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Saturday, July 18, 2009

Stamps Fact

Stamps Issuing Countries

North America

(1) Canada (2) United States of America (3) Mexico


Former Name: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, British Columbia and Vancouver Island, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada (Dominion), Newfoundland.

First Stamp Issued: April 1851, Nova Scotia September 01, 1851, New Brunswick September 1851, Prince Edward Island January 01, 1861, British Columbia and Vancouver Island 1860 superseded by separate issues in 1865 after the currency had been decimalized in Vancouver Island, Vancouver Island September 19, 1865, British Columbia November 1865, and Newfoundland January 01, 1857.

First Stamps: Canada (Dominion)

Valid for use throughout original federation March 1868. Successive issues were made available over an ever-widening areas as new provinces came into existence and as the settlements spread.

Name on stamp: Canada

The British Dominion occupies an area in the north of the American Continent almost the size of Europe. The discovery of Canada is credited to John Cabot, a Genoese sailor, in 1497.

2-United States of America

First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1847.

First Stamps: Provisional from 1845.

Name on stamp: USA

Gained independence in 1776 and since then includes 48 states in North America, Alaska, Hawaii, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa and the Trust Territory of the Pacific.


First Stamp Issued: August 01, 1856

Name on stamp: Mexico

The Republic in Central America was the home of the Aztecs, probably the greatest of America’s ancient civilizations. Prior to the issue of her own stamps in 1856, there had been British postal agencies at Vera Cruz and Tampico, using British stamps.

West Indies

1-Bahamas (2) Cayman Islands (3) Cuba (4) Haiti (5) Jamaica


First Stamp Issued: June 10, 1859 inscribed ‘Interinsular Postage’

First Stamps: Britain 1858-9 (oblit: AO5 at Nassau)

Name of stamp: Bahamas

A group of islands in the North Atlantic which were discovered by Christopher Columbus. The mail service dates back to 1841, although a letter is known from the Bahamas as early as 1761. British stamps were first used, until distinctive stamps for the islands appeared in 1859.

2-Cayman Islands

First Stamp Issued: November 1900 (possibly not put into use before February 19, 1901)

First Stamps: Jamaica from April 1889

Name on stamp: Cayman Islands

A group of three islands in the West Indies close to Jamaica, discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1503. From 1889, the stamps of Jamaica were used (until 1959 the islands were a dependency of Jamaica), this practice continuing until 1901.

3- Cuba

First Stamp Issued: April 1855

Name on stamp: Cuba

Cuba, the largest of the islands in the West Indies, was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1492. The first stamps appeared in 1855, when the island was under Spanish control, these stamps being for joint use by Cuba and Puerto Rico. Separate stamp issues for Cuba were released in 1873. Cuba became an independent Republic in 1901.


First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1881

First Stamps: Britain 1869

Name on stamp: Republique d’Haiti

Part of the island of San Domingo – which was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1492 – formerly known as Hispaniola. The first stamps were issued in 1881, although the Royal Mail Packet Company did issue a 10c label to indicate payment of its service from 1875 to 1880.


First Stamp Issued: November 23, 1860

First Stamps: Britain from 1858 (issued 8th May in Kingston and November at other offices).

Name of stamp: Jamaica

Island in the Caribbean, discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1493. At first the stamps of Great Britain were in use from 1858, but in November 1860 Jamaica’s own stamps appeared. The island was inhabited by an aboriginal tribe until the Spanish took possession in 1509. It officially became British by the Treaty of Madrid in 1670.


1-Anguilla (2) Antigua & Barbuda (3) Barbados (4) British Virgin Islands (5) Dominica (6) Dominican Republic (7) Grenada (8) Montserrat (9) St.Kitts & Nevis (10) St.Lucia (11) St.Vincent & The Grenadines (12) Trinidad & Tobago (13) Puerto Rico


Former Name: St Christopher (St Kitts), St Christopher-Nevis (Saint Kitts-Nevis), St Christopher, Nevis and Anguilla, Leeward Islands.

First Stamp Issued: September 04, 1967, St Christopher (St Kitts) April 01, 1870, St Christopher-Nevis 1903 (inscribed Saint Kitts-Nevis), St Christopher, Nevis and Anguilla June 02, 1953, Leeward Islands 1890.

First Stamps: St Christopher (St Kitts): Britain from 1858-60 (oblit A12 at Basseterre, St Christopher-Nevis (Saint Kitts-Nevis): Britain 1858-60, Nevis 1861-90, St Christopher 1870-90 and Leeward Islands 1890-1903.

Name on stamp: Anguilla

A small group of islands in the West Indies settled by the British in 1650. It was politically attached to the larger grouping of St Kitts Nevis Anguilla, until this grouping was granted Associated Statehood, upon which Anguilla declared she ‘independent’. Anguilla was restored to British control by the Anguilla Act of 1971.

2-Antigua & Barbuda

First Separate Stamp Issued; September 04, 1967

Name on stamp: Antigua, Barbuda

An island in the West Indies which was discovered in 1493 by Christopher Columbus and named by him after the Church of Santa Maria la Antigua in Seville. Its first stamps were issued in 1862, to be replaced for a short period by the issues of the Leeward Islands. For a time stamps of Antigua and Leeward Islands were used jointly.

Barbuda and Redonda are both small island dependencies of Antigua. All reports indicate that Redonda is uninhabited. Stamps for Barbuda, being overprints on the definitive of the Leeward Islands, appeared in 1922. Following a long period when Antigua stamps were used, the islands’ own issues again appeared in 1968.


First Stamp Issued: August 01, 1851

Name on stamp: Barbados

Island in the Caribbean originally called Los Barbados, meaning bearded fig trees, by the Portuguese who visited the island in the sixteenth century. A mail service operated with England from the eighteenth century, while distinctive stamps were first to appear in 1852.

4-British Virgin Islands

First Stamp Issued: January 02, 1968

Name on stamp: British Virgin Islands

A group of islands in the West Indies, of which eight inhabited islands, form the British Virgin Islands, the remainder being administered by United States of America. The group was discovered by Christopher Columbus, who called the largest island St Ursula and the others, the 11,000 virgins.


Former Name: Aden

First Stamp Issued: April 01, 1937

First Stamps: Britain 1858-60 (oblit. A07 at Roseau)

Name on stamp: Commonwealth of Dominica

An island in the West Indies which was discovered on the first Sunday in November in 1493 by Christopher Columbus. Sinday is Dies Dominica, hence the name given to the island. A branch of the British Post Office was established in the 1840s and British stamps used from 1858. The first Dominica stamps appeared in 1874.

6-Dominican Republic

First Stamp Issued: October 18, 1865

First Stamps: Cuba/Puerto Rico 1861

Name on stamp: Republica Dominicana

The eastern part of the island of San Domingo in the West Indies (the western part is known as Haiti), which became independent of Spanish control in 1865. In that same year it started issuing its own stamps. The island was first discovered by Christopher Columbus.


First Stamp Issued: 1861

First Stamps: Britain 1858-60 (oblit. A15 St Georges)

Name on stamp: An island in the West Indies which is now independent. It was discovered in 1498 by Christopher Columbus, who called the island ‘La Conception’. British stamps were used from 1858, but three years later distinctive stamps for Grenada were introduced.


Former Name: Leeward Islands

First Stamp Issued: Antigua overprinted September 1876

First Stamps: Britain 1858-60 (oblit. A08)

Name on stamp: Montserrat

The British dependency in the Lesser Antilles is one of the Leeward Islands. Its first stamps were issued in 1876. From 1890 to 1956, stamps of the Leeward Islands were valid for use on the island and from 1890 to 1903, they replaced Montserrat stamps completely. In recent years, stamp issues of the Montserrat have become more numerous but policies are moderate when compared with those of some neighbouring islands.

9-St.Kitts and Nevis

First Stamp Issued: June 23, 1980

Name on stamp: St Kitts, Nevis

A Caribbean island which has formed part of St Christopher (known locally as St Kitts) Nevis Anguilla grouping. St Kitts issued its own stamps again in 1980. A West Indian island, discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1493, which has formed part of the Associated State of St Kitts Nevis. A post office was established in 1710 and at first British stamps were used. From 1861 until 1890 stamps inscribed Nevis were issued, being replaced by stamps inscribed St-Kitts-Nevis in 1903 and by St Christopher Nevis Anguilla from 1952. As a dependency of St Christopher, it issued its own stamps again in June 1980.


First Stamp Issued: December 18, 1860

First Stamps: Britain 1858-60 (oblit. A11 at Castries)

Name on stamp: Saint Lucia

A Caribbean island which became the possession of the British, following their eviction of the French. A British post office was established in 1844 and the first stamps used on the island were of those of Great Britain. The Island’s own stamps appeared in 1860. The island gained Independence in 1979.

11-St.Vincent and The Grenadines

First Stamp Issued: May 08, 1861

Independence: October 27, 1979

It is a group of islands in the Caribbean Sea, north of Trinidad and Tobago. It was disputed between France and Great Britain in the 18th century; Saint Vincent was ceded to the latter in 1783. Autonomy was granted in 1969, and independence in 1979.

12-Trinidad and Tobago

Former Name: Trinidad, Tobago

First Stamp Issued: 1913, Trinidad August 14, 1851, Tobago August 01, 1879

First Stamps: Tobago: Britain 1858-60 (oblit. A14 at Scarborough)

Name on stamp: Trinidad and Tobago

Two neighbouring independent islands in the Caribbean, discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1498 and colonized by the Spanish in 1530s. The first stamps of Trinidad appeared in 1851, being a local issue for mail carried on board the vessel ‘Lady McLeod’. Fiscal stamps, which could be used for postage, were available in Tobago from 1879.

13-Puerto Rico

First Stamp Issued: With Cuba jointly 18555-56

Name on stamp: Puerto Rico

Most easterly of the islands in the Antilles archipelago, discovered in 1493 by Christopher Columbus. Not settled by the Spanish until 1508 when Ponce de Leon became governor. First stamps issued were joint issues with Cuba not generally used in Puerto Rico until July 25, 1856. First stamps with the name of the island appeared in 1873. Became a US Territory on March 02, 1917 and gained US Commonwealth status on July 25, 1952. US overprinted were used until April 1900 but unoverprinted stamps have been used since April 12, 1900.

Central America

(1) Belize (2) Costa Rica (3) El Salvador (4) Guatemala (5) Nicaragua (6) Honduras (7) Panama


Former Name: British Honduras, Cayes of Belize

First Stamp Issued: June 1973

Name on stamp: Belize

This country in Central America bounded by Mexico and Guatemala, was colonized by the Jamaicans in 1662. Once known as Belize, it then became British Honduras, reverting to Belize in 1973. Cayes of Belize issued stamps in 1984 which were sponsored by a stamp dealer. They had little postal usage.

2-Costa Rica

First Stamp Issued: 1863

First Stamps: Costa Rica 1863

Name on stamp: Republic of Costa Rica

Costa Rica or ‘Rich Coast’ is nicknamed ‘The Switzerland of the Americas’ for its stability, democracy and mountainous sceneries. Visited by Christopher Columbus in 1502, then combed by gold-diggers, colonized by Spain, gained its first independence in 1821, became a member of the Federation of Central America, and broke free again to independence in 1839 –“Ticos”, or the locals, are characterized by their spirit of independence. The first stamp, issued in 1863, featured the country’s coat of arms. Today, Costa Rica has no military forces, only domestic police forces, congregations of happy tourists, and a long history of peace and stamps.

3-El Salvador

First Stamp Issued: May 1867

Name on stamp: El Salvador

A Republic in Central America which was invaded by Spain in 1524, the name becoming El Salvador in 1841. The first stamps were issued in 1867, but between 1890 and 1898 there was a period of philatelic exploitation, resulting in a multitude of stamp issues which are still philatelically worthless.


First Stamp Issued: March 01, 1871

Name on stamp: Guatemala

A Republic in Central America which was under the control of the Spaniards from the 1500s to 1821: the country is now independent. The first stamps were issued in 1871.


First Stamp Issued: 1882

First Stamps: British from 1865

Name on stamp: Nicaragua

A Republic in Central America, Nicaragua was colonized by the Spanish following the landing by Gil Gonzales de Avila. The first stamps were issued in 1862, although there were periods in the mid 1800s when British stamps were used in parts of the country.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1866 (but it is probable that these were never in fact issued. Second series issued 1877-8)

Name on stamp: Republica de Honduras

A Republic in Central America which was discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1502 and later became a colony of Spain. An attempt to establish a postal service was made in 1866 and stamps were issued, but they did not really see regular use until 1877 when a further attempt was made to organize the post.


Former Name: Canal Zone

First Stamp Issued: August 1904

First Stamps: 1878

Name on stamp: Panama

Panama, in Central America, gained independence in 1903, having formerly been part of the Republic of Colombia. The first stamps, in 1878, were therefore issued as part of Colombia, until stamps were issued for independent Panama in 1903.

