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Here are some more of the many articles published on our website:

The fake CORREE overprint

In KP Vol. XXXIX No. 4 (November 1993) Don Vorhis, KSS president at the time, wrote the following: “From a recent sale abroad, 3 Japanese Kiku, one Tazawa, 5 revenues with “CORREE” stamped on them. All are used, so the creator had to work to avoid the cancels. One example shown here.” That was in […]


KPC3442-3445: Historic Architecture in Korea – Royal Palaces (Special Edition)

(News from 우정사업본부 / KoreaPost) On 26 February 2020 KoreaPost issued a series of four stamps showing “Historic Architecture in Korea”, in this particular case (parts of) the royal palaces of Korea. Besides a “regular” set of stamps the stamps were also issued as a set with the same subjects, but with a different printing […]


KPC3438-3441: Historic Architecture in Korea – Royal Palaces

(News from 우정사업본부 / KoreaPost) On 26 February 2020 KoreaPost issued a series of four stamps showing “Historic Architecture in Korea”. In this particular cases the stamps show (parts of) the royal palaces of Korea: the Jagyeongjeon Chamber (경복궁 자경전), Buyongjeong (창덕궁 부용정), Myeongjeongjeon (창경궁 명정전) in Changgyeonggung Palace and Seogjojeon (덕수궁 석조전) in Deoksu […]


Selling stamps the K-pop way!

Korean girl-bands (and boy-bands) are very popular in East Asia. So popular that pretty much anything with one of these bands on them will sell. However, one wonders whether these publicity examples from KoreaPost actually helped selling more “My Own Stamps” stamps.


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 […]


KPC3435-3437: Korean Aircraft (2nd series)

(News from 우정사업본부 / KoreaPost) On 20 March 2020 KoreaPost issued a series of three stamps showing aircraft produced in Korea, the second in the series showing Korean aircraft. These aircraft are the KUH-1EM, the KUH-1P and the KUH-1FS, which are all helicopters produced by Korea Aerospace Industries. These helicopters were the result of  the […]


KSC5240: Greenhouse Vegetables

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) On 20 March 2020 the Korea Stamp Corporation issued a sheetlet containing four different stamps showing “greenhouse vegetables”. The KSC stated: “The DPRK pays close concern to supplying the people with plenty of fresh vegetables all the year round.”


Reader’s Question: Was this a common type of advertising card at the time?

Recently I bought at a Dutch stamp fair, Winterstamps, this item. It is not particularly valuable, but it did peak my interest because I had not seen this type of item before. Nowadays the Korea Stamp Corporation, the official state run North Korean stamp issuing organization, issues rather small new stamp issue leaflets/brochures.


Mr. Zip comes to Korea

Yes, Mr. Zip has come to Korea. After starting out in 1959 in Great Britain, according to an announcement of the Korean Philatelic Center, he began working in Korea on July 1, 1970. Postal reform has been recognized as a need by many countries, a reform which is concerned primarily with reducing costs and improving […]


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 […]


KSC publishes 2020 DPRK stamp release program

The official (state) postal organization of North Korea, the Korea Stamp Corporation, has published the themes and dates for the 2020 stamp releases of the DPRK. The January and February releases on the list are already known of course, but many other themes were shown for the first time with the release of the list.

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KSC5268-5269: City of Samjiyon

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued two souvenir sheets showing the City of Samjiyon. The KSC describes the subject of the sheets as “the epitome of the socialist civilization whose architecture strikes the perfect combination of the nationality, modernity and specific feature of the northern tableland.”


Varieties of 1955 Navy stamp

As I write these words (in 1956), Lt. Lee Chang Sung is leaving our shores for his native Korea after four months or so in our country, first at Great Lakes Ills., and the most of 8 weeks at San Diego. He has been a great help to us these past three months. Translating, explaining […]


“Missent to Korea” instead of paquebot from Korea

Recently I bought a cover on Ebay with a “Missent from Korea” cachet on it. Since the addressee on the envelope, Gustav Lund, was a very well-known paquebot cover collector it was immediately obvious to me that this was supposed to have been a paquebot cover. But there was no paquebot cachet on the cover. […]


Korean Souvenir Books and Reprints issues of 1903-1906 (Part II: Reprints)

The Scott catalogue states that most of the high value Scott numbers 52-54 reprints, the 50 ch, 1 won, and 2 won, with thin, semi-transparent paper, perforation 12 ½, that are in collectors’ collections and on the market today, come from the early souvenir books. Scott values 52-4 at $400, $600, and $875, respectively; but […]


KoreaPost releases Yearbook 2019

On 28 February 2020 KoreaPost released the 2019 Yearbook. This Yearbook contains all the official commemorative and regular stamps released by KoreaPost during 2019, making for a total of 82 commemorative and 3 regular stamps. All descriptions are in both Korean and English.


A brief biography of Helen Kingsbury Zirkle (1898 – 1976)

My interest in Chinese stamps has focused for the past few years on Manchukuo. During this time I have collected a number of books that have aided my research and one of the most useful has been a book with the catchy title “The Postage Stamps and Commemorative Cancellations of Manchoukuo/Manshukoku, Manchou Tikuo, Manchukuo”, written […]


KSC5265-5267: Yangdok Hot Spring Resort

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued a stamp and a souvenir sheet showing the Yangdok Hot Spring Resort. According to the KSC “the inaugural ceremony of the Yangdok Hot Spring Resort was held with splendour on December 7, Juche 108 (2019).”


