POST MARKS OF SOUTHERN AFRICA

PREPARED BY ALEX VISSER (RDPSA)

 

EXPLANATORY NOTES TO THE ADDENDUM OF

“THE POSTMARKS OF SOUTH AFRICA AND FORMER STATES AND COLONIES”

 

Since Ralph Putzel, RDPSA, published the first volume of the ten-volume opus magnus in 1992, major changes in the status of post offices in Southern Africa occurred. Many post offices were closed, and new post offices opened. Furthermore, many cancellers were unable to handle the year 2000. The SA Post Office resolved to use a standard steel canceller, based on the Swiss style which is termed “new style” in the description. Apparently some 7 600 of these cancellers were issued.

 

However, individual post offices were given certain freedom, and some regions resolved to use a variety of self-inking cancellers. These have been found to have a relatively short life of two to four years and may become elusive in years to come. Until clarity on their availability is obtained, their price has been retained at 2/10, as for all current material, consistent with the original pricing.

 

In the Addendum, which is maintained in electronic format to facilitate inclusion of new information in the correct position, the same style as the original books is kept. Information readily available in the books is not repeated. Note that the books are out of print and will not be reprinted.

 

The same numbering system as in the books is maintained, except in some isolated instances where the information for a particular post office is renumbered, but this is clearly indicated. Where the information of a canceller in the book is modified an asterisk is found after the number, such as No. 4*. If no asterisk is shown the information is new. This is also true of additional variants of the date format.

SOUTH AFRICA

 

Postmarks are listed alphabetically per Post Office

 

To locate your search, please click on the applicable letters of the alphabet

Aa – Az

 

Updated Feb 2024

Ba – Bd

 

Updated Feb 2024

Be – Bh

 

Updated Feb 2024

Bi – Bn

 

Updated Feb 2024

Bo – Bq

 

Updated Feb 2024

Br – Bz

 

Updated Feb 2024

Ca – Cao

 

Updated Feb 2024

Cap – Capf

 

Updated Feb 2024

Caph – Clu

 

Updated Feb 2024

Co – Cz

 

Updated Feb 2024

Da – Dh

 

Updated Jan 2024

Di – Dt

 

Updated Jan 2024

Du – Dz

 

Updated Jan 2024

Ea – En

 

Updated Oct 2023

Em – Ez

 

Updated Oct 2023

Fa – Fz

 

Updated Sept 2023

Ga – Gh

 

Updated Oct 2023

Gi – Gq

 

Updated Oct 2023

Gr – Gz

 

Updated Oct 2023

Ha – Hh

 

Updated Nov 2023

Hi – Hz

 

Updated Nov 2023

Ia – Iz

 

Updated Feb 2024

Ja – Jz

 

Updated Feb 2024

Ka – Kd

 

Updated Dec 2023

Ke – Kk

 

Updated Dec 2023

Kl – Kq

 

Updated Dec 2023

Kr – Kz

 

Updated Dec 2023

La – Lh

 

Updated Nov 2023

Li – Lz

 

Updated Nov 2023

Ma – Maq

 

Updated May 2023

Mar – Md

 

Updated May 2023

Me – Mn

 

Updated May 2023

Mo – Mor

 

Updated May 2023

Mos – Mz

 

Updated May 2023

Na – Nn

 

Updated Aug 2023

No – Nz

 

Updated Aug 2023

Oa – Oz

 

Updated Aug 2023

Pa – Ph

 

Updated May 2023

Pi – Pn

 

Updated July 2023

Po – Pz

 

Updated May 2023

Qa – Qz

 

Updated Aug 2023

Ra – Rn

 

Updated Sept 2023

Ro – Rz

 

Updated Sept 2023

Sa – Sh

 

Updated Dec 2023

Si – Ss

 

Updated Dec 2023

St – Sz

 

Updated Dec 2023

Ta – Tz

 

Updated Aug 2023

Ua – Uz

 

Updated Jan 2024

Va – Vz

 

Updated Jan 2024

Wa – Wh

 

Updated Feb 2024

Wi – Wz

 

Updated Feb 2024

X, Y, Z

 

Updated Feb 2024

Unrecorded cancellers, or better copies of illustrated strikes, are always welcome. These can be sent electronically (scanned at 300 dpi) or as clear photocopies.

 

A large number of postal historians have provided me with new information, which is gratefully acknowledged. I would like to express my appreciation to them all  for providing material for the Addendum.

