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Telegraph stamps of the World

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Up a level Not my site, but
a good reference:
Post Office Telegraphs Ceylon Telegraphs HongKong Telegraphs India Telegraphs Jamaica Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Australia
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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.  
I have had to make a few additions. This has required re-numbering.
  To avoid confusion, I will give these RH numbers (Revised Hiscocks).  
I have though retained the old Hiscocks number for reference.
CheckList         Setup

 

Orange Free State.

Steve Hiscocks wrote:
Sources differ on the date of the first telegraph service in the Orange Free State (OFS) with some setting it in 1885 with the issue of the first specifically
Telegraph stamps and others some five years earlier with the suggestion that postage or fiscal stamps, pen-cancelled, were used initially. All telegraph
stamps throughout the issuing period were 'provisionals' — postage or fiscal stamps overprinted 'Telegraaf' or 'TF'. The overprinting was done
by C. Borkenhagen in Bloemfontein using the same types used in printing the local newspaper which probably accounts for the wide variety of
types used and the somewhat inaccurate type-setting leading to many errors and varieties. The telegraph stamps were very occasionally used for
postage, either by accident or to fill a temporary shortage, but this was frowned upon and perhaps 99% of so-called 'postally used' telegraph
stamps derive from the fact that many small offices used the same cancellations for both purposes.

With the take-over by the British in 1901 and the change to the Orange River Colony (ORC) the same stamps continued in use but now overprinted V.R.I.
(Victoria Regina Imperator) for public use and, additionally, AT (Army Telegraphs) for military use. It would seem that the same printer was retained!
There appears to have been no rule against the sale of telegraph stamps to the public and, although in theory no used stamps should have reached the
market, in practice large numbers were 'liberated' by departing Boer postmasters and, no doubt, by their arriving British counterparts. Those issued
for a few years before 1901 are thus relatively common in used condition while the earlier ones had already been officially destroyed by then and
are much less common. Some overprint errors, such as double, inverted or at extreme angles may be met with.
This is because there was no 'printers waste' allowance, and every stamp was issued regardless.


 

It has recently been brought to my attention that there exists four PDF files prepared by Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.
They have released the pdfs for free consumption in the interests of making OFS philately more visible.
  In the interests of furthering that laudable attitude, I am making them available for download. I have also made updates to the Hiscocks listing in light of them.  

Volume 1, part 1.
Postage Stamps (13.8 MBytes)
Volume 1, part 2.
Postage Stamps (16.3 MBytes)
Volume 2.
The Telegraphs (28.7 MBytes)
Volume 3.
Orange Free State Philately (32.8 MBytes)
Chapter 1 The Orange Free State and its Stamps
Chapter 2 The Definitive Postage Stamps
Chapter 3 The Provisional Issues
Chapter 4 The 4d Provisional of 1877
Chapter 5 The 1d Provisional of 1881
Chapter 6 The ½d Provisional of 1882
Chapter 7 The 3d Provisional of 1882
Chapter 8 The 2d Provisional of 1888
Chapter 9 The 1d/4d and 1d/3d Provisionals of 1890-2
Chapter 10 The 2½d Provisionals of 1892-97
Chapter 11 The ½d Provisionals of 1896
Plates Scenes of the Orange Free State circa 1900
Chapter 12 The British Occupation
Chapter 13 The V.R.I. Overprint Settings
Chapter 14 The 1st V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 15 The 2nd V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 16 The 3rd V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 17 The 4th V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 18 The 5th V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 18A Key to Raised Stop Varieties
Chapter 19 Settings 3-5, Unplaced Varieties
Chapter 20 The 6th V.R.I. Setting
Chapter 21 The O.R.C. on Cape Stamps
Chapter 22 The 1902 Provisionals
Appendix A A Printing Primer and Glossary
Appendix B Citation Abbreviations
Appendix C Philatelic Society for Greater Southern Africa
Chapter 1 Telegraph System Development
Chapter 2 O.V.S. Telegraph Stamps
Chapter 3 V.R.I. Overprints on O.V.S. Stamps
Chapter 4 V.R.I./A.T. Stamps
Chapter 5 6d & 1/- V.R.I. Provisionals
Chapter 6 Forms and Stationery
Chapter 7 Telegraph Office Marks
Plates 1-4 Telegraph Office Illustrations
Chapter 8 Cancels and other marks
Appendix A Telegraph Traffic and Rates
Appendix B The V.R.I. Overprints, Forme Development
Appendix C Telegraphy
Appendix D Citation Abbreviations
Appendix E Philatelic Society for Greater Southern Africa
Chapter 1 The Revenue Issues of the Republic, embossed 1
Chapter 2 The Definitive Issue, 1877-90
Chapter 3 Provisional and Special Issues
Chapter 4 The General Means Tax of 1885
Chapter 5 The Occupation Revenues
Chapter 6 The Occupation Revenues, Part B,
Chapter 7 The Bank Draft Occupation Overprints
Chapter 8 The R.D.M. Franks
Chapter 9 Military Franking
Chapter 10 Postal Stationery, the London Cards
Chapter 11 Postal Stationery, the Provisional Postal Cards
Chapter 12 The Occupation Postal Cards
Chapter 13 The ORC Overprint on CGH Postal Cards
Chapter 14 The Postal Notes
Appendix A Citation Abbreviations

Chapter 1 of Volume 2 in the table above contains maps and a list of Offices which could be very useful to anyone trying to identify a place from a cancel on a stamp.
I have therefore created this V2Ch1 html version of it for convenience.

 

Shortcuts to different sections
Issue 1 Issue 2 Issue 3 Issue 4 Issue 5 Issue 6 Issues 7 / 8 Issue 9 Issues 10 / 11 Issue 12 Forgeries 1 VRI 1 VRI 2 VRI 3 VRI 4 VRI 5 Forgeries 2 Stationery

 

September 1885 - 1st Telegraph Issue.

Initially the current postage stamps were overprinted with type-1 in Red, Violet or Black, reading in various directions.
The first printing was reported to be 100 sheets of 1s (240 stamps per sheet); 100 sheets of 6d; 50 sheets of 3d and 50 sheets of 1d. Anticipated to be sufficient for four months.


Orange Free State Type RH1 block
This shows two rows of six stamps from the left-hand pane of a sheet, together with the gutter running down the middle of the sheet.
I have not actually seen any gutter pairs, but in principle they could exist, though it was probably normal practice to divide the panes before overprinting.
The overprinting was by handstamping leading to some variability of the result - Image courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

Orange Free State Type H1 Orange Free State Type H1a OFS Type RH1b pair
H1 H1a courtesy of Jack Koster. H1b pair courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

Orange Free State Type H2a Orange Free State Type H2b Orange Free State Type H2d Orange Free State Type H3a mint pair Orange Free State Type H3a used
H2a H2b * H2d H3a mint pair H3a used
One of mine. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe. Courtesy of Ian Paterson.

Though the early ones looked fairly neat and tidy, the later ones deteriorated so that often hyphen and/or stop could not be seen.
Hiscocks described the H3a overprint colour as 'red', Ian Paterson describes it as 'magenta'. Personally I think it's carmine smile.
Either way, it isn't violet or black, and is prone to showing through the back. I have not yet seen an overprint on the 3d reading downwards.

Presumably the different overprint colours related to different printings.

Orange Free State Type RH4 Orange Free State Type H4b - 1Orange Free State Type H4b - 2 Orange Free State Type RH4c Orange Free State Type RH5
H4 H4b - 2 examples H4c H5
One of mine. Courtesy of Jack Koster. Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht.

Orange Free State Type RH6 Orange Free State Type RH6a Orange Free State Type RH6a
H6 H6a H6a used
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe. Courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht

3 used examples courtesy of Rolf Lamprecht. They are all pen cancelled, which was normal for telegraph and fiscal usage,
but the shilling stamp also has a telegraph cancel giving it more credibility.
The middle overprint also looks reasonable, but I'm not convinced about the first.


