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Telegraph stamps of the World

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a good reference:
Post Office Telegraphs Ceylon Telegraphs HongKong Telegraphs India Telegraphs Jamaica Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Australia
GB Ceylon Hong Kong India Jamaica Natal OFS Australia and states
Up a level by Dave Elsmore.
Matabeleland Telegraphs Sarawack Telegraphs Sudan Telegraphs Transvaal Telegraphs Uganda Railway NSW Telegraphs Western Australia Telegraphs Western Australia Telegraphs
Other Africa Sarawak Sudan Transvaal Uganda New South Wales Western Australia Other Australia


  I have brought these prices up to date and added currency selection.  
CheckList         Setup


Shortcuts to different sections
1869 series Postmarks 1881/2 Prov. 1882 series 1890 series 1899-1900 Prov. Angeli Head

Shortcuts to different sections
1904 issue 1904 Prov. Postal Service Used abroad Service Telegraphs Jammu & Kashmir J&K Officials Patiala Telephone stamps



1860 De La Rue on unwatermarked "enamelled" safety paper. Perf. 14

H1   courtesy of www.stampbay.com


Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H1 4A reddish purple (12,000) 1500.00 1000.00
H2 1R reddish purple (12,000) 3000.00 1500.00
H2a         handstamped "ON HMS ONLY"   - -
H3 4R reddish purple (500) 30000.00 5000.00

Hiscocks added the following 4 notes:

Note 1. No. 2(a) is thought to have been a local overprint rather than an official issue.
Note 2. Used stamps normally have a number of approximately 3mm holes punched in them.
                Three or four examples of left hand halves used after 1869 with those of the next issue are known.  
Note 3. The numbers in brackets are those printed minus those overprinted for Court Fee payment and those  
                destroyed assuming the same rates of usage in the Calcutta presidency, for which figures are
                not known, as in the Bombay and Madras presidencies where they are known.
Note 4. No. 2 in fact differs slightly from No. 1 in that it lacks the outer frame line round the design.


An example of the 4 anna used, courtesy of Andrew Higson. The date is presumably in error and should have been 1861.

India-H1 used

Remainders (the majority) of the 4a, 1r and 4r stamps were overprinted and used for Court Fees. Images courtesy of Andrew Higson.

Court Fee - 4a

Court Fee - 1r

Court Fee - 4r

The way of cancelling them was very varied.


1869 (1 February) De La Rue on white or bluish wove paper. Perf. 14
Various frames with two heads of Queen Victoria.

India-H4 India-H5 India-H6 India-H8 India-H12
1 Ans.   H4 2 Ans.   H5 4 Ans.   H6 1 R.   H8 5 R.   H12
H4 - One of mine. H6 and H12 images courtesy of ibredguy.co.uk Others from Wiki.


India - the rest
8 Ans.   H7 2R 8A.   H10 10 R.   H14 25 R.   H17 50 R.   H20
The rest of the set (reduced size), courtesy of Dr Mark Gibson.


Watermarked Crown over "INDIA".


Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H4 1A yellow-green (1878) (190,000) 40.00 4.00
H4a         green (March/May 1880) 40.00 4.00
H5 2A maroon (1869) (600,000) 24.00 1.50
H5a         deeper shade (1881) 40.00 2.00
H6 4A light blue (shades)(1.2.69) (1,500,000) 16.00 0.50
H6a         watermark inverted 100.00 8.00
H6b         on bluish to very blue paper 40.00 4.00
H6c         dull blue (1881) 32.00 1.00
H7 8A light brown (shades) (1.2.69) (5,400,000) 12.00 0.40
H7a         on bluish to very blue paper 40.00 4.00
H7b         watermark inverted - 8.00
H7c         imperf (Oct. 1878, Ceylon) - 150.00
H7d         reddish-brown 20.00 0.80
H8 1R grey (shades) Die I (1.2.69) (875,000) 200.00 4.00
H8a         on bluish paper 300.00 10.00
H8b         bluish grey 300.00 10.00
H8c         imperf (7.5.69, Bombay) - 150.00
H9 1R grey (shades) Die II (1869) (15,000,000) 20.00 0.50
H9a         blue-grey 12.00 0.50
H9b         double printing (March 1879) - -
H10 2R 8A orange-yellow (shades) Die I (1.2.69) (800,000)   32.00 0.60
H10a         on bluish paper 60.00 1.20
H11 2R 8A orange (shades) Die II (1878) (970,000) 40.00 1.00
H11a         watermark inverted - 10.00
H12 5R orange-brown (shades) (1.2.69) (875,000) 40.00 0.80
H12a         vertical perfs. misplaced 8mm to left (Karachi 1871)   - 40.00
H13 10R dull blue-green(shades) Die I (1.2.69) (475,000) 40.00 0.80
H13a         deep blue-green 60.00 1.00
H13b         imperf. - -
H14 10R dull blue-green(shades) Die II (1878) (570,000) 40.00 0.80
H15 14R 4A bright lilac (Jan. 1870) (67,920) 100.00 4.00
H16 25R reddish-lilac (shades) Die I (1.2.69) (150,000) 100.00 4.00
H17 25R reddish-lilac (shades) Die II (1878-9) (250,000) 80.00 1.50
H18 28R 8A bright yellow-green (Jan. 1870) (79,560) 200.00 2.00
H19 50R rose (shades) Die I (1.2.69) (50,000) 300.00 5.00
H19a         imperf. - -
H20 50R rose to rose-carmineDie II (1874) (120,000) 120.00 2.00
ValueDie I.Die II.
1R.India-1R-DieI India-1R-DieII
India-2R8-DieI India-2R8-DieII
10R. India-10R-Die-I India-10R-Die-II
25R. India-25R-Die-II
50R. India-50R-DieI India-50R-DieII
My images are not as good as I would like.
For the 1R. and 50R, corner frames are solid or double-lined.
For the 2R.8A. the lines of shading behind the head are thicker on Die I.
This reduces the contrast. On Die II there is also shading, particularly
at the back of the neck, and it is easier to see the boundary of the head.
Also Die I is a very yellow shade whereas most Die II
stamps are the later orange shade.
For the 10R, Die-II letters and numbers are thicker and the head background lighter due to thinner lines.
For the 25R, Die-II has the white ornaments shown, Die-I does not.


India-H8c 1 Anna imperf.
H8c on a part form, Bombay 7.5.1869 courtesy of Grosvenor Auctions.
BB&R perfin
Perfins are known on these (though scarce).
This one 'B B & R' is an unknown user in Calcutta.
Image courtesy of Jeff Turnbull.
We would be interested to hear of other examples.


Hiscocks added the following 5 notes:

Note 1. Nos. 4-20 are listed above in value order with issue dates in brackets.
                The order of printing was 4A, 8A, 1R(Die I), 2½R(Die I), 5R, 10R(Die I), 25R(Die I), 50R(Die I),
                1R(Die II), 2A, 14¼R, 28½R, 50R(Die II), 25R(Die II), 10R(Die II), 1A, 2½R(Die II).
Note 2. Used prices are for cancelled upper halves of stamps. Stamps were occasionally used upside down
                and lower halves are worth at least x 3. Most cancellations were in black — coloured cancellations  
                (usually blue or red) command a premium of 50-100%. The Madras 'diamond' and the
                Pondicherry diamond cost x 3 and x 5 respectively.
Note 3. Nos. 'Specimen' and, more rarely, 'cancelled' sets are found. The former sell at about mint prices and  
                the latter at a little more.
Note 4. The numbers quoted above are from de la Rue archives and are approximate after allowing for
                damaged sheets and those later overprinted for Court Fee use.
Note 5. Some stamps, e.g. No. 8, are much more rare than their printings would suggest and the reasons for
                this are not known. Prices reflect this.

