Roland Auctions NY is proud to present the seventh of many specialized auctions containing collections from the Estate of Dr. Alan York. A nationally renowned and esteemed collector, Dr. York’s vast historical holdings tell the story of Western Civilization and the history of the United States of America from George Washington’s 1789 inauguration through the new millennium. Worldwide Philately begins the auction and is highlighted by better singles, sets and collections of United States and French Offices in China, Fiume, World War II propaganda, Jewish ghetto and internment camp issues, General Government revenues, post-World War II Germany, as well as an advanced grouping of United States Civil War and British anti-slavery theme envelopes.  Following this section, and comprising over 300 lots, is Dr. York’s painstakingly assembled collection of World War II Numismatics. This scholarly group introduces a meticulously curated one-of-a-kind collection of scarce to rare specimens only seen once in a lifetime.  A partial list of highlights includes:

  • British and Commonwealth internment camp coins and currency from East Africa, Ireland, Channel Islands, India, and Australia.
  • Internment and prisoner of war camp chits/coupons from the United States, France and elsewhere.
  • Third Reich labor, internment and concentration camp coupons/notes from Auschwitz, Birkenau, Mauthausen, Dachau, Gross-Rosen, Neuengamme, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen, Ravensbruck, Flossenburg, Oranienburg, Mittelbau-Dora, Amersfoort, Westerbork, Herzogenbusch, and elsewhere .
  • Jewish ghetto notes, coins and ration coupons from Theresienstadt, Warsaw and a very advanced study of the diverse issues from Litzmannstadt (Lodz) including specimens.
  • Post-World War II displaced persons and refugee notes including highlights from Deggendorf, Feldafing and the Cyprus American Joint Distribution Committee.
  • German “Operation Bernhard” forgeries of British “white” notes as well as genuine £100 notes.
  • General Government prisoner of war and internment camp notes from Murnau, Grossborn and Woldenberg.
  • Jewish winter help issues and Palestine immigration fund related materials.

Although Alan York (1925 – 2014) enjoyed a successful career as an optometrist, it was his avocation as a collector that at times rivaled and surpassed his “official” profession.  A lifelong passion for learning and sharing knowledge was the essential engine behind Dr. York’s thoughtfully assembled collections.  Beginning as a young boy, encouraged by his father, Alan York became enthralled with philately (the collection and study of postage stamps).  During a recent interview with Dr. York’s daughter, Barbara York of East Hampton, she recounted, “My father’s initial interest in stamps was the catalyst from which the other collections sprung.  Through stamp collecting he deepened his knowledge of history, geography, and current affairs…”  Growing up in Brooklyn during the Great Depression, and with limited means, young Alan York worked determinedly to put himself through the Illinois College of Optometry. Upon being drafted into military service during World War II, and recognizing his abilities as a born educator,  the U.S. Army assigned Dr. York the task of teaching illiterate G.I.s to read prior to their deployments across the globe.  The personal contact and participation in bringing literacy to untold numbers of his struggling peers appealed strongly to Alan’s compassionate nature. After the war, it was this experience that served as the impetus for additional studies at N.Y.U. where he earned a Master’s Degree in Education.  While at N.Y.U. he met, and later married, fellow student Claire Fisher.  Together the newlywed couple taught remedial reading, with Claire going on to an impressive career as an educator on Eastern Long Island. After settling in East Hampton, N.Y., the York family expanded with the addition of a son, Steven, and daughter Barbara.

Auction: Friday, May 19th, 11am

Preview: Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday, May 16th – 18th, from 10 am – 7pm.

This truly outstanding sale can be viewed online at