Saturday, 29 November 2014

1994 - Second Heritage Series - Emerging Years 1950s

The 1950s.
          The 1950s were a time of prosperity, comfort, full employment and a healthy economy. In contrast to the extremes of the previous decades, the 1950s gave New Zealanders much to be content about.  

          Our contribution during the war, outstanding achievements in the international sports arena, the conquest of Mount Everest, social welfare and education systems of world class standard - even words of flattery from the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II - New Zealand was becoming a mighty little country in its own right. New Zealanders understandably discovered a new sense of pride and patriotism.         
          This is my decade. I was born in 1955, about half-way through the 10 years. Of course I personally remember nothing myself but family photos and stories have told me much of what things were like then. It was certainly a good time for New Zealand. My family moved from the city to live on the country property I live on today.

Friday, 28 November 2014

Queen Victoria Fiscal Stamps - Part Four.

         In this, our last post on the QV Fiscal Stamps, we are going to look at the design of the long-type fiscal/postal series from 1880 and compare them with the 1882 2nd Side-Faced Issue. Then I have some examples of how the QV Fiscal Stamps were used, both for revenue stamp duty and for postage.

I love to enlarge these old stamps, blow them up as far as I can when I get a good quality image. It is only then that we can really enjoy the fine workmanship of these classic stamps. Often enlarging brings out details that are missed in the tiny images. For example in the image above of the 6/- Rose, look at the fine detailing in the scrolling work in the borders. Also, it was only when I enlarged the image that I discovered the ferns in the triangles in each corner. Notice the fine detail that has gone into Queen Victoria's crown.   

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

1993 - Second Heritage Series - Emerging Years 1940s.

Overview of the Complete Series. 

Back to Emerging Years 1930s.         Forward to Emerging Years 1950s.

The 1940s.
          It was a decade of enormous contrast. From the harsh tragedy and shortages of war ... to VJ Day ... to the enormous nationwide party which seemed to continue right through the latter half of the 1940s. The pendulum had swung.
         Those who were around in the 40s - as children, as civilians or in the services - will recall the extremes of war and the celebration of peace. It was a decade which saw New Zealand come of age. Fresh from the hardship of the 1930s depression, then plunged into war, we became a mature society with a developing sense of national identity. It was a turning point, as the 'New Zealander' - a person with national pride and values - began to emerge.
         The two major developments shown on these stamps was Hydro Electricity, delivering clean, green power, and Aerial Topdressing, improving pasture and farming, which was reflected in greater exports. They both had long term effects on that even today continue to deliver benefits for New Zealand. 

Monday, 24 November 2014

The KiwiStamp

No Value Indicated - The KiwiStamp. 
        "Easy to understand and simple to use, these non-denominated stamps will always be worth the required postage of a Standard Post™ medium letter. You can also use multiple KiwiStamp™ postage stamps on a range of letter sizes or to send letters by FastPost™."
         That is how NZ Post promoted these stamps on their web site. The concept is simple, a stamp that will always be worth the required postage of a standard letter, regardless of how much the price of postage may rise between purchase and use.
         The stamps first appeared in 2009 then were reissued again in 2011. Of course all the stamps of both issues were self-adhesive being mainly sold in booklets or coils.

2009 KiwiStamp Issue.
        The 2009 KiwiStamp issue marked New Zealand Post's first venture into non-denominated stamps. Each stamp covers the base delivery rate within New Zealand of a small envelope using standard postage (50 cents at the time of issue). Two stamps are required for express delivery (FastPost) and extra stamps for larger sized envelopes.

        Marketed as a customer convenience, they also had the added benefit of allowing New Zealand Post to raise postage rates at any time without needing to print new stamps. New stamps and designs were introduced in the 2011 KiwiStamp issue.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Queen Victoria Fiscal Stamps - Part Three.

Back to QV Fiscal Stamps - Part Two.               Forward to QV Fiscal Stamps - Part Four.

