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...

Friday, January 9, 2015


1871 Scott 40 10c deep green "Spain"
Quick History
The Philippines are a group of 7,107 islands in the western Pacific Ocean, and were initially colonized by the Spanish after their "discovery" by Ferdinand Magellan in 1521.

As part of the Spanish Empire for 300 years, the inhabitants adopted Roman Catholicism, while Manila, the capital, became part of the Manila-Acapulco galleon trade between the 16th and 19th centuries.

Stamps were introduced in 1854, and closely follow in design those of Spanish Cuba, except for denomination.

The Spanish-American War of 1898 resulted in Spain ceding the Philippine islands to the United States. The nascent "First Philippine Republic" movement was crushed by the United States, and an Insular Government (territorial government) was instituted in 1901.

The Commonwealth of the Philippines was created in 1935, with full independence achieved in 1946.

Population was 7,600,000 in 1903.

1878 Scott 62 25m black "King Alponso XII"
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic Specialized 1840-1940 catalogue has, for Philippines 1854-1940, 654 major number descriptions. Of those, 275 are CV <$1-$1+, or 42%. Generally, the Spanish era (1854-1898) is moderately expensive, and quite expensive for the early issues; the U.S era (1899-1935) is moderately expensive to inexpensive; while the Commonwealth era (post 1935) is inexpensive.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
20 Cuartos = 1 Real
100 Centavos de Peso = 1 Peso (1864)
100 Centimos de Escudo = 1 Escudo (1871)
100 Centimos de Peseta = 1 Peseta (1872)
1000 Milesimas de Peso = 100 Centimos or Centavos = 1 Peso (1878)
100 Cents = 1 Dollar (1899)
100 Centavos = 1 Peso (1906)
1863 Scott 14 5c vermilion "Queen Isabella II"
Colon after CORREOS
(Note: Probable Forgery)
The early Spanish Dominion stamps had Queen Isabella II as a subject, and resemble the Cuban stamps issued during the same era, except for differences in denomination. Generally the earlier 1854-1862 ( 13 stamps) are moderately expensive to quite expensive, and I have no examples.

But this 1863 specimen can be distinguished from the 1861-62 versions by having a colon, rather than a dot, after "CORREOS".

(Update Note: I was alerted that this is a probable forgery. I suspect that is true, as many of the Spanish stamps of the era are indeed forgeries. )

1864 Scott 22 6 2/8c green "Queen Isabella II" Stamp
With OP, Scott 36, part of 1868-74 issue
A four stamp set was issued in 1864 with this design. (Similar stamps are found for Cuba.) CV is $2-$3+.

However, this particular stamp above has OP 'Habilitado por la Nacion", which makes it part of the 1868-74 seventeen stamp overprinted set from preceding issues. CV ranges from $4 to $6000!

1874 Scott 48 12c gray lilac "Peace"
A four stamp set was released in 1874 (similar to the Cuban 1871 set) with this design. She must be holding an olive branch, as the design is labeled "Peace" in Scott. Interestingly, the same design for the Cuban stamps is called "Espana" (Spain) in Scott.

1877 Scott 55 10c blue "King Alfonso XII"
Between 1875-77, a seven stamp issue was developed with the "King Alfonso XII" design. His mother, Isabella II, had been forced into exile in 1868 after the "Glorious Revolution". His mother abdicated in his favor, and he returned as king following a coup in 1874. He was only seventeen.

By the way, if you notice stamps of this era punched with a round hole, that was for telegraph use, or for a stamp that was withdrawn from use. I have an example in my collection.

1882 Scott 86 12 4/8c bright rose "King Alfonso XII"
A thirteen stamp issue was produced between 1880-86 of the young king. The 2 4/8c ultramarine stamp comes in original, 1st, and 2nd retouch states. Scott has the details.

1883 Scott 95 8c on 2c carmine
Green Surcharge
Between 1881-88, there were issued some 24 stamps handstamped surcharged in various colors

In addition, 23 Revenue stamps were also handstamped surcharged (not shown).

1886 Scott 136 2 4/8c on 1c bister, Magenta Surcharge
On Telegraph Stamps
Telegraph stamps (five) can also be found surcharged.