South America

(1) Argentina (2) Bolivia (3) Brazil (4) Chile (5) Colombia (6) Ecuador (7) Falkland Islands (8) French Guiana (9) Guyana (10) Paraguay (11) Peru (12) Suriname (13) Uruguay (14) Venezuela


Former Name: Currents, Cordoba

First Stamp Issued: Argentine Republic January 11, 1858, Correintes August 21, 1856, Cordoba October 28, 1858

Name on stamp: Republica Argentina

The second largest country in South America, which derives its name from the Latin word for silver. It was colonized by the Spanish in the sixteenth century. However, there was a period when British stamps were used in Buenos Aires. Its own stamps first appeared in 1858, the country’s first commemorative being issued 34 years later in 1892.


First Stamp Issued: 1867

Name on stamp: Correros de Bolivia

Bolivia, in South America, was invaded by the Spanish in the sixteenth century, who made slaves of the Incas, the previous inhabitants. An internal postal service was established in 1866 for which stamps were produced, although the first stamps for international mail did not appear until the following year. A British postal agency did operate at Cobija until 1878.


First Stamp Issued: (‘bullseyes’) August 01, 1843

Name on stamp: Brasil

A Republic in South America which actually occupies nearly one half of that continent. It was discovered in 1500 by a Spanish explorer, Pinzon, but was in fact first colonized by the Portuguese. Its stamps appeared in 1843, being the second country in the world to issue postage stamps following the lead of Great Britain.


First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1853

Name on stamp: Chile

The Republic of Chile lies on the west coast of South America. The first stamps were issued in 1853: most of the early stamps feature the portrait of Christopher Columbus.


Former Name: Antioquoia, Bolivar, Boyaca, Cauca, Cundinamarca, Santander, Tolima

First Stamp Issued: Bolivar 1863, Antioquoia 1868, Cundinamarca 1870, Tolima 1870, Santander 1884, Boyaca 1899, Cauca 1902.

First Stamps: Granadine Confederation August 1859

Name on stamp: Colombia

A Republic in South America, much of which lies within the Andes range of mountains. Not surprisingly the country takes its name from Christopher Columbus, who visited the land in 1502. Owing to the country’s poor natural communications, but also in pursuance of their sovereign rights, the states of the republic had their own posts and issued their own stamps. The last such stamps were withdrawn by decree of July 28, 1906.


Former Name: Galapagos Islands

First Stamp Issued: Galapagos Islands July 15, 1957. These areas found used also on the mainland.

First Stamps: January 01, 1865

Name on stamp: Ecuador

This Republic in South America acquired its name because it lies across the Ecuador. It was conquered by the Spanish in 1527, gaining independence in 1890. The first stamps were issued in 1865. Galapagos Islands have been a province of Ecuador since 1973.

7-Falkland Islands

First Stamp Issued: June 19, 1878

Name on stamp: Falkland Islands

Group of Islands in the South Atlantic, including the two main islands of East Falkland and West Falkland. The first stamps appeared in 1869, comprising hand franks reading ‘Falkland Islands Paid’ impressed onto envelopes. Actual stamps inscribed Falkland Islands first appeared in 1878.

8-French Guiana

First Stamp Issued: 1886

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues 1860, Compagnie des Transports Aeriens Guyanais 1921, Republic of France 1947.

Name on stamp: RF

A French settlement since 1604, French Guiana was once a notorious site of panel settlement. Though its only post office in Cayenne existed from 1819 to 1888, internal mail was free and external mail hand stamped from 1833, but reverted to French Colonies General Issues in 1860. In 1921, local stamps of Compagnie des Transports Aeriens Guyanais were introduced for internal mails. The area became an overseas department of France, and has been using regular French issues since 1947.


Former Name: British Guiana

First Stamp Issued: (‘cotton reels’) July 01, 1850 (these were produced locally pending arrival of definitive from London)

Name on stamp: Guyana

Guyana is an independent Republic in South America, previously known as British Guiana. Guiana was the name given to the area of land between the Amazon and Orincoco rivers. British stamps were used, although the country’s own stamps appeared in 1850. The most famous is the 1856 1c black on magenta, the world rarest stamp.


First Stamp Issued: August 01, 1870

Name on stamp: Paraguay

A Republic in central South America, which was discovered in 1516 by Juan Diaz de Solis. Its first stamps appeared in 1870.


First Stamp Issued: March 10, 1858

First Stamps: (originally printed for Pacific Steam Navigation Co.) December 01, 1857

Name on stamp: Peru

A Republic in South America, bordered by Brazil and Colombia, which was once the home of the Incas until their defeat by the Spanish in the sixteenth century. Independence came to the country in 1821. The first stamps of Peru were issued in 1858, although the previous year stamps were produced by the Pacific Steam Navigation Company, who operated a mail service.


First Stamp Issued: October 01, 1873 (as independent country) November 25, 1975

Name on stamp: Suriname

Once a Netherlands colony in South America (also known as Netherlands, or Dutch, Guiana) until independence in 1975, Suriname issued her first stamps in 1873.


First Stamp Issued: (permanent) July 01, 1859

First Stamps: (private mail coach routes) October 01, 1856

Name on stamp: Uruguay

One of the smallest of the Republic in South America, Uruguay became independent in 1828. The first stamps were issued in 1856, these being known as ‘Montevideo suns’ on account of their design, showing a small, smiling face surrounded by rays.


Former Name: Carupano, Guayana, Marino, Maturin

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1859

First Stamp: Carupano First Issue November 1902 during hostilities, Carupano Second Issue January 1903 during blockade by European powers, Guayana March 1903, Marino 1903, Maturin 1903.

Name on stamp: Venezuela

The South American Republic was the first part of the American mainland to be discovered by Christopher Columbus. After years of Spanish control, the country became independent in 1811. Provisionals were issued in Carupano, Guayana, Marino and Maturin during the civil war of 1899-1903.

Northern Europe

(1) Faroe Islands (2) Finland (3) Greenland (4) Iceland (5)Norway (6) Sweden

1-Faroe Islands (Denmark)

First Stamp Issued: January 30, 1975

First Stamps: Danish from 1870

Name on stamp: Foroyar

These islands became part of the Kingdom of Denmark in 1380, but gained self-government in 1948.


First Stamp Issued: March 03, 1856

Name on stamp: Suomi

A Republic in Northern Europe whose name means ‘land of fens and lakes’. It is bordered by Sweden and Russia and indeed was at one time a Swedish dependency. The first stamps were issued in 1856, but stamped stationery had been in use since 1845. The first commemorative series appeared in 1927.


First Stamp Issued: 1905

Name on stamp: Kalaallit Nunaat Gronland

The world’s largest island, Greenland forms part of the Kingdom of Denmark. However its location off the north-east coast of Canada has resulted in Greenland having independence status, which was extended to Home Rule in 1979. The first stamps of Greenland were parcel stamps released in 1905.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1873

First Stamps: Denmark from March 1870, Numeral 236 and 237 were allocated to Reykjavik and Seydisfjordur respectively.

Name on stamp: Island

This independent Republic is an island to the south east of Greenland, which can boast the oldest democratic assembly in Europe, the parliament having been established in 930 AD. It was once under Danish rule, and indeed Danish stamps were issued from 1870. In 1873 distinctive stamps for Iceland were issued.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1855

Name on stamp: Norge, Noreg

Following the ‘Viking’ era, this Scandinavian country entered into a union with Denmark and Sweden in 1387; in 1814 Denmark ceded Norway to Sweden, the country becoming an independent Kingdom in 1905. Its first stamps were issued in 1855.


First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1855

Name on stamp: Sverige

A Kingdom in Europe and the largest of the Scandinavian countries. The postal service was established in 1636, the first stamps being issued in 1855. Sweden is unusual in that the stamps are not issued in large sheets but only in booklets and rolls. About once a year an issue is prepared in the form of a miniature sheet.

Western Europe

(1) Andorra (2) Austria (3) Belgium (4) Denmark (5) France (6) Germany (7) Ireland (8) Italy (9) Liechtenstein (10) Luxembourg (11) Monaco (12) Netherlands (13) Portugal (14) San Marino (15) Spain (16) Switzerland (17) United Kingdom (18) Vatican City


First Stamp Issued: Spanish overprinted – March 1928

First Stamps: Spain or France to 1928

Name on stamp: Andorra/Andorre

A state in the Pyrenees which is under the joint control of France and Spain and, even today, has both French and Spanish stamp issues. The first Spanish stamps were introduced in 1928, while three years later there were suitable overprints on the stamps of France, these being replaced in 1932 by stamps inscribed Andorra.


First Stamp Issued: Unoverprinted July 1919

First Stamps: Austrian Republic overprinted ‘German Austria’ December 1918

Name on stamp: Republik Osterreich

A Republic in central Europe which once formed part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. For the period of 1938 to 1945 it became part of the German Reich. The first stamps for Austria were issued in 1850.


First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1849

Name on stamp: Belgique-Belgie

Belgium is a Kingdom in Europe which has been independent since the 1830s. Its postal service has long history, dating back to the sixteenth century, with stamps being issued for the first time in 1849. These first stamps depicted the portrait of King Leopold I dressed in army uniform, and as such have become known as the ‘Epaulettes’ series.


First Stamp Issued: April 01, 1851

Name on stamp: Danmark

Denmark, a Kingdom and the smallest of the Scandinavian countries, was the first to issue stamps, in 1851. The first records the existence of Denmark stem from reports of raids by the Vikings in the ninth century.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1849

Name on stamp: France

This Republic in Europe sees its postal system date back to the region of Louis XI, although in those days the post was confined to the Court. It was not until 1589 that the privilege was extended to the general public. The first stamps for France appeared in 1849.


Former Name : Allenstein, Baden, Bavaria (Bayem), Bergedorf, Bremen, Brunswick (Braunschweig), Hamburg, Hanover, Heligoland (Helgoland), Lubeck, Marienwerder, Mecklenburg, Oldenburg, Prussia, Saar, Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, Thum and Taxis, Upper Silesia, Wurttemberg, North German Confederation, Germany, Berlin-Brandenburg (OPD Berlin), Mecklenburg-Vonpommeru (OPD Schwerin), Saxony (OPD Halls), West Saxony (OPD Leipzig), East Saxony (OPD Dresden), Thuringia (OPD Erfurt), German Democratic Republic (DDR), German Federal Rpublic, Wesst Berlin.

First Stamp Issued : Allenstein Overprinted Germany April 03, 1920, Baden May 01, 1851, Bavaria (Bayem) November 01, 1849, Bergedorf November 01, 1861, Bremen April 10, 1855, Brunswick (Braunschweig) January 01, 1852, Hamburg January 01, 1859, Hanover December 01, 1850, Heligoland (Helgoland) April 15, 1867, Lubeck January 01, 1859, Merienwerder March 13, 1920, Mecklenburg-Schwerin July 01, 1856, Mecklenburg-Strelitz 1864, Oldenburg January 05, 1852, Prussia November 15, 1850, Saar Overprinted German issues January 30, 1920, Saxony June 29, 1850, Schleswig-Holstein November 15, 1850, Thum and Taxis January 29, 1851, Upper Silesia February 14, 1920, Wurttemberg October 15, 1851, North German Confederation January 01, 1868, Germany (before 1949) January 01, 1872, Berlin-Brandenburg (OPD Berlin) June 1945, Mecklenburg-Vonpommeru (OPD Schwerin) August 28, 1945, Saxony (OPD Halls) October 10, 1945, West Saxony (OPD Leipzig) September 28, 1945, East Saxony (OPD Dresden) June 23, 1945, Thuringia (OPD Erfurt) October 01, 1945, German Democratic Republic (DDR) October 09, 1949, German Federal Republic September 07, 1949, West Berlin (jointly administered by the US, France and Great Britain) 1948.

Name on stamp: Deutschland


Former Name: United Kingdom

First Stamp Issued: For free state (Eire) February 17, 1922

First Stamps: British stamps from May 06, 1840

Name on stamp: Eire

This independent Republic within the British Isles comprises the whole of Ireland with the exception of the six northern countries which form Ulster. Stamps for the Provisional Government (January to December 1922) and initially for the Irish Free State were overprints on Great Britain stamps. Stamps inscribed Eire appeared in December 1922.


Former Name: Lombardy-Venetia, Modena, Naples, Papal States, Parma, Romagna, Sardinia, Sicily, Tuscany, Italian Social Repulic.

First Stamp Issued : February 24, 1862, Lombardy-Venetia June 01, 1850, Modena June 01, 1852, Naples January 01, 1858, Papal States January 01, 1852, Parma June 01, 1852, Romagna June 12, 1859, Sardinia January 01, 1851, Sicily January 01, 1859, Tuscany April 01, 1851, Italian Social Republic February 1944 (overprinted).

First Stamps: Romagna, Papal States from January 01, 1852.

