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Claessen Henk 063 Hello fellow collectors, My name is Henk Claessen, I am 64 years old and live in Sittard, the Netherlands. At the age of seven I started collecting match labels. When the children came into my family, the hobby fade into the background. A few years ago I fanatically resumed my old hobby. I only collect labels, mainly the old (pre-war) labels from the Netherlands, Sweden, Germany and Japan. However, I also have a lot of labels from all over the world. (I think about 150,000 pieces at the moment) Japanese labels are my favorites, even if I can't read a word of Japanese. The early colored letterpress prints are heavenly. I try to translate the texts more often, which is not that easy. My Japan collection, mostly from the Meiji period (1868-1912), contains around 10,000 labels, including around 700 package labels. The best thing is when I can get labels in an original booklet. These booklets were issued by the manufacturer or used by agents and contain an average of 100 to 400 pieces. I to like search for abnomallities, like wrong spelling, misprints, violation of the copy-right, that wasn’t invented in the early Meiji period. So, in a pleasant way, I’m quite busy with my hobby.
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