How to determine the cost of sending a telegram in a society with two different character sets?

A problem which is very uncommon in most parts of the world is the Korean question of what to do with the fact that Koreans could use either (Korean) hangul or (Chinese) hanja characters when sending a telegram? While they can convey exactly the same message in Korean, the two writing systems are completely different […]

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The Imperfs, Double Printings and Two-Sided Printings of Korea 1946-1953 Stamps

From the first printed stamps in South Korea in 1946 after the WWII, up to around 1953, many of those issues can be found printed as imperforated stamps, double printed stamps and stamps printed on both sides. The stamps were issued by the US Military from 1946-1948. On August 15, 1948, the South Korean government […]

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April 1946 postwar usages of Postage Fee Paid forms with Japanese Showa and USAMGIK surcharges

In 1919 the Japanese introduced “Postage Fee Paid” forms. These forms were used to pay for various kinds of mail matter in bulk. The official Japanese postal term was 郵便料金受領証原符 = Postage fee reception original form and is imprinted on top. The actual mail items received a circular bisected handstamp in characters “(post office name)/postage […]

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South Korea’s 1966 Unusual S/S for the 6th Postal Week — Revisited

Back in 2018 a short article was published that described South Korea’s unusual souvenir sheet (S/S) that was issued in 1966 for commemorating the 6th Postal Week. What is unusual about this S/S is that it was only issued with a red overprint. There was not a single stamp issued to accompany it. The S/S […]

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The 1950 postal stationery inflationary surcharge on stamps?

Occasionally South Korean stamps show up on popular (stamp) auction websites with a 10 won overprint on them. But are these overprints real? According to John Sauer in his Monograph 1, Specialized Postal Stationery Catalog of the Republic of Korea, page 7, postal card KPC #PC15 was created with a 10 won surcharge on the […]

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Post cards commemorating the ROK 1955 Expo

Two post cards, part of a set commemorating the ROK 1955 Expo. These two post cards were made by the Huimangsa 希望社 · 製 for the industrial exhibition commemorating the tenth anniversary of liberation 解放十週年產業博覽會記念. This refers to August 15, 1945, commemorated in both the ROK and DPRK as the date Korea was liberated from […]

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Korean postal affairs under American occupation (1946)

Prior to occupation of southern Korea by American forces, the postage used was Japanese. Since the American occupation, and up to the present time, they have continued to use Japanese postage on hand. Importation of additional stamps from Japan was, of course, immediately stopped. No attempt was made to over the postage on hand in […]

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April 1946 postwar usages of Postage Fee Paid forms with Japanese Showa and USAMGIK surcharges

In 1919 the Japanese Posts introduced “Postage Fee Paid” forms. These forms were used to pay for various kinds of mail matter in bulk. The official Japanese postal term was 郵便料金受領証原符 = “Postage fee reception original form” and is imprinted on top. The actual mail items received a circular bisected handstamp in characters “(post office […]

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Follow-Up to Millard Beatty’s Article on the UN Flags Errors of 1951

Millard Beatty’s article discussed some of the errors he had found on the Italy and New Zealand issues of Korea’s 1951 UN Flag set. I was aware of the Italy issue missing the crown, but the spelling of “Zealand” with an “I”, rather than an “L” was a new variety to me, and I decided […]

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Korean Relief Inc. and the Story of Father Aloysius Schwartz

Our past Chairman and Publisher of the Korea Stamp Society (KSS), Ivo Spanjersberg, has long urged that he and I write an article about the Korean Relief Inc. organization and its related Korean philatelic items. Various items of postal history, including postal stationery, aerogrammes, Christmas seals and labels, and other related merchandize, are frequently seen […]

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Missionary stamp collectors on 1964 KPS membership list

In an issue of the KSS Newsletter, there was a photocopy of part of the membership list of the Korea Philatelic Society. It is interesting to note that two non-Koreans are listed as members, both missionaries. One is KSS member Dr. Lyman Hale (1922 – 2019), a physician at Severance Hospital, Seoul and a member […]

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