Name on stamp: Italia

A Republic in southern Europe with coastline on both the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas. This former Kingdom once comprised smaller Kingdoms and Duchies which had their own stamps. The stamps of Sardinia were introduced in Italy in 1861, the country having her own stamps two years later.


First Stamp Issued: February 01, 1912

First Stamps: Austria 1850-1912

Name on stamp: Fuerstentum Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein lies sandwiched between Austria and Switzerland. The postal history dates from the sixteenth century and developed because the main post route from Milan to Lindau passed through it. Prior to the issue of Liechtenstein’s own stamps in 1912, her postal arrangements were looked after Austria and Austrian stamps were used.


First Stamp Issued: September 15, 1852

Name on stamp: Luxembourg

A Grand Duchy in Europe bordered by Belgium, France and West Germany, which throughout its history has been owned by various countries, although now independent. Its first stamps were issued in 182, the first commemorative set appearing in 1921 and postage due labels having been in use since 1907.


First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1885

First stamps: Sardinia 1851-60, France 1860-85

Name on stamp: Monaco

Monaco achieved independence in 1861, the sovereignty of the country having been recognized by the French in 1512. It was annexed by the French during the French Revolution and placed under Sardinian protection in 1815. Following periods of use of Sardinian and French, Monaco’s own stamps were released in 1855.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1852

Name on stamp: Nederland

A Kingdom in Europe, bordering on the North Sea, which is often incorrectly referred to as Holland. Its first stamps were issued in 1852, these showing a portrait of King William III.


First Stamp Issued: July 1853

Name on stamp: Portugal

A Republic on the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal once formed part of the Roman Empire and has had a renowned history in the field of exploration, world trade and colonization.

14-San Marino

First Stamp Issued: August 01, 1929

First Stamps: Italy from 1870 to 1929

Name on stamp: San Marino

A small independent Republic which is completely surrounded by Italy. It is thought to have been founded in 301 AD by Marinus, a stone-mason. The postal service was started in 1862, at first using Sardinian stamps and later Italian, until the country’s own stamps appeared in 1877.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1850

Name on stamp: Espana

A Republic in south-west Europe which reached the height of its power in the fifteenth century. The first stamps were issued in 1850, while the first Spanish commemorative ser was issued in 1905 to mark the 300th anniversary of the publication of ‘Don Quixote’ by Cervantes.


Former Name: Geneva, Zurich

First Stamp Issued: Cantonal Issues 1843-7

First Federal Stamps Issued: May 1850

Name on stamp: Helvetia

A Republic in Europe which is bounded by France, Germany, Austria and Italy. It consists of a confederation of self-governing cantons, and in fact the first stamps were issued by one such canton, Zurich, in 1843, being quickly followed by Geneva. Stamps for the confederation first appeared in 1850.

17-United Kigdom

First Stamp Issued: May 06, 1840

Name on stamp: (UK is given the privilege of not having to include her name on her postage stamps).

The British Isles in Europe comprise the countries of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Great Britain has the distinction of having introduced the postage stamp to the world. The world’s first stamp, the Penny Black officially came into use on May 06, 1840.

18-Vatican City

First Stamp Issued: August 01, 1929

First Stamps: Italy from 1870 to 1929

Name on stamp: Poste Vaticane

A small area within Rome which since 1929 has been under the independent sovereignty of the Pope. The Vatican Palace, the Pop’s official residence, is located there. Stamps for Vatican City were first issued in 1929.

Eastern Europe

(1) Albania (2) Belarus (3) Bosnia & Herzegovina (4) Bulgaria (5) Croatia (6) Czech Republic (7) Estonia (8) FYRO Macedonia (9) Greece (10) Hungary (11) Latvia (12) Lithuania (13) Moldova (14) Poland (15) Romania

(16) Russia (17) Slovakia (18) Slovenia (19) Ukrine (20) Yugoslavia


Former Name: Saseno

First Stamp Issued: 1913

Saseno: Italy overprinted Saseno – April 1923

First Stamps: Turkish from 1870

Name on stamp: RPE Shqiperise

Albania became a People’s Republic in 1946, having formerly been part of the Turkish Empire for many years and achieving independence in 1912.


Former Name: Belarusian National Republic / Belarusian Democratic, Republic Belorussia, Belorussian (Byelorussian), Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR).

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: Belarusian National Republic 1918, Belarus 1992

Name on stamp: Belarus

The Belarussians, nicknamed Little Russians or White Russians, had their first stamp under Belarusian National Republic in 1918 – these are frequently found forged nowadays. In 1939, Belorussia became Belorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, and joined the USSR. During then, stamps and pre-stamped stationery of the USSR were in use. With the dissolution of USSR in 1991, the country declared independence and start issuing its own stamps since 1992.

3-Bosnia and Herzegovina

Former Name: The Austro-Hungarian Empire, State of SHS, the Kingdom of SHS, the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, Yugoslavia.

First Stamp Issued: 1879

First Stamps: Bosnia-Herzegovina: The Austro-Hungarian Empire 1879, Bosnia-Herzegovina: State of SHS (Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes) 1918, The Kingdom of SHS (Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes) 1921, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929 overprint, Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Sarajevo Government Issues) 1991, Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Herzeg-Bosnia Issues) 1993, Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina 1997, Republic Srpska 1997.

Name on stamp: Bosna I Hercegovina

History has always had Bosnia-Herzegovina under fire – first under Ottoman Turkish rule, it went under Austrian protection during which its first stamp was issued, was thereafter formally annexed – disrupting the Serbians’ ‘Kingdom of Serbia’ intention. In Sarajevo, 1914, the heir to Austrian’s aging emperor was assassinated. After World War I, the shaken country joined a newly established Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1918, and used its stamps. It remained so until Tito’s communist government crumbled. In 1992, Bosnia and Herzegovina declared independence. History recurred when the Bosnian Serbs and neighbouring Serbia revived a “greater Serbia” plan, firing up ethnic clashes. As a resolution, Bosnia and Herzegovina now has a national government, and a second tier government consisting Bosniak/Croat Federation of Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska (RS), each of which are issuing stamps.


Former Name: Eastern Rumelia

First Stamp Issued: Bulgaria as principality March 01, 1879.

First Stamps: Turkish stamps from the 1850s

A Socialist Republic in the Balkan Peninsula. Bulgaria was formerly a Turkish province. The first stamps were issued in 1879, showing a lion standing upright with a crown on his head, symbolizing might and power.


Former Name: The Austro-Hungarian Empire, The Kingdom of SHS, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia, Yugoslavia.

First Stamp Issued: 1906

First Stamps: Croatia: State of SHS (Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes) overprint 1918, The Kingdom of SHS 1921, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929 overprint, Croatia 1941, Croatia 1991.

Name on stamp: Republika Hrvatska

Croatia was a province in The Austro-Hungarian Empire until 1918 when it became a part of Yugoslavia. Individual states in Yugoslavia issued their own stamps until 1921 when a unified version was introduced, and in 1929 it was called The Kingdom of Yugoslavia. In 1941 communistic powers were growing but the country proclaimed independence during its occupation by the Axis powers from 1941 to 1945, during which postage stamps were issued in its own name. Croatia was overrun and reincorporated into Yugoslavia under a communistic Tito government in 1945. In 1991 Croatia declared its independence. Disputes with Serbia over the republic of Krajina where it issued its stamps subsided when the last Serb-held enclave in eastern Slavonia was returned to Croatia in 1998, under UN supervision.

6-Czech Republic

Former Name: Bohemia an Moravia, East Silesia

First Stamp Issued: October 1918

First Stamps: Austria to 1918

Name on stamp: Ceskoslovensko

This country in Europe was once part of the Austrian Empire, gaining independence in 1918, although there was a period of German occupation from 1939 to 1944.


Former Name: Estonian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: Estonia (Eesti Post) 1918, Estonian SSR 1940, USSR 1941, Germany 1941, USSR 1944, Estonia 1991.

Name on stamp: Eesti

For centuries, Estonia was under Swedish influence until the Russia came and conquered in 1721. For almost two centuries, it was under Russian rule until Estonia gained independence from the fall of Russian Empire in 1917. Estonian stamp was issued in 1918. In 1939, Soviet forces returned and absorbed it into the USSR. In its 1941 battle with Germany, USSR lost Estonia to Germany. Till 1944, the Germans issued stamps and German Ostland overprints in Estonia. Relentlessly, the USSR returned. Estonia was re-occupied, only to gain independence from USSR’s dissolution in 1991. In the same year Estonian stamps were issued and its Philatelic Bureau is active. In 1994, the last Russian troops withdraw from the country.

8-FYRO Macedonia

Former Name: Macedonia

First Stamp Issued: 1992

First Stamps: Serbia: State of SHS (Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes) overprint 1918. The Kingdom of SHS 1921. The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929 overprint Macedonia 1992.

Name on stamp: Makedonija

Macedonia was incorporated into Serbia after the Balkan Wars. Together with Serbia, it joined Yugoslavia in 1918. From 1941-1944, Bulgaria annexed the territory, after which Macedonia declared independence under German support, but was returned to Yugoslavia after. Overprinted Bulgarian stamps were in use for a few weeks before the collapse of the German puppet government. After decades of Tito communist government, Macedonia declared its independence in 1991, and started issuing its stamps in 1992. Greece objected Macedonia’s right to use its Hellenic name and symbols, but normalized in 1995, as relations with Yugoslavia were also normalized in 1996.


Former Name: Ionian Islands (Corfu), Crete, Dodecanese Islands, Aegean Islands (Chios, Icaria, Lemnos, Samos), Long Island.

First Stamp Issued: October 01, 1861, Ionian Islands: May 15, 1859, Crete: Joint occupying powers 1899 and Crete March 1900, Dodecanese Islands: Italy overprinted 1912, Chios: Greece overprinted May 1913, Icaria: October 08, 1912, Lemnos: Greece overprinted stamps 1912-1913 Long Island: May 07, 1916.

First Stamps: Crete: Turkey up to 1899, Dodecanese Islands: Turkish up to 1912.

Name on stamp: Hellas

It was well over 2000 years ago that Ancient Greece was at the zenith of its power but in more recent times, 400 years of Turkish control was only ended by independence in 1827. Stamps for Greece first appeared in 1861, although there was a period when British stamps were used at Salonika.


First Stamp Issued: For Austria and Hungary June 01, 1867, For Hungary alone June 20, 1868.

First Stamps: Austrian stamps June 01, 1850

Name on stamp: Magyar Posta

This People’s Republic in central Europe was settled by the Magyars in the ninth century. The postal service dates to the seventeenth century, with Austrian stamps being used from 1850, stamps for use in both Austria and Hungary appearing in 1867, and in 1868, stamps for use in Hungary alone to pay the tax on newspapers. The first postage stamps for Hungary appeared in 1871.


Former Name: Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: Russia 1857, Latvia 1918, German 1918, USSR 1940, German “Ostland” overprint 1941, Latvia 1991

Name on stamp: Larvija

First ruled by Poland and Sweden, Latvia was incorporated into Russia, which had its first stamp in 1857. During World War I, Russia lost eastern Latvia to the German forces. Its stamps were accommodated until 1918, when the German forces seized the country and issued “Postgebiet Ob. Ost” overprints . Fresh from the experience of WWI, Lativa declared independence. Its first stamp, issued in 1918 itself, was printed on German army maps. Twelve years and over three hundred stamp issues later, the USSR returned, and proclaimed Latvia a Soviet Socialist Republic. The Germans returned too, battling USSR for WWII. USSR overprints were invalidated in October, again replaced only by German “Ostland” overprints until its surrender. Soon, the USSR stamps until 1991 when it gained independence from the union’s dissolution. In the same year, its first stamps were issued, some overprinted on USSR stamps.


Former Name: Lithuanian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: Russia 1857, Lithuania 1918, German overprint 1941, USSR 1944, Lithuania 1990

Name on stamp: Lativa

Once an empire, Lithuania untied with the Kingdom of Poland, eclipsed, and in 1793 was absorbed by Russia. It remained so until World War I. German forces occupying the land supported its declaration of independence from Russia. In 1918, Lithuania’s first stamp was issued. Twelve years later, Lithuania was seized and annexed to the Soviet Union. The German forces returned for WWII in 1941. German “Ostland”, LIETUVA as well as Russian overprints were used. In 1944, the Soviet Union reoccupied Lithuania, and stamps of USSR have been used since. With the dissolution of USSR, Lithuania was one of the first nations to declare independence, and its stamp quickly followed, in 1990. Lithuania has used three currencies since, each time revaluing the otherwise worthless kopeck stamps for postal validity. Lithuania has since pursued membership in the European Union.


