A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Thursday, July 10, 2014


1946 Scott 79 2p orange brown & black, Wmk 253 
"Polynesian Migratory Canoe"
Quick History
Niue ("behold the coconut") is an island country in the South Pacific Ocean currently in free association with New Zealand.

The Capital is Alofi, and the population was 4,100 in 1936. Of interest, the population today is about 1,400, with 90% of Niueans living in New Zealand.

New Zealand annexed Niue in 1901, along with the Cook islands to the east.

Captain James Cook sighted the island in 1774, but was refused permission to land by the natives.

They had a native red banana (hulahula) painted on their teeth- which looked like blood to Captain Cook- so he named it "Savage Island".

Niue is within Polynesia
Niue was "somewhat" separately administered from the Cook Islands by New Zealand because of Niue's remoteness, as well as the fact that Niue and the Cook Islands Polynesians had cultural and linguistic differences.

I say "somewhat", because Niue and the Cook Islands were pretty much lumped together in reality as we shall see.

Niue- 100 square miles in area
Stamps were issued for Niue in 1902 by overprinting the issues of New Zealand.

This was the case until 1920, when Niue proper received their own issues. Rarotonga (Cook Islands) issues had the same images though.

In 1932, "Cook Islands" script was added to the "Niue" script on the new  issues of Niue. Again, the Cook Islands shared the same images on their stamps.

1937 Scott 70 1p rose carmine "Coronation Issue"
New Zealand Stamps of 1937, Overprinted
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic Specialized catalogue has, for Niue 1902-1950, 103 major descriptive numbers. Of those, 43 are CV <$1-$1+, or 42%. The 1941-1950 issues provide 18 of these less expensive stamps. Truth be told, the pre-1940 issues are somewhat expensive for the WW classical collector. Niue is within the British Commonwealth sphere, but is also collected by those interested in New Zealand as well.

And further truth be told, I don't have a very deep Niue collection: just enough to post this blog. ;-)

A closer look at the stamps and issues
12 Pence = 1 Shilling
20 Shillings = 1 Pound
I don't have any of the earlier (1902-1923) overprinted New Zealand issues for Niue at the moment- some 31 stamps in total. It is really just a matter of a lacunae in my collection, as some 13 are CV $1+-$4, and I should obtain some.

1920 Scott 36 1p carmine & black, Unwmk
"Avarua Waterfront"
The first issue proper for Niue occurred in 1920, and had six stamps. This issue was unwatermarked. Nice view of Niue? Actually, not, as the "Avarua Waterfront" is on Rarotonga (Cook Islands). !

1926 Scott 41 1/2p yellow green & black, Wmk 61
"Landing of Captain Cook"
Between 1925-27, four more stamps were issued for Niue with watermark 61. The scenes, though, are of the Cook Islands, and not of Niue. 

Wmk 61: "Single-lined N Z and Star close together"
Wmk 253: "Multiple N Z and Star"
This might be a good time to review the watermarks encountered here. The Wmk 61 stamps were issued 1925-1938. The Wmk 253 stamps are found for 1940-1950. The same stamp images can be found for both watermarks, so keep the watermarking tray handy. ;-)

1933 Scott 60 1/2p yellow green & black, Wmk 61
""Landing of Captain Cook"
In 1932, a new issue was developed for both for the Cook Islands and Niue. Niue had a "Niue" script added to their stamps. The seven stamp issue was unwatermarked.

The same seven stamps were reissued between 1933-36, this time with wmk 61.

1945 Scott 78 1p deep red & black, Wmk 253
"Captain James Cook"
Between 1944-46, the stamps were issued again (with the addition of a 2sh and 3sh stamp, and a change in the monarch pic on the 1sh stamp), but with wmk 253 on the paper.

1940 Scott 76 3p on 1 1/2p rose violet & black, Wmk 253
"Mt. Ikurangi behind Avarua"
In 1940, a new stamp with surcharge (the stamp was only issued with the surcharge) was released. The same image and surcharge was also produced for the Cook Islands. Niue can't catch an image break, though, as the scene is from Rarotonga.

1946 Scott 90 1p emerald "Parliament House, Wellington"
New Zealand Scott 248, Black overprint
Four of the New Zealand "Peace issue" stamps of 1946 were overprinted as shown for Niue.

1946 Scott 92 6p orange red & red brown
"New Zealand Coat of Arms"
New Zealand Scott 254, Black overprint
Lovely stamps, they did not get shown in the New Zealand blog, so here they are. :-) The other two stamps in the issue also are shown elsewhere in this post.

Deep Blue
1937 Coronation Issue of Niue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has seven pages for Niue, and covers all the major Scott numbers. As Niue's issues frequently differ by watermark, it is nice to have spaces for all these major number varieties.

1946 Scott 91 2p rose violet "The Royal Family"
New Zealand Scott 250, Blue overprint
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on one page, has thirty spaces for Niue. Coverage (1940 and earlier) is 42%. The pages are located between Niger and North Borneo. It appears the coverage is identical in the earlier 1940s editions BB's.

* BB has only one stamp crossing the $10 threshold.
* The 1932  images were issued in three flavors: 1932 unwmk, 1933-36 wmk 61, and 1944-46 wmk 253. Because of the late date of issue for the 1944-46 production, I did not include them as choices in the checklist. But you might very well find them in feeder BB's. Or you might decide to put them in yourself. ;-)


3 or 6, 4 or 7, 8 or 9,10,



35 or 41, 36 or 42, 37,38,39,40,

53 or 60, 54 or 61, 
55 or 62, 56 or 63, 57 or 64, 58 or 65, 




A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
1917-20 Scott 22 1p carmine ($10)
B) (   ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.
C) *1920- Choices are unwmk vs wmk 61
D) *1932- Choices are unwmk vs wmk 61. Also, because of the late date of issue, I did not include as choices the 1944-46 wmk 253 issue.

1946 Scott 93 8p brown lake & black 
"Knight, Window of Wellington Boys' College"
New Zealand Scott 255, Blue overprint

Out of the Blue
Because of cultural and linguistic differences, to say nothing about their distance from each other, Niue and the Cook Islands are really separate entities. Hard to tell from the stamps though. ;-)

Note: Maps appear to be in the public domain.


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