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Did you know ? Fun facts on philately

Guinness World record for HM QEII

In April 2001 Gibraltar achieved a Guinness World Record by issuing the fastest stamp in history. A photograph of HM Queen Elizabeth II was taken that morning at Buckingham Palace for the Gibraltar stamps,. The photo was emailed immediately to the Bureau’s office in Gibraltar where the sheet was designed by Stephen Perera and then sent to the printers who commenced printing at 10.00am that same day. At midday, a representative of the Crown Agents flew to Gibraltar with the printed stamps and the stamps were put on sale that same afternoon (exactly 624 minutes after the photograph was taken.) The media published the story as follows; “Gibraltar gives a World Record to HM Queen Elizabeth II for Her Birthday!

Abdul Rasul’s trove of 5,915 mosque stamps sets a world record

Mr. Rasul, a 41-year-old IT professional who has entered the Guinness Book of Records for the largest collection of 5,915 stamps featuring mosques. The oldest stamp in his possession was released by the Afghanistan government in 1892. Mr. Rasul also has a rare stamp with inverted centre — printed upside down — released in Somalia in 1902. 

There have been postage stamps that are records

Bhutan, an Asian nation in the Himalayan Mountains, issued a group of postage stamps that were actually phonograph records. These stamps, issued in 1973, had native folk songs recorded on one side and could be played on a record player. 

Products were advertised on the back of stamps? 

Sometime before 1883 advertising for various products was printed on the back of U.S. three-cent stamps. 

Candles were once used to determine the postage rates? 

In 1693, letters were held in front of a candle to determine the postage rate. The less the light shone through, the more costly the rate. This was known as candling. 

An undersea post office actually did exist! 

It was established in 1939 as part of a scientific facility on the sea bed off the Bahamas. They used a special oval postmark that was inscribed “SEA FLOOR/BAHAMAS”. Here you can see the post office depicted on Bahamas 5 shilling stamp issued in 1965. 

A stamp was created on the Moon! 

In 1969 during the Apollo 11 moon flight, the astronauts took with them a die of a postage stamp which they pulled an impression of when they touched down on the moon. Thus, creating the moon’s first postage stamp! Once the die was returned to earth it was used to produce the 10 cent airmail stamp issued in September of 1969. 

The world’s largest; smallest and Oldest post offices

Chicago – biggest post office
Ochopee, Florida – smallest post office
Sanquhar Post Office (Scotland) – oldest working post office

The world’s largest post office is the head post office in Chicago, Illinois. The smallest post office in the world is located in Ochopee, Florida. 

Sanquhar Post Office (Scotland) has the exclusive title of oldest working post office in the world. Having been in continuous operation since 1712, the tiny post office has more than a 300-year history.

Can you believe Cats were used to deliver the mail! 

I’ve heard of many different types of animals being used to deliver mail – camels, reindeer, horses, dogs, pigeons, but CATS? Well it’s true. In 1879 Liege, Belgium employed 37 cats to carry bundles of letters to villages. This service didn’t last long as cats proved to be thoroughly undisciplined. 

Great Britain is the only country which issues stamps without its name printed on them. 

Instead the profile of the monarch appears on British stamps. The Universal Postal Union allows this because Britain was the first country to issue stamps. 

The first post offices in America were bags hung in taverns. 

The mail was handled by captains of ships. 

When stamps were first issued, they had no gum on the back. 

And if paste was not available, mailers sometimes pinned or even sewed stamps to envelopes. 

The first touch of humor did not appear on a U.S. stamp until 1963. 

The 5-cent City Mail delivery stamp was issued for the 100th anniversary of free city mail delivery. The design, by Norman Rockwell, featured a letter carrier holding an umbrella, followed by a smiling boy and a little dog.

Author: kheyati

https://philatelist.home.blog/ I am an avid philatelist, I focus on global miniatures & souvenir stamps. Happy to help enthusiasts!

One thought on “Did you know ? Fun facts on philately”

  1. Great bunch of cool facts. It is great stories like this that enlarge the hobby. I am new to the hobby, but I am enjoying reading about it–if only the magazines weren’t so expensive in Canada.

    Liked by 1 person

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