Former Name: Davia, Bessarabia, Soviet Socialist Republic of Moldova (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1991

First Stamps: Moldova 1991

Name on stamp: Moldova

Since the departure of Ottoman Turkish in the 19th century, Moldova was repeatedly contested between Russia and Romania – in 1812 Russia took control and renamed it Bessarabia, in 1918 Romania captured it from a disintegrating Russian Empire, the USSR returned to declare it a new Moldovian Soviet Socialist Republic in 1940, but Romania regained it during World War II, only to have it returned to USSR it in 1944 – until the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, Moldova declared independence. It is a member of the CIS but no stamps are issued under that name. Internally, however, internal dispute between Romanian-majority west of Dniester River with Ukrainians and Russians in the east have resulted in the birth of an autonomous. Transnistria Republic, which issues its own stamps. Many of these are available in the philately market, spurious. The war tom Moldova elected a communist as its president in 2001.


Former Name : Danzig (renamed Gdansk), East Silesia, Upper Silesia

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1860

Name on stamp: Polska

A Communist Republic bordered by Czechoslovakia, Germany and Russia. Prussian and Austrian stamps were used from 1850, and Russian stamps were introduced in 1856. Poland’s own stamps first appeared in 1860.


Former Name: Moldavia, Moldavia-Walachia

First Stamp Issued: June 26, 1862

First Stamps: Turkey and the issues of Moldavia-Walachia 1858

Name on stamp: Posta Romana

A Republic in south-eastern Europe which is bounded by the USSR, Hungary, Yugoslavia and Bulgaria. The first stamps appeared in 1858 for Moldova, which together with Walachia was late to become Romania. Stamps for the two areas appeared in 1862, while in 1865 the first stamps were issued actually inscribed for Romania.


Former Name : Russian Empire, Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1858

First Stamps: Imperforate 1858. Zemstvo (local stamps): Shilisselburg 1865. First semi-postal stamps with 3K donated to charity 1904. First currency stamps used as substitute for coinage 1915. Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR/CCCP) 1923.

Name on stamp: Rossiya

Though its first stamp leaked before its official issue, Russia regularly issued stamps. In 1917, after a coup abdicated the Tsar, a short-lived Kerensky government’s stamps had no time for issue before the Bolsheviks took over. Meanwhile, anti-Bolsheviks issued stamps in their own areas. Until 1918, most stamps carried only the initials RSFSR (PCiCP). In 1922, the communist Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) was formed and issued its first stamp eight months later. The union dissolved in 1991. Its twelve former states formed the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) under which no postage stamps were issued. Now an independent Russian Federation issues stamps frequently, with ROSSIJA inscribed in Latin and Cyrillic type. Stamps exported in cancel-t-order from help the country acquire foreign currencies; while local overprinted stamps were legally issued in the city of St. Petersburg.


Former Name: Bohemia and Moravia, East Silesia

First Stamp Issued: October 1918

First Stamps: Austria to 1918

Name on stamp: Ceskkoslovensko

This country in Europe was once part of the Austrian Empire, gaining independence in 1918, although there was a period of German occupation from 1939 to 1944.


Former Name: The Austro-Hungarian Empire, The Kingdom of SHS, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia, Yugoslavia

First Stamp Issued: 1919

First Stamps: Slovenia: State of SHS overprint 1918, The Kingdom of SHS 1921, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929 overprint, Slovenia 1941, Slovenia 1991

Name on stamp: Slovenija

Slovenia was a province in The Austro-Hungarian Empire until 1918 when it became a part of Yugoslavia. Individual states in Yugoslavia issued their own stamps until 1921 when a unified version was introduced, and in 1929 it was called The Kingdom of Yugoslavia. During World War II, Slovenia was divided between Germany and Italy, both of which issued stamps for their zones. After the war, Slovenia was reoccupied by Yugoslavia under Tito’s communist government, and overprinted stamps of the German occupation (Ljubljana), Germany proper, and Hungary were used shortly until regular Yugoslav issues replaced them. In 1991 Slovenia declared its independence from Yugoslavia. With a strong a stable economy, the country is a leading candidate for a membership in the EU and NATO.


Former Name: Ukrainian National Republic, Ukrainian State, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: First currency stamps 1918, First definitive set 1918, Ukraine: Russian overprint 1918, Ukraine: Hitler Head German overprint 1941, Ukraine 1992.

Name on stamp: Ukraine

Once the heartland of medieval Russia and Kiev, Ukraine was occupied by the Polish, Russians, the Germans forces during World War I. In 1918, it asserted independence. Existing stocks of Russian stamps were overprinted with Ukrainian national emblem, the trident. Again a bloodshed battleground during the Russian Civil War is absorbed into USSR in 1920. Its government-in-exile prepared a 14-set Vienna Issue that never made it, however Western Ukraine and Carpatho-Ukraine issued stamps in their areas. German occupation again marked Ukraine’s World War II years during which the Hitler Head German definitive set overprint was used. Post-WWII, a weakened Ukraine reverted to USSR. With the dissolution on USSR in 1991, it gained independence and issued its stamps 1992. Spurious stamps featuring the trident have been largely reported in the market. In recent years, the country zealous of its new independence is reasserting control over the autonomous state of Crimea which is seeking independence and is issuing overprints of USSR.


Former Name : Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Dalmatia, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia, State of SHS, The Kingdom of SHS, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

First Stamp Issued: 1918

First Stamps: Bosnia-Herzegovina: State of SHS (Serbs, Croats and Slovenes) 1918, Croatia: State of SHS 1918, Slovenia: State of SHS 1918, The Kingdom of SHS 1921, The Kingdom of Yugoslavia 1929, Croatia 1941, Slovenia: Italy overprint 1941, Dalmatia: Italy overprint 1943, Yugoslavia 1992.

Name on stamp: Jugoslavija

During the post-WWI years, the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes broke free from Austria-Hungary and formed a Kingdom in 1918. Each state used its own stamps till 1921 when a stamp for the whole Kingdom was introduced. The Germans invasions disrupted the country’s history, but Marshal Tito seized the country and formed a communist government in 1945. Faced by a shortage of stamps, regional overprints were produced in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia. After Tito’s death in 1980, the country unraveled. Slovenia, Croatia, and The Former Yugoslavia Republic of Macedonia declared independence in 1991; Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992; the remaining republics of Serbia and Montenegro declared a new “Federal Republic of Yugoslavia” in 1992 and its intention to unite Serbs in neighbouring republics into a “Greater Serbia” has resulted in unrests in the region.

Central Asia

(1) Armenia (2) Azerbaijan (3) Georgia (4) Kazakhstan (5) Kyrgyzstan (6) Tajikistan (7) Turkmenistan (8) Uzbekistan


Former Name: Armenian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR). Armenian Republic

First Stamps: Armenia; Russia overprint 1919, Armenia 1922, Transcaucasian Federation 1923, USSR 1924, Armenia 1992

Name on stamp: Armenia

Armenia was incorporated into Russia in 1828, and proclaimed as a part of the Soviet Socialist Republic in 1920. Its first stamp was an overprint in 1919, and this has been commemorated by a special issue in 1994 for the 75th Anniversary of First Armenian Post Stamp. In 1922 Armenia issued its own definitives. Together with Azerbaijan and Georgia, Armenia made up the Transcaucasian Federation of Soviet Republics in 1923, and stamps were issued. In 1924, stamps of USSR are used. For long since, the country was fighting a long conflict with Azerbaijan over a largely Armenian-populated Nagorno-Karabakh region. Through the dissolution of USSR in 1991, Armenia gained independence and started issuing its own stamps in 1992. Though a member of the CIS, no stamps were issued under the name of CIS itself. Over at the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region, cease-fire agreements were loosely adhered to, and Armenia continues to occupy the province and issue its own stamps.

On March 12, 1922, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia were federated, but each continued to have separate stamps until October 01, 1923 when they were replaced by a general issue for the Transcaucasian Federation.


Former Name: Azerbaijan Soviet Socialist Republic

First Stamp Issued: 1919

First Stamps: Azerbaijan 1919, Transcaucasian Federation 1923, USSR 1924, Azerbaijan 1992

Name on stamp: Azarbaycan

Azerbaijan’s government definitive stamps were first issued 1919. In 1923, together with Armenia and Georgia, Azerbaijan made up the Transcaucasian Federation of Azerbaijan made up the Transcaucasian Federation of Soviet Republics, and stamps were issued. In 1924, stamps of the USSR came into use. Azerbaijan was fighting a long conflict with Armenia. Armenia over a largely Armenian-populated Nagorno-Karabakh region since. Though cease-fire agreements were loosely adhered to, Armenia gained independence from the dissolution of the USSR in 1991, and issued its own stamps again in 1992. Though a member of the CIS, no stamps were issued under the name of CIS itself.

On March 12, 1922, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia were federated, but each continued to have separate stamps until October 01, 1923 when they were replaced by a general issue for the Transcaucasian Federation.


Former Name: Transcaucasion Federation Republic, Georgian Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1857

First Stamps: Tbilisi 1857, Georgia 1919, Transcaucasion Federated Republics 1924, Georgia 1993

Name on stamp: Georgia

Georgia had its first stamp issued in its capital Tbilisi in 1857. Following the Russian Revolution, the territory gained independence and issued its own stamps between 1918 and 1921. However, in 1924 its status as a member of the Transcaucasian Federation of Soviet Republics took over, and it joined the USSR until its dissolution in 1991. In 1993, Georgia declared independence and the first national postage sign of the new Georgia bore “Georgia is a member of UNO”. It joined the Commonwealth of Independent States, however with no stamps issued under CIS’s name. Over at its Abkhazia region, a long fight prevailed between Georgian government and a separatist party that wanted independence, and was issuing its own stamps. In 1998, this economically awakening country issued an 80-tetri stamp commemorating Georgia’s 80th Anniversary of Independence – reiterating the validity of its 1918 independence.

On March 12, 1922, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia were federated, but each continued to have separate stamps until October 01, 1923 when they were replaced by a general issue for the Transcaucasian Federation.


Former Name: Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1991

First Stamps: Kazakhstan 1991

Name on stamp: Kazakhstan

In its history, Kazakhstan had been both a Mongolian and late Russian territory. In 1936 it was incorporated into USSR, and became a pivotal Cape Canaveral of the Soviet space program. After USSR’s dissolution in 1991, Kazakhstan declared independence – thus born a new country on the geopolitical map of the world, and new stamps bearing the new country’s name.


Former Name: Kirghiz Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1991

First Stamps: Kyrgyzstan 1991

Name on stamp: Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan, an agricultural country with natural beauty, was annexed by Russia in 1864. Kyrgyzstan was part of an independent Turkestan republic from 1917 to 1924. It was proclaimed a constituent republic of the USSR in 1936 and was declared independent in 1991 after the dissolution of USSR.


Former Name: Tajik Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1992

First Stamps: Tajikistan 1992

Name on stamp: Tajikistan

A former territory of the emirate of Bukhara, Tajikistan became a protectorate of Russia in 1868 until the Russian Revolution made way for it to joined the Turkestan Soviet Socialist Autonomous Republic in 1918. The Tajik Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic was created as part of the Uzbek SSR in 1924 and it joined the USSR in 1929. It gained independence from the dissolution of USSR in 1991. Stamps have been issued by Tajikistan since 1992. Since then, Tajikistan has experienced three changes in government and a five-year civil war between secularist and Islamic factions.


Former Name: The Turkistan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, Turkmen Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1992

First Stamps: Turkmenistan 1992

Name on stamp: Turkmenistan

Once annexed by Russia between 1865 and 1885, Turkmenistan formed The Turkistan Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in 1922, and joined the USSR in 1925. It gained independence from the dissolution of USSR in 1991, and stamp issues began in 1992, however remaining conservative since. Turkmenistan’s involvement with the CIS is nominal, while it is important to mark that no stamps have been issued under the name of CIS. This country’s large gas and oil reserves have led to its inclination for economic independence in recent years.


Former Name: Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic (of USSR)

First Stamp Issued: 1992

First Stamps: Uzbekistan 1992

Name on stamp: (1992-1997) Uzbekistan (1998-current) O’zbekiston

Though currently plagued by ecological issues, Uzbekistan has had a colorful heritage trail – ruled by Persia, Greeks, Mongols, Turks, The Uzbeks and then Russia. Russia conquered Uzbekistan in the late 19th century, which managed to revert itself to the Uzbek Republic in 1924, but was quickly made Uzbekistan Soviet Republic the following year. From USSR’s dissolve in 1991, Uzbekistan gained independence and issued its first stamp in 1992. Several overprints of Russian stamps were also issued in the following years. Uzbekistan is a member of the CIS; however, it had no stamps issued under CIS’s name.

Middle East

(1) Bahrain (2) Iran (3) Iraq (4) Israel (50) Jordan (6) Kuwait (7) Lebanon (8) Oman (9) Qatar (10) Saudi Arabia (11) Syria (12) Turkey (13) United Arab Emirates (14) Yemen


First Stamp Issued: August 10, 1933

First Stamps: India August 01, 1883

Name on stamp: State of Bahrain

An independent Sheikdom and island in the Persian Gulf, whose postal affairs have been, administered both from India and Great Britain until Bahrain took over in 1966. Indian stamps overprinted were introduced in 1933; British stamps overprinted appeared in 1948, while stamps actually inscribed Bahrain didn’t appear until 1960.