1880 QV Long-type Fiscal Stamps - The Complete Set. 

      In my first post on the Queen Victoria Fiscal Stamps, we looked at a series of issues leading up to the famous 1880 Revenue/Postage stamps. In my second post, we looked at the 1880 set itself. Included in that post was a set of the stamps most commonly used for postage after these stamps were authorised for postal use in 1882.

       Now we come to the question - What about all the other stamps from this series? Well, there is a large number of them, around 60 approx., it is hard to tell as some values appear in different colour shades so I'm unsure if they are varieties or separate stamps. I now think I have all the values except for one and in time I hope to fill in this gap too. The main purpose of this post will be to show all of them, as in this way you can get an idea of the actual size of this important issue.

       As you go through the collection on this page you will notice some appear to be mint while others have been cancelled in various ways, using date strikes, punch marks and handwritten dates. As I said above, I have also included some more obvious colour varieties too.

      Also, notice how the design changes as you go down the page. It is particularly noticeable in the frame around Queen Victoria's head. This is very similar to what happened in the Side-face postal issues as well. The design retains the words 'New Zealand' at the top and 'Stamp Duty' further down but the frame around Queen Victoria's portrait goes from a circle to part circle top and bottom. It then becomes a square, a hexagon and finally to an elliptical circle.     

Friday, 21 November 2014

1993 - Second Heritage Series - Emerging Years 1930s

The 1930s.
        In stark contrast to the previous carefree decade, the 1930s brought hardship and strife to most New Zealanders. By the end of 1931 the country was firmly in the grip of a worldwide economic depression. It was not until Labour's landslide election victory in 1935 that the tide turned. Little did New Zealanders know that their bright new vision of the future would last just four years before they were plunged into the bloodiest World War in history. 

        I did not experience the Great Depression myself but I've heard a lot about it from my parents and uncles, aunties etc. There are the funny stories about the guy who used waste solvent from a printing factory to run his car. Bright coloured smoke coming out the back. Or the stories of rationing, swapping food and vegetables, no work and long dole lines of men waiting for work. Both my grand-fathers worked more than one job.  

         Many people got over it as times got better but equally many never did. They always saved everything, ready for when times get hard. Never wanting to borrow money or get into debt. Always ensuring debt is repaid, right down to the last penny. These are habits from the tough times of the 1930s, The Great Depression.   

Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Round Kiwis

       When I published my post on the 2014 Antarctica Penguins, Allan wrote a comment on the round design of the stamps. I objected to his comment and wanted it removed. He replaced it with a better-worded comment. During the course of discussing it, he mentioned that New Zealand had issued other round stamps. He even said there had been a series of Round Kiwis that looked like coins. So I went looking for them.

       In 1988 a stamp design appeared that was rather unique. It was New Zealand's first round stamp, featuring a kiwi in its design. The Maori motif around the border represents the kowhai tree flower, symbolising the continuous cycle of life. Like Allan said above, it actually appears more like a coin than a stamp. The stamp was engraved by G T Prosser of the British American Banknote Inc. Canada from a design completed by Allan Mitchell.
       This stamp was initially produced in a green colour (1988), in booklets of six stamps, later printings in sheet format were in red (1991), blue (1993) and purple (1997). The first three printings of this stamp were by Leigh-Mardon by intaglio with the red and blue printings in sheets of 24 stamps. The purple printing was produced by Southern Colour Print by lithography in sheets of 36 stamps.
        Kiwi are flightless, nocturnal birds endemic to Aotearoa. They emerge from their burrows after dark to forage noisily along the forest floor and sniff out worms and insects. Their nostrils are at the base of their bill and give the kiwi a superior sense of smell that makes up for its poor eyesight. Kiwi have been described as ‘honorary mammals’ because of their hair-like feathers, long tactile whiskers at the base of their bill, and their marrow-filled bones. Kiwi are also sometimes called ‘te manu huna a Tāne’ - the hidden bird of Tāne, the god of the forest.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Index Ten - 2010 - 2014

Stamps Issued 2010 - 2014
Dark Blue: - Link to Featured Post.
Light Blue: - Link to Part of Set or Mention.

