THUNDER BEFORE LIGHTNING Pony Express Stamp Book Art by ALBERTO VARGAS (1961)
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This is a rare, interesting and strange publication. Published in 1961, ‘THUNDER BEFORE LIGHTNING The Pony Express in Stamp and Story’ is a collection of 100 short stories of the history of the Pony Express. To accompany each story is a large sized (1 1/2″ x 2″) full color stamp painted by Alberto Vargas. Yes, THAT Alberto Vargas! 100 stamps included, never used, still on their original strips.
Why the authors, based in Salt Lake City, decided to use Alberto Vargas (famous for his Playboy pin-ups) as the illustrator, is anybody’s guess. Full color, wraparound cover to boot! I know Vargas was still painting some pretty cool pin-ups for Playboy at this time, so I’m not sure what he was smoking when he illustrated THIS project, but it’s hard to believe it’s the same artist.
SEE LARGE IMAGES BELOW.
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