RH # Hisc. First issue Description Mint Used
RH1 H1 1d lake-brown, Ovp.Violet, vertically down. 25.00 10.00
RH1a H1a         reading vertically up. 30.00 12.00
RH1b H1b         reading diagonally. 35.00 15.00
RH1c H1c         overprint double. 120.00 80.00
RH2 H2 3d ultramarine, Ovp.Violet, vertically down. 35.00 15.00
RH2a H2a         reading vertically up. 30.00 12.00
RH2b H2b         reading diagonally. 40.00 17.00
RH2c H2c         overprint double. 120.00 80.00
*RH2d -         overprint diagonal inverted. - -
RH3 H3 3d ultramarine, Ovp.Red, vertically down. 120.00 40.00
RH3a H3a         reading vertically up. 120.00 40.00
RH3b H3b         reading diagonally. 140.00 45.00
RH3c H3c         overprint double. 240.00 160.00
RH4 H4 6d rose(shades), Ovp.Violet, vertically down. 32.00 12.00
RH4a H4a         reading vertically up. 35.00 13.00
RH4b H4b         reading horizontally. 40.00 15.00
RH4c H4c         reading diagonally. 37.00 14.00
RH4d H4d         overprint double. 120.00 100.00
RH5 H5 6d rose(shades), Ovp.Black, reading horizontally. 160.00 50.00
RH5a H5a         reading diagonally. 170.00 55.00
RH6 H6 1s yellow-orange, Ovp.Violet, vertically down. 250.00 125.00
RH6a H6a         reading vertically up. 260.00 130.00
RH6b -         reading horizontally. 270.00 140.00
RH6c -         reading diagonally. 265.00 135.00
RH6d H6b         overprint double. 350.00 325.00
RH7 - 1s yellow-orange, Ovp.Black, vertically down.  300.00 150.00
RH7a -         reading vertically up. 315.00 160.00
RH8 H7 5s bluish green (unissued), Ovp.Black, vertically down.   800.00 -
RH8a H7a         reading vertically up. 800.00 -
* I have added RH2d due to the example illustrated.
  Orange Free State Type RH4c block of 4

A block of RH4c showing variability courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.
Whilst the early ones were generally vertical, later ones were
always stamped horizontally or diagonally.
  Orange Free State Type RH8a-fake
RH8a ?
Timothy Bartshe tells that this is from an eBay sale.
Sorry, I do not know who to attribute, if it's you, please get in touch.

The overprint is clearly forged. The 'T' and 'G' are totally wrong
and it has a stop before 'GRAAF'. On top of that,
cancellation of these was normally by initials in pen.
This has a postal cancellation.
I would really like to be able to illustrate an example of a
genuine RH8 or RH8a (if such a thing exists).
Can anyone help with that ?

These overprints were poor quality and often parts are missing, especially the period and hyphen.
The orientation and position is also highly variable. The 5s is not known to have been issued.

 

September 1886 - 2nd Telegraph Issue.

Revenue stamps overprinted as above, 60 stamps (6 x 10) per sheet.


Orange Free State Type RH9 block
Block of RH9 showing overprint variability, courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph RH9 Orange Free State  RH10 pair
1s   RH9 1s   RH10 pair
Courtesy of ibredguy.co.uk. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph RH10 Orange Free State Telegraph RH11 Orange Free State  RH11
1s   RH10 1s   RH11 1s   RH11
A couple of mine. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH9 - R van Acton (Heilbron) OFS RH9 - 16 (Wepener) Orange Free State Telegraph RH9a
1s   RH9 - signature of R-van-Acton (Heilbron 1888-98 then  then Winburg) 1s   RH9 - Barred 16 (Wepener) 1s   RH9a - overprint doubled
Images courtesy of Jack Koster. Image courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

Other 11-barred numerals: 8 = Boshof; 11 = Bethlehem; 12 = Rouxville; 17 = Ladybrand; 20 = Brandfort; 25 = Frankfort; 29 = Senekal; K = Zastron


Orange Free State  RH10a pair
1s   RH10 / 10a pair - overprint doubled on second
Images courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.


Orange Free State Forgery-1   Orange Free State Forgery-2
A couple of presumed bogus items. There is no record that genuine overprints of this type were ever applied to these stamps. Images courtesy of Les Bottomley.

 

RH # Hisc. Issue 2 description Mint Used
RH9 H8 1s bluish green, Ovp.Violet, reading horizontally to diagonally. 30.00 15.00
RH9a H8a         overprint double. 150.00 100.00
RH10 H9 1s purple brown (shades), Ovp.Violet, reading horizontally to diagonally.   50.00 20.00
RH10a H9a         overprint double. 250.00 250.00
RH10b H9b         overprint inverted. 150.00 150.00
RH11 H10 1s purple brown (shades), Ovp.Black, reading horizontally to diagonally. 75.00 30.00

 

April(?) 1888 - 3rd Telegraph Issue.

Revenue stamps as above overprinted T  F.


Orange Free State Type RH12 block
Block of RH12 showing broken bar under 'li' at top centre and various damaged letters of the overprint. This is the largest known multiple, courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.


Orange Free State Type RH12 strip of 4
Strip of four RH12 showing gap in bar 7mm left of 'E' of 'Een' on the third stamp. The 'n' of 'Een' and the 'g' are also damaged. This is the second largest known multiple, courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

OFS - RH12 strip, first  Detail from first
stamp of strip.
 It is known that the basic stamp was in 10 rows of 6 stamps.
In principle, the forme used for overprinting could be of the full
60 impressions, or only 3 x 10 applied twice.
This strip is important because in the latter case there
would only be 3 different stamps on each row.

These details from the first and last stamps of the strip
show that the spacing between the 'g' to the stop is different,
so the forme must have had the full 60 impressions.
 
Orange Free State Telegraph H11
1s on 7s ('TF' 8.2 x 2.9mm)   RH12. The bar typically stops short of the ends of the row.
OFS - RH12 strip, lastDetail from last
stamp of strip.

 

OFS RH12a OFS RH12b OFS RH12d
RH12a - bar missed, manuscript bar added. RH12b error - 'Shiliing'. RH12d gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling' and 10mm left of 'E'.
Image courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe. Image courtesy of Jack Koster.

OFS RH12e OFS RH12f OFS RH12g
RH12e gap in bar under 'E' of 'Een'. RH12f wide gap (3mm) in bar under 'n' of 'Een'. RH12g gap in bar under 'S' of 'Shilling'.
Images courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe. Image courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH12h OFS RH12j
RH12h gap in bar under 'li' of 'Shilling'. RH12j gap in bar 7mm left of 'E' of 'Een'.
Images courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

RH # Hisc. Issue 3 description Mint Used
RH12 H11 1s on 7s slate-violet ('TF' 8.2 x 2.9mm). 60.00 15.00
RH12a H11a         two bars over value. 125.00 50.00
RH12b H11b         error - 'Shiliing'. 125.00 50.00
RH12c H11c         error - 'Ecn'. 125.00 50.00
RH12d H11d         gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling' and 10mm left of 'E'. 90.00 30.00
RH12e H11e         gap in bar under 'E' of 'Een'. 90.00 30.00
RH12f H11f         wide gap (3mm) in bar under 'n' of 'Een'. 90.00 30.00
RH12g -         gap in bar under 'S' of 'Shilling'. 90.00 30.00
RH12h -         gap in bar under 'li' of 'Shilling'. 90.00 30.00
RH12i -         gap in bar under 'h' of 'Shilling'. 90.00 30.00
RH12j -         gap in bar 7mm left of 'E' of 'Een'. 90.00 30.00
 
Dimensions of overprint (mm) for issues 3 and 4
  Issue 3 Issue 4
Short TF
Issue 4
Tall TF
TF height2.75 - 3.02.93.4
TF spacing5.03.53.5
TF length8.0 - 8.56.66.6
Space TF to words5.5 - 6.07.07.0
Length of words, inclusive of stop 252424

Hiscocks' reference to two bars in H11a probably refers to the overprint plus a manuscript penstroke through the value, missed by the overprint.
This was sometimes done to ensure the old value was obliterated.