Unfortunately, Hiscocks says nothing about distinguishing the Dies.
He has some helpful arrowed diagrams for all but the 25R. value, but some words would have been useful.
I have tried to describe the differences better above.


As well as the two diamonds mentioned above, Ceylon and Portuguese India also used these stamps in their early days.
Ceylon, though be carefull not to read 'OMB' as 'COLOMBO' when it is more likely 'BOMBAY'.
GOA was a Portuguese colony, and another colony DAMAUN may also have used them.
I have also listed the Pondicherry diamond under French India.

Madras-diamond 1874 25 Rupee
Madras diamond 1874 on a 2½ Die I PONDICHERRY on a 25Rs.


India-Pondicherry-5-4-73 India-Pondicherry-18-8-73
Pondicherry diamond 5-4-73. Pondicherry diamond 18-8-73.




Front and back (half-size) of a typical receipt cancelled 'KARACHI 12-3 08'. This kind of cancel was normal.
Since only the top half should be on the receipt, the 1890 and 1904 series, used halves were normally indistinguishable.
Telegraph stamps were withdrawn shortly after, on 1st April 1908.



1881-82 Provisionals. 'TELEGRAPH' of various sizes (quoted sizes include stops) overprinted on revenue stamps. White or bluish wove paper, perf. 14.
The images below are from various sources and have been re-sized to be, as near as I can get, to the same scale for overprint comparison.
Warning, Forgeries about: I see many of these that are fiscally used, have forged overprints added, and then are offered for sale as genuine unused telegraphs.
Fiscal usage was often done by embossing with a large ornate design and date plugs. This should not exist on a genuine unused telegraph stamp !

Here is an example, see the embossing, it even shows date-plugs of 20/9/90, well beyond the time genuine ones were used.
The overprint also shows very ragged edges, in contrast to this genuine one below:
I hope this saves some people from wasting their money. These 3 images courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley.


Calcutta Overprints:
Type 26, 24 x 2½mm overprint including stops - enough to span 17 perforation teeth
Type 27, 28 x 3mm overprint including stops - enough to span 20 perforation teeth

H21 courtesy of Tony Brown (anthonybrown55 on ebay).

India-H22 from Wikimedia Commons
H22 (24 x 2½mm overprint). from Wikimedia Commons

H24 (24 x 2½mm overprint). courtesy of Grosvenor Auctions. Sold as S.G. T25
This overprint looks more uneven than the others, with the 'G' slimmer.

24mm x 2½mm overprint (not listed by Hiscocks - added as *H26a), courtesy of Moses at mystampzone, or on ebay.

H23, H25 and H26 (28 x 3mm). Images courtesy of www.stampbay.com

India-H26 India-H31
H26 (28 x 3mm) H31 (24 x 2 ½mm) courtesy Rupert of Strathspey Philatelics
who tells me that SG price the left half
25% more than the right half.


Hisc. Ovpt. Desc. Mint Used
H21 26 1A dull lilac/blue, ovp 24x2½mm (Feb. 1882) (Note 1) 250.00 32.00
H22 26 1A dull lilac/white, ovp 24x2½mm (Feb. 1882) (Note 1) 250.00 32.00
H23 27 1A dull lilac/blue, ovp 28x3mm (Feb. 1882) (Note 1) 250.00 32.00
H24 26 2A bright lilac, ovp 24x2½mm (Feb. 1882) (Notes 2 and 3)   - -
H25 27 2A bright lilac, ovp 28x3mm (Aug. 1881) (Note 2) 150.00 32.00
H26 27 4A green, ovp 28x3mm (Aug. 1881) (Note 2) 150.00 24.00
*H26a 26 4A green, ovp 24x2½mm (illustrated above, Feb. 1882 ?)   - -

* I added H26a due to the example shown.


Madras overprints: 26 x 2¾mm — no stop (18½ teeth).
These tend to be across the face of the Queen. This was very much a French-influenced area. Perhaps they had no great love of her.

India-Madras-1   India-Madras-2
Note the Pondicherry cancel. Pondicherry was part of French India and in the Madras area.
Images courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley.

Hisc. Ovpt. Desc. Mint Used
H27 28 1A pale lilac (20.3.82) (4,000) 500.00 100.00
H28 28 2A bright lilac (20.3.82) (4,000)   - -
H29 28 4A green (17.4.82) (48,000) 250.00 20.00


Bombay overprints:

Hisc. Ovpt. Desc. Mint Used
H30 29 2A bright lilac, ovp 26 x 3mm — no stop (13.8.81) (400)   1250.00 400.00
H31 26 2A bright lilac, ovp 24 x 2½mm (15.8.81) (16,800) 250.00 20.00

Hiscocks added the following 6 notes:

Note 1. It will be noted that strictly speaking Nos. 21-31 comprise two separate issues — August 1881
                and February-April 1882.
Note 2. The total printing of Nos. 21, 22 and 23 was apparently 16,000 of which at least 4,000 were
                destroyed when the 1882 (second watermark)normal stamps, the late arrival of which necessitated  
                these provisionals, finally arrived.
                Some of these were supplied to Bombay which had run out of 1A special adhesives at that time.
Note 3. Numbers printed are not known for Nos. 24, 25 and 26.
Note 4. No. 24 is listed by some references but not by others.
Note 5. [The overprint on H30] is very similar to [The overprint on H23,H25 and H26] but has no stop,
                is very roughly printed with broken letters, small 'A', etc, and is usually crooked and lower down
                on the stamp. The type used on No. 31 is almost identical with [that on H21,H22 and H24] but
                may be distinguished in that the printers in Calcutta were instructed to place the overprint "over the
                coronet" and did so, while those in Bombay overprinted (as in No. 30) lower down across the face.  
Note 6. The printing of No. 28 is reported but no specimens have been observed.


1882 As the 1869 issue (Die II where applicable) but new watermark with 'fleur de lis' added. White paper, Perf. 14


W2 - with added 'fleur de lis'.
Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H32 1A green 10.00 1.25
H32a         yellow-green 10.00 1.25
H33 2A maroon 7.50 1.00
H34 4A light blue (shades) 10.00 0.50
H35 8A light brown (shades) 10.00 0.50
H35a         reddish-brown 10.00 0.60
H36 1R bluish grey 10.00 0.50
H36a         slate 10.00 0.60
H37 2R 8A reddish orange (shades)   20.00 0.60
H37a         dull orange 20.00 0.60
H38 5R orange-brown (shades) 25.00 1.25
H39 10R blue-green (shades) 50.00 1.88
H40 25R reddish-lilac 62.00 1.88
H40a         greyish lilac 62.00 1.88
H41 50R carmine (shades) 75.00 1.25

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:
Note 1. The 14¼R and 28½R values, which had been introduced to meet the  
                agreed international rates in accord with the Vienna International
                Telegraph Conference of 1868, were not reprinted on W2 paper.
Note 2. Cancellations were mainly as before but some circular date stamp
                cancellations are found after about 1888. All values are occasionally
                found whole, punched, and bearing either a place name or
                'CHECK OFFICE' stamped vertically.


