Newspaper Stamp 1873 - 1895

First Sideface 1874 - 1882

Second Sdeface 1882 - 1898

The "Newspaper" stamp 1873 - 95 was designed by John Davies and engraved on a woodbox die and printed at the Govenment printing office in Wellington. The varieties are easily distingished by watermark and there perforation variations. Shown are the standard Davo "New Zealand" pages, I have designed specialist pages for all Campbell Patterson variations and these will be uploaded in time. I am still to decide whether the specialist pages of the Newspaper, First Sidefaces and Second Sidefaces will be included on the New Zealand Collection Page or in a new page that holds specialised collections.

​The "First Sideface " Queen Victoria 1874 - 82 was only around for a short period of 8 years. There are a few colour variations from the different printing runs, with the only major variation being in the perforations, other than the provisional printings of the 1d and 2d in 1875 on the large star watermarked paper used in the printing of the Chalons.

​The "Second Sideface"  Queen Victoria 1882 - 90 was introduced for the purposes of paying both postal and revenue charges. Over its life it was printed on 4 different papers and had variations in perforation (comb, line and rotary) combined with different dies as the electro's were worn out.
​In 1893 these stamps came out with "Advertisements" on there backs, there were 3 settings with a number of variations in colours and perforation.  My pages of "Adsons" will be uploaded in time, once again a very specialised area one of which I am only a novice. (A great publication as reference for these is published by J.A Robb)

New Zealand Chalons 1855 - 1873

Pictorials 1898 - 1909

The 1898 stamp issue holds a special interest as one of the world's earliest pictorial definitive issues.

The biggest change  was the departure from the universal use of portrait designs of monarchs or presidents to a set of stamps in which every stamp was not only different from the others.  The stamp designs were selected from around 2,400 entered in a public competition.

H W Young designed the 1/2d stamp, J Gaut the 1d, W R Bock the 2d, 3d, 9d and 1s values, E Howard the 4d, 6d and 8d and E T Luke the 2 1/2d, 5d, 2s and 5s stamps.

The stamps were all engraved by Waterlow and Sons, England and are known as the "London" prints. The first issue was also printed by Waterlow and Sons, with later supplies being printed in New Zealand from new plates also supplied by Waterlow and Sons.

In late 1899 - 1900 several of the 1898 Pictorials were reissued in different colours and size. A new stamp was also issued in December 1900 commemorating the departure of New Zealand troops to the South African War.

Pictorials 1903 - 1908
Christchurch Exhibition - 1906

Plans for the 1906 Christchurch Exhibition were finalised for the first industrial exhibition to be held in New Zealand - the 'New Zealand International Exhibition of Arts and Industries'.

The Exhibition was government subsidised with no expense spared, the buildings were impressive in size and design and included a complete Maori Pa (fortified village).  The displays were of a high standard with significant participation by other British empire countries.

Stamps issued to commemorate the event was approved by Government and Mr L J Steel, an Auckland artist, who was well known for his portrayal of Maori and historical subjects, had previously submitted designs of a historical nature.  His permission was obtained to use some of these designs for this commemorative stamp issue. The dies for printing the stamps were engraved by W R Bock of Wellington.

King Edward VII,  1909 - 1916
​Auckland Exhibition - 1913

The 1909 - 1916 King Edward VII issue. When Queen Victoria died in 1901 she was succeeded by her son Edward who became King Edward VII. The 1d Universal stamp had at that time just been issued and as the new pictorial stamp issues were only three years old, it was decided not to issue stamps depicting the new monarch till 1906.

Edward VII who was born on 9 November 1841, was nearly 60 years old when he succeeded his mother as British monarch. As Prince of Wales, he acquired a reputation as a playboy and was heartily disapproved of by his mother, but he was also a noted sportsman, traveller, and patron of the arts. Edward and his wife, Alexandra of Denmark, presided over an unconventional social set that included members of the upper middle classes as well as the traditional aristocracy. Although when he succeeded to the throne he had little experience in Government, Edward was extremely popular during his short reign - he died on 6 May 1910.

