15th October 1940
perf 12½,11½x11, wmk multiple script CA, engraved
Printed by Bradbury Wilkinson & Co, 1d, 3d, 4d and 2/6
others printed by Waterlow & Sons.
|½ penny blue-green and orange||1||1|
|1d red-lilac and rose-violet||2||2|
|1½d rose-carmine and black||3||3|
|2d dark brown and bright green||4||4|
|3d dark blue and yellow-green||5||5|
|4d dark blue-green and black||1951||5A||5b|
|6d slate green and deep blue||6||6|
|8d lilac-rose and green||1951||6A||6a|
|1 shilling slate and violet||7||7|
|2/6 dark brown and bright green||8||8|
† Year of issue, where other than 1940.
Gibbons  tells a long story about the history and postal history of the Pitcairns. The settlement was discovered by the Bounty mutineers in 1790 and they (the mutineers) were not discovered until 1808. Two Royal Navy frigates followed in 1814 and their captains' reports "resulted in considerable interest being taken in the inhabitants' welfare by religious and philanthropic circles in Great Britain".
The population was moved to Tahiti in 1831 because of overcrowding, but many returned. In 1856 they were evacuated to Norfolk Island, but groups of familes again went back in 1859 and 1864.
Pitcairn Is. entire
|1930 on NZ SG468
A regular mail service was not introduced until 1920. Prior to that, letters were allowed free postage if endorsed by a cachet or manuscript and Gibbons refers to a publication written by Mr. Cy Keating and published by the Pitcairn Islands Study Group and shows illustrations of the many formats used. The cachets are all broadly in the format "POSTED AT PITCAIRN ISLAND / NO STAMPS AVAILABLE".
New Zealand ended the free postage arrangements in 1926 but, following complaints, opened an agency there using NZ stamps and a large cancellation (Gibbons lists these as 'Z' prefixes). Stamps inscribed Pitcairn Islands were eventually issed in 1940.