1890 New designs De La Rue on white wove paper. Perf. 14
Various frames with single head of Queen Victoria.

India-H42 India-H43 India-H44 India-H45 India-H46
1 Ans.   H42 2 Ans.   H43 4 Ans.   H44 8 Ans.   H45 1 R.   H46
H42 and H44 images courtesy of ibredguy.co.uk, H43 from from Wikimedia Commons - all reduced size.


India - the rest
2½ R.   H47 5 R.   H48 10 R.   H49 25 R.   H50 50 R.   H51
The rest of the set (reduced size as specimens), courtesy of Dr Mark Gibson.


Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H42 1A yellowish green (Aug. 1890) 12.00 0.50
H43 2A maroon (Jan. 1891) 12.00 1.00
H44 4A blue (shades) (Aug. 1890) 16.00 0.50
H45 8A brown (Aug. 1890) 16.00 0.50
H46 1R grey (Aug. 1890) 16.00 0.50
H46a        bluish grey 16.00 0.50
H47 2R 8A orange (shades) (Jan. 1891)   40.00 2.00
H48 5R brownish orange (Jan. 1891) 32.00 1.50
H49 10R blue-green (Jan. 1891) 60.00 1.50
H50 25R bright lilac (Jan. 1891) 80.00 3.00
H51 50R carmine (Jan. 1891) 100.00 4.00

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. A large proportion of the 2½R stamps (No. 47) in stock in India and those at the printers (de la Rue)  
                were converted to 2R as below.
Note 2. Stamps of this issue are occasionally met with used whole — prices as for mint.
Note 3. Used half stamps can be difficult to allocate between the above issue and those of King Edward VII  
                (1904) and many cannot be allocated at all — see note below No. 65. Prices above are for those  
                which can be identified.


1899-1900 Provisionals. Overprinted or surcharged in black. Perf. 14
As on page 162 of Hiscocks book.
For the moment I am having to take H55 from page 162 of Hiscocks book.
H53 is courtesy of Grosvenor Auctions.
Can anyone provide a scan of H55 ?


Forgers have been at work here too.

Calcutta overprint Calcutta overprint Double overprint forgery Overprint on 4As forgery
De La Rue overprint De La Rue overprint
Forgery overprint Forgery overprint

Thgis is presumably intended to look like a double overprint and a 2Rs on 4As.
Images courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley.


4 Annas on 1 Rupee
for this 4A on 1R (No. 46)  see H68 below.
Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H52 2R on 2½R (N0. 47) (4.9.99) (236,960) 125.00 10.00
H53 2R 'TELEGRAPH' on Foreign Bill purple (see note) (24.2.00) (14,467)   600.00 100.00
H54 2R on 2½R (N0. 47) (30.4.00) (283,840) 125.00 10.00

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:

Note 1. No. 52 was prepared in Calcutta to fill the gap while No. 55 (below) was being prepared
                by de la Rue. There are many minor varieties. At the same time de la Rue was instructed to
                surcharge such copies of No. 47 as they had in stock to produce No. 54. Stocks of No. 52 ran  
                out before No. 54 reached India and No. 53 was produced in Calcutta to meet demand.
                Its life was very short and it is rare: the majority were called in and destroyed
                (except for the 'leakage' of one or two sheets) when No. 54 arrived.
Note 2. No. 53 was overprinted on 40 year old Foreign Bill stamps on thick bluish 'enamelled' safety paper,  
                watermarked W1. The watermark is hard to see on such thick paper — for printers as well as
                philatelists — and inverted watermarks might well exist for No. 53 as for most
                Foreign Bill stamps of this issue.


1890 (14 November) New design (Angeli Head)
De La Rue on white wove paper. Watermark W2, perf. 14

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H55 2R yellow 100.00 15.00
H55a        red line printed across lower half. 100.00 -
H55b        red line hand-ruled across lower half.   100.00 -

For used 2R brown-orange see H61.

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. Copies used whole sell as mint.
Note 2. The unfortunate colour made the design difficult to see under the primitive artificial light of the time.  
                Since the use of a stamp upside down resulted in the clerk being fined the value of the stamp
                (because it was assumed that any lower half in public hands would be used to construct a
                'new stamp') the offices in Madras and Bombay ruled lines across the lower half in red ink while  
                the Calcutta office printed red lines before issue.
Note 3. One set of colour trials in various shades of yellow and orange is known (ex de la Rue).
Specimen Puzzle
This is a bit of a puzzle, compare it to H53.
It has a similar overprint plus on the right-hand side says

It is stated to have a boxed advert for Errington and Martin on the back.
These stamp importers used near-worthless stamps to advertise their company.
They also had a reputation for combatting forgery.
Is this a genuine specimen of an unknown essay,
or a forgers attempt to discredit them ?
If the last, they went to a lot of work for nothing.
Anyone have something similar ?

Image courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley.


1904 Altered designs.
for King Edward VII. Other details as previous.
Reduced size images, courtesy of Dr Mark Gibson.

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H56 1A yellow-green 12.00 0.75
H57 2A maroon 12.00 1.20
H58 4A light blue 12.00 0.60
H59 8A brown 16.00 0.60
H60 1R grey 16.00 0.60
H61 2R brown-orange   32.00 1.25
H62 5R orange-brown   40.00 1.88
H63 10R bluish green   60.00 2.50
H64 25R bright lilac 80.00 2.50
H65 50R carmine 100.00 4.00

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:

Note 1. Except in the obvious case of No. 61 it is difficult to distinguish between top halves of the
                1890 and 1904 issues. Darker shades of blue on the 4A usually indicate the earlier issue but
                otherwise one can only be certain if either they bear cancellation dates in 1903 or earlier (this does
                not work in reverse of course) or the cuts are sufficiently low to show the difference imposed on the
                designs by the insertion of the imperial crown over the head of King Edward.
                Many used stamps of these issues cannot be unambiguously assigned and sell for perhaps £0.10.
Note 2. Used whole stamps are not particularly rare and sell at a little below mint. They arise because telegraph  
                stamps only were used at separate telegraph offices — found only in big towns — where they were
                bisected in the usual way. Elsewhere telegraph and post offices were combined and postage stamps
                were used for inland telegrams, the stamps being stuck only on the message part of the form where it  
                would eventually be destroyed after checking. Telegraph stamps were acceptable in whole or part
                payment but would be stuck entirely on the message part like or with the postage stamps.
                Whole used copies thus result from leakage from the checking offices.
                This use of whole stamps below the line continued to be permitted for the 5 to 50R values after the
                abolition of telegraph stamps on 1 April 1908.


