From The Fossil no. 352, April 2012
The Fossils lost our beloved Trustee Stan "Skip" Oliner, age 73, on January 15, 2012. Stan was recruited for NAPA by the late Elaine (Jorgensen) Peck. His many publications for NAPA between 1954 and 1976 are detailed in Tom Parson's abstract from the Moitoret Family Index of Amateur Journals 1870 - 2004, which appears later in this issue. Stan served NAPA as Official Editor in 1960-61 and as President in 1968-69 and as Librarian (lifetime appointment). He was also President of The Fossils in 1973-74. In 1964-67, he undertook an examination and reorganization of the Library of Amateur Journalism, between its stays at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia PA (1935-64) and at New York University in New York NY (1967-80). Then in 1990 he and Mike Horvat each took a week from their lives to rescue the Willametta and Martin Keffer collection in Roanoke VA and to ship it to join the rest of the Library of Amateur Journalism in Stayton OR. When in 2003-04 The Fossils learned that the Library of Amateur Journalism would be losing its home in Stayton OR, Stan contributed his expert knowledge of institutions and their practices to The Fossils' LAJ committee, which finally decided upon placement with the University of Wisconsin Special Collections in Madison WI, where LAJ arrived on December 30, 2004. Then in 2010 Stan once again coordinated efforts to rescue part of the Sheldon and Helen Wesson collection (formerly the property of Fossil Historian Daniel Graham) when it was offered for sale by a Connecticut bookseller. Stan reported on the results of the rescue project to the joint AAPA-NAPA convention in Elk Grove Village IL in 2010--the same convention at which he received the hobby's coveted Gold Composing Stick Award. Regrettably, Stan died while the placement of Graham-Wesson collection was still in progress. (He had placed a selection of "Lone Scout" material from the collection with the University of Wyoming.) Fortunately, Fossil Secretary-treasurer Tom Parson, a fellow Denver resident, has taken over and will carry to completion Stan's endeavors with guidance from The Fossils, AAPA and NAPA, all of which participated financially in the rescue of the Graham-Wesson collection.
Stan was born in Denver in 1938, the son of the late Herman Oliner (d. 2001) and Bess (Charney) Oliver (1916-2009). His mother was the last surviving child of Samuel and Rebecca Charney, Russian Jewish immigrants who settled in Denver in 1911. She married Herman Oliner in August 1936. The Oliners had a son Stan and a daughter Fern. Son Stan became a professional librarian, who worked for many years as curator of books and manuscripts for the Colorado Historical Society. He was a member of the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester MA, a prominent donor and volunteer for its fabled amateur journalism collection. He was twice married and by his first wife had daughters Michelle Oliner and Stephanie Smith Velasco. By his second daughter he was the grandfather of Jacquelyn, Ari and Paul Velasco. Stan's cremated remains are to be buried next summer at the Jewish cemetery in Leadville CO, and a memorial service is to be held at an as-yet unscheduled future date.
The Fossils join the Oliner family and all of amateur journalism in mourning the passing of Stan Oliner. His knowledge of and love for amateur journals were an outstanding resource for the hobby and for all of the institutions which collect its journals. Stan will be sorely missed in the hobby ranks. In his later years, Stan volunteered his time and knowledge not only at the American Antiquarian Society in Worcester MA but also at the African-American Collection at the Denver Public Library. I hope he would like the article on Rev. Charles Randolph Uncles, the first black Roman Catholic priest ordained on American soil, in this issue of The Fossil. That this outstanding man participated in our hobby as a youth and that The Fossils welcomed him in our hobby ranks (despite the prejudice against his race in some amateur journalism circles at that time) is surely an honor both to our hobby and to our organization.