 

September(?) 1888 - 4th Telegraph Issue.

Revenue stamps overprinted as above.

Orange Free State Telegraph H12 OFS RH13c OFS RH13d
1s on 8s ('TF' 6.6 x 2.9mm)   RH13 1s on 8s RH13c - error - 'Shiiling'. 1s on 8s RH13d - gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling'.
Image Courtesy of ibredguy.co.uk. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH13e OFS RH13h OFS RH13i
1s on 8s RH13e - gap in bar under space between 'n' and 'S'. 1s on 8s RH13h - gap in bar 1.5mm right of stop. 1s on 8s RH13i - 'T' 3.4mm, 'F' 2.9mm.
Image courtesy of Jack Koster. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH13j OFS RH14 OFS RH14b
1s on 8s RH13j - broken 'g' in 'Shilling'. 1s on 8s ('TF' 6.6 x 3.4mm) RH14. 1s on 8s ('TF' 6.6 x 3.4mm) RH14b - error - 'Ecn'.
Courtesy Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe. Courtesy of Jack Koster. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH14f OFS RH14h OFS RH14i
1s on 8s RH14f - gap 8mm right of stop, or 7.2mm left of 'Een'. 1s on 8s RH14h - gap in bar under 'S' of 'Shilling'. 1s on 8s RH14i - gap in bar under the stop.
Signed (inverted) ARA by A. R. Ashman who was at Edenburg in 1895
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH14j OFS RH14k
1s on 8s RH14j - gap under 'ili' of variety 'Shiliing'. 1s on 8s RH14k - gap in bar 4mm right of stop.
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH14m OFS RH15 OFS RH15d
1s on 8s RH14m - gap in bar just left of 'Een' and under 'lli'. 1s on 9s ('TF' 6.6 x 2.9mm)   RH15 1s on 9s   RH15d - gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling'.
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH15e OFS RH15g OFS RH15i
1s on 9s   RH15e - gap in bar under space between 'n' and 'S'. 1s on 9s   RH15g - gap in bar under 'ill' with short bar to right. 1s on 9s   RH15i - gap in bar 3.0 mm right of stop.
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS Telegraph RH16 OFS RH16e OFS RH16f
1s on 9s ('TF' 6.6 x 3.4mm)   RH16 1s on 9s   RH16e - gap 3.5 mm left of 'E' in 'Een'. Bar short to right. 1s on 9s   RH16f - gap 7.2 mm right of stop, or 8 mm left of 'Een'.
One of mine. Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS RH16g OFS RH16j
1s on 9s   RH16g - wide gap in bar under 'E' of 'Een'. 1s on 9s   RH16j - gap under 'ili' of variety 'Shiliing'.
Courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

OFS RH16 OFS RH16
1s on 9s   RH16 - bar shifted downwards.
Signed (inverted) NJAG for N.J.A. Galloway, Wepener 1898.
1s on 9s   RH16 - no bar. Top row ?
Same cancel, sideways.
Images courtesy of Jack Koster..

On the first, the bar is sloping downwards and part of the bar from the stamp above can be seen at the top.
On the second, no bar is apparent. Presumably this was from the top row of the sheet. Used at Wepener.

RH # Hisc. Issue 4 description Mint Used
RH13 H12 1s on 8s yellow ('TF' 6.6 x 2.9mm). 90.00 35.00
RH13a H12a         error - 'E-n'. 125.00 50.00
RH13b H12b         error - 'ShilliLg'. 125.00 50.00
RH13c H12c         error - 'Shiiling'. 125.00 50.00
RH13d H12d         gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling'. 100.00 50.00
RH13e H12e         gap in bar under space between 'n' and 'S'.   100.00 50.00
RH13f -         gap in bar just left of 'Een' and under 'lli'. 100.00 50.00
RH13g -         gap in bar under 'ill' with short bar to right. 100.00 50.00
RH13h -         gap in bar 1.5mm right of stop. 100.00 50.00
RH13i H12f         'T' 3.4mm, 'F' 2.9mm. and short first ' l ' 100.00 50.00
RH13j -         broken 'g' in 'Shilling'. 100.00 50.00
RH14 H13 1s on 8s yellow ('TF' 6.6 x 3.4mm). 90.00 15.00
RH14a H13a         error - 'Shiiling'. 125.00 50.00
RH14b H13b         error - 'Ecn'. 125.00 50.00
RH14c H13c         error - 'Shiillilg' (or all in caps?*) 125.00 50.00
RH14d H13d         error - 'E-n'. 125.00 50.00
RH14e H13e         gap 3mm left of 'E' in 'Een'. Bar short to right. 125.00 50.00
RH14f H13f         gap 8mm right of stop, or 7.2mm left of 'Een'. 125.00 50.00
RH14g H13g         wide (3mm) gap in bar under 'E' of 'Een'. 125.00 50.00
RH14h -         gap in bar under 'S' of 'Shilling'. 125.00 50.00
RH14i -         gap in bar under the stop. 125.00 50.00
RH14j -         gap under 'ili' of variety 'Shiliing'. 125.00 50.00
RH14k -         gap in bar 4mm right of stop. 125.00 50.00
RH14m -         gap in bar just left of 'Een' and under 'lli'. 125.00 50.00
RH15 H14 1s on 9s olive-bistre ('TF' 6.6 x 2.9mm). 100.00 50.00
RH15a H14a         error - 'E-n'. 150.00 75.00
RH15b H14b         error - 'ShilliLg'. 150.00 75.00
RH15c H14c         error - 'Shiiling'. 150.00 75.00
RH15d H14d         gap in bar under 'n' of 'Shilling'. 150.00 75.00
RH15e H14e         gap in bar under space between 'n' and 'S'.   150.00 75.00
RH15f -         gap in bar just left of 'Een' and under 'lli'. 150.00 75.00
RH15g -         gap in bar under 'ill' with short bar to right. 150.00 75.00
RH15h -         gap in bar 1.5 mm right of stop. 150.00 75.00
RH15i -         gap in bar 3.0 mm right of stop. 150.00 75.00
RH15j H14f         'T' 3.4mm, 'F' 2.9mm. 150.00 75.00
RH16 H15 1s on 9s olive-bistre ('TF' 6.6 x 3.4mm). 75.00 25.00
RH16a H15a         error - 'Shiiling'. 150.00 75.00
RH16b H15b         error - 'Ecn'. 150.00 75.00
RH16c H15c         error - 'Shillilg' (or all in caps?*) 150.00 75.00
RH16d H15d         error - 'E-n'. 150.00 75.00
RH16e H15e         gap 3.5 mm left of 'E' in 'Een'. Bar short to right. 150.00 75.00
RH16f H15f         gap 7.2 mm right of stop, or 8 mm left of 'Een'. 150.00 75.00
RH16g H15g         wide gap in bar under 'E' of 'Een'. 150.00 75.00
RH16h -         gap in bar under 'S' of 'Shilling'. 150.00 75.00
RH16i -         gap in bar under the stop. 150.00 75.00
RH16j -         gap under 'ili' of variety 'Shiliing'. 150.00 75.00

* Hiscocks notes: "Morley describes the error on 13c and 15c as being all in capital letters.
This seems likely to be a printing error in Morley (of which there are many!)."

On H13f, depending on the placement of the overprint, that may be off the edge of the stamp.
8mm to the right is about 32mm to the left.

 

1888 - 5th Telegraph Issue.