1904 (July) Provisionals surcharged in black on Foreign Bill and Telegraph stamps. Perf. 14

India-H66 India-H66 India-H22 from Wikimedia Commons
H66   courtesy of ibredguy.co.uk H67 Specimen
courtesy of Martin Robinson
H68 Specimen
from Wikimedia Commons


Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H66 1A on 4R Foreign Bill, Purple on white to blue (205,508)   15.00 3.75
H66a        numeral '1' missing in upper half. 125.00 50.00
H66b        letters of 'ANNA' spaced out in upper half. 50.00 20.00
H66c        'h' for 'H' in upper 'TELEGRAPH'. 50.00 20.00
H66d        watermark inverted . 30.00 10.00
H66e        'C' for 'G' in lower 'TELEGRAPH'. 50.00 -
H67 2R on 8A (No. 59) brown (190,707) 25.00 5.00
H68 4A on 1R (No. 46) grey (441,082) 20.00 5.00

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. These provisionals arose from a run on low values caused by a change of tariff early in 1904.
                They were printed in Calcutta.
Note 2. No. 66, like No. 53, is on the old Foreign Bill of watermark W1 on pinkish white to bluish thick,
                enamelled safety paper. Printing was poor and many non-systematic errors occur in addition to the  
                systematic errors listed above. No. 66(a) occurred once in each pane (twice per sheet) but was
                quickly noted and corrected: it is therefore rare. The others also occurred once in each pane.
Note 3. These stamps were in use from July to 17 August (1A and 2A values) and 24 August (4A) when
                remainders in the Calcutta stamp office were destroyed. The numbers above are those issued
                (i.e. those printed minus those destroyed).



A notice from T. D. Berrington, Director General of Telegraphs, dated 2nd March 1908 stated:

"From 1st April 1908 ordinary postage stamps will be used in place of
the double Telegraph Stamps in payment of Telegrams at all Telegraph Offices.
But as the stock of Postage Stamps of the higher denominations, of one rupee
and upwards will not be sufficient to meet the demands of both the Telegraph
and Postal Departments at present, and as there is no Postage Stamp of a
higher denomination than Rs. 5, Telegraph Stamps to the value of one rupee
and upwards will continue to be used till such time as a further supply of the
higher denominations of Postage Stamps is received; and two new Postage
Stamps of Rs. 10 and Rs. 15, respectively, are manufactured.
Service  Postage  Stamps  i. e.  Postage  Stamps  overprinted  with  the
letters On H. M. S. may be used in payment of state Telegrams.
When a  Telegram is paid for partly in  Postage and  partly in Telegraph
Stamps the latter should be affixed whole but lengthways on the Telegram form.
The Stamps must be affixed by the sender himself to the Telegram form.
The counter clerk (i. e. the booking clerk) will merely calculate the charges and
sell the stamps to the sender to be affixed to the Telegram form in the proper
place. When the stamps have been affixed, the counter clerk will obliterate
each one with the Name and Date Stamp of the office in the presence of the
The receipt to be granted to the Sender will bear no Stamp or portion
of a stamp."


Postal Service.

An exhibit by Steven Zwillinger of the USA displays an example of this form as well as some pre-stamped forms and Telegraph stamps.
The exhibit specifically relates to the Edwardian issues. Interestingly it mentions that the 1906 Postal Service issue could
be used to pay for telegrams at combined Post and Telegraph Offices, "though none are recorded."
These would get telegraph cancels, whereas in normal use (Customs Duty) these stamps would get purple cancels.

Postal Service ½ A. Postal Service 1 A. Postal Service 2 As. Postal Service 4 As. Postal Service 8 As.
A range of Postal Service stamps with the normal purple cancels.

Postal Service 8 As.
An example of an 8As used in Calcutta with a black cancel.

I do not know if the same applied to the Victorian issues - Telegraphic cancels on both are worth looking out for.




Used Abroad

After the withdrawal of special Telegraph stamps on 1st April 1908, normal postage stamps were used for the purpose.
They can be recognised by distinctive cancels.

Telegraph cancel  Telegraph cancel on Simla
25Rs used in Madras and 5Rs Service used in Simla.
Various codes are used on these :

G.T.D. - General Telegraph Division.
G.T.O. - General Telegraph Office.
S.T.C. - Subscriber Trunk Calling.
S.T.D. - Subscriber Trunk Dialing.
I.T.D. - International Trunk Dialing.

This Indian Telegraph cancel can be found on stamps of other countries.

Telegraph cancel on Kuwait 1922 - front  Telegraph cancel on Kuwait 1922 - back
Front and back of a Telegraph piece used in Kuwait in 1922.

Telegraph cancel on Kuwait 1923
A year later with a 'KUWAIT' overprint. These are typically on higher denomination stamps.
Similar items can be found for Burma, Pakistan and I'm sure more places.

Telegraph cancel on Iraq
This is dated 28 August 1920, a pivotal year for Mesopotamia that had just been re-named Iraq by the British.
Indian troops had been needed to suppress a rebelion against British rule. The overprint is on a Turkish stamp
as the area had been part of the Ottoman Empire up until the first World War.
The cancel is inscribed AMARAN / I. E. F. D. TELEGRAPHS



Service Telegraph Stamps.

Queen Victoria double headed issue (date and watermark unknown) Illustrated by C.S.F.Crofton (1905).
Handstamped "ON THE PUBLIC SERVICE ONLY" known (so far) on 10R only.

Taken from page 165 of Hiscocks book.
image from Hiscocks page 165

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H69 10R bluish green   - -


1908(?) Stamps of 1904 overprinted 'OHMS' in black.

India-H73 India-H74
H73 and H74   courtesy of Martin Robinson


Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H70 2R brown-orange (40,800)   50.00 -
H71 5R orange-brown (10,000)   50.00 -
H72 10R bluish green (2,400) 75.00 -
H73 25R bright lilac (2,000) 100.00 -
H74 50R carmine (800) 150.00 -

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. There is no evidence that these stamps were ever actually used although the upper halves are in fact the  
                same as normal stamps and lower halves might all have been destroyed in the usual way.


1904+? Bombay Police Department.
Taken from page 166 of Hiscocks book.
For the moment I am having to take this from page 166 of Hiscocks book. Can anyone provide scans of any of these ?

Hand-stamped in various colours "BO. POLICE DEPTT"

Though very unclear, this would seem to be a
purple handstamp saying "Madras Police Dept."
Clearly it pre-dates the ones above. Status unknown.
Adding as H74A. Image courtesy of Gerald
Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H74A 2A Madras Police Dept. - -
H75 1A (N0. 32) (colour ?) - -
H76 2A (N0. 33) (colour ?) - -
H77 1A (N0. 42) (colour ?) - -
H78 1A (N0. 56) (blue-green)   125.00 -
H79 1A (N0. 56) (blue) - -
H80 1A (N0. 56) (purple) 125.00 -
H81 2A (N0. 57) (blue-green) 125.00 -
H82 2A (N0. 57) (blue) 125.00 -
H83 2A (N0. 57) (purple) 125.00 -
H84 4A (N0. 58) (blue-green) 125.00 -
H85 4A (N0. 58) (blue) - -
H86 4A (N0. 58) (purple) - -
H87 8A (N0. 59) (blue-green) 125.00 -
H88 8A (N0. 59) (blue) - -
H89 8A (N0. 59) (purple) - -
H90 1R (N0. 60) (blue-green) - -
H91 1R (N0. 60) (blue) - -
H92 1R (N0. 60) (purple) - -

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:

Note 1. The status of these stamps is obscure. I have seen no evidence of their actual use but it is quite possible  
                that both halves were officially destroyed after use. They may however have been trials.
Note 2. Those priced above I have seen and Nos. 75, 76 and 77 have been reported. A somewhat vague
                description in a 1972 auction catalogue adds the 1R value but the hand-stamp colour is not given.
                I have surmized that complete sets of the 1904 issues to 1R were done in all these colours and that
                the earlier stamps were done at the same time (1904 or later) using old stock which happened to be  
                available. Further information is needed.


