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, October 19, 2021

Dutch Indies 1864-1908 - a closer look

1868 Scott 2 10c lake "King William III"
Engraved; Perf; "Batavia" postmark 
Into the Deep Blue

The Dutch Indies (the name in Big Blue), or Netherlands Indies (the more accepted name) was a Dutch colony on a series of islands in the East Indies. Stamps for the colony were issued throughout the classical era (1864-1940). 

Netherlands Indies
Map courtesy of Stamp World History

For more on the background and history see:

This blog post will look at some of the stamps and issues from 1864-1908.

1864 Scott 1 10c lake "King William III"
Engraved; Imperf

The first stamp issue for the Dutch Indies was an unwatermarked engraved close-up portrait "King William III" imperforated 10c lake stamp that was released April 1, 1864. The half-facing portrait was one that is not found on Netherlands stamps proper, so increases the interest. I wonder how much he enjoyed being king? He looks reluctant here, doesn't he?

A perforated version (Perf 12.5 X 12) was released in 1868, and is shown here as the "header" stamp above.

CV is $100 for the 1864 unperforated stamp, and $150 for the 1868 perforated variety.

I checked Stamp Forgeries of the World website, and these Scott 1 & 2 appear genuine.

1870 Scott 3 1c slate green "William III"
Type I

Between 1870-88, a typographed fourteen stamp set featuring William III in side portrait was issued.

There are multiple different perfs known (see catalogue for specifics).

The "1 cent" has two types. Type I (above) has "CENT" 6mm long.

1876 Scott 4 1c slate green "William III"
Type II; Batavia postmark

Type II has "CENT" 7.5mm long.

Scott also breaks out perfs that are "small holes" (minor numbers) for the issue. "small holes" are defined as "spaces between the holes wider than the diameter of the holes". See the 2.50g stamp below as an example. (The Michel catalogue not only breaks out the small holes, but also includes the perf for the stamp.)

1870 Scott 16 2.50g green & violet "William III"
"small holes" Perf

CV for the issue ranges from <$1 to $95. The 2.50g above (the only bi-color for the issue) is CV $17+.  I'm sure in some catalogue or stamp journal is a list of which settlement the center number means for this cancellation.

1893 Scott 29 50c carmine
"Princess Wilhelmina"
"Soerabaja" postmark

Between 1892-97 an eight stamp set showing Princess Wilhelmina was issued. The portrait appears to be the same as the Netherlands 1891-96 issue. She actually ascended the throne at age 10 in 1890, but under her mother's regency (Queen Emma), until age 18 (1898), when her mother's regency ended.

I picked out this stamp to illustrate the issue because of the postmark. Surabaja is now a port city on the island of Java.

1902 Scott 37 2.50g on 2 1/2g brown lilac "Wilhelmina"
On Netherlands 1899 Scott 84 Surcharged in Black

Between 1900-02, seven Netherland stamps were surcharged in black for use in the Dutch Indies.

The Scott 37 (above) as a CV of $11, while the original Netherlands stamp is CV $3+.

1905 Scott 58 10c on 20c greenish slate "Wilhelmina"
Surcharged in Black

Between 1903-08, a ten stamp set with the circular portrait of Queen Wilhelmina was issued. An example is shown heading the "Out of the Blue" section below. CV ranges from <$1 to $2.

In 1905, the 20c greenish slate from the issue was surcharged in black, as shown above. CV is $2.

1905 Scott 2 1/2g slate blue "Wilhelmina"

Also, between 1905-12, four larger format "Wilhelmina" stamps were issued for the larger denominations. CV is <$1-$40.

1908 Scott 75 22 1/2c brown & olive green "Wilhelmina"
Previous Issues Overprinted "Buiten...Bezit."

For the territory outside of Java and Madura, in 1908, eighteen previously issued stamps were overprinted as shown (above). 

1908 Scott 79 1g dull lilac "Wilhelmina"
 Previous Issues Overprinted "Buiten...Bezit."

For the eighteen stamp overprinted issue, CV ranges from <$1 to $65.

1908 Scott 86 5c rose red
Previous issues overprinted "Java"

Likewise, in 1908, eighteen previously issued stamps were overprinted "Java" for use in Java and Madura. CV is <$1 to $47+.

1908 Scott 90 15c chocolate "Wilhelmina"
Previous issues overprinted "Java"
Note the horizontal bars?

When I saw this stamp, I wondered if this could have be a "remainder", as other countries have done so by overprinted horizontal bars on their surplus stamps, and selling them at a discount to stamp dealers etc. But this is a legitimate issue. Some of the 1906 Scott 50 chocolate stamps were overprinted with two horizontal bars (making Scott 50a), and then in turn were overprinted "Buiten...Bezit" (Scott 72) or "Java" (Scott 90 above). !!

1904 Scott 57 50c red brown "Wilhelmina"
Out of the Blue

Well, that was fun! I suspect a postal history collection of early Dutch Indies stamps on cover would be interesting indeed.

Comments appreciated!

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