First Stamp Issued: 1868

Name on stamp: Republique Islamique de I’ Iran

This country in Asia was formerly known as Persia. The first stamps were introduced in 1868, although as Iran the first issue appeared in 1935.


First Stamp Issued: September 01, 1918

First Stamps: Turkish 1863

Name on stamp: Republic of Iraq

Known as in the West as Mesopotamia. A country to the west of Iran, Iraq was formerly under Turkish control, until a British Mandate was declared following the First World War. It became a Republic in 1958. The first stamps appeared in 1918, being overprints on the stamps of Turkey, reading ‘Iraq in British Occupation’. Stamps inscribed Iraq appeared in 1923.


Former Name: Palestine

First Stamp Issued: May 16, 1948, Palestine February 01, 1918

First Stamps: Palestine: specifically overprinted Palestine September 01, 1920

Name on stamp: Israel

A Jewish Republic in the former territory of Palestine, which came into being in 1948, following a period from 1917 when the area was governed by Britain. The first stamps for Israel appeared in 1948, although there had been earlier issues for Palestine, as a British Military Administration, a British Civil Administration and a British Mandated Territory.


Former Name: Transjordan

First Stamp Issued: November 1920

First Stamps: E.E.F. stamps (Palestine) February 10, 1918

Name on stamp: The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

The Arab territory to the east of Israel was formerly called Transjordan. It was a dependency of the Turkish Empire up to 1917; from 1918 to 1946 a British Mandate existed, the country becoming an independent Kingdom in 1946. The first stamps in 1920 were overprints on the issues of Palestine.


First Stamp Issued: April 01, 1923

First Stamps: India 1915

Name on stamp: State of Kuwait

An independent Arab State in the Persian Gulf, the postal service at which has been administered by India, then Great Britain, until Kuwait itself took over in 1959. Consequently, the first stamps were overprints on India in 1923, followed by overprints on Great Britain, and Kuwait’s own stamps in 1958.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1924

First Stamps: Turkish from 1883

Name on stamp: Liban

This Arab territory north of Israel has history dating back thousands of years, for there are mentions of the land in the Bible. It was once Turkish, then came under a French Mandate, with the French Occupation of Syria stamps being used. Independence came in 1946. Overprinted French stamps were put in use in 1924.


Former Name: Muscat and Oman

First Stamp Issued: Inscribed Sultanate of Oman January 16, 1971

Name on stamp: Sultanate of Oman

This Sultanate in Arabia was formerly known as Muscat and Oman. As the postal administration has been in the hands of both India and the Great Britain, the stamps of East Africa, Pakistan and Great Britain have been used. The first stamps inscribed Muscat and Oman appeared in 1966; stamps designated Oman was first issued in 1971.


First Stamp Issued: April 01, 1957

First Stamps: Bahrain 1950

Name on stamp: State of Qatar

An independent Arab State whose wealth has come from oil. There was the British postal administration from 1950 to 1963, with British stamps were used from 1950. British stamps were overprinted ‘Qatar’ in 1957, while stamps inscribed with the name were introduced in 1961.

10-Saudi Arabia

Former Name: Hejaz, Nejd, Hejaz and Nejd

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1934, Hejaz August 20, 1916, Nejd March 23, 1925, Hejaz and Nejd February 1926.

Name on stamp: KSA

This kingdom, which lies on the peninsula between the Red Sea and Arabian Gulf, was formerly under Turkish rule. The area known as Hejaz became independent in 1916 but was conquered by Nejd in 1926. The first stamps therefore date back to 1916 or for combined issues to 1926. The name was changed to Saudi Arabia in 1932, the stamps appearing inscribed thus two years later.


Former Name: Cilisia

First Stamp Issued: French Military Occupation February 21, 1919, Cicilia March 04, 1919 (inscriptions TEO and OMF).

First Stamps: Turkish 1883

Name on stamp: Syria A.R.

The history of Syria includes Turkish control, and French Military Administration and a French Mandate. In 1958 Egypt and Syria joined to form the United Arab Republic, but this was split up in 1961 and the Syrian Arab Republic was formed. The first stamps, in 1919, were overprints on France. Stamps inscribed for Syria were issued in 1920.


First Stamps Issued: May 1863

Name on stamp: Turkiye Cumhuriyeti

Turkey is now an independent Republic, established in 1923, but its first stamps appeared in 1863 when it was still part of the Ottoman Empire. That first set comprised two sections: one for the prepayment of postage, and one for cases where postage was paid on delivery.

13-United Arab Emirates

Former Name: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujeira, Sharjah, Umm al Qiwain, Ras al Khaima

First Stamp Issued: March 30, 1964, Abu Dhabi March 30, 1964, Ajman 1964, Dubai (inscribed Trucial States) January 07, 1961, Fujeira September 22, 1964, Sharjah 1963, Umm al Qiwain June 29, 1964, Ras al Khaima 21 December 1964.

First Stamps: Abu Dhabi, British PAs in Eastern Arabia 1963, Dubai, India 1909

Name on stamps: United Arab Emirates

Six of the former trucial states formed a union on December 02, 1971: Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Dubai, Fujeira, Sharjah and Umm al Qiwain. Ras al Khaima joined in 1972. All continued to use their own stamps until after the adoption of a common currency and postal administration on August 01, 1972.


Former Name: Aden (previously Aden-Seiyun, Aden-Shihr and Mukulla), Mahra Sultanate of Qishu and Socotra, Federation of South Arabia, Kathiri State of Seiyun, Upper Yafa.

First Stamp Issue: Aden April 01, 1937, Mahra Sultanate of Qishu and Socotra March 12, 1967, Federation of South Arabia November 25, 1963 (withdrawn 1967), Kathiri State of Seiyun August 1942, Upper Yafa 1967.

First Stamps: Aden: India from 1854, Kathiri State of Seiyun: Aden 1937-42

Name on stamp: Yemen PDR

An area of Arabia which in recent years has frequently changed its name, having been Aden and its surrounding Protectorates, then the South Arabian Federation, later Southern Yemen, becoming the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen in 1970.

South Asia

(1) Afghanistan (2) Bangladesh (3) Bhutan (4) India (5) Maldives (6) Nepal

(7) Pakistan 8) Sri Lanka


First Stamp Issued: 1871

Name on stamp: Postes Afghanes

A barren, mountainous country in Asia, which for just over 200 years was a monarchy, becoming an independent Republic in 1973. The first stamps appeared in 1983, the rare distinction that the method of ‘cancelling’ was to tear the stamps. Equally unusual is the fact that many of the early stamps were round.


First Stamp Issued: July 29, 1971

Name on stamp: Bangladesh

A part of India which formerly was regarded as the possession of Pakistan, until internal conflict in 1970. The first stamps used were remaining stocks of the stamps of Pakistan, locally overprinted ‘Bangladesh’ in many forms. The first stamps inscribed Bangladesh appeared in 1971.


First Stamps: January 01, 1955

(Fiscal stamps validated for internal postal use)

Name on stamp: Bhutan

An independent country in the Himalayas, which is bordered by India, Sikkim and Tibet. The first stamps appeared in 1962, although fiscal stamps had been put on sale in 1954 and it is thought that some of these were used postally.


Former Name : Chamba, Gwalior, Nabha, Patiala, Alwar, Bamra, Barwani, Bhopal, Bhor, Bijawar, Bussahir, Charkhari, Cochin, Dhar, Duttia (Datia), Faridkot, Hyderabad (Deccan), Idar, Indore (Holkar), Jaipur, Jammu and Kashmir, Jasdan, Jhalawar, Jind, Kishangarh, Las Bela, Morvi, Nandgaon, Nawanagar, Orchha, Poonch, Rajasthan, Rajpipla, Sirmoor, Soruth, Travancore, Tranvancore-Cochin, Wadhwan, French Indian Settlements, Portuguese India.

First Stamp Issue : July 01, 1852 (the so-called ‘Scinde Dawk’ issue, made by the commissioner of Sind province, the first adhesive postage stamps in Asia), Chamba 1886, Gwalior 1885 Hindi inscription, Nabha 1885, Patiala 1884 overprinted variously Puttialla or Patiala, Alwar 1877, Bamra 1888, Barwani 1921, Bhopal 1876, Bhor 1879, Bijawar 1935, Bundi May 1894, Bussahir June 20, 1895, Charkhari 1894, Cochin April 01, 1892 most have characteristics Umbrella watermark, Dhar 1897, Duttia (Datia) 1893, Faridkot 1879, Hyderabad (Deccan)1869 stamps inscribed in native script or H.E.H. The Nizam’s Government, Idar February 21, 1939, Indore (Holkar) 1886, Jaipur 1904, Jammu and Kashmir March 1866, Jasdan 1942, Jhalawar 1887, Jind 1874, Kishangarh 1899, Las Bela 1897, Morvi April 01, 1931, Nandgaon February 1892, Nawanagar 1877, Orchha 1913, Poonch 1876, Rajasthan 1949, Rajpipla 1880, Sirmoor 1879, Soruth November 1864, Travancore October 16, 1888 most have the characteristics conch shell watermark, Travancore-Cochin July 01, 1949, Wadhwan 1888, French Indian Settlements November 1892, Portuguese India October 01, 1871 (after 1877 these were valid for overseas postage via Bombay).

Name on stamp: India

India’s unique blend of peoples and cultures came under the jurisdiction of the British Crown from 1837 until independence in 1947. The first stamps are extremely rare, being locals produced for the province of Scinde in 1852. The postal service was originally administered by the East India Company, and stamps inscribed India first appeared in 1854.


First Stamp Issued: 1906

Name on stamp: Republic of Maldives

An independent Republic to the south-west of Sri Lanka, the Maldives comprises some 2000 coral islands, which until 1965, were part of the British Commonwealth. A post office opened in 1906 using the stamps of Ceylon suitably overprinted. Stamps inscribed Maldive Islands appeared in 1909.


First Stamp Issued: May 1881

First Stamps: India 1854

Name on stamp: Nepal

An independent Kingdom in the Himalayas which lies between India and Tibet. The first stamps were issued in 1861, but up to 1959 these could not be used on internal mail: external mail needed to have Indian stamps affixed.


Former Name: Bahawalpur

First Stamp Issued: October 01, 1947: Bahawalpur January 01, 1945 (official only)

First Stamps: India to 1947

Name on stamp: Pakistan

Pakistan was formerly part of India, gaining independence in 1947 to become a Republic in the British Commonwealth. The first stamps appeared in 1947 comprising of the overprint ‘Pakistan’ on the stamps of India. Distinctive stamps first appeared in 1948.

8-Sri Lanka

Former Name: Ceylon

First Stamp Issued: May 22, 1972: Ceylon April 01, 1857

Name on stamp: Sri Lanka

A tropical island to the south of India, known as Ceylon until 1972. The civilization on the island dates back to the time of Vijaya who was exiled on the island, about 2500 years ago, and became King Lanka.

East Asia

(1) China (2) Hong Kong (3) Japan (4) Macau (5) Mongolia (6) North Korea

(7) South Korea (8) Taiwan


First Stamp Issued: October 08, 1949

First Stamps: 1862

Name on stamp: People’s Republic of China

A country that was much divided and served by many provincial authorities. It was only on October 08, 1949 that the first general issue was available when China came under total communist rule. Great Britain, France, Russia, Japan, Germany, Italy and the United States operated post offices in China from 1840s till as late as 1930.

2-Hong Kong

First Stamp Issued:

First Stamps:

Name on stamp:


Former Name: Ryukyu Islands

First Stamp Issued: April 20, 1871: Ryukyu Islands 1948

First Stamps: Ryukyu Islands: Japanese until 1945

Name on stamp: Nippon

A chain of islands which comprise the Empire of Japan in Asia. Japan can trace its history as far back as 500 AD.


First Stamp Issue: March 01, 1884

First Stamps: 1863

Name on stamp: Macau

It was first leased from China and late made a colony of Portugal. It returned to China in 2001.


First Stamps Issued: August 1924

First Stamps: 1863

Name on stamp: Mongolia

Before it became a republic in 1924, stamps of Russia were used from various posts. The Russian postal administration started a service in 1870 followed by the Chinese Post Office in 1909.

6-North Korea

Former Name: Korea

First Stamp Issued: March 12, 1946

Korea November 18, 1884 (these were shortlived as the PO was burned down during a revolt in December 1884; new stamps were not issued until 1895).

First Stamps: Japan

Name on stamp: DPR of Korea

Korea comprises a peninsula in Asia, once an Empire under Chinese suzerainty and annexed to Japan in 1910. After 1945 Russian and United States Military Administrators were established in North and South Korea respectively. Each became an independent Republic in 1948. The stamps for the Empire first appeared in 1884, for North Korea in 1946.

7-South Korea

Former Name: Korea

First Stamp Issued: February 01, 1946

First Stamps: Japan

Name on stamp: Republic of Korea

That part of Korea once under the United States Military Administration, the first stamps as such appearing in 1946.