In June 1906 it was decided to issue a series of stamps depicting Edward VII but at the same time retaining the penny Universal design.  The following year the status of New Zealand changed when the country was proclaimed a Dominion as opposed to a Colony.
As a result of the above in March 1908 the Postmaster-General announced that the 1d Universal would be reissued with the words 'Dominion of New Zealand' in place of 'New Zealand' and that King Edward VII stamps would be issued in 1/2d, 2d, 3d, 4d, 5d, 6d, 8d, and 1s values.

The new 1d 'Dominion' stamp and several of the new King Edward VII stamps were overprinted 'official' for postage on letters, packets and telegrams sent on public service. Stamps depicting Edward VII continued to be produced for over a decade after his death, and the 1d Dominion was not replaced until 1926.

The 1913 Auchland Exhibition Issue.

Inspired by the success of the 1906 Christchurch Exhibition the city of Auckland staged the 'Auckland Industrial, Agricultural and Mining Exhibition' between 1 December 1913 and 18 April 1914.

On 29 October 1913, the Auckland Philatelic Society wrote to the Postmaster-General suggesting that an overprinted series of stamps be produced commemorating the Exhibition.  Approval was granted and on 11 November the Government Printer was instructed to overprint 1/2d, 3d and 6d 'Edward VII' stamps plus a quantity of 1d 'Dominion' with the inscription 'Auckland Exhibition, 1913'. The stamps were only valid for postage purposes within New Zealand and to Australia.

King George V, 1915 - 1934

The 1915 - 1934 King George V series.

George the V succeeded his father, Edward VII, to the British throne in 1910. Born on June 3, 1865, he pursued a naval career until his older brothers death, in 1892, which made him second in line to the throne of his grandmother, Queen Victoria.  In 1894 he married Princess Mary of Teck. George V won popular affection by his visits to the troops during World War I and later by his Christmas radio broadcasts.  During the war he changed the name of the Royal Family to Windsor.  He died on 20 January 1936, and was succeeded by his oldest son, Edward VIII.

The Edwardian stamps had only been in use for six months when King George V ascended the throne.  The Postmaster-General therefore agreed to wait before issuing new stamps so that the Edward VII stamps could be used up. Stamps depicting George V were finally issued in 1915, the design depicting a side face portrait of the King.  The stamp designs were influenced by the 1840 1d black stamp of Great Britain. The dies were engraved and plates prepared by Perkins, Bacon & Co, except for the 11/2d surface-printed 'local plate' which was prepared by W.R. Bock in Wellington.

For economic reasons several denominations of this issue were produced by the cheaper surface printing method (1 1/2d, 2d and 3d) as well as bring recess printed.  The 1/2d value was, however, never recess-printed. 

The surface-printed version of these stamps has the solid background colour broken up by fine white diagonal lines forming diamond shapes where as the recess-printed version has a background design made up of fine coloured lines giving an almost solid look - broken by tiny white dots. The stamps remained in production until 1935. 

Victory Issue 1920 - 1923
​Dunedin Exhibition - 1925

The 1920 Victory issue. Immediately following the cessation of hostilities in November 1918 a request was made to the Post and Telegraph Department to issue a set of stamps to commemorate the declaration of peace. The suggestion was adopted that same month.

The 1925 Dunedin Exhibition in early in 1925 the organisers of the New Zealand and South Seas Exhibition, which was to open in Dunedin in November of that year, approached the Postmaster-General with a request that a set of commemorative stamps be produced for the event. Mr H Linley Richardson was asked to prepare a suitable stamp design. 

For the central portion he depicted a view of the Exhibition's Grand Court (which was about 400 metres in length) facing towards the dome of the Festival Hall, with hills in the background.  The outside frame was copied from a Maori taniko pattern. Although the country's population at the time was only 1,250,000, a total of more than 3,000,000 visitors paid for admission to the Exhibition.