Overprinted "BOMBAY / POLICE DEPARTMENT." in black.

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H93 1A (N0. 56)   - -
H94 2A (N0. 57) - -
H95 4A (N0. 58) 125.00 -
H96 8A (N0. 59) 125.00 -
H97 1R (N0. 60) 125.00 -
H98 2R (N0. 61) 125.00 -

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. Note 1 above again applies and again only those priced have been seen and the others assumed to exist.  
                Both the No. 75-92 and the No. 93-98 series could, of course extend to higher values.


Overprinted similar to above, but for the Central Provinces Police Department.

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H99 1A (N0. 56)   150.00 -
H100 2A (N0. 57) 150.00 -
H101 * 4A (N0. 58) - -
H102 8A (N0. 59) 150.00 -
H103 1R (N0. 60) 150.00 -

*H101 is actually omitted from the catalogue, it jumps from 100 to 102. I assumed it was a typo.

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. Nos. 99-103 were sold in a Robson Lowe auction on 28 March 1974. I have seen no other reference to them.  

and also:

General Note. Early literature refers in general terms to other semi-official overprints. I have found no specific  
                evidence of these and would welcome information.


Jammu & Kashmir State Telegraph Stamps.

There is some very useful information at kashmirstamps.com
and at EarlyWritings


1884(?) Handstamped on locally made (white or buff) wove paper, no watermark, imperf.
Taken from page 168 of Hiscocks book.
For the moment I am having to take this from page 168 of Hiscocks book. The denominations are given in Persian.

H1b H2 H3
1 Anna.   H1a 2 Annas.   H2 4 Annas.   H3
Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht


H4 H5 H5 forgery
8 Annas.   H4 1 Rupee.   H5 1 Rupee.   H5 Forgery, see Note 4 below
Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht From Wiki Commons.


H6 H7
2 Rupees.   H6 5 Rupees.   H7
Courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht

These stamps were bisected in use, like the Indian telegraph stamps. Examples shown below.
They were cancelled by manuscript or an oval hand-stamp in black or purple.
Used copies, especially on piece are very rare.

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H1 1A green 10.00 50.00
H1a         yellow-green 10.00 50.00
H1b         bluish green 10.00 50.00
H1c         olive green 20.00 100.00
H2 2A brown 10.00 50.00
H2a         dark brown 10.00 50.00
H2b         greyish brown 10.00 50.00
H3 4A ultramarine 15.00 50.00
H3a         royal blue 15.00 50.00
H4 8A brownish yellow (shades)   25.00 75.00
H4a        brownish orange (shades)   25.00 75.00
H4b         greyish yellow 25.00 75.00
H4c         olive yellow 25.00 75.00
H5 1R scarlet (shades) 30.00 75.00
H5a         red 30.00 75.00
H5b         dull redish brown 30.00 75.00
H6 2R dark greenish slate (shades) 50.00 100.00
H7 5R chocolate 75.00 150.00
H8 10R vermilion - -
H9 25R violet - -

Hiscocks added the following 5 notes:

Note 1. Three different wove papers were used for the above series:
                        1. Thin white wove.
                        2. Thin fine wove — pale buff.
                        3. Thin white coarse — buff.
                These have not been separately listed for lack of specific information but may be in a future edition.
                From limited observation Nos. 1 and 2 are commonly found on paper types 2 and 3 while all values  
                are found on paper type 1.
Note 2. Nos. 8 and 9 are listed in all earlier catalogues but no UK collector has to my knowledge seen copies  
                of either. They are therefore listed but unpriced.
Note 3. There is an apparent 'variety' of No. 3 in which the blue pigment is oxidised almost to black.
Note 4. Two non-philatelic forgeries of No. 5 exist. In the more common the sun is 1mm clear of the upper
                frame line compared with almost touching in the genuine and the shield is narrower (7¾mm) than in
                the genuine (about 9mm). The shield pattern consists of three jagged lines without the three separate
                'suns' and there are minor differences at all points. I have not seen the other forgery but it is reported  
                that the Dogra script is gibberish: whether this helps in the majority of cases where the script is
                badly smudged is not clear.
Note 5. For the same designs in black see Nos. 76-89.


A puzzle.

H1 overprint ? H2 overprint ? These stamps were normally torn in half when used
so I am assuming these pink markings are
an overprint or surcharge of some kind.

Anyone recognise them or have information about them ?

Images courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht.

H3 overprint ?



I have only seen referencies to forgeries of the 1 Rupee stamp as mentioned by Steve Hiscocks in note 4 above.
However it is apparent that, although that may have been true at one time, it is no longer true.
There are now some in circulation that are simply the wrong size, shrunk by 10% to 20%, and at least one in the wrong colour too.

Pair of 1A
34mm across frame.

30mm across frame
Kashmir-12 Forgery
At the top is a pair of 1 Anna and a 5 Rupee that as far as I can tell are genuine. Below these are stamps at the same scale of 300dpi, 1 Anna, 4 Annas, a 5 Rupees in the correct colour and another 5R in green. All are significantly smaller.
Perhaps they were copied from examples on the internet without knowing the correct size, and reproduced. As always, buyer beware !

The 5Rs on the top row and the one in green are courtesy of Paul & Les Bottomley.



1887(?) As above but on thin cream laid paper.

Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H10 1A yellowish green (shades) 25.00 75.00
H11 2A brown (shades) 25.00 75.00
H12 4A ultramarine (shades) 25.00 75.00
H13 8A brownish yellow (shades)   40.00 100.00
H14 1R red (shades) 50.00 125.00

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. Used prices for Nos. 1-14 are for half stamps. Whole used copies are occasionally found but are  
                        very rare — prices x 3.

Here are some used examples on piece, courtesy of Stanley Gibbons. (Scaled as close as I can to 300dpi)
2As at the top, 1A and 1R at the bottom. Despite poor condition, these might at least help to identify forgeries.



1897 Printed by de la Rue on white wove paper. No watermark. Perf. 14.

half Anna half Anna
Some examples of these (reduced size), with the bulk of them courtesy of Rarities Stamp Auctions (click image to see listing).


