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Heligoland

1st March 1867

British Colony 23

Hel1
heli1
  Heligoland #1 1a  
heldies

Rouletted, no watermark, typographed and embossed.
Printed in Berlin.

1867-68 Head Die I in colourless relief, rouletted
Description Date issued Die used Scott SG Mi Y&T Mink
½ schilling blue-green and rose
1st March 1867
Die 1
1 1 1(I) 1 1
½ schilling blue-green and rose
July 1868
Die 2
1A 1a 1(II) 1a 2
1s rose and blue-green
21st March 1867
Die 1
2 2 2 2 3
2s rose and grass-green
21st March 1867
Die 1
3 3 3 3 4
6s green and rose
1st March 1867
Die 1
4 4 4 4 5

Die 2 differs from Die 1 in two respects: a curl under the chignon (hair at right); one jewel on the diadem (jewellery on forehead). Die 3 was used for some of the subsequent reprints.

An island in the North Sea, previously owned by Denmark, occupied by Britain after the Napoleonic Wars and ceded to Germany in 1890. The population was largely German and the stamps of Hamburg had been used prior to this issue which shows Victoria in profile, printed in Berlin and using the island’s colours of red and green (as did all the nineteen(-ish) stamps issued).┬áMinkus [1] notes that, “after WWII British razed island, used it for bombing practice. Upon appeal by inhabitants it was returned to Germany in 1952.”

All the catalogues warn of reprints. Minkus [1] states “ impressions for official use were made [of some issues and] were sold, together with the plates, to the public. Private impressions from the plates, on diff paper & in various shades & perfs other than those of the originals, exist in large quantities.” The majority of the illustrations used on this page are from ebay and thus reprints are more than likely: the purpose of this exercise is to illustrate the issues and so that is regarded (by the author, at least) as acceptible.


As only nineteen stamps (plus variants) were issued and they are all rather distinctive and attractive, it is worth listing and illustrating in its entirety. The listings on these pages are usually built on the Scott catalogues (ScC), but in this instance will be based on Gibbons (SGP1).

Hel1
heli1
Hel2
Hel3
Hel4
SG1 SG1a SG2 SG3 SG4

Hel5
Hel6
Hel7
image
image
SG5 SG6 SG7 SG8 SG9
1869-73 Head in colourless relief perf 13½ x 14½
Description Date issued Die used Scott SG Mi Y&T Mink Notes
¼ schilling rose and green
Aug 73
1
7+a, 8, 13 5 8+a-b 5, 5a 10+a, 11
SG5a, 5b colour variants, no Mi5
½ sch blue-green and rose
1869
2
5+a-b, 9 6 6+a-h 6 6+a, 7
SG6a, 6b colour and paper variants
¾ sch green and rose
Dec 73
1
10 7 9 7 12
1sch rose and yellow-green
Jul 71
3
6, 11 8 7+a-d 8 8, 9
SG8a colour and paper variant
1½ sch green and rose
Sep 73
1
12 9 10 9 13
quadrille paper

An explanation of the numbering, Scott “5+a-b, 9” means that there are Sc5, Sc5a, Sc5b and Sc9 equivalent to SG6, SG6a and SG6b.


Hel10
Hel12a
Hel13
Hel14
SG10 SG11 SG12a SG13 SG14

image
image
image
Hel18
Hel19
SG15 SG16 SG17 SG18b SG19

1875-1890 Head Die II embossed in colourless relief perf 13½ x 14½, currency change
denominated in pfennigs or marks and also farthings (¼d), pence or shillings
Description Date issued   Scott SG Mi Y&T Mink Notes
1 pfennig (1 farthing) deep green and rose
1875
  14 10 11 10 14
2pf (2f) deep rose and deep green
1875
  15 11 12 11 15
3pf (2½f) pale green, red and yellow
Jun 76
  20+a 12 17+a-b 16 20+a
SG12a colour variant
5pf (3f) deep yellow-green and rose
1875
  16 13 13+a-b 12 16+a
SG13a colour variant
10pf (1½ pence) deep rose and deep green
1875
  17+a-b 14 14+a-e 13 17+a-b
SG14a colour variant
20pf (2½d) rose, green and yellow
Jun 76
  21+a-e 15 18+a-h 17 21+a-b
SG15a-c colour variants
25pf (3d) deep green and rose
1875
  18+a 16 15 14 18
50pf (6d) rose and green
1875
  19+a 17 16 15 19
1 (1 shilling) mark deep green, scarlet and black
Aug 79
  22+a-b, 24 18 19a-b 18, 18a 22+a,v
SG18a-b perf and colour variants
5m (5s) deep green, aniline rose, black and yellow
Aug 79
  23, 25 19 20 19, 19a 23+v-v1
SG19a perf variant

helcover
Heligoland 1890 cover from ebay with Sc13a, 17a, 21b, 16, 17 Heligoland Registered to Harburg, Germany.