First Stamp Issued: December 01, 1949

First Stamps: 1886

Name on stamp: Republic of China

Japan ceded the island in 1895. It was returned to China in 1945 and taken over by Chiang Kai Sheik to become a republic.

Southeast Asia

(1) Brunei (2) Burma (3) Cambodia (4) Indonesia (5) Laos (6) Malaysia (7) Philippines (8) Singapore (9) Thailand (10) Vietnam


First Stamp Issued: October 11, 1906

Name on stamp: Brunei

The sultanate once formed a very powerful empire. The country has been under British protection since 1888. The first recognized stamps, issued in 1906, were overprints on the stamps of Laguna.

2-Burma (Myanmar)

Former Name: Burma, India, Socialist Republic of the Union of Burma

First Stamp Issued: 1937

First Stamps: Burma: India overprinted 1937. Burma: inscribed 1938, During Japanese Occupation: overprinted with Burmese peacock emblem 1942.

Name on stamp: Myanmar

Once ruled as a part of India under the British Crown Colony, Burma adopted socialist economy upon achieving independence on January 04, 1948. Since 1990, however, internal unrests held sway and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Aung San Suu Kyi’s name became synonymous with Myanmar’s political struggle against military junta. For long, Myanmar is without an official philatelic bureau, and it has been known as one of the most conservative in stamp issues and philately information dissemination, making it a favourite of illegal stamp producers.


Former Name: Indo-China, Khmer Republic, Kampuchea Republic

First Stamp Issued: 1951

First Stamps: Cambodia 1951

Name on stamp: Kampuchea

Once a French protectorate, Cambodia remained a part of French Indo China until the end of World War II, when it was made an associated state within the French Union. It issued its first stamp, joined the Universal Postal Union in 1951, and achieved independence in 1955. Cambodia’s relation with the United States was temporarily severed during 1965-1969 over a dispute that the US was perpetrating a revolution in the country. In 1970, Communist Khmer Republic was proclaimed, its rebel troop Khmer Rouge rose to power and began a history of violence that aggravated with the subsequent Vietnamese invasion. Refugees fled in terror to neighbouring Thailand. In 1975, stamps of Cambodia were forbidden entry into the US. By 1998, however, political stability was slowly restored, and the once-terror Khmer Rouge diminished with time.


Former Name : Netherlands Indies, Java and Madura, Sumatra, United States of Indonesia, South Moluccas (Maluku Saletan), Riau-Lingga Archipelago (Riau), Netherlands New Guinea, West New Guinea, West Irian (Irian Barat).

First Stamp Issued: August 17, 1950. Netherlands Indies April 01, 1864, Java and Madura October 1945, Sumatra 1945, United States of Indonesia 1950, South Moluccas (Maluku Selatan) 1950, Riau-Lingga Archipelago (Riau) January 01, 1954, Netherlands New Guinea January 01, 1950, West New Guinea October 01, 1962, West Irian (Irian Barat) May 1, 1963.

Name on stamp: Republik Indonesia

Indonesia was formerly an independent Republic which was proclaimed in Java and Sumatra. The remainder of the Netherlands Indies was renamed Indonesia in 1948. The whole being proclaimed a Republic in 1950. The first stamps inscribed for Indonesia appeared in 1949, although the previous stamps of Netherlands Indies had been suitably overprinted.


Former Name: Indo-China

First Stamp Issued: 1951

First Stamps: Indo-China: French up to 1951

Name on stamp: Rep Dem Pop Lao

Though landlocked with neither railroads nor sophisticated road system – Laos did not escape the French influence that made it a part of French Indo China in 1893. After World War II, Laos gained independence in 1949. This, however, pulled off a history of unrest – on December 02, 1975, Communism ended six centuries of Monarchy in the country, and Lao People’s Democratic Republic was proclaimed. Intricately fine engravings and rich colors once featured on this largely Buddhist country’s early stamps made way for propagandistic functions and popular western designs with the Communist regime, and Laos have come to know a new look for stamps since.


Former Name : Straits Settlements, Perak, Sungei Ujong, Selangor, Pahang, Negri Sembilan, Federated Malay States, Johore, Kedah, Kelantan, Perlis, Trengganu, Melaka (Malacca), Pulau Pinang (Penang), Federation of Malaysia.

First Stamp Issued : Straits Settlements April 01, 1867, Perak 1878, Sungei Ujong 1878, Selangor 1881, Pahang January 1889, Negri Sembilan 1891, Federated Malay States 1900, Johore July 1876, Kedah July 01, 1912, Kelantan January 1911, Perlis December 01, 1948, Trengganu 1910, Melaka (Malacca) December 01, 1948, Pulau Pinang (Penang) December 01, 1948, Federation of Malaysia September 16, 1963.

First Stamps: Straits Settlements: India October 22, 1854March 31, 1867, Perak: Straits Settlements 1874-8, Selangor: Straits Settlements 1874-81, Federated Malay States: Individual states from 1878, Kedah: Siam to 1909, Federated Malay States 1909-12, Kelantan: Siam to 1909, Federated Malay States 1909-11, Perlis: Siam to 1909, then as Kedah to 1948, Trengganu: Straits Settlements 1910

Name on stamp: Malaysia

An area of South East Asia which comprises the former Malayan Federation (consisting of the states on the Malay Peninsula), Saba and Sarawak. The individual States have issued their own stamps over many years; stamps for the Malayan Federation first appeared in 1957 to be replaced in 1965 by stamps for Malaysia.


First Stamp Issued: February 01, 1854

Name on stamp: Pilipnas

A group of over 7000 islands in the China Sea, which were discovered by Ferdinand Magellan in 1521 and named in honour of King Philip II of Spain. After a history of control by various countries, they became independent in 1946. The first stamps appeared in 1854 while the islands were under Spanish Occupation.


Former Name: Straits Settlements, Federation of Malaya, Federation of Malaysia

First Stamp Issued: September 01, 1948

Name on stamp: Singapore

A Republic comprising a group of islands on the southern tip of the Malay peninsula – named after the largest of the island in the group – which became an important sea port and trading centre, thanks to its position between India and China. It became a separate colony in 1948 when the Straits Settlements were dissolved.


Former Name: Siam

First Stamp Issued: August 04, 1883

Name on stamp: Thailand

This independent Kingdom in Asia was first settled by the Thais in the twelfth century. It was known as Siam, changing its name in 1840. The postal service was originally established for the benefit of the royal family, stamps being introduced in 1883.


Former Name: Annam, Cochin, China, Tonkin, Viet Minh

First Stamp Issued: Viet Minh: French overprint 1945, Viet Minh 1954, Vietnam 1951, Socialist Republic of Vietnam 1976.

First Stamps: Canada (Dominion): Cochin China: France 1862

Name on stamp: Vietnam


(1) Australia (2) Fiji (3) Nauru (4) New Caledonia (5) New Zealand (6) Papua New Guinea (7) Solomon Islands (8)Vanuatu


Former Name : New South Wales, Queensland, Victoria, Van Diemens Land, Tasmania, South Australia, Western Australia, The Commonwealth of Australia

First Stamp Issued: New South Wales January 01, 1850, Queensland November 01, 1860, Victoria January 05, 1850, Van Diemens Land November 01, 1853, Tasmania January 1858, South Australia January 01, 1855, Western Australia August 01, 1854, The Commonwealth of Australia January 01, 1913.

Name on stamp: Australia

The British took possession of Australia following Captain James Cook’s landing near Sydney in 1770. Before the establishment of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901, the individual States produced separate stamp issues.


First Stamp Issued: November 01, 1870 (as independent territory), October 10, 1970

Name on stamp: Fiji

The group of islands in the South Western Pacific known as Fiji was sighted by the Dutchman, Tasman. They became a British colony in 1870, being produced by the local newspaper, The Fiji Times. The first ‘proper’ stamps appeared in 1871, these being overprinted ‘V.R’ in 1874 when the islands were ceded to Great Britain.


First Stamp Issued: 1916

First Stamps: NW Pacific Islands overprinted 1914-16

Name on stamp: Nauru

An independent Republic in the Pacific, Nauru was discovered in 1798 by Captain Feam of the Royal Navy. Ninety years late it was annexed by Germany and administered as part of the Marshall Islands. Australia captured the island in 1914. The island came under both a British and an Australian mandate until its independence in 1968.

4-New Caledonia

First Stamp Issued: June 10, 1859 inscribed ‘Interinsular Postage’

First Stamps: Britain 1858-9 (oblit: AO5 at Nassau)

Name on stamp: Nouvelle-Caledonie et Dependances

Islands in the Central Pacific, discovered and named by Captain Cook in 1774, and settled by the French from 1793. The first stamp appeared in 1860, being a single 10c value depicting Emperor Napoleon III. From 1862 to 1881 the French ‘colonial’ series was used, and then various overprints. Stamps for New Caledonia reappeared in 1905.

5-New Zealand

First Stamp Issued: July 18, 1855

Name on stamp: New Zealand

A Dominion of the British Commonwealth in the Pacific Ocean, New Zealand comprises two islands, North and South. It was originally inhabited by the Maoris from Polynesia. The first recorded sighting was made in 1642 by Tasman, a Butch explorer, and Captain Cook rediscovered the islands in 1769.

6-Papua New Guinea

Former Name: Territory of Papua (previously British New Guinea), Territory of New Guinea (previously German New Guinea), North West Pacific Islands

First Stamp Issued : As a trust territory: October 30, 1952, As Papua New Guinea January 26, 1972, As a self-governing territory: December 05, 1973, As an independent country: September 10, 1975, British New Guinea: July 01, 1901, Territory of Papua: BNG stamps overprinted November 08, 1906, German New Guinea: 1900, Territory of New Guinea: 1925, North West Guinea: 1900, Territory of New Guinea: 1925m, North West Pacific Islands: March 15, 1915

First Stamps : Papua New Guinea: Queensland, British New Guinea, German New Guinea and Territory of New Guinea, British New Guinea: Queensland from 1885 onwards Territory of Papua: Queensland and British New Guinea, German New Guinea: German standard stamps from 1885, Territory of New Guinea: German issues from 1885.

Name on stamp: Papua New Guinea

This territory in the Pacific Ocean became independent in 1975. At first separate stamp issues appeared for each of Papua and New Guinea; combined issues were first released in 1952. At that time the territory was known as Papua and New Guinea, the ‘and’ being dropped in 1972.

7-Solomon Islands

Former Name: British Solomon Islands

First Stamp Issued: Solomon Islands August 04, 1975, British Solomon Islands February 14, 1907

First Stamps: Solomon Islands: New South Wales to 1907 and British Solomon Islands; as self-governing territory January 12, 1976. British Solomon Islands: New South Wales from 1896

Name on stamp: Solomon Islands

The stamps currently inscribed Solomon Islands come from the territory formerly known as the British Solomon Islands Protectorate in the South-West Pacific. The British resident Commissioner, Charles Woodford, designed the initial stamps in 1907.


Former Name: New Hebrides

First Stamp Issued: February 14, 1907

First Stamps: New South Wales from 1896

Name on stamp: Vanuatu

A group of islands which prior to independence in 1980 were known as the New Hebrides. They were discovered by Pedro Fernandez de Quiros, but were named by Captain Cook. Up to independence they were jointly administered by Great Britain and France and from the first stamp in 1908 up to 1980, each issue had been released both in English and French.

North Eastern Africa

(1) Chad (2) Djibouti (3) Egypt (4) Eritrea (5) Ethiopia (6) Libya (7) Somalia (8) Sudan


Former Name: French Equatorial Africa

First Stamp Issued: November 28, 1959

Name on stamp: Republique de Tchad

One of the French territories in Central Africa, a dependency of Ubangui-Shari, Chad became a Republic within the French Community in 1958. Stamps of French Congo were first used, before the stamps of Middle Congo suitably overprinted were introduced in 1922.


Former Name: Afars and Issas

First Stamp Issued: August 21, 1967

First Stamps: Obock, Djibouti and Cote Francaise des Somali

Name on stamp: Republique de Djibouti

Djibouti lies in the Gulf of Aden, off the east coast of Africa. It was once the French Territory of the Afars and Issas and before that was known as the French Somali Coast. Stamps overprinted for use there appeared in 1891. Stamps for French Somali Coast appeared in 1902; for the Afars and Issas in 1967 and for Djibouti in 1977.


Former Name: United Arab Republic

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1866

Name on stamp: A R Egypt

An Arab Republic in north-east Africa. The civilization in Egypt dates back some 6000 years and indeed a postal service, by pigeons, was in use as long ago as 1300 BC. The first stamps as such did not appear until 1866.


First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1893

First Stamps: Egyptian used in Massawa 1869-85

Name on stamp: Eritrea

Administered by the British and federated with Ethiopia on September 15, 1952 (fully integrated ten years later). It still has strong separatist movement. Stamps inscribed Eritrea purporting to come from ‘areas liberated from Ethiopia’ has been on the market in 1978: it is not clear whether they are bogus, propagandist or was prepared in hope of use.