These and the rest of the TF overprints, were produced by Borckenhagen on existing postage stamps by overprinting 'T F'.

Postage stamps as Type-1 shown above, overprinted 'T F' 6.5 x 2.8mm

OFS-RH17 Transvaal Telegraph 3d OFS-RH19 OFS-RH20
1d   RH17 3d   RH18 6d   RH19 1s   RH20

RH17, RH19 and RH20 are courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.


RH # Hisc. Issue 5 description Mint Used
RH17 H16 1d lake-brown. 40.00 15.00
RH18 H17 3d ultramarine. 7.50 3.75
RH18a H17a         overprint misplaced horizontally. 50.00 25.00
RH19 H18 6d rose to rose-carmine shades. 10.00 3.75
RH19a H18a         overprint misplaced horizontally. 50.00 25.00
RH19b H18b         overprint double (small separation). 75.00 25.00
RH19c H18c         overprint double (larger horizontal separation).   75.00 25.00
RH20 H19 1s yellow-orange. 10.00 3.75
RH20a H19a         overprint misplaced horizontally. 50.00 25.00

The "overprint misplaced horizontally." error on the 6d have the " T " on the right, and the " F " on the left. The others are not quite so bad.

 

1890 ? - 6th Telegraph Issue.

Overprinted 'T F' 6.75 x 2.8mm (as above) but thicker letters.

OFS-H20 Transvaal Telegraph 6d OFS-H22
3d   RH21 6d   RH22 1s   RH23

 

OFS-RH21a OFS Telegraph 6d - RH22b OFS-RH22d
3d   RH21a - " F T " 6d   RH22b and RH22a - " F T " 6d   RH22d - dropped 'F'.
Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

OFS-RH22e OFS Telegraph 6d - RH22i OFS-RH23a OFS-RH23f OFS-RH23g
6d   RH22e - 'T' and 'F' further apart. 6d   RH22i - 'slug' between. 1s   RH23a - " F T " 1s   RH23 and RH23f - 'TF' closely spaced. 1s   RH23g - overprint misplaced.
Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

RH # Hisc. Issue 6 description Mint Used
RH21 H20 3d ultramarine. 10.00 3.75
RH21a H20a         error - 'F T'. 75.00 50.00
RH21b H20b         error - 'F T' with broken 'F'. 75.00 50.00
RH21c H20c         error - dropped 'T'. 40.00 15.00
RH21d H20d         error - dropped 'F'. 40.00 15.00
RH22 H21 6d rose to rose-carmine. 10.00 3.75
RH22a H21a         error - 'F T'. 75.00 70.00
RH22b H21b         error - 'F T' with broken 'F'. 75.00 70.00
RH22c H21c         error - dropped 'T'. 40.00 15.00
RH22d H21d         error - dropped 'F'. 40.00 15.00
RH22e H21e         'T' and 'F' further (4mm) apart. 40.00 15.00
RH22f H21f         overprint double. 125.00 125.00
RH22g H21g         overprint double - 'T F' offset on reverse.   200.00 200.00
RH22h -         'TF' closely spaced. 50.00 20.00
RH22i -         'slug' between ' F ' and ' T '. 75.00 70.00
RH22j H21h         overprint inverted. - -
RH23 H22 1s yellow-orange. 10.00 3.75
RH23a H22a         error - 'F T'. 75.00 50.00
RH23b H22b         error - 'F T' with broken 'F'. 75.00 50.00
RH23c H22c         error - dropped 'T'. 40.00 15.00
RH23d H22d         error - dropped 'F'. 40.00 15.00
RH23e H22e         'T' and 'F' further (4mm) apart. 40.00 15.00
RH23f -         'TF' closely spaced. 50.00 20.00
RH23g H22f         overprint misplaced horizontally. 75.00 50.00
  Top stamp is RH22 - TF
OFS Telegraph 6d - H22a
Bottom stamp is RH22a - FT
Top stamp is RH22
OFS Telegraph 6d - H22f
Both stamps are RH22f - doubled.
Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

H21h, inverted overprint, was reported, but none have been seen. It was likely a forgery.

 

1889 ? - 7th Telegraph Issue (1s) and 8th (6d).

Postage stamps as Type-1 shown above, small 'T F' overprint, slightly different on the two values.

OFS RH24 OFS Telegraph 6d - H24 OFS Telegraph 1s - H25 OFS RH24
6d   RH24 - De Wetsdorp cancel 6d   RH24 - mint 1s   RH25 - used 1s   RH25 - mint
Image courtesy of Jack Koster.. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe. Image courtesy of Jack Koster..

 

RH # Hisc. Issue 7 and 8 description Mint Used
RH24 H23 6d rose to rose-carmine   ('T F' 5.5 x 2.1mm).   150.00 75.00
RH25 H24 1s yellow-orange   ('T F' 6.0 x 2.25mm). 175.00 100.00
RH25a H24a         'F' badly misplaced. 250.00 150.00

 

1891 - 9th Telegraph Issue.

Postage stamps as Type-1 shown above, with 'T F' overprint.
There are two different overprints on the same sheets, so that pairs exist with one of each.

OFS-H25 OFS-H28 OFS-H29 OFS-RH28 OFS-RH31
1d   RH26 1d   RH29 6d   RH30 1s   RH28 1s   RH31
Some of mine. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

RH30 has a postal cancel of Bethlehem, however it may still have been telegraphic use, since the staff of busy offices often may have used the wrong hand-stamp.
In small offices there may only have been one hand-stamp for everything.


OFS-RH27c OFS-RH31b
1s   RH27c 1s   RH31b
Narrow setting images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.
OFS-RH26b
Pair of RH26b (or RH29b), courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.
The top half of the sheet was RH26 stamps, and the bottom half was RH29.


Bloemfontein Manager Office
  RH29 at the top
OFS-RH29c
RH29c (narrow) at the bottom, courtesy of
Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.





<——————
The cancel used on these, repeated again on the left for clarity, has
"Office of the Manager of Telegraphs" over "Oranje Vry Staat"
with BLOEMFONTEIN in the middle.
This image also courtesy of Hiset and Bartshe.
('T F' 9.4 x 3.9mm)   ('T F' 8.8 x 3.3mm)  
RH # Hisc. Issue 9 description Mint Used
RH26 H25 1d lake-brown. 6.25 2.50
RH26a H25a         'T F' inverted. 125.00 50.00
RH26b H25b         se-tenant with H28.   200.00 -
RH27 H26 6d rose-carmine. 6.25 2.50
RH27a H26a         overprint double. 125.00 50.00
RH27b H26b         se-tenant with H29. 200.00 -
RH27c -         narrow (8.9 mm). - -
RH28 H27 1s yellow-orange. 10.00 3.50
RH28a H27a         se-tenant with H30. 200.00 -






















 
RH # Hisc. Issue 9 description Mint Used
RH29 H28 1d lake-brown. 6.25 2.50
RH29a H28a         'T F' inverted. 125.00 50.00
RH29b H28b         se-tenant with H25.   200.00 -
RH29c -         narrow (8.3 mm). - -
RH30 H29 6d rose-carmine. 6.25 2.50
RH30a H29a         se-tenant with H26. 200.00 -
RH30b -         double overprint ? - -
RH31 H30 1s yellow-orange. 10.00 3.50
RH31a H30a         se-tenant with H27. 200.00 -
RH31b -         narrow (8.3 mm). - -

Hisey & Bartshe reported that they had not seen any of these with inverted or double overprints. They considered them to be "dubious".
Hiscocks provided moderate prices for three such examples. I would welcome images of any of these.
Hisey & Bartshe did discover the narrow settings that I have added. They seem to be rare.
There are probably narrow versions of at least some of the other types, and I would again welcome images.

 

1892 - 10th Telegraph Issue (6d) and 11th (1s).

'T F.' and 'T. F.' overprints.