 

Alex Visser (RDPSA)  alex.visser@up.ac.za

Click here to view the list of Contributors

POSTMARKS AND POSTAL MARKINGS OF NATAL AND ZULULAND TO 1910

 

by Alex Visser RDPSA and Roger Porter RDPSA

 

Standing on the shoulders of giants allows us to see further and in greater detail. We wish to acknowledge the contributions made by well-known Natal postal history students since the 1970s such as A Leslie Leon, WR Hart, Basil Kantey, John Dickson, Dr Mark Chutter, EB Proud and Ralph Putzel. We also acknowledge those philatelists who are currently undertaking research on the postmarks and postal history of Natal. A number of publications listed in section 3 provided the basis for a review of the state of the knowledge as over the years new information has become available that  has allowed for inconsistencies to be corrected. It is the purpose of this document to serve as a central repository for information that is current, and hence it is placed on the Philatelic Federation of South Africa website for ready access by students of Natal and Zululand postal history.

 

The four volume Putzel (1986/90) Encyclopaedia of South African post offices and postal agencies, and the ten volume Putzel, later Putzel and Visser (1992 to 2003) The postmarks of South Africa and former states and colonies, have provided an extensive coverage of the postmarks and was used initially. Recent papers by Roger Porter in the Cape and Natal Philatelic Journal (2019a, 2019b, 2021) is an extensive update of the POA cancellations and the work by Hart et al (1977) and Kantey (1982). As a linkage with these publications the relevant references are given. Note that in some instances the reference are not sequential, as new information has become available.  Although only postmarks and postal markings in use during the Colonial period to 1910 are listed, later handstamps and postal markings can be found in Putzel, later Putzel and Visser (1992 to 2003) and electronic Addenda. The ‘Madame Joseph’ forgeries are discussed by Worboys (1994) and Cartwright (2005).

Comments, corrections and additions are welcome, by email to alex.visser@up.ac.za

 

Postal history of Natal

click here

 

Presentation of information

click here

 

British Army Post Office in Natal during the ABW – click here

Railway Map of  Natal

click here

Postmarks are listed alphabetically per Post Office as in the book

 

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

A

Updated June 2023

B

Updated June 2023

C

Updated June 2023

D

Updated June 2023

E

Updated June 2023

F

Updated June 2023

G

Updated June 2023

H

Updated June 2023

I

Updated June 2023

J and K

Updated June 2023

L

Updated June 2023

M

Updated June 2023

N and O

Updated June 2023

P and Q

Updated July 2023

R

Updated June 2023

S

Updated June 2023

T

Updated June 2023

U

Updated June 2023

V W X Z

Updated June 2023

Orange Free State

 

ITS POST OFFICES AND THEIR MARKINGS – 1854 to 1910

 

By Kevin Price

 

This Postmark Book (PmkBOOK) is an up-to-date internet version of the book of the same name published by A.G.M. (Archie) Batten, F.R.P.S.L., in 1976. Since this date there have been over ten supplements and numerous discoveries and updates reported in the Orange Free State Study Circle Bulletins. Two other publications have also been sourced to complete many gaps in our knowledge of this subject – The Postmarks of South Africa by Ralph F. Putzel and The Closure and Restoration of Civil Postal Services in the O.R.C. and the Transvaal 1900-1902 by Richard Stroud.

 

This PmkBOOK will bring together all this information and collate it in the same manner that Archie has done in his seminal work. Archie states in his preface that many collectors have written up their collections based on his original writings. The PmkBOOK will continue this system of identification for collectors. To quote Archie from his preface: “So, to meet, as I hope, all interests, I have reduced the alterations in the numbering of types of canceller to the minimum while still trying to conserve, for the individual, a reasonable chronological sequence. The method adopted – by the use of A and B Type numbers – will soon become apparent to the user.”

 

The original illustrations have been used but where a clear and complete cancellation on stamp or cover has been found it has been scanned at 300 dpi and used in place of the hand-drawn illustration. If any reader has evidence of any new information or a good quality complete cancellation, a scanned image of it sent to kevinwprice@bigpond.com will be gratefully accepted, acknowledged and used to update the cancellation image or description details.

 

Numerous members of the Study Circle have contributed to this PmkBOOK over the years. Many belong to the pantheon of famous philatelists who have been mentioned in the original publication or have won many philatelic awards. As well there are those collectors who collect solely for the pleasure this hobby provides. All these students of philately are mentioned at the end of this Introduction as this is a team effort by collectors who have a passion for examining the postmarks of this ‘dead’ country.

