1913 SPG Postcard showing missionary residence

On Kobay, the Korean version of Ebay, mission history-related philatelic items are often available. Here is one of many of these items – a postcard sent within Great Britain from Grimsby to Skidbrooke on 19 February 1913. Both of these places are coastal towns in north east Lincolnshire. Grimsby is a major fishing port, whereas […]

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A Beautiful Cover. A Striking Cover. A Cover of Extreme Importance!

I had the unique opportunity to review prior to its publication the article by Dr. Joel Lee. It is not only a beautiful cover. This Empire Korea cover is a striking example of the postal history of Korea and it is a cover of extreme importance. To the casual observer, not familiar with Empire Korea […]

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Beautiful Postal Cards and Postal Covers of Early Korea

Some of the rarest examples of postal history of Empire Korea, combining the images of early 20th century Korea on hand-tinted postal cards and a cover demonstrating all the stamps available at the Chemulpo, Korea post office on a single day are that of a correspondence addressed to Mrs. Charlotte K. Ober, University of Washington, […]

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Entires with “TAEGEUK” of the 1st and 2nd Issued Sets

The Gab-sin coup d’etat (甲申政變; 갑신정변) of 4 December 1884 (Lunar calendar 10. 17.), attempted by the reformers at the opening ceremony of the post office, failed. All main figures were killed including Mr. Young-Sik Hong whose constant efforts had led to the issuing of a Royal decree to establish the Department of Post Office […]

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Having fun with the Korean postal services: cancellations

Because of the extreme emphasis of Koreans on education there are, even today in times of digital communications, a lot of stationery shops in Korea. These shops sell hundreds and sometimes even thousands of different products, one of them being whole series of sticker stamps. These stickers look like stamps because of their “perforation” and […]

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Korean paquebot cover from 1953 shows up

In a recent series of reprinted articles several covers with Korean (Busan) paquebot cancellations from the 1950s were shown. One cover was referenced in an article by Talbert Fowler from 1954. This cover apparently came with a strange paquebot marking. The cover showed up recently in an inheritance sale of Korean paquebot covers from a […]

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Reader’s Question: History of Travelling Post Offices in Korea?

  Does anybody know more about the history of Travelling Post Offices (우편열차) in Korea? What I have found so far comes from two pictures showing two boards from the Stamp Museum in Cheonan (not Seoul) from an exhibit on TPO’s in Korea. This board lists for instance that the first mail transported by train […]

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Korea’s First Post Office Cancel – Don’t Be Misled!

In the summer of 1964 I received the following letter from a French gentleman: “Enclosed is $3000.00 plus in Korea No. l’s and 2’s in singles, pairs and combinations. All stamps are tied on piece and with the exception of one or two stamps the condition is very fine or superb. As I do not […]

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The special registration stamp and envelope (1961)

The special registration envelope and stamp illustrated here are used to mail currency and valuables within Korea only. The white envelope, 5″ x 9″ has an inner envelope made of paper of the same type used to cover doors and windows. Money, bonds, jewelry, and other valuables can be mailed in this. Money is not […]

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Christian Literature Society correspondence illustrates different surface mail cachets

A series of covers, recently offered for sale on Ebay, show another interesting piece of Korean missionary history. The Christian Literature Society of Korea (대한 기독교 서회) was and is a major publisher and bookseller in Korea, and dates back to the earliest years of Protestant Christian missions. It is an ecumenical organisation as is […]

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Two Examples of the Often Faked Cancellations of the First Two Korean Stamps of 1884

Normally mint stamps are worth more than used stamps. One notable exception to this philatelic rule is the often faked cancellations of Korea’s first two stamps issued in 1884, the 5 and 10 mun values. As these two stamps were used for just a few days because of a riot/revolution that burned down the Korean […]

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Korean paquebot covers (1954) Part III: The captains and the Busan fires

This is the final installment of a series of articles which started with a text from Talbert B. Fowler from August 1954 as Part I and some background information to an activity started by Milbury named the Sea-Jug Post as Part II. In this part we look at Busan during the Korean War and learn […]

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