McClaren displayed a full round of Straits Settlements provisional surcharges,
both mint, used and on cover/postal stationery. Only stamps that could
reasonably be found used on cover were represented in the first section.
The display commenced with the 10 cents on 24 cents including inverted
watermark block of four and positional pieces with the narrow ‘0’
in ‘10’. These were followed by a selection of the 30 cents
on 32 cents orange, including a part pane of 50. A card was displayed
showing the varieties on each stamp which may be constant, including
antique letters which do not appear to have been studied up to now.
is to form part of a study project for this and other values soon to
be posted on the Forum. The postal requirement for this value is still
Various surcharges were then displayed, including specimens where relevant,
with a number of the 1892 ‘ONE CENT’ values being present
in panes, multiples and as single varieties. Three blocks of four of
the surcharged 4 cents value were shown with the ‘Broken Frame’
variety, one mint and two used, the used blocks showing early and late
states of the flaw. This issue is to form the major part of the proposed
study mentioned above.
The first airing of the newly discovered ‘Slug’ flaw on
the ‘ONE CENT’ on six cents lilac was given, being a positional
example on a block of 15, 3 x 5, being stamp 10 (type ‘c’)
on the pane, later also displayed used on cover. This stamp is to be
featured in the ‘Catalogue Column’ in Gibbons Stamp Monthly
and will be given catalogue status. The flaw is to be found in the bottom
right corner ornament and extends into the outer oval frame and can
easily be seen with the naked eye, appearing as a slug in the flower
bed. It should be considerably scarcer than the 4 cent flaw as it is
not in a collectable position, the 4 cents value forming part of a corner
block of four above the current number in the bottom margin, stamp 10-5.
Also displayed was a block of 12, being rows 9 and 10, of the 4 cents
on 1899 8 cents ultramarine with the scarce ‘Spaced Stop’
on the last stamp of row 10. It is believed that this variety was noticed
early on during printing and was corrected, the majority of stamps in
this position being found with a normally spaced stop.
The used on cover section followed, with a selection of covers to various
destinations, many being to the Netherlands East Indies. An attempt
was made to display as many combinations of the provisional surcharges
as possible. One cover had, in addition to surcharged stamps, a pair
of the un-surcharged 3 cents brown with repaired ‘S’ on
one stamp and another cover the ‘Slug’ flaw mentioned earlier.
Two covers attracted postage due, one to Essex, England bearing a Foreign
Branch ‘5d’ hand stamp and the other to Canada via London
bearing a Foreign Branch ‘2d’ hand stamp prior to being
re-bagged for onwards transmission, both being double weight covers
franked as for single weights.
The 1 cent printed paper rate was represented by a price list of stamps
from the Singapore dealer C. A. Ribeiro in a wrapper. The contents had
been scanned for display, which proved interesting to some members,
comparing the prices of a hundred years ago to those now charged.
Various items of mint and used postal stationery were shown, some being
of ‘Windrath’ origin but no less attractive for that, these,
generally, being some of the only available examples of combinations
of stamps and stationery available.
The final items were GV 2 cents postcards surcharged 1 cent during 1917
and issued early 1918, this being the last surcharged item that appeared
for the Straits Settlements.
Four members signed up for the proposed study outlined above on the
day, which is encouraging.