Former Name: Abyssinia

First Stamp Issued: November 24, 1894

Name on stamp: Ethiopia

A Socialist State in East Africa, formerly known as Abyssinia, the civilization if which dates back to Biblical times. The postal service was established in 1894 in which year the first stamps were introduced, although until 1908 these stamps were only used for internal mail deliveries.


Former Name: Cyrenaica, Fezzan, Ghadames, Tripolitania

First Stamp Issued: December 24, 1951: Cyrenaica October 24, 1923, Fezzan May 16, 1943, Ghadames April 12, 1949, Tripolitania October 24, 1923

Name on stamp: Socialist People’s Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

Libya is in fact the Greek name for North Africa. Libya was formerly an Italian colony: following a revolution the country became the Libyan Arab Republic. Stamps of Italy suitably overprinted were issued in 1912, followed by distinctive stamps in 1921.


Former Name: Italian East Africa, Jubaland (Oltre Giuba), Somalia (Italian Trust Territory), Somalia (Republic including ex-British Somaliland), Somaliland Protectorate (British Somaliland).

First Stamp Issued: Somalia (Somali Democratic Republic): October 12, 1903, Jubaland (Oltre Giuba): June 29, 1925, Somaliland Protectorate (British Somaliland) 1903

First Stamps: Italian East Africa: combined territories February 07, 1938, Jubaland: 1896, Somalia (Italian Trust Territory): April 01, 1950, Somalia (Republic including ex-British Somaliland): April 01, 1960, later inscribed 1973 – Jun.Dim. Somalia, from 1974-Jam.Dim. Soomaaliya

Name on stamp: Jamhuuriyadda Dimoqraadiga Soomaaliya

A Republic formed in 1960 by the amalgamation of Italian-administered Somalia and the British-administered Somaliland Protectorate. The first (colonial) stamps were issued in 1903. The present country name was introduced in October 1969.


First Stamp Issued: March 1897: As an independent republic September 15, 1956

First Stamps: Egypt 1867

Name on stamp: Democratic Republic of the Sudan

An independent Republic in Africa, south of Egypt, whose population comprises both Arabs and Negroes. The post office was established in 1867. Overprints on Egypt were replaced in 1898 by stamps in a design showing a Camel Postman.

Western Africa

(1) Algeria (2) Benin (3) Bukina Faso (4) Cameroon (5) Cape Verde (6) Cote d’Ivoire (7) Ghana (8) Guinea (9) Guinea-Bissau (10) Liberia (11) Mali

(12) Mauritania (13) Morocco (14) Niger (15) Nigeria (16) Senegal (17) Sierra Leone (18) The Gambia (19) Togo (20) Tunisia


Former Name: Aden

First Stamp Issued: May 08, 1924

First Stamps: France from 1849

Name on stamp: Algerie

A Republic in North Africa which became independent in 1962. It was administered by France from 1847; French stamps being used before 1924 and from 1958 to 1962. In the intervening period colonials inscribed for Algeria were utilized.


Former Name: Dahomey

First Stamp Issued: September 1892

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues at Porto Novo from 1888

Name on stamp: Republique Populaire du Benin

This country, which lies on the west coast of Africa, was incorporated into the French territory of Dahomey in 1894, but was once again renamed as Benin when it became a People’s Republic in 1975.

3-Burkina Faso

Former Name: Upper Volta

First Stamp Issued: October 1984, Upper Volta: December 1920 (withdrawn December 31, 1932)

First Stamps: French Sudan from 1894

Name on stamp: Burkina Faso

The first stamps were overprints appearing in 1920, while issues inscribed Upper Volta first appeared in 1928. The colony of Upper Volta was created from parts of the colony of Upper Senegal and Niger in 1919, divided among French Sudan, Ivory Coast and Niger from 1932, and reconstituted as a French Overseas Territory in 1947. Semi-autonomous status was achieved in December 11, 1958 and full independence came on August 05, 1960. The name was changed to Burkina Faso in August 04, 1984.


Former Name: German Cameroons (Kamerun), (British) Cameroons, Southern Cameroons, Cameroun

First Stamp Issued: German Cameroons (Kamerun) April 1897, Southern Cameroons October 01, 1960

First Stamps: German Cameroons (Kamerun): Germany 1887, (British) Cameroons: British Occupation 1915, Nigeria from c. 1920. Cameroun: French Occupation 1915

Name on stamp: Republique Unie du Cameroun

A Republic on the west coast of Africa, once forming the German colony of Kamerun, and later being divided between France and Great Britain. Stamps used have included German stamps overprinted ‘Kamerun’ in 1897, and French occupation overprints on the stamps of Gabon in 1915. Stamps inscribed for use there first appeared in 1925.

5-Cape Verde

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1877

Name on stamp: Republica de Cabo Verde

A group of islands in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Africa, which were formerly Portuguese. The islands gained independence in 1975. The first stamps were issued in 1877 but for many years most of the stamps repeated the designs used by Angola.

6-Cote d’Ivoire

First Stamp Issued: November 1892: As an autonomous republic October 01, 1959

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues at Assinie in 1862-71 (distinguishable by ASI in a lozenge of dots)

Name on stamp: Republique de Cote d’Ivoire

Once a French Colony in West Africa, the Ivory Coast became incorporated in French West Africa in 1944. In 1958 it became an autonomous Republic within the French community, achieving full independence in 1960. Stamps were issued from 1892 to 1944, when the stamps of French West Africa were used. Stamps for Ivory Coast again appeared in 1959.


Former Name: Gold Coast

First Stamp Issued: March 30, 1964

First Stamps: July 01, 1875: Last issue overprinted Ghana on independence

Name on stamp: A Republic in West Africa which was formerly known as Gold Coast. Stamps inscribed Gold Coast first appeared in 1875, being replaced in 1957 by the stamps of Ghana. The first stamps from Ghana comprised overprints on the Queen Elizabeth II definitives of Gold Coast announcing Ghana’s independence.


Former Name: French Guinea

First Stamp Issued: November 1892

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues from 1881

Name on stamp: Republique de Guinee

This former French colony on the west coast of Africa became independent in 1958. The first stamps were introduced the following year, initially consisting of the stamps of French West Africa suitably overprinted. Stamps inscribed Guinea appeared the same year.


Former Name: Portuguese Guinea

First Stamp Issued: 1974, Portuguese Guinea: 1881

Name on stamp: Republica da Guinea-Bissau

This country on the west coast of Africa was explored by Alvaro Fernandez in 1446, and was formerly knows as Portuguese Guinea. The first stamps appeared in 1881, being issued with the inscription ‘Guinea Bissau’ in 1975.


First Stamp Issued: 1860

Name on stamp: Liberia

A Republic on the west coast of Africa which was originally explored by the Portuguese navigator, Pedro de Sintra. In the early 1800s it became a home for freed slaves and indeed the name ‘Liberia’ is derived from the word ‘free’. This territory is one of the first to issue pictorial stamps.


Former Name: French Sudan, Senegambia and Niger, Upper Senegal and Niger, French West Africa, Mali Federation

First Stamps Issued: French Sudan April 12, 1894, Senegambia and Niger: July 1903 (Inscribed Senegambia er Niger), Upper Senegal and Niger 1906 (inscribed Haut Senegal et Niger), French West Africa December 1944, Mali Federation: November 07, 1959.

First Stamps: French Sudan: French Colonies General issues at Kayes 1890, Senegambia and Niger: French Sudan to 1903, Upper Senegal and Niger French Sudan to 1903.

Name on stamp: Republique du Mali

At first Mali comprised the Federation of French Sudan and Sengegal, formed in 1959 but one year late a split occurred with Sudan becoming the Republic of Mali. Stamps first appeared in 1959 for the Federation, being replaced in 1960 by stamps for the Republic.


First Stamp Issued: 1906

First Stamps: Stamps of Senegal at Kaedi and Rosso only after independence January 20, 1960

Name on stamp: Republique Islamique de Mauritanie

Mauritania is an independent Islamic Republic in Africa, which extends inland to the Sahara. Once a French colony, it was incorporated into French West Africa in 1944. Stamps were issued from 1906 to 1944, with French West Africa stamps then being used until Mauritania’s own stamps reappeared in 1960.


Former Name: French Morocco, Tangier (international Zone 1912 – October 1956), Spanish Morocco, Ifni, Spanish Sahara, Spanish West Africa

First Stamp Issued: French Morocco: August 01, 1914 (withdrawn March 02, 1956), Spanish Morocco: July 22, 1914 (withdrawn April 07, 1956), Ifni: 1941, Spanish Sahara 1924, Spanish West Africa October 09, 1949-51

Name on stamp: Royaume du Maroc

This Kingdom in north-west Africa gained independence in 1956, and from that time it has issued its own stamps. From 1892 an internal postal service was put into operation, but for overseas mail reliance was put on the postal agencies operated by foreign powers. Indeed British stamps remained in use for Tangier up to 1956.


Former Name: French West Africa

First Stamp Issued: 1921

First Stamps: Niger: Upper Senegal and Niger 1921, French West Africa 1944, Niger 1960

Name on stamp: Republique du Niger

The hot, barren Saharan desert is the look of Niger. Despite local Tuaregs revolts, Niger was turned from a French military territory to a French West African colony in 1922. Its first stamps issued in 1921 were overprints on the issues of Upper Senegal and Niger, featuring typical French colonial pattern. In 1944 to 1959, the stamps of French West Africa came into use. Since its independence on August 03, 1960, stamps have been issued in great profusion – up to about fifteen issues each year, many featuring world events and thematic designs not necessarily related to the country itself.


Former Name : Lagos, Niger Territories, Oil River Protectorate, Niger Coast Protectorate, Southern Nigeria, Northern Nigeria

First Stamp Issued: June 01, 1914, Lagos: June 10, 1874, Southern Nigeria: March 1901, Northern Nigeria: March 1900

First Stamps: Niger Territories: Britain 1890-1900, Oil River Protectorate: (overprinted GB) July 1892, Niger Coast Protectorate: inscribed (by overprint) Niger Coast Protectorate: November 1893

Name on stamp: Nigeria

A Republic in West Africa, formerly consisting of the Royal Niger Company, the Niger Coast Protectorate and the Protectorate of Lagos. The first stamps inscribed Nigeria appeared in 1914, although there were previous issues for the Niger Coast Protectorate, Northern Nigeria and Southern Nigeria. During the Civil War in the late 1960s, stamps were produced for use in Biafra.


Former Name: Mali Federation

First Stamp Issued: 1887

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues from 1859 distinguished by a lozenge of dots with GOR or SEN.

Name on stamp: Republique du Senegal

Having been a French colony since 1629, Senegal was incorporated into French West Africa in 1944 and in 1959 it became a part of Mali. That last association split up in 1960 leaving Senegal as a Republic within the French Community.

17-Sierra Leone

First Stamp Issued: September 21, 1859 (oblit. B31 used at Freetown)

Name on stamp: Sierra Leone

An independent Republic in West Africa which when originally established as a colony, was used as a settlement for liberated slaves and homeless Africans.

18-The Gambia

First Stamp Issued: March 1869

Name on stamp: The Gambia

An independent Republic in West Africa, which comprises a narrow stretch of land along the banks of the Gambia River. The river itself was discovered by the Portuguese in 1447. The first stamps appeared in 1869 and are known as the ‘Cameos’ having an embossed portrait of Queen Victoria.


First Stamp Issued: June 1897, July 15, 1921 Under French Mandate: October 06, 1947 as a Trust Territory: May 02, 1955 as an Autonomous Republic.

First Stamps: Germany: March 01, 1888 (Klein-Popo, 1888: Lorne 1890)

Name on stamp: Republique Togolaise

This territory is West Africa was formerly a German colony. It was divided between France and Great Britain in 1919, gaining independence in 1960. German stamps were at first used, such stamps being specially overprinted in 1897. Stamps inscribed for Togo first their appearance in 1924.


First Stamp Issued : July 01, 1888

First Stamps: France from 1862

Name on stamp: Republique Tunisienne

A Republic in North Africa which was formerly a French Protectorate. A postal service was established by the Sardinians in 1853, and Sardinian stamps were at first used. Later, Italian stamps were in use, until Tunisia produced her own stamps in 1888. Stamps for air mail post were introduced in 1919.

Southern Africa

(1) Angola (2) Botswana (3) Brundi (4) Central African Republic (5) Comoros (6) Democratic Republic of Congo (7) Equatorial Guinea (8) Gabon (9) Kenya (10) Lesotho (11) Madagascar (12) Malawi (13) Mauritius (14) Mozambique (15) Namibia (16) Republic of Congo (17) Rwanda (18) Sao Tome & Principe (19) Seychelles (20) South Africa (21) Swaziland (22) Tanzania (23) Uganda (24) Zambia (15) Zimbabwe


Former Name: Portuguese Congo

First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1870, Portuguese Congo: August 05, 1894

Name on stamp: Angola

Angola, in the southern part of Africa, was discovered in 1483 by the Portuguese explorer, Diego Cam, and from that time came under Portuguese control until independence was granted in 1975: the country is now a Republic. It was the first Portuguese colony to issue its own stamps.


