- Issue date: 06/09/2004
- Printing Process: Huecograbado
- Paper: Estucado,engomado,fosforescente
- Size of stamp: 40,9 X 28,8 mm.(horizontales)
- Sheet effects: 50
- Postal value of the stamps: 0,77 €
- Print run: 1.000.000
- Dented: 13 3/4
A stamp is being issued to commemorate the 150 th Anniversary of the First Issue of Stamps in the Philippines . The first Philippines stamp and a postmark with the Spanish Post Office typography is shown in the picture, on an emerald green background reminiscent of the waters of the Pacific.
The Philippines archipelago, named after King Philip II of Spain, consists of more than 7,000 islands. Many of these are uninhabited and only 11 have an area of over 2,600 Km 2 and contain most of the population. The Philippines' philatelic history began in 1847, when the Manila Postal Administrator suggested that its own stamps be issued, but this remained at the planning stage and was not carried out. Later, a Royal Order of 12 January 1853 made franking compulsory for internal correspondence on the islands, using adhesive stamps. But it was on 7 December of the same year, by a decree by the Governor of Manila, that the prior franking was finally established, and this took effect a few months later. The first issue of stamps was printed in Manila and went into circulation on 1 February 1854. The series consisted of four values: 5 cuartos orange, 10 cuartos carmine, 1 real dark blue and 2 reales green, all imperforated. The stamps were engraved in copper and a plate for each of the values in the issue with the likeness of Isabel II was produced. Each plate contained 40 stamps, with a 5 x 8 layout, and each one was engraved separately, with the result that there are as many varieties as stamps contained on the plate. The paper used was very fragile and disintegrated easily, and the design of the stamps, according to the specialist literature, was not well received in Madrid. This led to the publication of a Decree on 1 September 1854, stating that in future, only stamps necessary for internal circulation in the Philippines (5 cuartos and 10 cuartos) would be printed in Manila and stamps for foreign correspondence (1 real and 2 reales) would be supplied from Madrid. The Philippines was the first Asian country to issue postage stamps. It appears that only the state of Sind (now in Pakistan) issued a stamp before 1854, but it was at local level and had a very short print run.