Admirals 1926 - 1927
Health 1929 - 1934
​Silver Jubilee - 1935

The 1926 King George V - Admirals. In early 1924 the demand for the 2/- and 3/- stamps was such that two new stamps were required to replace the 'Duty' stamps that had been in use up to that time. On 1 July 1924 Cabinet approved the issue. 

As Viscount Jellicoe was then Governor-General,  it was decided that a portrait of the King in the uniform of Admiral of the Fleet be used. Viscount Jellicoe was the commander of the British fleet at the Battle of Jutland in 1916.

The dies were engraved by Waterlow and Sons in London.  The initial printing known as the "Jone's Paper" was poorly received, but subsequent printings on "Cowan paper" achieved far better results.

The 2/- stamp was also overprinted with the word 'Official' for use on official correspondence.  The stamps remained on sale till May 1935.

In 1926 the issue of Health stamps in New Zealand was requested by Mr E Nielsen of Norsewood, Hawkes Bay on behalf of his mother that special Christmas seals be issued,following Denmark lead, to raise funds for deserving health projects.

The first Health stamp was approved in October 1929.  The stamp was assigned a postage rate of 1d postage and a charity value of 1d.  At the suggestion of the Health Department it was decided that the proceeds of the charity value were to be donated to Children's Health Camps. The first Health camp was held at Turakina, near Wanganui in 1919 when 55 children attended a three week camp organised by Dr Elizabeth Gunn.  The Camps were designed to provide holiday health care for children with nutritional and minor physical problems.

In 1931 The New Zealand "Red Boy and Blue Boy" were printed one of New Zealands Iconic stamp issues. The dominant feature of these two stamp designs is a happy, smiling boy radiating health and contentment. The background design represents typical New Zealand lake and mountain scenery. The four stars at the top left of the design are symbolic of the Southern Cross and appear next to the anti-tuberculosis cross.

The 1935 Silver Jubilee issue, the accession to the throne of His Majesty King George V was celebrated throughout the British Empire on 6 May 1935 with much rejoicing.

The stamps designed by Mr James Berry intially incorporated sketches of the Royal couple together with the Southern Cross.  The final design however depicted an image of the King and Queen taken from a series of photographs taken to commemorate the Jubilee.  His Majesty personally approved the proof and requested that the original working drawing should be mounted in his collection.

Express Delivery Stamps 1903 - 1939

On 1 January 1901 an express delivery and special messenger service was introduced by the Post and Telegraph Office whereby, on payment of a special fee, the sender of an article could ensure that it would be delivered as soon as possible after receipt at the office of destination.

A special stamp was produced in 1903 to better promote the service. Although it was expected the service (and stamp) would prove popular the initial print run of 117,840 stamps was enough to last for the next 23 years.  Later reprints occurring during 1927 - 36.
The 6d design was based on an American 'special delivery' stamp issue of 1885.  The design was suitably adapted with the inclusion of Maori carvings and a large black tree fern.

By 1938 the original stamp had been in use for 35 years and it was time to introduce a new one. As a Chrysler coupe was then in use in the larger centres for the delivery of Express correspondence, it was felt that this would be an appropriate subject to depict on the new 6d stamp, which was designed by James Berry and engraved by the Australian Commonwealth Note and Stamp Printer. 

Under Construction
Under Construction

Postal Fiscals - 1882

In 1882 the early Victorian fiscal stamps, all depicting a side face view of Queen Victoria, were essentially 'duty' stamps,and a decision was made to permit them to be used for postal purposes. 'Duty' stamps were primarily used as a convenient method of signifying the collection of charges for land transfers and other dutiable transactions were recieved.

A quantity of the 2/-, 5/- and £1 denominations of this issue were also overprinted with the word "Official", and these were only used for postal purposes.  These stamps remained in production through until 1930, being New Zealand's only high value stamps except the 2s and 5s 1898 Pictorials. The stamps were engraved by W R Bock.

The 1d, 4d, 6d, 8d and 1/- values were postally used in 1882 as supplies of First Side face stamps ran short before the Second Side face replacements were ready.  In addition to the stamps listed here values above £1 are known to have been postally used.