1888 Scott 138 1c gray green "King Alfonso XII"
Types of 1880-86 Redrawn
Between 1887-88, a three stamp "redrawn" issue was released. These are actually posthumous, as King Alfonso XII had died of tuberculosis and dysentery in 1885 at the age of 27.

But his second wife was pregnant with a son....

1891 Scott 178 25c dull blue "King Alfonso XIII"
Alfonso XIII was a monarch from birth, and these stamp portraits show him at age four. His mother, Maria Christina of Austria, served as regent until his 16th birthday in 1902. During the regent period, Spain lost her larger colonies- Cuba, and the Philippines- because of the Spanish-American War.

The 1890-97 issue consists of 41 stamps. CV ranges from <$1-$2+ for 26 stamps.  The most expensive CV @ $40 is for the 20c salmon.

1894 Scott P7 1/8c orange brown "King Alfonso XIII"
Newspaper Stamp
There were also 16 Newspaper stamps released with the baby Alfonso XIII image from 1890-96.

1907 Scott 185 5c on 5c green, Red Surcharge
In 1897, nine previous issues were handstamped surcharged, as shown. The surcharges can be found in blue, red, black, and violet colors.

1898 Scott 201 5c carmine rose "King Alfonso XIII"
The adolescent Alfonso XIII (twelve years old) visage was issued on 20 stamps in 1898. Similar stamps can be found for the other Spanish colonies. CV is <$1-$1+ for fourteen stamps.

1899 Scott 217 10c brown, type I, "Webster"
Issued under U.S. Administration
Then the Spanish-American War happened, and Spain ceded the Philippines in 1898 to the U.S. for 20 million dollars. Between 1899-1901, a nine stamp issue was released by overprinting U.S. stamps of the era.

1903 Scott 227 2c carmine "Washington"
On 1902-03 U.S. Issues
The overprinting continued until 1906 when Philippine stamps proper were issued for the territory.

The 1903-04 overprinted issue had 15 stamps, and the C.V. reflects U.S. collector interests, with nine stamps @ <$1-$10+.

1899 Scott J3 5c deep claret
Seven U.S. postage due stamps were likewise overprinted between 1899-1901.

Although my focus is WW classical era stamps for this blog, I must admit that my home country produced exquisite stamp designs indeed. ;-)

1898-99 Scott Y2 2c red "Coat of Arms"
Filipino Revolutionary Government
When the U.S. took over in 1898, they had to face the newly created "Filipino Revolutionary Government" created by General Emilio Aguinaldo on June 23, 1899, primarily located on the island of Luzon. The rebellion was quashed, and the General was taken prisoner on March 23, 1901.

Of interest, Aguinaldo was again in the news during the Japanese occupation, as he urged cooperation with them. He was arrested after WW  II, but released under presidential amnesty. He argued he was trying to minimize Filipino deaths.

Five stamps were issued between 1898-99, and the collector may want a souvenir of the uprising. ;-)

Deep Blue
1933-39 Air Post Issues in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 34 pages, and covers all the stamp issues except one. The one exception are the 1898-99 Filipino Revolutionary Government stamps, which are in the classic 1840-1940 Scott catalogue. I added a quadrilled page for those stamps.

1883 Scott 103 1r on 2c carmine, red surcharge
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on seven pages, has 217 spaces. Coverage is 33%.

* There are ten stamps with CV $10+: three which are CV $35- $40 (Most Expensive category).

* The 1906-22 spaces are a mess. Often, there are up to five choices, because the Perf variations (Perf 10,11,12) and the watermark variations (Wmk 190,191, unwmked) are telescoped into one space. And there is no room for the 1925-31 Imperf variety.

* The "Commonwealth" overprinted issue is only admitted for the 1936-37 variety, not the 1938-40 variety.

* No Official stamps are included in BB, although 34 stamps are CV <$1-$1+.


