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  • ZASM Railway stamps

    Hi all

    In a recent discussion with Dstorm the method of cancelling Railway stamps came up and it was agreed that stamps cancelled by pencil crosses may appear a bit odd to collectors viewing the item and thus may put them off buying.

    In order to put minds at ease I have dug out my copy of "NZAM" by George van den Hurk, "THE NETHERLANDS SOUTH AFRICAN RAILWAY COMPANY" and "THE POSTAL SERVICE OF THE SOUTH AFRICAN REPUBLIC", published by the PFSA.

    Method of cancellation
    In a letter from the Board of Directors of the NZAM, Amsterdam, dated 10 July 1891, Middelburg writes on the subject of invalidating railway stamps. "The introduction of parcel stamps makes it necessary that a method be found to invalidate these stamps. The method used by postal administrators for cancelling postage stamps is not acceptable, because this kind of cancelling is not suitable for parcels. As is known to you, it is easy to change old stamps or certificates of value after use so that they can be used again. The ingenuity is often great."
    "In the past the Amsterdam Omnibus Company made many trials in order to find a way to ensure that their tickets are used once only, and we asked this Company for information. They use so-called indelible pencils which are moistened before use. The conductors are provided with a small cylinder with a small moistened sponge, in which the pencil has to be inserted before use."
    "We shall send you soon two dozen of these cylinders and one gross of indelible pencils, and for your consideration propose that the parcel stamps be invalidated with a cross drawn by one of these pencils."

    Considering the many millions of parcels carried by the NZASM it is difficult to understand why to date so few invalidated ZASM railway stamps have been discovered. One important reason must be that they were defaced so well that they were not considered collectable.

    Hope this helps.

    Regards
    Gabriel1
    Items I have for sale.

  • #2
    Hello Gabriel1

    Thanks for a very interesting post.

    I have two Superb Unmounted Mint NZASM stamps in my possession. They look as if they were printed yesterday, with the gum shiny and with no wrinkles (no, they are not regummed). Highly sellable stuff. And more than a hundred years old.

    But I fully agree with you about the rarity of the defaced stamps. I have never even seen one. Yet, put a Superb UM stamp up for sale with a Pencil Cross one and we both know that the UM one will sell at a higher price.

    It is a strange, strange world we live in.

    Some time ago Postage Dues were simply considered as mere labels. Up to about 15 years ago Revenue Stamps were simply considered as spacefillers by the majority of collectors. I hope that the tide will turn for South African Railway Stamps. The Belgium Railway Stamps have full catalogue status. I think that it is only a lack of knowledge that is keeping the popularity of South African Railway Stamps back.

    About a month ago I put a RARE 1917 TWENTY SHILLINGS South African Railways stamp (a pound, in other words) for sale on Crazy Auction (with pen defacing). It went for a miserable R360-00. Say no more. I have the same item in a block of 6. Might as well keep it and enjoy it.

    Yet, lets talk Union One Pound Kings Head Used. By no means as scarce….

    The SACC and Stanley Gibbons are considered to be Bibles to most collectors.

    Regards

    Jacques
    Philately starts where the catalogue stops.
    Items I have for sale.

    Comment


    • #3
      Hello Gabriel1

      Regarding the above posts.

      The attached NZASM mint stamp is RARE as it is, but have you ever seen it used? Whether physically or in any auction catalogue or price list?

      Regards

      Jacques
      Attached Files
      Philately starts where the catalogue stops.
      Items I have for sale.

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Jacques

        When are you going to sell me one of these stamps?

        Regards
        Gabriel1
        Items I have for sale.

        Comment


        • #5
          Hello Gabriel1

          Perhaps off-topic (we are talking British and not Dutch administration here), but have a look at this SAR item.

          This Railway Post Office clerk took his job seriously. Not only were the SIX stamps cancelled TEN times in total but each and every stamp was also “neatly” cancelled with a RED pen!

          The total face value of this block is a round 6 Pounds. I wonder what the parcel consisted of! An elephant perhaps?

          Regards

          Jacques

          Sorry, struggling to upload the picture!
          Attached Files
          Last edited by admin; 12-04-09, 20:52.
          Philately starts where the catalogue stops.
          Items I have for sale.

          Comment


          • #6
            Hi Jacques

            From about 1897 people used to send gold and money in parcels, alot of theft was recorded and the post office warned they would not take responsibility for any losses. At one stage they advised that if money was sent it sould be torn in half diagonally, send half first, once received send other half.
            Sounds a bit strange.

            Regards
            Gabriel1
            Items I have for sale.

            Comment

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