Under Construction
Under Construction

Arms Issues - 1931

The 1931 Arms Postal Fiscals designed by H L Richardson of Wellington, incorporated the New Zealand Coat of Arms, however because of the confined space he depicted his own interpretation of the subject, which varied considerably from the version authorised by Royal Warrant in 1911. An error was also made in the design whereby the New Zealand flag was depicted instead of the Union Jack.

The whole of the 'Arms' set of stamps was fully authorised for postal use, and all values to £1 were regularly used. With so many similar looking stamps there were cases of denominations being mixed up, therefore several of the higher values were overprinted with their value in black.  The 5/- value was also overprinted with the word 'Official', in one variety vertically and in another horizontally, for Public Service use.

The 'odd' values above £1 were normally stocked by Post Offices (being obtainable only from the G.P.O Wellington or from provincial Stamp Duties Offices) very few were used for postage purposes.  The set contained values up to  £1000.  Only values to  £5 are listed although some higher values have been proven to have been postally used, including the £6 0n £6, £7 on £7, £8, £8 on  £8, £9 on £9, £10, £10 on £10 and £20 on £20. The £1 stamp was withdrawn from use on 31 October 1960 as the introduction of a new £1 pictorial stamp rendered the stamp obsolete. From 1st November 1960 the only 'Arms' stamps still in use were the £2, £3 £4 £5, £10, £20 and £50 denominations.  All of the imperial issue was withdrawn in July 1967 with the introduction of decimal currency, and replaced by $4, $6, $8 and $10 values with the same design.

Under Construction

Arms Issues 1940 - 1967

Life Insurance 1891 - 1937

1891 Government Life Insurance Issue. An important precedent was established by New Zealand, when a set of stamps was issued advertising a State trading department. The New Zealand Government Life Insurance Department was established in 1869, and in common with other Government services, enjoyed franking privileges, paying an annual amount to the Post and Telegraph Department to cover the cost of postage on its correspondence. The decision to issue the stamps was the result of a dispute between the two Departments regarding the calculation of postage costs. The matter was referred to an arbitrator but the Insurance Department insisted on paying future postage costs by the purchase of postage stamps.

The stamps were initially restricted to mail posted by the insurance office for delivery in New Zealand; however in 1969 this condition was relaxed to allow such mail to be posted to overseas addresses. Government Life stamps were withdrawn from use in 1989.
The 1891 issue of six stamps depicted a lighthouse (as did all future Government Life stamp issues).  On the rays of light from the lantern the words 'State Security' were reproduced, the letters "V R" was incorporated into the background design of each stamp.
The stamps were designed by W B Hudson (Life Insurance Department) and J F Rogers (Government Printing Office) and engraved by A E Cousins.

In 1905 a further Government Life stamp issue was produced, new printing plates were needed, the opportunity was taken in 1905 to remove 'V R', which was no longer appropriate, from the original stamp design.  At the same time the rays of the lantern were widened, a window added to the tower - which was reduced in height.  Extra ornamentation was also added to the bottom of the design.  Printings of this version of the stamps continued through until the 1940s.

Under Construction

Official Service 1907 - 1925

From 1891 some New Zealand stamps used on official government mail were overprinted by rubber stamps at the time of posting with the letters 'O.P.S.O' - 'On Public Service Only'. More commonly, various forms of special printed or rubber-stamp franks were used.

In August 1906, Government decided that "as from 1 January 1907, the existing system of franking letters, packets and telegrams sent on public service, is to be abolished, and that in lieu thereof such correspondence is to be paid for by means of official stamps". Several of the current pictorial stamps of the day, together with the Penny Universal stamp, were overprinted with the word 'OFFICIAL' for this purpose.

Official Service 1910 - 1933

Postage Dues 1899 - 1949

The 1899 "Postage Due" stamps were produced for the collection of unpaid or insufficiently paid postage on all classes of mail.

Because of the utilitarian nature of postage due stamps, it was not considered necessary to spend a lot on each stamp to get a special design produced.  The Government Printer was therefore instructed to prepare a simple single design for the whole issue.