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DON FELIPE R. HIDALGO

By Aquilino de los Triņos

(Philippine Journal of Philately, Jan-Feb 1949)


Don Felipe R. Hidalgo, nephew of the Filipino painter Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo y Padilla, is a leading Filipino collector, owner of a vast treasure worth a million-peso in souvenirs, armors, coins, medals, furniture, virtu, old pain­tings, different stamps throughout the world and all multifarious collections that can be called a treasure, from a tiny pincushion in the figure of Hitler to a life-size bronze tiger.

He began collecting at the tender age of six, and still collecting now and acquiring rarer collections for his treasures. He will be 64 on January 20, 1949 and still looking in his prime of life. He belongs to a long line of the wealthy Hidalgo families in Manila.  He attended his grammar school at the Ateneo de Manila with Bishop Cesar Guerrero, Judge Jorge Revilla and Engineer Zaragoza as his classmates, and continued his law course at the old Liceo de Manila.

Although Chapter XIII of the American Air Mail Society, popularly known as the Philippine Air Mail Society, has not yet been reorganized since the armistice, he is still the president. He collects thousands upon thousands of different stamps investing a considerable portion of his money on this collection. He specializes on first day covers and air mails; stamps with errors also fascinate him. He says he did not invest his money in business nor buy real estate but invested it in collections. Asked whether his collection is for speculation, he emphatically replied that treasure-collection gives him an aesthetic bliss usually found among lovers of arts, and that is all he desires.

He agrees that however determined a philatelist to invest his money on stamps, he cannot possibly have a complete collection of a certain country. Emphasizing the rare one-cent British Guiana stamp as his example, he says that this stamp is so rare that only a few got hold of this stamp, and that one stamp missing from his collection means incompleteness of the collection for that particular country.

He has no definite plans for the future in case he succumbs to the inevitable, however, he says he will give his treasure-collection to whom­ever among his children will be interested to keep it.

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