 

I will make mention here of non-member Alex Visser, the compiler of the addendum to the encyclopaedic The Postmarks of South Africa by Ralph F. Putzel. As Alex is made aware of a new OFS/ORC finding, he advises me so I can report it to our members and I reciprocate by telling him of our new discoveries.

 

To see the types and descriptions of the different Postmarks and cachets click here

 

 

Click here to see the acronyms used to describe the status of a Post Office

 

 

Acknowledgements

click here

To Join the Orange Free State Study Circle contact the President, Richard Stroud, at

Richard-stroud@outlook.com

or visit their website at www.orangefreestatephilately.org

Postmarks are listed alphabetically per Post Office as in the book

 

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

A

Updated Feb. 2023

B

Updated Dec. 2023

Bloemfontein

Updated Dec. 2023

C

Updated Dec. 2023

D

Updated Dec. 2023

E

Updated Dec. 2023

F

Updated Dec. 2023

G

Updated Feb. 2023

H

Updated Dec. 2023

I – J

Updated Dec. 2023

K

Updated Dec. 2023

L

Updated Dec. 2023

M

Updated Feb. 2023

N – O

Updated Feb. 2023

P – Q

Updated Dec. 2023

R

Updated Dec. 2023

S

Updated Dec. 2023

T

Updated Dec. 2023

U – V

Updated Dec. 2023

W

Updated Dec. 2023

Z

Updated Feb. 2023

GERMAN SOUTH WEST AFRICA/SOUTH WEST AFRICA/NAMIBIA

 

ADDENDUM TO THE COMPREHENSIVE HANDBOOK of the POSTMARKS OF GERMAN SOUTH WEST AFRICA/SOUTH WEST AFRICA/NAMIBIA by RALPH F PUTZEL, prepared by ALEX VISSER

 

Some 30 years have elapsed since Ralph Putzel published THE COMPREHENSIVE HANDBOOK of the POSTMARKS OF GERMAN SOUTH WEST AFRICA/SOUTH WEST AFRICA/NAMIBIA in 1991. In the intervening period considerable new research has become available. Additionally the Namibian independence in 1990 and the year 2000 required the introduction of a complete new range of date stamps.  It has become time to consolidate this new information into a single document, albeit in electronic format.  This Addendum is the document, and it builds on the originally published book but does not duplicate the information, unless there is a correction or addition to the previously published information.

 

I wish to acknowledge the encouragement that I received from Dr Hans Ulrich (Uli) Bantz, President of the South West Africa Study Group (SWASG), over many years to update the Putzel book.  Dr Bantz was also the Editor of the SWASG Newsletter that documented many of the new finds.  Without the huge assistance I received from Herrn Friedhelm Beck, Secretary of the Windhoek Philatelic Society (WPS), who managed to compile a complete listing with ancillary information on post-independence and the year 2000 date stamps, this work would not have materialised, as my own collection obtained from mail use, was sadly incomplete.  I express my sincerest appreciation to Friedhelm for his kind support, and also wish to acknowledge the extracts of the background from an unpublished document he prepared which I included in the Introduction with his permission.  Both Friedhelm and I received substantial assistance from NamPost and in particular Ms Hannelie Maasdorp, Manager, and Ms Sannie van Wyk of NamPost’s Philatelic Services, which I wish to acknowledge.

Postmarks are listed alphabetically per Post Office as in the book

 

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

GSWA/SWA/Namibia 

 

Updated July 2021

Acknowledgements

 

August 2021

 

Day wheels on date stamps are separate, and for dates up to 9 the other digit wheel could be a block, a hyphen or a blank. These are normal and although Putzel describes some of them they are not variants and are no longer recorded.

 

Abbreviations additional to those on p.175 of the book:  S.A.M.C. – South African Military Constabulary

CAPE OF GOOD HOPE

 

REVISED LISTING OF THE POST OFFICES AND THE POSTAL MARKINGS

1792-1910

 

Franco Frescura and Alex Visser

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

FOREWORD

by Franco Frescura

 

It gives me great pleasure to write the Introduction to this, the next stage of this research project. This work has had a long and chequered career. Begun late in 1978 when Michael Nethersole, David Morrison and I discovered a common interest in the postal history of the Cape Colony, it rapidly developed a life of its own, and for a long time we despaired that it would ever be finished. David dropped out in 1981, while Michael and I developed an on-off-on arrangement as our respective careers took their unpredictable paths. Inevitably my wife Lesley was also “press-ganged” into service, and many a cold Highveld night was spent by the two of us reconciling hopelessly tangled Colonial records. Yes, we did have better things to do, but at that time our daughter was just settling down into her sleeping routine … well, you know the rest.