Former Name: British Bechuanaland, Bechuanaland Protectorate, Stellaland

First Stamps Issued: September 30, 1966, British Bechuanaland: December 1885, Bechuanaland Protectorate: August 07, 1888, Stellaland: February 1884

Name on stamp: Botswana

Botswana lies in the centre of Southern Africa. It was once known as British Bechuanaland, but was split into Cape Colony and Bechuanaland. Early stamps comprised overprints on either the stamps of Cape of Good Hope or Great Britain, before stamps inscribed British Bechuanaland or Bechuanaland Protectorate appeared.


Former Name: Ruanda-Urundi

First Stamps: July 01, 1962

Name on stamp: Republique du Burundi

Once part of the Belgian territory of Ruanda-Urundi, Burundi achieved independence in 1962, and following a revolution in 1967 became a Republic. The first stamps used in the territory were those of the Belgian Congo overprinted, introduced in 1916. In 1962 stamps of Ruanda-Urundi appeared overprinted for Burundi.

4-Central African Republic

Former Name: Ubangi-Shari

First Stamp Issued: December 01, 1959, Ubangi-Shari: November 1922

First Stamps: As Ubangi-Shari-Chad until 1922

Name on stamp: Republique Centrafricaine

Formerly known as Ubangi-Shari, part of French Equatorial Africa, this independent country within the French community became as Empire in 1976, but reverted to being a Republic in 1979 on the overthrow of the President. The Republic’s first stamps appeared in 1959, with stamps for the Empire being issued from 1977 until 1979.


6-Democratic Republic of Congo

Former Name: Congo Democratic Republic (previously Belgian Congo), Katanga, South Kasai

First Stamp Issued: Inscribed Zaire December 18, 1971, Katanga: September 12, 1960, South Kasai: June 20, 1961

First Stamps: Inscribed Etat du Congo: January 01, 1886

Name on stamp: Republique de Zaire

This country in South Africa was formerly known as the Belgian Congo and Congo Republic, the change in name taking place in 1971. The first stamps inscribed Zaire therefore date from 1971, although stamps for Belgian Congo had existed since 1886.

7-Equatorial Guinea

Former Name: Elobey, Annobon, Fernando Po, Rio Muni, Spanish Guinea

First Stamp Issued: October 12, 1968, Elobey, Annobon and Corisco: June 1903, Fernando Po (as Spanish Colony): July 01, 1868, Rio Muni: April 1960, Spanish Guinea 1902

First Stamps: Fernando Po: Britain from 1874

Name on stamp: Republica de Guinea Ecuatorial

Equatorial Guinea consists of the former Spanish provinces of Fernando Po and Rio Muni, which were united and became a Republic in 1968.


Former Name: French Equatorial Africa

First Stamp Issued: (previously) July 31, 1886

First Stamps: After new division October 15, 1904

Name on stamp: Republique Gabonaise

This country in West Africa takes its name from the Gabun River and was discovered by the Portuguese, although they did not settle the land. It later became a French colony, being part of French Equatorial Africa, until granted the stats of a Republic within the French Community in 1958.


Former Name: British East Africa, East Africa and Uganda Protectorates, Kenya and Uganda, Kenya Uganda and Tanganyika

First Stamp Issued: 1963

First Stamps: British East Africa: Imperial British East Africa Company: May 23, 1890, Protectorates: July 01, 1895, East Africa and Uganda Protectorates: Common to both protectorates: August-September 1903, Kenya and Uganda: Inscribed Kenya and Uganda: November 01, 1922, Kenya Uganda and Tanganyika: with joint inscription: May 01, 1935

Name on stamp: Kenya

Stamps inscribed Kenya has only appeared since this East African Republic became independent in 1963. Earlier stamps were either overprinted ‘British East Africa Company’ on Great Britain or inscribed as such; or inscribed British East Africa Protectorate, East Africa and Uganda Protectorate, Kenya and Uganda, or Kenya Uganda and Tanganyika.


Former Name: Basutoland

First Stamp Issued: October 04, 1966, Basutoland: December 01, 1933

First Stamps: Cape of Good Hope from c. 1880

Name on stamp: Lesotho

A country in South Africa which has issued stamps inscribed Lesotho since independence in 1966. Previously known as Basutoland, it at times used the stamps of Cape of Good Hope and South Africa, until stamps inscribed with ‘Basutoland’ were first issued in 1933. In 1959 and 1965 stamps were issued inscribed both Basutoland and Lesotho.


Former Name: Malagasy Republic, Nossi Be, Diego Suarez, Sainte-Marie de Madagascar

First Stamp Issued: 1889, Malagasy Republic: December 1958, Nossi Be: June 1889, Diego Suarez: January 25, 1890, Sainte-Marie de Madagascar: April 1894 (withdrawn January 18, 1898)

First Stamps: French Colonies General Issues 1885

Name on stamp: Rebobika Demokratika Malagasy

Dependencies of Madagascar that had their own stamps for various periods under French rule include Nossi Be, Diego Suarez, Sainte-Marie de Madagascar and the Comoro Islands.


Former Name: Nyasaland (British Central Africa Pretoectorate)

First Stamp Issued: July 06, 1964

First Stamps: British South Africa Company (overprinted B.C.A.) 1891 inscribed Nyasaland: July 22, 1908

Name on stamp: Malawi

This Republic in central Africa was formerly known as Nyasaland. On independence in 1964, stamps first appeared inscribed Malawi. Stamps inscribed Nyasaland did not appear until 1908; previous stamps used in the territory had been those of the British Central Africa Protectorate, which initially comprised the stamps of Rhodesia overprinted ‘B.C.A’.


First Stamp Issued: September 21, 1847

Name on stamp: Mauritius

An island in the Indian Ocean which has been independent since 1968, having the distinction of being the first British colony to issue postage stamps. It first stamps were famous 1d and 2d of 1847 which were inscribed ‘Post Office’ instead of ‘Post Paid’. A post office was established in 1811 and British stamps were initially used.


Former Name: Kionga, Lourenco Marques, Zambezia, Quelimane and Tete, Inhambane, Mozambique Company

First Stamp Issued: Mozambique: July 1876, Kionga: 1916, Lourenco Marques: July 28, 1893, Zambezia: July 28, 1893, Quelimane and Tete 1913-20, Inhambane: July 01, 1895, Mozambique Company 1892

First Stamps: Kionga: German East Africa

Name on stamp: Mocambique

This country in East Africa, which is divided by the Zambesi River, was colonized by the Portuguese in 1507. The first stamps in 1876 consisted of overprints, distinctive stamps not appearing until 1930.


Former Name: German South-West Africa

First Stamp Issued: January 01, 1923. Issues were bilingual in English and Afrikaans, but since 1970 have borne the abbreviations SWA instead. German South-West Africa: March 1897.

First Stamps: German South-West Africa: 1888

Name on stamp: SWA

Mandated territory in southern Africa, which was formerly a German colony. It is also known as Namibia. German stamps overprinted were used from 1897; Union of South Africa stamps were employed from 1915; South African stamps suitably overprinted were introduced in 1923; stamps actually inscribed South-West Africa first appeared in 1931.

16-Republic of Congo

Former Name: Middle Congo, French Congo, French Equatorial Africa

First Stamp Issued: November 28, 1970, French Congo (provisional): March 24, 1891, French Equatorial Africa: March 16, 1936

First Stamps: French Congo: inscribed MOYEN CONGO 1907

Name on stamp: Republique Populaire du Congo

This independent Republic within the French Community was formerly known as Middle Congo, being part of French Equatorial Africa. The first stamps inscribed Congo Republic appeared in 1959 to mark the first anniversary of gaining republic status.


Former Name: Ruanda-Urundi

First Stamp Issued: July 01, 1962

Name in stamp: Republique Rwandaise

An independent Republic in central Africa which was established in 1962, having been previously part of the Belgian controlled territory of Ruanda-Urundi. The first stamps were issued in 1962.

18-Sao Tome & Principe


Former Name: British Indian Ocean Territory

First Stamp Issued: April 05, 1890, British Indian Ocean Territory (locally): January 17, 1968 (released in London January 15)

First Stamps: Mauritius

Name on stamp: Seychelles

This group of islands in the Indian Ocean was discovered by the Portuguese in 1505. They were taken over by the French in the eighteenth century and named after the then Comptroller-General of France, Vicomte Moreau des Seychelles. The islands were transferred to Britain in 1814. The stamps of Mauritius were used from 1861 to 1890, when stamped inscribed Seychelles appeared.

20-South Africa

Former Name: Cape of Good Hope (Cape Colony), Griqualand West, Zululand, Natal, Orange River Colony (previously Orange Free State), Transvaal, Mafeking, Vryburg, New Republic

First Stamp Issued : Union of South Africa: November 04, 1910 (2 ½ value only; full definitives, 1913), Republicc of South Africa: May 31, 1961, Cape of Good Hope: September 01, 1853, Griqualand West: March 1877, Zululand: May 01, 1888, Natal: May 26, 1857, Orange Free State: January 1868, Orange River Colony: August 1900 (overprinted on Cape of Good Hope), Transvaal: August 1869 (their delivery appears to have been delayed, and they were sold direct to collectors for cash to pay the printer, a very early example of the practice), New Republic: January 1886.

First Stamps: Griqualand West: Cape of Good Hope from 1871

Stamps Issued: Mafekin: March 24 – May 17, Vryburg: During brief Boer occupation: November 1899, and during British occupation: May 1900

Name on stamp: RSA

An independent Republic, South Africa was first settled by the Dutch and English. Its early postal system was rather romantic; letters would be left under large stones and collected by captains visiting Cape Town. At first stamps appeared for the Cape of Good Hope, Natal, Transvaal and Orange River Colony individually, until the formation of the Union of South Africa in 1910.


First Stamp Issued: October 18, 1889, withdrawn November 07, 1894, Separate stamps revived January 02, 1933.

Name on stamp: Swaziland

Swaziland is an independent Kingdom in Southern Africa which was settled by the Dutch and British in the late nineteenth century. Stamps of the South African Republic, overprinted ‘Swaziland’, were in use between 1889 and 1894. From 1894 to 1933 the stamps of Transvaal and South Africa were in use until stamps inscribed Swaziland was introduced in 1933.


Former Name: German East Africa, Zanzibar, Tanganyika

First Stamp Issued: German East Africa: July 01, 1893, Zanzibar: November 10, 1895 (Protectorate), Tanganyika: October 1917

First Stamps: German East Africa: German 1890, Zanzibar: India from 1875. Inscribed Zanzibar Tanzania: October 17, 1965

Name on stamp: Tanzania

A Republic in East Africa which was created by the uniting of Tanganyika and Zanzibar; stamps inscribed Tanzania first appeared in 1965. Stamps inscribed Tanganyika first appeared in 1922, the area having initially used German stamps. Indian stamps were first used in Zanzibar; stamps inscribed Zanzibar appeared in 1896.


Former Name: East Africa and Uganda Protectorates, Kenya and Uganda, Kenya Uganda and Tanganyika

First Stamp Issued: Before 1903; March 1895 valid within borders only after 1963: October 09, 1962

Name on stamp: Uganda

This country in central East Africa had very distinctive initial stamps, as they were produced locally on a typewriter by the Reverend Ernest Miller of the Church Missionary Society. For a period the stamps of Kenya, Uganda and Tanganyika were in use.


Former Name: Northern Rhodesia

First Stamp Issued: October 24, 1964, Northern Rhodesia: April 01, 1925

Name on stamp: Zambia

A Republic in central Africa formerly known as Northern Rhodesia. Prior to 1925 the stamps of Rhodesia were used, although a provisional ½ stamp, produced in 1917 at Livingstone, belonged to Northern Rhodesia alone.


Former Name: Rhodesia and Nyasaland, Southern Rhodesia, Rhodesia (Zimbabwe-Rhodesia)

First Stamp Issued: April 18, 1980

First Stamps: Rhodesia overprinted, Rhodesia and Nyasaland: valid throughout the Federation: July 01, 1954, Southern Rhodesia: April 01, 1924, Rhodesia (Zimbabwe-Rhodesia): (first independent issue): December 08, 1965, separate issues resumed: May 17, 1965

Name on stamp: Zimbabwe

An independent state in central Africa, Zimbabwe was previously known as Rhodesia and prior to that as Southern Rhodesia. The first stamps in use were those issued by the British South Africa Company in 1892, bearing the Company’s Coat-of-Arms; these were overprinted ‘Rhodesia’ in 1909 and issued inscribed Rhodesia the following year.