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Firsts stamps

The Penny Black was the world's first adhesive postage stamp used in a public postal system. It was first issued in Great Britain on 1 May 1840, but was not valid for use until 6 May. It features a profile of Queen Victoria. In 1837, British…
Britain’s then Postmaster General, Colonel Henry Bishop, produced the world’s first postal datestamp in 1661 in response to criticism that letters were often delayed in the post. An announcement in the April 1661 issues of Mercurius Publicus explained: ‘A stamp is invented that is putt upon…
The three astronauts – Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins – onboard the historic 1969 Apollo 11 space mission, which landed the first men on the Moon, took a die for a postage stamp showing them setting foot on the Moon’s surface. When the lunar…
The world’s first ever self-adhesive stamps were issued by Sierra Leone on February 10, 1964, and they came in the shape of a map of the African country. The stamps were printed in the UK by Walsall, and a special aqueous-based acrylic adhesive was developed as…
There can’t be many countries which haven’t issued stamps that have postage stamps as their subject. Reproducing old stamps, usually commemorating a centenary or some other significant anniversary, in the designs of new issues has long been a popular practice. Known as stamp-on-stamp the practice is…
The first official post by aeroplane was organised as part of an exhibition in India in February 1911, held in the city of Allahabad. Mail flown on this special, one-off, flight bore a special postmark. Some 5,000 to 6,500 items are said to have been flown…
Christmas is celebrated in many ways throughout the world so it’s no surprise that the philately for the holiday includes thousands of stamps and covers, most created since the mid-20th century. The Christmas theme is among the world’s most popular topical areas to collect. Whenever we…