Issued under Spanish Dominion


52 or 53,62 or 63,(55),

78 or 79 or 80, 81,82,85,86,87,88,

100 or 101,105 or 106,107,109,111,

137, 138a or 138,





Next Page



Issued under American Dominion

213,214,215,216,217 or 217A,218,219,



Next Page

2c- 241 or 261 or 276 or 285 or 290
4c- 242 or 262 or 277 or 286 or 291
6c- 243 or 263 or 278 or 287 or 292
8c- 244 or 264 or 279 or 287A or 293
10c- 245 or 265 or 280 or 288 or 294
12c brown lake- 246
12c orange- 255 or 266 or 295
16c violet black- 247
16c olive green- 256 or 267 or 281 or 289 or 296
20c orange brown- 248
20c yellow- 257 or 268 or 282 or 289A or 297
26c violet brown- 249
26c blue green- 258 or 269 or 298
30c olive green- 250
30c ultramarine- 259
30c gray- 283 or 289C
1p (illustrated)- 251
1p pale violet- 260 or 271 or 284 or 289D or 300
2p- 260A or 272 or 301
4p- 253 or 273 or 302



Next Page



Next Page



Next Page

Special Delivery
E2 or E3 or E4 or E5,

Postage Due



Newspaper Stamps






Next Page

Air Post




A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
1895 Scott 141 1c rose ($10+)
1890 Scott 173 20c salmon ($40)
1894 Scott 175 20c dark violet ($10+)
1895 Scott 195 4m orange brown ($10+)
1899 Scott 219 50c orange ($37+)
1903 Scott 228 3c bright violet ($10+)
1903 Scott 232 8c violet black ($10+)
1903 (Scott 234) 13c purple black ($10+)
1903 Scott 235 15c olive green ($10+)
1903 Scott 236 50c orange ($35)
B) (    ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.
C) *144- this is an 1894 2c claret, but there is no 1890 2c issued- so put the Scott 144 here.
D) *1906-22 -I ignored BB's color specifications in some cases, and admitted all: variables include Perf 10,11,12, & Wmk 191,192,unwmked issues.
E) *1936-37- Only the 1936-37 overprints are admitted based on BB's specifications.  The 1938-40 overprints are not admitted.

1901 Scott 222 8c violet brown "Sherman"
Overprint in Black on 1895 U.S. Scott 272
Out of the Blue
Unfortunately, I was not able to review the later Philippines stamp issues, as that would have required several blog posts. But take a look for yourself- what an interesting country!

Note: Map appears to be in the public domain.

Have a comment?


  1. Nice postage and my congratrulations to your blog, hugs !!

  2. Thanks Postmail, and you have a very interesting blog too!

  3. Hmm...very interesting. Either the 1997 Big Blue doesn't have the Air Mail page or mine is missing, resulting in my count of 201. However, you may be off by two, as I also have spaces for the 1c & 2c 1899 Postage Dues.

  4. Hi Joe!
    Ah, I was indeed off, because I did not put the 1899 J1 and J2 into the checklist. I corrected it. Thanks! I counted to make sure, and I have 217 spaces, including a last page of 16 air post stamps. I can't believe Scott would lop off the 1997 edition Philippines air mail page!

    I'm glad you stopped by, Joe, because I wanted to thank you again for the count you provided in Excel for Big Blue.If you haven't seen it, I did indeed reference your excel work in the blog post


  5. I requested the Revolutionary issues from Bill snd he sent me a pdf, so I believe Steiner has them now.

  6. Does anybody know the value of the 1901 Scott 222 8c violet brown "Sherman" stamp at the bottom of the page?

    1. I am on a trip without catalogues, but will look it up upon return.

    2. 1901 Scott 222 8c violet brown "Sherman"
      Overprint in Black on 1895 U.S. Scott 272

      Unused: $40; Used $7.50

  7. Hi, Jim! I enjoy reading your blogs! Great job!
    Just one little note: stamp depicted as Scott #22 is actually #36, as it is overprinted with "Habilitado por la nacion."
    Greetings from Croatia! :)

    1. And so it is! Thanks NLaLa for picking this up. Appreciated! I changed the information.

      By the way, I was in Zagreb in 2018. Beautiful City!

  8. The stamp you picture as Scott #14 is a well-known forgery and should be replaced in your post.

    1. Thanks for the comment Jim Jim Jr. I notice you appear to specialize in the Philippines. No doubt you are correct, as Spanish stamps of the era were rife with forgeries. I changed the post to reflect this. Could you point out the signs that this is a forgery? Thanks!