OFS-H31 OFS-RH32b OFS-RH32c OFS-RH32d OFS-RH32f
6d   RH32 6d   RH32b 6d   RH32 and RH32c "T E". 6d   RH32d - broken ' T '. 6d   RH32f - stop after ' T ' instead of ' F '.
One of mine. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS-H32 OFS-RH33a OFS-RH33b OFS-RH33c
1s   RH33 1s   RH33a - extra large stop after ' T '. 1s   RH33b - large stop after ' F '. 1s   RH33c - comma after ' F '.
One of mine. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS-RH33d OFS-RH33e OFS-RH33f OFS-RH33g
1s   RH33d - no stop after ' F '. 1s   RH33e - no stop after ' T '. 1s   RH33f - no stop after ' T ' or ' F '. 1s   RH33g - no stop after 'T', raised after 'F'.
Courtesy of R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe. Courtesy of Bram Leeflang Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

RH # Hisc. Issue 10 and 11 description Mint Used
RH32 H31 6d rose-carmine   'T F.'   5.3 x 2.5mm   (excluding stop). 75.00 40.00
RH32a H31a         no stop. 100.00 50.00
RH32b H31b         extra large stop. 100.00 50.00
RH32c H31c         'T E.' for 'T F.' 125.00 75.00
RH32d H31d         inverted 'L' for 'T'. 125.00 75.00
RH32e H31e         overprint misplaced horizontally. 120.00 70.00
RH32f -         stop after 'T' but not 'F'. 125.00 75.00
RH33 H32 1s yellow-orange   'T. F.'   5.8 x 2.5mm   (excluding last stop).   25.00 15.00
RH33a H32a         extra large stop after 'T' 40.00 25.00
RH33b H32b         large stop after 'F'. 40.00 25.00
RH33c H32c         comma after 'F'. 40.00 25.00
RH33d H32d         no stop after 'F'. 40.00 25.00
RH33e H32e         no stop after 'T'. 40.00 25.00
RH33f H32f         no stop after either 'T' or 'F'. 40.00 25.00
RH33g -         no stop after 'T', raised stop after 'F'. 40.00 25.00
RH33h H32g         overprint misplaced horizontally. 50.00 30.00

 

1893 - 12th Telegraph Issue.

Postage stamps as Type-1 shown above with poor quality 'T F' overprints   (4.7 x 2.6mm).

OFS-RH34a OFS-RH34a OFS-RH34c OFS-H34 OFS-RH35d
1d   RH34 3d   RH34a - inverted ' TF '. 3d   RH34c - raised ' T '. 3d   RH35 3d   RH35 and RH35d - stop between ' T ' and ' F '.
Courtesy of Bram Leeflang Images courtesy of R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe. One of mine. Image courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS-H35 OFS-RH36b OFS-RH36e
6d   RH36 6d   RH36b - raised ' F '. 6d   RH36e and RH36 - raised stop between ' T ' and ' F '.
One of mine. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

OFS-H36 OFS-RH37a OFS RH37b OFS-RH37f
1s   RH37 1s   RH37a - 'F T' for 'T F'. 1s   RH37b - raised (broken) 'F'. RH37f - raised stop between ' T ' and ' F '.
One of mine. Courtesy R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe. Courtesy of Jack Koster.. Courtesy R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe.

 

RH # Hisc. Issue 12 description Mint Used
RH34 H33 1d lake-brown. 6.00 2.00
RH34a H33a         overprint inverted. 50.00 25.00
RH34b H33b         raised 'F'. 20.00 10.00
RH34c -         raised 'T'. 20.00 10.00
RH34d -         stop between 'T' and 'F'. - -
RH35 H34 3d ultramarine. 5.00 2.50
RH35a H34a         'F T' for 'T F'. * 50.00 25.00
RH35b H34b         raised 'F'. 20.00 10.00
RH35c -         raised 'T'. 20.00 10.00
RH35d -         raised stop between 'T' and 'F'.   - -
RH36 H35 6d rose-carmine. 7.50 3.75
RH36a H35a         'F T' for 'T F'. * 60.00 30.00
RH36b H35b         raised 'F'. 25.00 15.00
RH36c H35c         top of 'F' missing. 40.00 25.00
RH36d -         raised 'T'. 25.00 15.00
RH36e -         raised stop between 'T' and 'F'. - -
RH37 H36 1s yellow-orange. 10.00 3.75
RH37a H36a         'F T' for 'T F'. * 60.00 30.00
RH37b H36b         raised 'F'. 30.00 20.00
RH37c H36c         top of 'F' missing. 40.00 25.00
RH37d H36d         stop between 'T' and 'F'.   40.00 25.00
RH37e -         raised 'T'. 30.00 20.00
RH37f -         raised stop between 'T' and 'F'. - -

* These are the result of horizontal shifting so the F is on the extreme left and the T on the extreme right.

 

1898-1899 (New colours, about 4.8 x 2.7mm).

Orange Free State TF Telegraph 1d OFS RH38a OFS RH38c Orange Free State TF Telegraph 1d OFS-RH39b
1d   RH38 1d   RH38a - raised 'F'. RH38c - stop between 'T' and 'F'. 6d   RH39 RH39b - raised stop between ' T ' and ' F '.
One of mine. Images courtesy of Jack Koster. One of mine. Courtesy R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe.

Orange Free State TF Telegraph 1s Orange Free State - RH40a OFS-RH40b
1s   RH40 RH40a - raised ' F '. RH40b - raised stop between ' T ' and ' F '.
One of mine. Courtesy of Jack Koster. Courtesy R. W. Hisey and R. T. Bartshe.

images of RH39b and RH40b are courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.


RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH38 H37 1d deep mauve (May 1899) 3.00 2.00
RH38a H37a         raised 'F'.   16.00 8.00
RH38b -         raised 'T'. 16.00 8.00
RH38c -         stop between 'T' and 'F'. 32.00 20.00
RH39 H38 6d ultramarine (August 1898) 3.00 2.00
RH39a H38a         raised 'F'. 16.00 8.00
RH39b H38b         raised stop between 'T' and 'F'. 32.00 20.00
RH39c H38c         comma 4mm below 'F'. 32.00 20.00
RH39d -         raised 'T'. 16.00 8.00
RH40 H39 1s light red-brown (June 1898)   3.00 2.00
RH40a H39a         raised 'F'. 16.00 8.00
RH40b H39b         raised stop between 'T' and 'F'. 32.00 20.00
RH40c -         raised 'T'. 16.00 8.00

The block of four to the right shows the variability of the overprint.
I am puzzled by the cancel however. It appears to be dated in 1919.
I also have a scan of a block of six H39 with a similar type cancel
used in Bloemfontein supposedly 13 January 1919.
In 1910 O.V.S was part of the Union of South Africa, I will admit
that I do not know what the USA used for Telegraph stamps or
cancels, but these stamps should have become obsolete after 1901
and OVS became ORC in 1900.
It is possible that the overprints are forged, but it still does
not explain the cancel on a postage stamp used from 1894 to 1902.
Perhaps the cancels on both blocks are forged.

Bram Leeflang gave me the answer to this:
(He cites Postmarks of the Orange Free State (1973) by Archibald. G. M. Batten pages 64-67)
The answer is simple: The Anglo Boer War started on 11 October 1899 and the peace was signed on
31 May 1902, between the representatives of the British and the ex-republican Boer Republics
(The peace of Vereeniging). The Orange Free State post offices were not supplied with the necessary
'00' digits in 1899 to indicate the year change to 1900. War time, they had 'some' other problems
to deal with! Some offices used the '19' instead of the year '1900' or no year at all.

Orange Free State TF Telegraph 1d block
Explanation to left.

 

FORGERIES.

