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...

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Colombian States - Boyaca & Cundinamarca

Boyaca 1903 Scott 17 10p black/buff
"President Jose Manuel Marroquin"
Into the Deep Blue
Now Departments within the Republic of Colombia, Boyaca and Cundinamarca were originally "States", and issued stamps between 1870-1904 (Cundinamarca) and 1902-1904 (Boyaca).

Colombian States - Boyaca & Cundinamarca
Colombia (Map by Gerben van Gelder )
So far, we have had posts on the Colombian States of Antioquia and Bolivar.

Also, there was an earlier 2011 post about Big Blue's coverage (or lack of) for the Colombian States.

Boyaca - a closer look
100 Centavos = 1 Peso

The State of Boyaca was late to the game: only issuing stamps between 1902-1904.

1903 Scott 4 10c dark gray "Coat of Arms"
The most substantial issue for Boyaca was released in 1903, and consisted of five denominations and five designs for the imperforate version.

1903 Scott 5 20c red brown "Coat of Arms"
As is usual for Colombia and Colombian States stamps of the era, they were produced lithographically.

1903 Scott 6 1p red 
CV for the imperforate five stamp issue is <$1 to $6+.

1903 Scott 10 10c dark gray "Coat of Arms"
Perf 12
The 1903 issue also had a Perf 12 version, given major numbers by Scott

1903 Scott 11 20c red brown "Coat of Arms"
Perf 12
CV for the seven stamp Perf 12 issue ranges from <$1 to $22.

1903 Scott 13 50c dull blue
"Gen. Prospero Pinzon"
Perf 12
An additional design is found with the Perf 12 issue: this one in 50c green (Scott 12) and 50c dull blue (above - Scott 13).

1903 Scott 17 10p black/buff
"President Jose Manuel Marroquin"
Perf 12
A larger format was used for the 10 peso denomination (and 5 peso - not shown).  CV for the 10p black/buff is $2+. The 10 peso stamp can also be found in black/rose (CV $22).

I note for the "Perf 12" stamps, some of the sides almost look like sewing machine perfs.

1904 Scott 18 10c orange
"Statue of Bolivar"
Perf 12
The last issue for Boyaca was in 1904, and consists of this one stamp. CV is <$1.

Cundinamarca - a closer look
100 Centavos = 1 Peso

Cundinamarca issued stamps between 1870 - 1904

I should mention at the outset that Cundinamarca ( and other Colombian States, and naturally Colombia) are infested with fakes/forgeries. It is truly hard for the non specialist to obtain information about them. Nevertheless, I did find an internet discussion link for Cundinamarcan fakes. Thanks Will and The Stamp Forum! Unfortunately, for the specific stamps discussed (1870, 1886) I don't have a copy. It does sound, though, that, for the counterfeit 1870 issue, there are long scratches through the plate in the upper half of the stamp. And, if the stamp copy is not clearly printed, it is probably a forgery.

1882 Scott 7 50c purple "Coat of Arms"
Between 1877-1882, a lithographic four "coat of arms" design, four denomination issue was released.
CV is <$1-$10+.

1884 Scott 11 5c blue "Coat of Arms"
A 5c blue design was issued in 1884. Scott 10 has a period after the A of COLOMBIA. The redrawn stamp (Scott 11) does not have this period. Both types are CV <$1.

1904 Scott 24 2c gray blue
In 1904, a twelve stamp nine design issue for Cundinamarca was released.

1904 Scott 29 20c blue/green
One can tell one is in the philatelic backwoods with this issue. My 2011 Scott has four of the designs still illustrated in black & white. All of the black & white illustration stamps are CV <$1. !! My 2020 Scott finally shows these illustrations in color.

1904 Scott 33 50c red violet
The issue comes in Perf 10 1/2, 12 (major numbers) and imperforate (minor numbers).

1904 Scott 34 1p gray green
CV for the 1904 twelve stamp issue (major numbers) is  <$1-$1+, except for the 40c blue/buff @ $40+. 

1904 Scott F2 10c bister
Registration Stamp
In 1904, besides the twelve stamp regular issue, a registration stamp was produced. CV is $1+.

The year 1904 proved to be the last of the issues for the Colombian States/Departments.

Out of the Blue
I find it quite curious that these fairly obscure States issues tend to have a very modest CV. Yet, these stamps are not all that common in WW collections. Supply/Demand curve?

Note: I'm going to now do  updates on other "C" and possibly "D"  countries, and leave Colombian States: Santander & Tolima for a later time.

Comments appreciated!


  1. Ray McIntire, Springfield, TNFebruary 27, 2021 at 8:09 AM

    I'm waiting....patiently...for Santander! Still am glad that I started, and continue with my '47 BB, because I can't imagine collecting Colombia without the States. I've finished Cundinamarca and Boyaca and bought a nice Tolima collection in an auction out of Argentina, so Tolima is finished. But, just trying to find the Santander stamps that are not published in Scott (they are published in the '41 Scott Catalogue I found on eBay for $7), especially the Cucuta issues has been difficult, and is the fun part of the chase! And BTW, if you need any Tolima, please email me.... Thanks again for what you do, Jim, and Congrats again on your recent anniversary!

    1. Thanks Ray for your comments regarding the Colombian States. Yes, I have quite a bit of Santander/Tolima/Cucuta that I need to show off, including those stamps that are no longer in Scott. But I will attend to other countries for awhile, then return when I have more enthusiasm. ;-)

  2. Jim, I do appreciate your diligent coverage of the regrettably obscure Colombian States. For each stamp issuing state, I am pleased to have type examples from both State and Departmental periods. IMO, Colombian States stamps help brighten up the historical image of the United States of Colombia and the early Republic of Colombia era.

    1. Thanks Gina - Colombia is one of the more interesting counties - I wonder why it doesn't have more demand by WW collectors for the stamps.