North America (LbNA)
weeks after Smithsonian
magazine published an article
on letterboxing in its April 1998 issue, Daniel "Elf"
Servatius, Erik "Vermont Viking" Davis, and Mitch "Der
Mad Stamper" Klink began development of the first American
letterboxing website. In October 1999, with additional assistance
from Randy "Mapsurfer" Hall and a host of other volunteers,
domain was officially introduced under the name "Letterboxing
North America." In addition to maps and clues, it included
tips for getting started, a link to a dedicated discussion forum
and a special section for kids. The LbNA patches were commissioned
by Mohmers and first produced in December 2000, with a design that
had been developed online by concensus of the website's participants.
It is interesting to note that the now-famous orange background
was a mistake. Early proofs showed orange, but Mohmers had been
told that they would actually be tan. But when they finally arrived,
sure enough, they were orange. This mistake has since been intentionally
copied by many other letterboxing patch designers in an attempt
to mimic the original color scheme.
|Patch donated by: Der Mad Stamper
this isn't a misprint. And, yes, we are aware that geocaching is
not the same as letterboxing. However, since its introduction in
October 2000, there have been letterbox clues on the Geocaching.com
website. Known as "hybrid" boxes, they can include a rubber
stamp and logbook for letterboxers, as well as a cache of trinkets
for geocachers. With GPS coordinates for "clues," these
hybrids do, technically, qualify this as a letterboxing-related
website. It might be interesting to note that when founder, Jeremy
Irish, first created the Geocaching.com website, he contacted the
LbNA web team about the possibility of consolidating both hobbies
into a single website. The answer he received was a resounding "NO!"
donated by: Der