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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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The Bencruachan making waves

One of the most interesting types of (philatelic) articles are in my opinion the ones which have a personal connection. Take for instance the KSS members who used to work in Korea in the 1960s and 1970s. At that time they wrote quite a few articles on the philatelic situation on the ground, which has […]


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 […]


Stamp collecting promotion posters from the 1980s and 1990s on NAK website

The South Korean government has been promoting the digitization of archives for several decades now. This is great for stamp collectors, as highly detailed information on South Korean postal and revenue stamps has come to light thanks to the efforts of South Korean archives. If you can read/write (type) Korean, a lot of information can […]


Reader’s Question: How much to send an envelope from North Korea to the USA in 1978?

Marci Jarvis, editor of Cat Mews (which is the magazine of the Cats on Stamps Study Unit) has a question with regards to the postage on this envelope. The Korean Stamp Corporation (KSC) sent it to the then editor of Topical Time, Jerry Husak, the founder of the American Topical Association. On it are a […]

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Another Type of Korea Methodist Seal

In an earlier article on 17 August 2019 posted on the Korea Stamp Society’s website, we wrote about the Methodist’s 50th anniversary in Korea. Dr. Sherwood Hall, the creator of Korea’s first Tuberculosis/Christmas and New Year’s seal in 1932 also designed this seal. A number of examples of these seals used on mailings from Korea […]


Examples of DPRK new issue leaflet from the 1990s: when times were different

For several years (starting in 2018) the KSS has been listing new stamp issues from North Korea. With these new issues the stamp issuing entity of the DPRK, the Korea Stamp Corporation (KSC), always releases a new issue leaflet. This issue shows details of the stamps, while at the same time doubling as an order […]


Reader’s Question: Why these strange North Korean stamp issues?

Leafing through the catalog of DPRK stamps and analyzing the policy of themes and stories on the stamps, I had several questions. Perhaps you, or other KSS members, can help me with the answer. Starting in 1946 to issue postage stamps with neutral themes (Rosa of Sharon, Diamond Mountains), the postal administration expanded the themes […]


Readers Question: Chōsen Sotokufu Teishin Kyoku Card?

My question concerns a card that was issued by Chōsen Sotokufu Teishin Kyoku and features a picture of chickens with an inscription in Korean. It appears that the design could have been issued as a New Year greeting. The Teishin Kyoku issued a set of post cards on October 1, 1910 commemorating the opening of […]

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Early Korean fake stamps (1884 – 1895 series)

Forgeries have always been a major problem for philatelists. This is perhaps even more true for early Korean materials: the simple fact that early Korean stamps weren’t much collected before the First World War made it quite easy for stamp forgers, especially from Japan, to create forgeries which could fool collectors. Even though often very […]


International Women’s Day (8 March) Featured in the Philately of the DPRK

In the period from 1953-1960, four issues of stamps, dedicated to the International Women’s Day (8 March) were issued in North Korea (this day is mainly celebrated in the territory of the former USSR, and some countries of Asia and Africa). Since 2019 this holiday has been a regional holiday in Berlin, Germany.


“I’ll make the world the way I like it!”

It is well-known that the People Republic of China (PRC) rewrites its history as it deems politically correct. The same goes for pictures showing the history of China. Since you haven’t seen everything yourself, you seldom notice it, of course. But here we have two stamp images that are supposed to show the same thing, […]


Dutch New Guinea Forces in Korean War

A member from the Netherlands philatelic group, the ZWP Study Circle, Han Dijkstra, helped me and Ivo Spanjersberg write an article about the postal history of New Guinea and detailed information about the postal issues of the United Nations “UNTEA” forces during the turnover of West New Guinea to Indonesia in the early 1960’s.


Comments on the new airmail and regular issues (1962)

In the 1960s (and for years after that decade) KSS member Lyman Hale and his wife lived in South Korea as medical missionaries, meaning they stayed there both as medical staff and as missionaries. Especially during the 1960s Lyman Hale wrote a lot of articles for KP (but as recent as 2019 he was still […]


The types of “unissued” or otherwise irregular stamps of the DPRK

In early 2019 I wrote an article for the KSS about “unissued” DPRK stamps. This showed that, in addition to the regular issued stamps, there were (and are still) many “disappeared” or “re-appeared” stamps in DPRK’s philatelic history. This short refresher article gives a bit more information as to why these stamps were treated the […]


Story of Baron G. de Gunzburg – Russian Government Official in Chosen

(On the relationship Between Chosŏn and Russia) On October 8, 1895, Queen Myung-Sung was assassinated by the Japanese force. King Go-Jong, who was also confined at the palace Kyung-Bok, fearing for his life, wanted to escape. On November 28, 1895, the King’s first try to flee to the legation of the United States failed because […]


Korean Philately Magazine – Blurb and how to Order Hard Copies

We have received several questions lately from members on how to order the hard copies of the Korean Philately (KP) magazines. It is currently explained on the website on how to order through Blurb, but we thought it would be good idea to do a refresher article on how the new KP’s came to be […]


When the war drums stop, so does the KSC

The Korea Stamp Corporation, the stamp issuing organization of the DPRK (North Korea), generally creates stamp along several lines of themes. One of those common themes is something along the lines of “the eternal fight for the motherland against our enemies”. The thing is: the official feelings towards these enemies, whomever they may be (usually […]

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Korean Philately Vol. 57 No. 3 (Q3 2021)

The KSS has published a new edition of the KSS magazine, Korean Philately, the second KP for 2021! As a member you can download this edition of Korean Philately for free as a PDF. And again, just as was the case with all four issues for 2020, you can own a full-colour magazine-style hard-copy version […]


First Korean photo gravure stamp issued (1969)

On May 1, 1969 the Republic of Korea released its first postage stamp produced by means of newly installed photogravure printing equipment. The 7W blue regular stamp features the flag of Korea. The photogravure production represents a distinct advance over the lithographed stamps which have been produced by the Korean Government Printing Agency since the […]


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