Index Nine - 2005 - 2009

Stamps Issued 2005 - 2009
Dark Blue: - Link to Featured Post.
Light Blue: - Link to Part of Set or Mention.

Index Eight - 2000 - 2004

Stamps Issued 2000 - 2004
Dark Blue:- Link to Featured Post.
Light Blue:- Link to Part of Set or Mention.

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Queen Victoria Fiscal Stamps - Part Two.

1880 Queen Victoria Long-Type Postal Fiscals.
The 1880 Queen Victoria Long types are by far the most diverse set of revenue stamps printed in New Zealand. 14 different printings were made over the 51-year history of the issue (even long after Queen Victoria had died!) with different papers, watermarks and perforations evident between each issue. This, combined with the wide range of values, from 4d to 1000 pounds, makes this an exceptionally interesting set to study.

A History of the Issue.
        By 1878 the die II revenue printing plates were beginning to wear. This resulted in several options for their replacement being considered. In 1878 and the following years, several important decisions were made by the New Zealand government. These resulted in major changes to both postage and revenue stamp production.

        It was decided that for the 1d denomination, most in demand of the revenue stamps, a new stamp of a completely different design would be introduced. Since this stamp would be used on many different documents a more convenient size was also considered. This resulted in the introduction of a smaller sized stamp based upon the British 1d Inland Revenue stamp. The design also reflected some of the current stamps in New Zealand's 1882 Second Side-Faced issue. Initially, this stamp was printed in lilac (15th June 1878) but due to the stamp's faded appearance was later printed in blue (from 14th December 1878).

1878 - 1d Lilac.                                  1878 - 1d Blue.

Friday, 14 November 2014

1992 - Second Heritage Series - Emerging Years 1920s.

Overview of the Complete Series.               Forward to Emerging Years 1930s

The 1920s.
         The 1920s were a good time to be alive. Sandwiched between World War I and the Great Depression, they were an oasis of peace and prosperity. They were boom years in New Zealand. The toll from war and disease touched countless homes and the losses would never be forgotten. But in this war-weary country, youth, both male and female, were ready to rebel a little, to test the limits of social customs. It was youth that became a force of its own for the first time. The arrival of the 'wireless', reliable motorcars, the cinema, The Invincibles and increased leisure time, combined with a post-war mood of release and optimism, created a period known for its love of fun and leisure activities.
       That is how NZ Post describes it on their website.  This is a period that stood-out between two decades of doom and gloom. With the appearance of radio, cars and air travel, it is easy to see why this generation stood out as different. They had things their parents never had and so they wanted to experience this new era of new ideas, new technology and new freedoms. 
       My parents were born in the twenties, Mum in 1926 and Dad in 1929. They never remembered much, being so young, their first real memories were from the thirties and the Great Depression.
      I like the stamps of this issue, they are interesting, like they are calling me to tell their stories. Each stamp gives me a feeling of boldness and confidence. The words 'New Zealand' and the value is shown clearly with the stamp's title in smaller text across the bottom. A simple, yet effective design repeated over all six stamps. They even have a twenties look about them too.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

2014 Ross Dependency - Penguins of Antarctica.

       Antarctica is a cold remote place few people other than scientists get to visit. But with many people there is a fasciation with animals and scenery from this continuant. That is why each year the annual Ross Dependency issue is so well received by stamp collectors.   

         Penguins are the most commonly found birds in Antarctica, and the Ross Dependency 2014 stamp issue features five unique breeds of penguin that choose to call this cold, dry continent home. The stamps are unusual in that they round instead of the usual rectangle shape.

         Truly flightless birds, penguins have evolved traits that make them perfect for icy conditions such as those of Antarctica. While many different colonies of penguins live in Antarctica, the majority of the world’s penguins prefer to inhabit other cooler waters in the Southern Hemisphere. A layer of fat under their feathers keeps them warm and a white belly acts as a camouflage keeping them safe from predators when swimming under ice.

Monday, 10 November 2014

Second Heritage Series - Emerging Years Series.

  First Heritage Series.                    Second Heritage Series.                    Third Heritage Series.