KSC5263-5264: Jungphyong Greenhouse Vegetable Farm

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued a stamp and a souvenir sheet showing the Village of Jungphyong  and it’s “Greenhouse Vegetable Farm”. According to the KSC “the inaugural ceremony of Jungphyong Greenhouse Vegetable Farm and Tree Nursery was held with splendour on December 3, Juche 108 (2019).”


KoreaPost creates corona virus awareness campaign

The current crisis with the corona virus has created the need for the Korean government to make as many Koreans as possible aware of the risk. Currently a series of campaigns raising awareness of how to avoid getting sick is on-going. KoreaPost has joined in by creating this cartoon, a “webtoon”, reminding people to help […]


Korean forgeries (IV): 50 Mon unissued (1884)

The fourth stamp in this series is the 50 Mon. As with the 25 Mon stamp, this green stamp was never issued and therefore any stamp claiming to be used has a fake cancellation. The stamp is designated Scott #4 and Minkus #N4. The stamps were produced in 1884. Black and white images are from […]


Hubba-Hubba Cachets

One of the interesting subtopics for a collection of Korean War covers is that of “Hubba-Hubba” covers. These have hand-struck cachets from rubber stamps and usually, but not always, have “HUBBA-HUBBA” somewhere in the design. Covers with these markings represent a form of “patriotic envelope” which has derived from the elaborate, printed envelopes of the […]

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North Korea Invades South Korea and Dr. Moon Chang-Mo Is Captured

This is the story of the rarest issued Korean tuberculosis (TB)/Christmas and New Year seal: the 1952 issue. One might believe that the rarest and most valuable Korean TB/Christmas and New Year seal is probably one of the series of seals that Dr. Sherwood Hall began to issue in 1932. However, discounting the unissued seal […]


KSC5238-5239: 78th Birthday of the Great Leader Comrade Kim Jong Il

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued two stamps showing Jong Il Peak and Mt Paektu. According to the KSC “Mt Paektu is the sacred mountain of the revolution where the great leader Comrade Kim Il Sung organized and waged the anti-Japanese revolutionary struggle. The great leader Comrade Kim […]

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Korean Eisenhower Material (1969): Part 2

The death of former President Dwight D. Eisenhower (October 14, 1890 – March 28, 1969) meant a surge of interest in Eisenhower related philatelic material. Eisenhower however had always been relatively popular in Korea, especially because of his support for South Korea during the Korean War and his visit to Korea in the 1950s.


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 […]


Korean geography through postal history

It is interesting to study geography through postal history. Recently I acquired this postcard. I noticed it because the sender’s address was written as “KyongSong”, the old name of Seoul during the Japanese colonial era. So at the first glance it seems this was a card sent from the South to the North.


KSC5258-5262: Let us break through head-on all the barriers to our advance!

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation issued a series of stamps to commemorate the Fifth Plenary Meeting of the Seventh Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea. According to the KSC “the Fifth Plenary Meeting of the Seventh Central Committee of the Workers’ Party of Korea was held from […]


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 […]


A “bottle card” (1981)

Fishing has long been important in the Korean and Japanese economies. While coastal fishing was the major source for marine foods in the past, beginning with the first “Five Year Plan” in 1962 Korea has increased its harvest of deep-sea fish by more than twenty-fold.


KSC5236-5237: Vehicles

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued two stamps showing vehicles produced in the DPRK. The vehicles shown are a trolley bus and a tram car.


Korean Souvenir Books and Reprints issues of 1903-1906 (Part I: Introduction)

By writing this article, this author is hoping that it will create interest and more information will be forthcoming from other readers of the Korea Stamp Society (KSS) website. The subject is known by different names. Very little literature has been published, at least in English, about, what Jim Kerr called, in his “Korean Kingdom […]


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 […]


Design of ROK UN Stamp (Scott #95)

On August 8, 1983, Forrest W. Calkins wrote the following letter to Frank Allard (only an excerpt is included), along with the enclosure referenced in the paragraph: “Over the weekend I did some digging to find some of the ROK covers that I did design, and was lucky to locate one of the UN stamps. […]


Korean Eisenhower Material (1969): Part 1

The death of former President Dwight D. Eisenhower (October 14, 1890 – March 28, 1969) has meant a surge of interest in Eisenhower related philatelic material. There is an active “American President’s Unit” of the American Topical Association ably handed by Mr. Lauren R. Junez of Plymouth, Michigan. In a recent bulletin of the President’s […]


Buyer Beware: The 1948 Observatory Issue and 1951 Surcharge

Another Korean issue that confuses collectors and dealer alike is the 1948 issue that pictures the Cheomseongdae Observatory, (Hangul: 첨성대) in Gyeongju, South Korea. The tower is said to be the oldest astronomical observatory in Asia, and maybe in the world, according to Wikipedia. It was built during the reign of Queen Seondeock of Silla, […]


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 […]


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 […]


KSC5235: Sweet Brier

(News from 조선우표사 / Korea Stamp Corporation) The Korea Stamp Corporation has issued a stamp and a so-called entire showing sweet brier. The 10 won stamp, published on 24 January, coincides with the release of a 10 won stamp showing the national tree of North Korea, the pine tree (KSC5233), and another 10 won stamp […]