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.

The 1920s.
View my full post on this issue.
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.

45c - Flaming Youth.
50c - Birth of Broadcasting.

80c - The Invincibles / All Blacks.
$1.00 - The Swaggie.

$1.50 - Motorcar for the Masses.
$1.80 - Arrival of the Air Age.

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. 

45c - Buttons and Bows.
50c - The Great Depression.

80c - Phar Lap.
$1.00 - State Housing.

$1.50 - Free Milk for School Children. 
$1.80 - The Talkies.

 The 1940s.
View my full post on this issue.
 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.
45c - New Zealand at War.
50c - Aerial Topdressing. 

80c - State Production of Hydro-Electricity.
$1.00 - New Zealand Marching Association. 

$1.50 - American Invasion. 
$1.80 - Victory. 

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.

45c - Rock and Roll Music.
80c - Conquest of Mount Everest - Edmund Hillary. 

$1.00 - Radio Broadcaster - Aunt Daisy.
$1.20 - Royal Visit - 1953.

$1.50 - Opo - The Friendly Dolphin.
$1.80 - Auckland Harbour Bridge / The Coat Hanger.  

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

Some of the images in this post were used with permission from the illustrated catalogue of StampsNZ
You can visit their website and On-line Catalogue at, 

No comments:

Post a Comment