This is fairly obvious, since this 1897 stamp was not given this 1891 overprint.
The letters are very rough when magnified, the middle bar on the ' F ' is too low, and the 1898 postmark also offers a clue.

forgery-4 closeup genuine
TF on ½d closeup genuine

 

These are obvious, since these values were not overprinted. They serve to illustrate a type of forgery.
The letters are very rough when magnified, and the serifs are splayed. There are probably forgeries that are not so obvious.

forgery-1 forgery-2 forgery-3
TF on ½d TF on 2d TF closeup
FORGERIES

 


 

1901 V. R. I. overprint (series 1)

Prior to the occupation, the Orange Free State used definitive stamps overprinted 'TF' for Telegraph purposes.
Some of these were additionally overprinted 'V.R.I.' and used by the British Army from 1900 for the Orange River Colony
The overprints were created and applied by Curling & Co., of Bloemfontein.
These stamps were in sheets having 10 rows of 6 stamps, giving 60 positions. The position/s of varieties in the sheet is given in brackets.

Orange Free State Telegraph 1d Orange Free State Telegraph 1d Orange Free State Telegraph 3d
1d   RH41, courtesy of Bram Leeflang. 1d   RH41b 3d   RH42

OFS-RH42j Orange Free State Telegraph 6d
3d   RH42j - double overprint, courtesy
of R.W. Hisey and R.T. Bartshe
6d   RH43

OFS 6d H42 OFS 6d H42
6d   RH43b (positions 6,30,55) 6d   RH43b (Large stops, position 53)

Images of and information for H43b kindly supplied by Bruce Warrender.

 

Orange Free State Telegraph 1s Orange Free State - RH43h 1s - Dropped F
1s   RH44 1s   RH44h courtesy of Jack Koster 1s   RH44n*
OFS H40c and H40d
RH41c and RH41d, courtesy of Bruce Warrender.
The cancel of  HS  7.V.01.  M-  confuses things.

 

RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH41 H40 1d deep mauve 5.00 3.75
RH41a H40a         raised 'F' in 'TF' 20.00 10.00
RH41b H40b         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) 30.00 20.00
RH41c H40c         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52)   40.00 30.00
RH41d H40d         'R' and ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) 40.00 30.00
RH41e H40e         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) 40.00 30.00
RH41f H40f         'R' stop low (46) 40.00 30.00
RH41g H40g         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) 40.00 30.00
RH41h H40h          ' I ' stop low (11, 36) 40.00 30.00
RH41i H40i         nick in curve of 'R' (16) 40.00 30.00
RH41j H40j         in gutter pair with 'V.R.I.' omitted 1000.00 -
RH41k H40k         'TT' altered to 'TF' 50.00 40.00
RH41l H40l         ' I ' almost omitted 40.00 30.00
RH42 H41 3d ultramarine 10.00 8.75
RH42a H41a         raised 'F' in 'TF' 25.00 15.00
RH42b H41b         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) 30.00 20.00
RH42c H41c         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52) 40.00 30.00
RH42d H41d         'R' and  ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) 40.00 30.00
RH42e H41e         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) 40.00 30.00
RH42f H41f         'R' stop low (46) 40.00 30.00
RH42g H41g         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) 40.00 30.00
RH42h H41h         ' I ' stop low (11, 36) 40.00 30.00
RH42i H41i         nick in curve of 'R' (16) 40.00 30.00
RH42j H41j         'V.R.I.' overprint double 150.00 125.00
RH42k H41k         'TT' altered to 'TF' 50.00 40.00
RH42l H41l         ' I ' almost omitted 40.00 30.00
RH42m H41m         'FT' for 'TF' 75.00 50.00
RH42n H41n         much of 'V.R.I.' omitted 75.00 50.00
 
RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH43 H42 6d ultramarine 10.00 7.50
RH43a H42a         raised 'F' in 'TF' 25.00 15.00
RH43b H42b         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) 30.00 20.00
RH43c H42c         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52)   40.00 30.00
RH43d H42d         'R' and ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) 40.00 30.00
RH43e H42e         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) 40.00 30.00
RH43f H42f         'R' stop low (46) 40.00 30.00
RH43g H42g         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) 40.00 30.00
RH43h H42h         ' I ' stop low (11, 36) 40.00 30.00
RH43i H42i         nick in curve of 'R' (16) 40.00 30.00
RH43j H42j         ' I ' almost omitted 40.00 30.00
RH43k H42k         'TT' altered to 'TF' 50.00 40.00
RH43l H42l         'stop' between ' T ' and 'F' 40.00 30.00
RH43m H42m         comma 4mm below 'F' 40.00 30.00
RH44 H43 1s light red-brown 7.50 5.00
RH44a H43a         raised 'F' in 'TF' 15.00 10.00
RH44b H43b         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) 20.00 15.00
RH44c H43c         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52) 40.00 30.00
RH44d H43d         'R' and ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) 40.00 30.00
RH44e H43e         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) 40.00 30.00
RH44f H43f         'R' stop low (46) 40.00 30.00
RH44g H43g         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) 40.00 30.00
RH44h H43h         ' I ' stop low (11, 36) 40.00 30.00
RH44i H43i         nick in curve of 'R' (16) 40.00 30.00
RH44j H43j         'V.R.I.' misplaced and slanting 150.00 125.00
RH44k H43k         'TT' altered to 'TF' 50.00 40.00
RH44l H43l         ' I ' almost omitted 40.00 30.00
RH44m H43m         'stop' between 'T' and 'F' 40.00 30.00
*RH44n -         dropped 'F' in 'TF' 40.00 30.00
 
OVS Table 3.1 Var.B
RH41c,RH42c,RH43c,RH44c.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.C
Pos 53 (larger stops, R & I)
OVS Table 3.1 Var.D
RH41d,RH42d,RH43d,RH44d.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.E
RH41e,RH42e,RH43e,RH44e.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.G
RH41f,RH42f,RH43f,RH44f.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.H
Positions 5, 7.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.I
Position 32.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.J
Position 22.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.P
Position 12.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.Q
Pos 39.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.R
RH41i,RH42i,RH43i,RH44i.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.S
Position 36.
OVS Table 3.1 Var.T
Position 31.
OVS Table 3.2 Var.a
RH41b,RH42b,RH43b,RH44b
OVS Table 3.2 Var.b
Positions 40, 46.
OVS Table 3.2 Var.c
Positions 11, 36, 40.

Variety illustrations courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

The overprints were in panes of 10 rows of 6. Numbers in brackets are positions within the pane of 60.
*RH44n has been added due to the example shown above, courtesy of Bruce Warrender.

 

1901 (series 2)

The V. R. I. overprints were the same as above and subject to the same flaws.

Orange Free State Telegraph 6d - wide TF Orange Free State Telegraph 6d - RH45f Orange Free State Telegraph 6d - RH45h OFS-RH46
6d   RH45 (wide 'T F', 6.8mm).
On what would have been issue 13.
6d   RH45f ('R' stop low).
Courtesy of Jack Koster - Ex Hiscocks.
6d   RH45h (' I ' stop low).
Courtesy of Jack Koster - Ex Hiscocks.
1d on 1d  RH46e - courtesy of
Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph 1d on 1d Forgery Orange Free State Telegraph 1d on 1d Forgery comparison
1d on 1d  RH46 -  FORGERY Closeup - the R, F are particularly wrong,
so is the d
Comparison

The image of the RH46 forgery is kindly provided by Bas van der Hoek.

