A Basic Introduction to the post-WWII Liberation use of Japanese Postcards in South Korea, 1946-47

Postcards South Korea

Most collectors of South Korean stamps are familiar with the 1946 set of Japanese stamps overprinted for use in US-occupied South Korea and revalued in Korean currency, i.e. cheon. These are listed in the Korean Postage Stamp Catalogue (KPSC) as numbers R1-R6 and in Scott as numbers 55-60. They were issued some months after the Liberation (replacing unoverprinted Japanese stamps) and used until the introduction of South Korea’s first definitives.

Figure 1. The US Military Rule Surcharged Japanese Stamped issued February 1, 1946 (KPSC R1-R6, Scott 55-60).

During the same period, 2, 3 and 5 sen Japanese Nanko postcards were also surcharged locally for use in South Korea, with the 5 sen being the most common. See Chen Fi-Yu’s article of February 3, 2021, published on the Korea Stamp Society’s website for the background, and more images of these Japanese Nanko postcards . These Nanko postcards were also surcharged for use in North Korea until mid-1948.

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