Hisc. 1897 Desc. Mint Used
H15 1A bright blue and carmine (5,200) 100.00 40.00
H16 2A bright reddish violet and olive brown (5,400)   100.00 40.00
H17 4A rose carmine and olive brown (5,400) 100.00 40.00
H18 8A yellow and light blue (10,240) 75.00 30.00
H19 1R yellow orange and reddish violet (5,360) 100.00 40.00
H20 2R brown and light blue (5,600) 100.00 40.00
H21 5R bluish green and carmine(5,520) 150.00 50.00
Used examples
Used examples (4A & 1A) on part form courtesy of Iain from Anglo-Indian-affairs on ebay.
Though an impressive cancel, they seem hard to get a meaningful date from.
LEH is the capital of Ladakh, a large area within Jammu & Kashmir. The dates were
apparently according to an ancient Tibetan Lunar calendar, which probably explains
why they are hard to match against the Western date. Subtract 56.7 from the year.

Telegram Receipts.

Telegram Receipt
Used 28/3/1908 with stamps of
4As, 1A and 8As on 5Rs for a total of 13As. Image courtesy of David Wild

Telegram Receipt
Used 10/4/1908 with stamps of
8As on 5Rs, 4As and 2As for a total of 14As. Image courtesy of David Wild


H27, 8As to scale at 300dpi.
Watermark W1
1899 As above but watermarked multiple rosettes (W1).
Hisc. Desc. Mint Used
H22 ½A blackish olive and blue green (30,800) (1909)   50.00 40.00
H23 1A bright blue and carmine (73,240) 50.00 40.00
H24 2A bright reddish violet and olive brown (86,280) 50.00 40.00
H25 4A rose carmine and olive brown (86,080) 50.00 40.00
H26 6A violet and sage green (26,000) (1909) 100.00 80.00
H27 8A yellow and light blue (25,280) 100.00 80.00
H28 1R yellow orange and reddish violet (10,280) 80.00 60.00
H29 2R brown and light blue (5,280) 100.00 80.00
H30 5R bluish green and carmine - -
Watermark W1

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. In Nos. 15 to 30 the frame colour is given first and the colour of the side and lower tablets second.
Note 2. The 'numbers printed', in brackets above, are from the de la Rue records. Those for the 1897 issue
                (Nos. 15-21) are probably correct but it must be remembered that they include any subsequently
                overprinted for provisionals. Those for the 1899 issue are probably incomplete and must be
                regarded as minimum numbers. The records show no printing of the 5R value on watermarked paper  
                but this stamp is known watermarked overprinted as provisionals indicating at least one further
                printing. It has not however been reported without overprint on watermarked paper and is therefore
                not priced in that state above.
Note 3. Used prices are for upper halves. Used whole stamps have not been recorded. The most usual form
                of cancellation is a large black shield containing the office and date on the samvat system —
                i.e. 57 years ahead of common usage.


1906-1909(?) Provisionals. Stamps of 1897 and 1899 surcharged as indicated in black. Other details as above.

Page-170-T3 Page-170-T4 Page-170-T5
Type 3 Type 4   No serifs Type 5   With Serifs


Page-170-T6 Page-170-T7 Page-170-T7A
Type 6 Type 7 Type 7A


Page-170-8 Anna overprint Page-170-8 Anna overprint Page-170-8 Anna overprint
Type 8, 9 or 10 ?
This has no serifs and thick, squat lettering.
Unfortunately several types are like this but with
differences in the bottom half.
Type 12? (from piece dated 10/4/1908)
This is quite narrow and matthes Type 12 best.
Type 15A ?
This has serifs but is it Type 13, 14, 15 or a new one ?
The '8' looks like Type 14, but the 'S' does not.
This could be Type 15A (see below)

With Steve Hiscocks original images being reduced size in black and white half-tone,
it is not easy to distinguise between some of them, especially with only top halves.
As mentioned in his notes below, there are also some that were not listed.

The left image is courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht. The other two images, courtesy of David Wild include at least one new one.


Small-thick '8 ANNAS' without serifs at the top

Page-170-T8 Page-170-T9/10 JK Type 9A Page-170-T11
Type 8   Large letters at the bottom
courtesy of Stamptrain on Ebay.
Type 10
'E' of 'EIGHT' to left of 'N' of 'ANNAS'.
Type 9
'E' of 'EIGHT' above 'N' of 'ANNAS'.
Type 9A
'E' left of 'N' of 'ANNAS', 'T' near 'S'.
Type 11   'T' over 'A'
courtesy of Auktionshaus Christoph Gärtner


Large '8 ANNAS' at the top with serifs

Page-170-T12 Page-170-T13 Page-170-T14 Page-170-T15 Page-170-T15C
Type 12
courtesy of Stamptrain on Ebay.
Type 13 Type 14 Type 15
courtesy of Stamptrain on Ebay.
Type 15A similar but different to Types 13-15
courtesy of Auktionshaus Christoph Gärtner

Black and white images taken from Hiscocks Book Page 170.


JK H31
Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H31 3 ½A on 1A (No. 23) 300.00 120.00
H32 4 1A on 2R (No. 20) 250.00 90.00
H33 5 1A on 2R (No. 29) (1907-8)   250.00 90.00
H34 6 2A on 2R (No. 20) 250.00 90.00
H35 7 4A on 2R (No. 20) 250.00 90.00
H35a 7A 4A on 2R (No. 20) 250.00 90.00
H36 7 4A on 5R (No. 21) 250.00 90.00
H37 8 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 50.00
H38 9 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 60.00
H39 10 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 60.00
H40 11 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 60.00
H41 12 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 60.00
H42 13 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 90.00
H43 14 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 90.00
H44 15 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 90.00
H45 15A 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 90.00
H46 9A 8A on 5R (No. 30) 180.00 90.00

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. Nos. 45 to 49 have been left unallocated to accommodate new discoveries although a further four varieties,  
                which have come to light since the above was set, make it seem likely that there are many more.
                There are now known to be two varieties of the '4 ANNAS' overprint — one in thick sans-serif capitals
                as illustrated and one in thinner serifed capitals.
                There would seem to be three main types of '8 ANNAS' upper-half overprints — thick small sans-serif,
                medium serifed and large serifed. While the upper parts of the overprints remain more or less constant
                within these types, the lower parts all vary in detail and it is possible that there were three settings
                of 40 with the lower parts of the overprints different in most or even all cases.
Note 2. All currently known copies of Nos. 37-44 are on the watermarked 5R. Earlier catalogues suggest that all
                are on the unwatermarked variety and it is possible that both types of at least some provisionals exist.
Note 3. Whole or mint copies of the lower values (Nos. 31-36) must have existed at some time since illustrations
                of both halves have long been available in various catalogues.
                Mint copies are not, to my knowledge, now known and they have not therefore been priced.

My note: While Hiscocks left some spare numbers for stamps, he left no spare numbers for Types.
I will call them Types 7A, 15A etc. Types 3 to 7 are relatively scarce mint.
Since the rest show a lot of variability on the bottom half (not normally found used),
there may be many more undescribed low value types.