    The second series of Heritage Stamps comprised four issues during 1992 through 1994. Four issues about four decades, the 1920s, the 30s, the 40s, and the 50s. These were decades of change, a time when New Zealand grew to emerge as the nation it is today. It would be impossible to record every event over every ten years on six small postage stamps but that is not intended here. These issues are not recording history, they are recording cultural and heritage change. They try to capture the atmosphere, the mood of change within each decade, as well as recording events or inventions that helped drive these changes.
       There are four issues and so I decided to create four posts, each linked from this page. I hope to publish them all over the next few weeks. But for now here is the whole series, all four issues, comprising 24 stamps with brief captions. As I complete each decade I might come back and add more text here as well.

Sunday, 9 November 2014

Queen Victoria Fiscal Stamps - Part One.

Forward to QV Fiscal Stamps - Part Two.

When New Zealand introduced postage stamps in 1855 it soon became apparent that stamps could also be useful for the payment Government taxes and levies. This was introduced in 1867 and soon became known as 'Stamp Duty.' Upon payment, a revenue stamp (Fiscal Stamp) would be attached to the transaction document as proof of payment. Often these stamps would also be signed and dated as well. Sometimes holes were punched in them as well to signify that they were used. 

Is this wrong? The Date is too early!

         Revenue stamps were officially introduced on 1st January 1867, however, it appears that some were released earlier as the above image clearly shows the date 17/12/1866. It is unlikely this date was written in error as presumably the new year would well and truly be entrenched in the clerk's mind by November 1867, some 11 months later, so we should consider the date must have been November 1866 and the stamp was used before its official issue date.

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

1990 - Treaty of Waitangi 150th Anniversary

 For an index to all our posts concerning The Maori People.

        I have just completed a series of posts on the six heritage issues leading up to the celebrating of 150 years since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi so I thought I should include the stamp issue on the anniversary itself. My purpose here is not to go into great detail on the history and debate surrounding this treaty, but rather just celebrate it as the founding document of the nation of New Zealand.

              The Treaty of Waitangi (Māori: Tiriti o Waitangi) is a treaty first signed on 6 February 1840 by representatives of the British Crown and various Māori chiefs from the North Island of New Zealand.
        The Treaty established a British Governor of New Zealand, recognised Māori ownership of their lands and other properties, and gave the Māori the rights of British subjects. The English and Māori versions of the Treaty differed significantly, so there is no consensus as to exactly what was agreed to. From the British point of view, the Treaty gave Britain sovereignty over New Zealand, and gave the Governor the right to govern the country. Māori believed they ceded to the Crown a right of governance in return for protection, without giving up their authority to manage their own affairs.
         After the initial signing at Waitangi, copies of the Treaty were taken around New Zealand and over the following months many other chiefs signed. In total there are nine copies of the Treaty of Waitangi including the original signed on 6 February 1840. Around 530 to 540 chiefs, at least 13 of them women, signed the Treaty of Waitangi.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

1963 - 1973 Railway Locomotives.

         For other stamps with a train theme see our collection Trains of New Zealand.
1963 Railway Century.

A two value issue to mark 100 years of railways in New Zealand. The first railway line in New Zealand ran from Christchurch to Ferrymead and was completed in 1863, the centenary of the event was commemorated by an issue of these two stamps.

The 10 Class DF (2-Co+Co-2) introduced in 1954 were New Zealand's first main-line diesel-electric locomotive. Built by English Electric of Great Britain the DFs and their half size sisters the DGs were soon superseded by the more robust USA build DA Class. Although depicted here hauling a Main Trunk express under the watchful Mount Ruapehu in the background, they spent most of their working life on less important routes such as the Bay of Plenty line. 

Saturday, 1 November 2014

Trains of New Zealand.

   Another of my interests besides Stamps is Trains. I like any trains anywhere but since this blog is about New Zealand stamps I suppose, I should display New Zealand trains.

Over the years New Zealand has issued four sets of train stamps plus quite a few others depicting trains or train related subjects. Let's have a look at them.