Internet is where most people buy and sell stamps today. In the months leading up to the February 2019 US – DPRK summit in Hanoi, there were massive unloads of North Korean stamps on the internet. This presented a good entry point for beginning collectors like myself to acquire some early North Korean stamps. However, like many other beginners, it was very hard to distinguish the reprints from the originals. So, I started to collect data on this subject which I then compiled for other collectors to help make stamp purchases easier.
From 1955 to 1957, North Korea produced legal imitation “reprints” of stamps issued originally between 1946 and 1956 to serve both postal needs and overseas sales. There are 55 reprints and these are postally valid stamps. Scott’s #100 “Ryongwang Pavilion and Taedong Gate” is the last known reprint. Scott’s catalogue lists many different ways to identify reprints and originals. The catalogue notes that differences in size, color, gum, paper and specific details can be used to determine whether a stamp is a reprint or an original.