 

RH # Hisc. Wide T F   Description Mint Used
RH45 H44 6d ultramarine 150.00 125.00
RH45a H44a         'TF' displaced to right 250.00 200.00
RH45b H44b         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) - -
RH45c H44c         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52)   - -
RH45d H44d         'R' and ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) - -
RH45e H44e         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) - -
RH45f H44f         'R' stop low (46) - -
RH45g H44g         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) - -
RH45h H44h         ' I ' stop low (11, 36) - -
RH45i H44i         nick in curve of 'R' (16) - -
RH45j H44j         ' I ' almost omitted - -
RH # Hisc. 1d overprint  Description Mint Used
RH46 H45 1d on 1d (type H40) deep mauve 200.00 150.00
RH46a -         'raised 'F' 250.00 200.00
RH46b -         'V' stop low (6, 30, 53, 55) - -
RH46c -         'V' and ' I ' stops low; all stops larger (52)   - -
RH46d -         'R' and ' I ' stops low; ' I ' dropped (58) - -
RH46e -         no left serif on 'V' (4, 57) - -
RH46f -         'R' stop low (46) - -
RH46g -         'R' and ' I ' stops low (40) - -
RH46h -         ' I ' stop low (11, 36) - -
RH46i -         nick in curve of 'R' (16) - -
RH47 H46 1d deep mauve (tall-thin 'TF') 200.00 150.00

Variety illustrations shown above are applicable to these.

Type RH47 is supposedly similar to RH46 but with a tall-thin 'TF' in blue-black ink.
I have my doubts as to its existence, other than as bogus examples.

Can anyone provide a scan of RH47 ?

 

1903 (March ?, series 3)

Orange Free State - RH48 Orange Free State - RH48b OFS-RH48c Orange Free State Telegraph 6d on 2d
6d on 2d   R RH48 6d on 2d   R RH48b (' 1 ' for ' I ' ) 6d on 2d   R RH48c 6d on 2d   R RH48e
Ex-Hiscocks.
Courtesy of Jack Koster.
Ex-Hiscocks.
Courtesy of Jack Koster.
Image courtesy of
Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.
Image courtesy of Bram Leeflang.

1903 (March ?, series 3)

Orange Free State Telegraph 1s on 3d Orange Free State H48c OFS-RH49d
1s on 3d   RH49c 1s on 3d   RH49c   (position 21) 1s on 3d   RH49a / RH49d
Image courtesy of Bram Leeflang. Image courtesy of Bruce Warrender Image courtesy of
Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

The last image provided by Bruce Warrender shows how the overprints are combined,
The 'V. R. I.' plus '3d' was originally for postage stamps, followed by 'T' and also 'One Shilling' and bar
It seems strange that they did not simply apply a 'TF' to the 6d on 6d and 1s on 1s values ?
The 'T' aligns differently to the 'Shilling' on these two. Also the 'g' is very different.
In fact all of the letters of "Shilling" use a variety of fonts at different positions on the sheet.
The "Six Pence" is the same font at all positions.

 

RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH48 H47 6d on 2d on 2d bright mauve 125.00 100.00
RH48a H47a         thick 'V' (12, 30, 37, 43, 53, 58)   175.00 150.00
RH48b H47b         inverted ' 1 ' for ' I ' (37) 200.00 175.00
RH48c H47c         break in bar under 'P' 150.00 125.00
RH48d H47d         break in bar under gap 150.00 125.00
RH48e H47e         large stop after ' I ' (9, 21, 52, 60) 150.00 125.00
RH49 H48 1s on 3d on 3d ultramarine 100.00 75.00
RH49a H48a         thick 'V' (12, 30, 37, 43, 53, 58) 125.00 100.00
RH49b H48b         inverted ' 1 ' for ' I ' (37) 150.00 125.00
RH49c H48c         large stop after ' I ' (9, 21, 52, 60) 125.00 100.00
RH49d H48d         break in bar under 1st ' i ' 125.00 100.00
RH49e H48e         break in bar under 'h' 125.00 100.00
RH49f H48f         break in bar under 'S' 125.00 100.00
RH49g H48g         'V.R.I.' overprint double 250.00 200.00

Types RH45 - RH49 are all relatively scarce.

 

 

(series 4)
By July 1900 the definitive stamps were being overprinted 'V.R.I./AT' and used by the British Army, although
The TF stamps were still in use at least a year later. Hiscocks listed 1d, 3d, 6d, 1s and 5s as types 49-53.

Orange Free State Telegraph 1d Orange Free State Telegraph 3d Orange Free State - RH51a OFS-RH51c OFS-RH51h
1d   RH50 3d   RH51 3d   RH51a - thick 'V' 3d   RH51c - inverted overprint. 3d   RH51h - dropped "V."
two of mine Courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph 6d Orange Free State Telegraph 6d Orange Free State Telegraph 1s Orange Free State - RH53a Orange Free State - RH53b OFS RH53g
6d   RH52 6d  RH52a (thick 'V') 1s   RH53 RH53a (thick 'V'), courtesy of Jack Koster RH53b (dropped 'V'), courtesy Jack Koster RH53g, courtesy of Bruce Warrender.

 

RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH50 H49 1d deep mauve 10.00 7.50
RH50a H49a         thick 'V' (5, 17, 23, 39, 45, 48) 15.00 12.50
RH50b H49b         dropped 'V.' (24) 40.00 25.00
RH50c -         clipped 'V' (37) 40.00 25.00
RH50d -         both 'V' serifs damaged (2) 40.00 25.00
RH50e -         right arm of 'V' damaged (31) 40.00 25.00
RH50f -         no top serif 'R' (16) 40.00 25.00
RH50g -         top serif 'R' clipped to point (38) 40.00 25.00
RH50h -         broken comma after 'R', ' I ' clipped (60) 40.00 25.00
RH51 H50 3d ultramarine 20.00 15.00
RH51a H50a         thick 'V' (5, 17, 23, 39, 45, 48) 30.00 20.00
RH51b H50b         dropped 'V.' (24) 50.00 40.00
RH51c H50c         overprint inverted 150.00 125.00
RH51d H50d         overprint inverted and thick 'V' 250.00 200.00
RH51e H50e         overprint inverted and dropped 'V' 300.00 250.00
RH51f -         inverted and broken 'V' 300.00 250.00
RH51g -         clipped 'V' (37) 50.00 40.00
RH51h -         both 'V' serifs damaged (2) 50.00 40.00
RH51i -         right arm of 'V' damaged (31) 50.00 40.00
RH51j -         no top serif 'R' (16) 50.00 40.00
RH51k -         top serif 'R' clipped to point (38) 50.00 40.00
RH51m -         broken comma after 'R', ' I ' clipped (60) 50.00 40.00
 
RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH52 H51 6d ultramarine 10.00 7.50
RH52a H51a         thick 'V' (5, 17, 23, 39, 45, 48) 20.00 15.00
RH52b H51b         dropped 'V.' (24) 40.00 30.00
RH52c -         clipped 'V' (37) 40.00 30.00
RH52d -         both 'V' serifs damaged (2) 40.00 30.00
RH52e -         right arm of 'V' damaged (31) 40.00 30.00
RH52f -         no top serif 'R' (16) 40.00 30.00
RH52g -         top serif 'R' clipped to point (38) 40.00 30.00
RH52h -         broken comma after 'R', ' I ' clipped (60) 40.00 30.00
RH53 H52 1s light red-brown 15.00 10.00
RH53a H52a         thick 'V' (5, 17, 23, 39, 45, 48) 25.00 15.00
RH53b H52b         dropped 'V.' (24) 40.00 25.00
RH53c H52c         overprint inverted (one weakly printed) 200.00 150.00
RH53d H52d         overprint inverted and thick 'V' 250.00 200.00
RH53e H52e         overprint inverted and dropped 'V' 300.00 250.00
RH53f -         inverted and broken 'V' 300.00 250.00
RH53g -         clipped 'V' (37) 40.00 25.00
RH53h -         both 'V' serifs damaged (2) 40.00 25.00
RH53i -         right arm of 'V' damaged (31) 40.00 25.00
RH53j -         no top serif 'R' (16) 40.00 25.00
RH53k -         top serif 'R' clipped to point (38) 40.00 25.00
RH53m -         broken comma after 'R', ' I ' clipped (60) 40.00 25.00
 
OVS Table 4.1 Var.A
RH50a,RH51a,RH52a,RH53a.
OVS page 61 Var.a
RH50b, RH51b, RH52b, RH53b.
OVS Table 4.1 Var.G
RH50c, RH51g, RH52c, RH53g
OVS Table 4.1 Var.B
RH51h,
OVS Table 4.1 Var.F
RH51i
OVS Table 4.1 Var.C
RH51j
OVS Table 4.1 Var.D
RH51k
OVS Table 4.1 Var.E
RH51m

Variety illustrations courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

 

 

1901 (series 5)

These all have the 'A T' 7.7 mm wide. The large size of the higher values is helpful in seeing the whole telegraph code.
According to Steve Hiscocks, the V. R. I. / AT overprint came out in 1901, but there is evidence that it was in 1900.