1911 New design based on upper half of previous issue. Paper as before. Perf. 14.
Hiscocks Book Pg171

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H50 16 ½A blackish olive and blue green (46,000) (1913) 120.00 -
H51 16 1A bright blue and carmine (219,280) (1911) 75.00 -
H52 16 2A bright reddish violet and olive brown(247,760) (1913)   75.00 -
H53 16 4A rose carmine and olive brown (251,200) (1912) 75.00 -
H54 16 6A violet and sage green (175,600) (1913) 100.00 -
H55 16 8A yellow and bright blue (189,360) (1912) 100.00 -
H56 16 1R yellow-orange and reddish violet (98,640) (1916) 120.00 -
H57 16 2R brown and light blue (10,560) (1921) 200.00 -
H58 16 5R bluish green and carmine (10,320) (1921) 200.00 -

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:

Note 1. While I have not seen copies of most of the above (Nos. 50-58) it is stated in the de la Rue records that
                there was to be no change in colours and I have assumed that this was so.
Note 2. The printings given in brackets are from de la Rue records. No printings between 1922 and 1929 or after  
                1929 are listed however and it seems probable that the records are incomplete.
                The above printings should therefore be regarded as minimum numbers except perhaps in the case of
                Nos. 57 and 58 where the rate of usage was so low that a printing was not required for 10 years and a
                second printing probably not needed.

Beware of similar fiscal stamps being sold as Telegraph stamps. Look for the word 'TELEGRAPH'.


1930 Provisional. Surcharged in black on No. 56 by de la Rue.
Hiscocks Book Pg172
This is taken from Hiscocks Book Page 172.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H59 17 12A on 1R (No. 56) (12,320)   240.00 -

Hiscocks added the following 3 notes:

Note 1. The printing quoted for No. 56 excludes those surcharged for No. 59 in March 1930.
Note 2. Locally printed provisionals on 1911-16 issues have not been reported and No. 59 is only known from de
                la Rue records. It is quite probable that locally prepared provisionals were used to fill the gap while
                delivery of No. 59 was awaited.
Note 3. Precise details of the change of usage allowing the employment of smaller stamps are not known but it seems  
                certain, in view of the large numbers printed and the scarcity of mint and virtual absence of used copies,
                that the new procedure resulted in their remaining in official hands at all stages.


1934 New design (Sir Hari Singh). Recess printed by de la Rue on white wove paper. Watermark W1. Perf. 14.
Hiscocks Book Pg172

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H60 18 1A deep blue (Sept. 1933) 60.00 -
H61 18 2A light chocolate (June 1934) 75.00 -
H62 18 4A dull green (Sept. 1933) 75.00 -
H63 18 8A deep reddish orange (Sept. 1933)   75.00 -
H64 18 12A yellow orange(Sept. 1933) 75.00 -
H65 18 1R violet (Sept. 1933) 100.00 -
H66 18 2R rose-carmine (Sept. 1933) 150.00 -
H67 18 5R black (June 1934) 180.00 -

Hiscocks added the following 2 notes:

Note 1. The dates in brackets above are those of printing. It is assumed that actual issue was early in 1934.
Note 2. The 2A and 5R values (Nos. 61 and 67) were issued in blocks of ten. All other values were in sheets of 40.  


1941(?) New design (Sir Hari Singh). Typographed on white wove paper. No watermark. Perf. 14.

H68 H70 H71 H73
1 Anna.   H68 4 Anna.   H70 8 Anna.   H71 1 Rupee.   H73

Type 19.   -   H68, H70 and H71 are courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H68 19 1A blue 60.00 -
H69 19 2A chocolate 75.00 -
H70 19 4A dull green 75.00 -
H71 19 8A orange-red 75.00 -
H72 19 12A orange-yellow   75.00 -
H73 19 1R violet 100.00 -
H74 19 2R carmine 125.00 -
H75 19 5R black 125.00 -

The fact that the 1Anna at least was overprinted to make
Receipt stamps suggests that they saw little use.
A later type was created for the 1 Rupee though.
See also note 4 below. Image courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht

Hiscocks added the following 5 notes:

Note 1. Nos. 68-75 were apparently produced in India — possibly at the Government Security Press as Nasik Road.
Note 2. The date of issue is unknown. The new design may have been necessitated by the difficulty of obtaining supplies.  
                from England after the outbreak of war in 1939.
Note 3. The colours of Nos. 74 and 75 are assumed by analogy with those of the 1934 set (Nos. 66 and 67).
Note 4. Nos. 70 and 71 are known overprinted 'Spl: Adh', i.e. Special Adhesive.
                This is the name given to general purpose revenue stamps in India.
Note 5. A stamp similar in type to Nos. 68-75 but with 'WIRELESS' substituted for 'TELEGRAPH' is referred to in
                the introduction to this section.

The reference of Note. 5 says simply "It is not known whether this is a telegraph stamp or some sort of revenue stamp
— perhaps for the payment of a radio license."



1960s(?) John Barefoot lists a new design similar to last but with a different center.
Typographed on white wove paper. No watermark. Perf. 14.


This is a mockup of what I will call Type 20 based on the description.
I will replace it as soon as I have a proper image.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H90 20 1R violet 100.00 -



1884(?) As Nos. 1-9 but in black. Handstamped on locally made (white or buff) wove paper, no watermark, imperf.
Taken from page 168 of Hiscocks book.
For the moment I am having to take this from page 168 of Hiscocks book. The denominations are given in Persian.

H? H77 H78
1 Anna.   H76 2 Annas   H77 4 Annas   H78
Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht.


H5 ? H5 ? H81
1 Rupee   H80 A better-inked example of the 1 Rupee   H80 2 Rupee   H81
Courtesy of Alec (ajj7 on ebay). courtesy: Sarfaraz of traditional-india. Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht.


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H76 1 1A black 18.00 60.00
H77 1 2A black 18.00 60.00
H78 1 4A black 18.00 60.00
H79 1 8A black 30.00 72.00
H80 1 1R black 48.00 90.00
H81 1 2R black 60.00 120.00
H82 1 5R black 120.00 180.00
H83 1 10R black   - -
H84 1 25R black - -

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. See Notes 1 and 2 below No. 9 above.  



1887(?) As above but on laid paper.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H85 1 1A black 30.00 90.00
H86 1 2A black 30.00 90.00
H87 1 4A black 48.00 120.00
H88 1 1R black 180.00 300.00
H89 1 5R black 270.00 450.00



Hiscocks says: "Dates of issue are unknown but evidently not related to those of the basic stamps.
Overprinting was carried out locally as required using whatever stamps happened to be in stock.
Victorian stamps were thus overprinted and used 30-40 years after they were originally issued for postal purposes."
He goes on to say
"... stamps have simply been listed in order of their SG numbers for each type of overprint ... the SG numbers quoted below refer to the Patiala section ..."

Hiscocks added the following note:

Note. Since these stamps were often not cancelled in use no separate prices
                are quoted for 'unused'. Prices are somewhate arbitrary for lack of  
                comparative data.

I. Stamps for public use.

Overprinted 'Telephone' of type 1 on Queen Victoria postage stamps of 1891-96. White wove paper except where indicated. Watermark W1. Perf. 14.

Watermark W1


H1 H2 H3 H4 H4A
H1 H2 H3 from Wiki Commons. H4 H4A


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H1 1 4A olive green (SG21) - 7.50
H1a 1         slate green (SG 22) - 5.00
H2 1 6A bistre (SG23/24) - 10.00
H3 1 8A dull mauve (SG25) - 10.00
H3a 1         magenta (SG 26) - 10.00
H4 1 12A purple/red (SG27) - 20.00
*H4A 1 1R green and carmine (SG28 ?)   - 25.00

* I added H4A due to the example shown.