 

Read more

ZUID-AFRIKAANSCHE REPUBLIEK (ZAR)/TRANSVAAL

 

ZAR AND TRANSVAAL DATE-STAMPS UNTIL UNION:

A WORKING CATALOGUE

by Bas Payne and Alex Visser: original publication and updates

 

Introduction and purpose:

 

The purpose of this catalogue is to provide a chronological listing of the date-stamps used by the postal authorities in Transvaal, from the beginnings until Union (31 May 1910).  Handwritten cancellations are outside the scope of this catalogue even when dated.

 

This catalogue is based on the listing of Transvaal date-stamps in Putzel’s catalogue (Putzel and Visser 1992-2003; referred to as Put) and Alex Visser’s Addenda (Visser nd; referred to as Add), and uses their numbering; it gives more detail, especially earliest and latest reported dates of use, and more illustrations of examples, and is arranged chronologically by earliest date of use.

 

Other published sources on which this catalogue depends heavily are:

  • Mathews’ Transvaal Philately (Mathews 1986, hereinafter referred to as  Mat),
  • Putzel’s Encyclopedia of post offices and agencies (Putzel 1986-90, (Ency)),
  • the series of three articles on ZAR date-stamps published by Alan Drysdall and George van den Hurk in The Transvaal Philatelist (van den Hurk and Drysdall 1993 (vdH&D),  van den Hurk  1993 (vdH),  and Drysdall and van den Hurk  1994 (D&vdH)), and
  • Frits Aab’s website (Aab nd).

 

This catalogue is being published in parts  in the Transvaal Philatelist, which are being put on this website  with the very kind permission of the Transvaal Study Circle committee   https://transvaalstudycircle.org/   Updates will be added on this website as new information becomes available; we hope that fellow-collectors will help.

 

Listing conventions and abbreviations

Office information

 

—————

 

Descriptions

Types of cancellers

 

—————

 

Dates

Numbering of types

 

—————

 

 Images

Measurements

 

—————

 

Uncertainty and doubt

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

Part 1 

A – Bis

Updated Nov 2021

Part 2

Bla – Bus

Updated Nov 2021

Part 3

Ca – Ela

Updated Nov 2021

Part 4

Eli – Fre

Updated Nov 2021

Part 5

Ga – Gro

Updated Nov 2021

Fa – Fz

 

Updated Nov 2021

SWAZILAND PHILATELY TO 1968

 

LISTING OF THE POST OFFICES AND THE POSTAL MARKINGS

by Alex Visser

 

The early postal services in Swaziland were provided by the South African Republic (ZAR) post office from 1887 until the outbreak of the Second Anglo-Boer War. The first postmarks were versions of the ZAR postmarks of the time. During the War no postal service functioned in Swaziland. After the War in late 1902 the service was restored initially under Transvaal administration, and later the Union postal administration, and new postmark types began to appear.

 

Swaziland issued their first stamps on 2 January 1933, but administration of the post offices was only transferred from the Union Post Office from 1 January 1954.

Introduction

 

The book “Swaziland Philately to 1968” edited by Peter van der Molen RDPSA FRPSL was published in 2013 by the Royal Philatelic Society London.  This magnus opus is no longer in print but is available in an electronic version.

 

A number of new items and information has become available since publication and Chapter 15 of this book is now presented in an updated web based electronic version with kind permission of the editor.  In order to maintain an alphabetical order new information is added under the office. As a result some page formatting has been lost compared with the published version. Background and supporting information contained in the book has been included in separate sections in this version and can be accessed by the links below. Modifications or new information is shown in bold red in the text.

 

In April 2018 what was known as SWAZILAND became ESWATINI. Only towards the end of 2019 the first date stamp appeared with the changed country name. This information is not relevant to the Chapter 15.

To locate your search, please click on the applicable link in blue

Presentation of Information

Office history, Typology, Rarity

 

————————–

 

Swaziland stamps used in South Africa

BONC and Triangulars

Updated December 2021

 

————————-

 

Swaziland map

Location of Post Office and places

 

Listing of Postal Markings by Office 

Updated December 2021

 

————————-

 

Bibliography