Orange Free State Telegraph 5s Orange Free State - RH54a
5s   RH54 5s   RH54a  - thick 'V'
One of mine. Courtesy of Jack Koster.

Orange Free State Telegraph 10s - RH55 OVS Telegraph 10s - RH55a OVS Telegraph 10s - RH55b
10s   RH55 10s   RH55a  - thick 'V' 10s   RH55b  - low, larger stop after 'V'
Images courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph 10s - RH55e OVS Telegraph 10s - RH55f Orange Free State Telegraph 10s - RH55g
10s   RH55e (Large stop after ' I ') 10s   RH55f  - inverted overprint (Kroonstad Military) 10s   RH55 with vertical displacement
Images courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe. Images courtesy of Jack Koster.

Orange Free State Telegraph £1 - RH56 Orange Free State Telegraph £1 Orange Free State Telegraph 20s
£1  RH56 - courtesy of Jack Koster. £1   RH56   with a non-Army cancel, courtesy of Ian Paterson. £1   RH56   H- 30.V.90. N   (Heilbron, opened 31/5/1900) with a date error.
Image courtesy of Elizabeth Hitchcox.

Orange Free State Telegraph £1 - RH56a OVS-£1 - RH56d Orange Free State Telegraph £1 - RH56e
£1   RH56a   -   thick 'V' £1   RH56d   -   broad short 'A' £1   RH56e   HS 30.X.00. M-   (Harrismith Military, opened 7/8/1900)
Images courtesy of Jack Koster. Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe. Images courtesy of Jack Koster.

OVS-£1 - RH56f OVS-£1 - RH56f detail
£1   RH56f   -   "VRY-STAAT" (hyphenated). The hyphen was (erroneously) present on all three master dies and not noticed until after the leads were made.
An attempt was made to remove it from all positions of all three plates (pence, shillings and pounds), but position 5 of the pound plate was missed.
Images courtesy of Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

Orange Free State Telegraph £4 - RH57 Orange Free State Telegraph £4
£4   RH57  mint, courtesy of Jack Koster. £4   RH57a   B     FN   (Bloemfontein), courtesy of Bram Leeflang.

 

RH # Hisc. Description Mint Used
RH54 H53 5s green ('AT' 7.7mm wide) 75.00 50.00
RH54a H53a         thick 'V' (2, 14, 20, 40, 43, 46) 100.00 75.00
RH54b H53b         low and larger stop after 'V' (60) 125.00 100.00
RH54c H53c         no stop after 'V' (31) 125.00 100.00
RH54d H53d         broad short 'A' (35) 125.00 100.00
RH54e H53e         large stop after 'I' (24, 41) 125.00 100.00
RH54f H53f         overprint slanting and vertically misplaced   250.00 250.00
RH55 H54 10s orange 75.00 50.00
RH55a H54a         thick 'V' (2, 14, 20, 40, 43, 46) 100.00 75.00
RH55b H54b         low and larger stop after 'V' (60)   125.00 100.00
RH55c H54c         no stop after 'V' (31) 125.00 100.00
RH55d H54d         broad short 'A' (35) 125.00 100.00
RH55e H54e         large stop after ' I ' (24, 41) 125.00 100.00
RH55f -         inverted overprint - -
RH56 H55 £1 claret 100.00 75.00
RH56a H55a         thick 'V' (2, 14, 20, 40, 43, 46) 125.00 100.00
RH56b H55b         low and larger stop after 'V' (60) 150.00 125.00
RH56c H55c         no stop after 'V' (31) 150.00 125.00
RH56d H55d         broad short 'A' (35) 150.00 125.00
RH56e H55e         large stop after ' I ' (24, 41) 150.00 125.00
RH56f -         "VRY-STAAT" (5) 150.00 125.00
RH57 H56 £4 rose 150.00 125.00
RH57a H56a         thick 'V' (2, 14, 20, 40, 43, 46) 175.00 150.00
RH57b H56b         low and larger stop after 'V' (60) 200.00 175.00
RH57c H56c         no stop after 'V' (31) 200.00 175.00
RH57d H56d         broad short 'A' (35) 200.00 175.00
RH57e H56e         large stop after ' I ' (24, 41) 200.00 175.00
RH57f -         "VRY-STAAT" (5) 200.00 175.00

 

 

FORGERIES.

These again are obvious, since these values were not overprinted. They serve to illustrate a type of forgery.
The letters are very rough when magnified, and the serifs are again splayed. These could also be applied to V.R.I. stamps that did not have it
The V.R.I. Telegraph stamps usually had an Army Telegraph cancel.

forgery-4 forgery-5 forgery-6
AT on ½d AT on 1d AT closeup
FORGERIES

 

 

Stationery.

A Sending Form (A) of 1898. 10 words, including names and addresses for 1/=.
Sending Form of 1898. 10 words, including names and addresses for 1/=
Image courtesy of R. Timothy Bartshe.

The following forms are all from the Telegraph PDF. (28.7 MBytes) by Robert W. Hisey and R. Timothy Bartshe.

A similar Sending Form A of 1899.
Sending Form of 1899 - front

 

Reverse of the form above.
Sending Form of 1899 - back

 

Tan Form A with 1/6d franking for 36 words
Form A piece

 

Grey Form A with 1/6d franking for 35 words
Form A piece

 

Form C, Receiving Office copy
Form C, Receiving Office copy

 

Form Ca or D, Recipients carbon copy
Recipients carbon copy

 

Form FA Press Telegram of 1895
Form FA Press Telegram

 

Field Telegraph Service
Field Telegraph Service

 

Cape GPO Form 506 / T.17 printed by W. A. Richardson & Sons.
Cape GPO Form 506

 

Form T.4 Delivery envelope used 1901.
Form T.4 Delivery envelope

 

Franked pieces of various sending forms:

1/5d on Imperial Military Telegraph   1/2d on  Military Signals Telegraph

5/6d on Imperial Military Telegraph   1/- on Occupation Civilian Telegraph

 

Form C. Imperial Military Telegraphs, printed by Argus Press
Form C. Imperial Military

 

Army Book 295 C. Army Telegraphs. Printed by Wyman & Sons.
Army Book 295 C

 

GPK-PW Advice Form - Authorization.
GPK-PW Advice Form - Authorization

 

GPK-PW Advice Form - Postmasters copy.
GPK-PW Advice Form - Postmasters copy

 

GPK-PW Receipt - Sending.
GPK-PW Form - Sending Receipt

 

GPK-PW Receipt - Receiving.
GPK-PW Form - Receiving Receipt

 

 

 

There is more information and illustrations at: ORANGE FREE STATE STUDY CIRCLE
Varieties are documented in Stamps from the Orange Free State by Buckley & Marriott available from the study circle.

 

 

Comments, criticisms, information or suggestions are always welcome.

Contact:     Emale

Please include the word 'Telegraphs' in the subject.

 

Last updated 13th. January 2022

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Permission is hereby granted to copy material for which the copyright is owned by myself, on condition that any data is not altered and this website is given credit.

 

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