On King Edward VII postage stamps of 1903-06. Other details as above.

H5 H6 H6A H7
H5 H6 *H6A H7 courtesy Sanjay of world_phil.

* I added H6A due to the example shown.


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H5 2 2A pale violet (SG39) - 7.50
H6 2 3A orange-brown (SG40) - 5.00
H6a 2         light brown - 5.00
*H6A 2 12A purple/red (SG44 ?) - 20.00
H7 2 1R green and carmine (SG45)   - 25.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1912-26. Other details as above.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H8 1 ½A green (SG49) - 5.00
H9 1 1½A reddish brown (SG51)   - 10.00

John Barefoot also lists a 6A in this series. This is listed by Hiscocks as H27.



On King George V postage stamps of 1928-34. Watermark W2.

H10 H11 Watermark 2
H10 H11 W2


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H10 3 ½A green (SG64)('Postage & Revenue') - 3.75
H11 3 2A purple (SG68) - 5.00
H12 3 2A 6P orange (SG69) - 10.00
H13 3 4A sage green (SG71)('Postage & Revenue')   - 7.50



On King George V postage stamps of 1935-37. Other details as above.

H14 H16
H14 H16


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H14 4 ½A bluish green (SG75)('Postage')   - 3.75
H15 4 2A vermilion (SG77) - 5.00
H16 5 4A sage green (SG79)('Postage') - 5.00



On King George VI postage stamps of 1937-38. Other details as above.
Taken from page 175 of Hiscocks book.
Type 6 is overprinted 'PATIALA STATE'.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H17 6 ½A red-brown (SG81)   - 10.00
H18 6 1A carmine (SG83) - 10.00


On King George VI postage stamps of 1943-47.
Type 7 is overprinted simply 'PATIALA'.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H19 7 ½A red-brown (SG99)   - 10.00
H20 7 1A carmine (SG101) - 10.00



On King George VI postage stamps of 1943-47. Other details as above.

H21 H22 H23
H21 H22 H23


H24 H25 H26
H24 H25 H26


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H21 8 ½A purple (SG104) - 7.50
H22 8 1A carmine (SG106) - 7.50
H23 8 2A vermilion (SG109)   - 7.50
H24 8 3A violet (SG110) - 10.00
H25 8 4A brown (SG112) - 10.00
H26 8 6A turquoise (SG113)   - 10.00


Overprinted 'Telephone' as in type 16. On King George V postage stamp of 1912-26. As for Nos. 5-9.
India Telephone H27.
Image courtesy of Leo (Leorevenue on ebay).

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H27 (16) 6A yellow-brown (SG55)   - 15.00



II. Stamps for Official Use.

Overprinted 'Telephone/Service' of type 9, etc.

On Queen Victoria postage stamps of 1891-96. As for Nos. 1-4.

Patiala-H28 Patiala-H29
H28 H29


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H28 9 4A olive green (SG21) - 5.00
H28a 9         slate green (SG 22)   - 5.00
H29 9 6A bistre (SG23) - 10.00


On King Edward VII postage stamps of 1903-06. As for Nos. 5-7.

Patiala-H30 Patiala-H31 Patiala-H32
#10, H30 #10, H31 #10, H32


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H30 10 2A pale violet (SG39) - 3.75
H31 10 3A orange-brown (SG40)   - 5.00
H32 10 6A bistre (SG42) - 10.00
H33 10 8A mauve (SG43) - 15.00
H34 10 12A purple/red (SG44) - 20.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1912-26. As for Nos. 8 and 9.

#11, H35

Someone has clearly tried to erase 'Telephone'.
It doesn't work.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H35 11 1½A reddish brown (SG51)   - 7.50
H36 11 6A yellow-brown (SG55) - 15.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1928-34. As for Nos. 10-13.

Patiala-H37 Patiala-H38 Patiala-H39
#12, H37 #12, H38 #12, H39


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H37 12 ½A green (SG64) - 5.00
H38 12 2A purple (SG68) - 5.00
H39 12 4A sage green (SG71)   - 5.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1935-37. As for Nos. 14-16.

Patiala-H40 Patiala-H41 Patiala-H41A Patiala-H42
#13, H40 #13, H41 #13, *H41A #13, H42


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H40 13 ½A blue-green (SG75)   - 5.00
H41 13 2A vermilion (SG77) - 7.50
*H41A 13 2A 6P orange - 12.00
H42 13 4A sage green (SG79) - 5.00

* I added H41A due to the example shown.


On King George VI postage stamps of 1937-38. As for Nos. 17 and 18.

#12, H44
from Wiki Commons


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H43 14 ½A red-brown (SG81)   - 10.00
H44 14 1A carmine (SG83) - 10.00


On King George VI postage stamps of 1943-47. As for Nos. 21-26.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H45 (8) ½A purple (SG104) - 10.00
H46 (8) 2A vermilion (SG109)   - 10.00
H47 (8) 6A turquoise (SG113)   - 10.00


Overprinted 'Service/Telephone' of type 15.

On King George V postage stamp of 1912-26. As for Nos. 8 and 9.
Taken from page 176 of Hiscocks book.
This is taken from Wiki Commons.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H48 15 2A mauve (SG52)   - 7.50


On King George V postage stamps of 1928-34. As for Nos. 10-13.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H49 15 ½A green (SG64) - 5.00
H50 15 2A purple (SG68) - 5.00
H51 15 4A sage green (SG71)   - 5.00


Overprinted 'Service/Telephone' of type 16.

On King George V postage stamp of 1912-26. As for Nos. 8 and 9.

Patiala-H52 Patiala-H53
Type 16, H52 Type 16, H53


Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H52 16 2A mauve (SG52) - 10.00
H53 16 6A yellow-brown (SG55)   - 10.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1928-34. As for Nos. 10-13.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H54 16 2A purple (SG68)   - 5.00


Overprinted 'Telephone' of type 1 on official postage stamps.

On King Edward VII official postage stamp of 1903-10. As for Nos. 5-7.
Taken from page 177 of Hiscocks book.
For the moment I am having to take most of this from page 177 of Hiscocks book.
Type 18 is from Wiki Commons.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H55 (17) 1R green and carmine (SGO32)   - 25.00


On King George V postage stamps of 1928-34. As for Nos. 10-13.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H56 18 2A vermilion (SGO61)   - 20.00


On King George VI official postage stamps of 1940-45. W2. Perf. 14.

Hisc. Type Description Mint Used
H57 (19) ½A red-brown (SGO72)   - 15.00
H58 (19) 1A carmine (SGO75) - 15.00
H59 (19) 2A vermilion (SGO78) - 15.00

Hiscocks added the following note and illustration:

Note. From the examination of those copies as have come my way it would
                seem that about 20% were not cancelled in any way in use,
                about 40% were cancelled by crayon — usually blue — and about
                40% were cancelled with hand-stamps of various types.
                Specifically 'TELEPHONE' cancellations are found for several towns  
                including Patiala and Bhatinda.
                That shown has no date, as is quite common, but even where the
                date tablet is filled in the date is often meaningless.


Taken from page 177 of Hiscocks book.


Example on piece

An example with a pair of H24 stamps.



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