with George previously when I had bought a smaller collection directly from him). As the years have now passed on many, too many, of those who signed for George have also passed on. George's timing with his requests was near perfect as it would be impossible to build up a collection anything like this today.
I have now shown this display at many clubs across the south of the country. Even though this has been hard work I decided to show the display here on my webpage.
I hope you enjoy these pages and the ‘often incredible’ stories of all those who kindly signed a postcard for George Overton for his collection, a collection I hope I have now given some respect to and done it justice in the way it is now presented.