Own one of the most sought-after stamps in philately

The Stamp Man

The Stamp Man

2019-06-10 10:59:42

Why do you buy rare postage stamps?

  • Pure investment?
  • Pure pleasure of ownership?
  • A combination of the two?

Whatever your reason, this stamp deserves your attention.


  • It is one of the most famous and popularly collected stamp issues of the world
  • There was big controversy around its issue in 1913
  • It is an iconic stamp design that defined a nation’s identity
  • It is the highest value denomination of that issue and one of the hardest to find in fine condition
  • I doubt you could find a better quality example anywhere
  • Owners of this stamp have enjoyed close to ‘double your money’ growth over the past decade

The market for this stamp seems to get hotter and hotter every year, just like its country.

Australia’s FIRST stamp

Australia’s first stamp celebrated its 106th anniversary this year.

It is a stamp that defined Australia’s bold and independent identity. It is so iconic many hundreds of collectors dedicate their entire collection exclusively to this stamp issue.

The Australian stamp market has changed considerably in recent years, with an increased focus on stamps in fine condition. The price difference between perfect examples and those with condition flaws can be as much as 1,000%.

The stamp I have for you today is in superb condition.

It is rare to find examples of this stamp so fresh, well centred and with full perforations. It is even rarer to find one with a large part of its original gum still in place.

Australia 1929-30 £2 black and rose, watermark 7, very fresh and well-centred, large part original gum. A most attractive example of this key high value. Mint. SG 114

The Kangaroo and Map (also referred to as the “Roo and Map”) was the first stamp issued by Australia, on the 2nd of January 1913. It has captured the minds and hearts of collectors ever since.

It was issued amongst great controversy…

How a stamp can define a nation

It took 12 years from federation for Australia to issue its first stamp.

One of the reasons for such delay was the amount of political debate regarding the design.

In 1911, the Postmaster-General’s Department launched a competition to come up with the ultimate stamp design for Australia’s first stamp.

The competition attracted 1,051 designs from 533 entrants.

The first prize was originally awarded to Hermann Altmann from Victoria. He produced a classic design featuring the full-face portrait of King George V. It was customary at the time for all stamps from British Commonwealth countries to include the King’s head.

However, a new Postmaster-General called Charles Frazer had different ideas…

He did not want any inclusion of British royal symbols or profiles. He believed:

“A postage stamp is one of the best advertising mediums the country can have”.

He demanded the design should break tradition to make a bold statement about the new nation. He wanted a symbolic home-grown design. The kangaroo, as the national animal emblem of Australia, needed to feature on the stamp.

The approved final design amalgamated the coastline map of Australia by the water colourist Blamire Young and the Kangaroo from one of the runners up from the previous competition, Edwin Arnold (ironically, an Englishman).

The stamp was criticised by the press. They claimed the stamp showed Australia as an empty desert, and the kangaroo looked more like a rabbit!

“The Argus”, a Melbourne newspaper, pointed towards the significance of the absence of the King’s head.

A determined and modernising Frazer was not to be swayed. He got his way, thus creating the stamp that today is considered iconic and representative of the strong and bold nation of Australia.

The stamp was so successful it remained in circulation for the next 35 years until it was withdrawn in 1948.

The Kangaroo and Map stamps were reissued through to 1946 using different watermarks and perforations. The stamp issue has become a field of specialised philatelic study.

Many famous collectors over the years focussed exclusively on building a whole collection of just the Kangaroo and Map stamps.

A strong market

In February 2007, Australian philatelist Arthur Gray sold his Kangaroo collection at auction in New York, realising over $7 million. There were 849 lots and every single one sold, showing the high level of demand and liquidity for this popular stamp.

In that sale, the 1913 £2 black and rose set a record for a single Kangaroo stamp, selling for $176,930. The stamp featured the monogram of the printer, J.B. Cooke.

From my experience, there has always been a healthy number of high net worth collectors active in the market for Kangaroo stamps.

Because of that, they have proved a good investment in recent years, particularly for top quality examples.

The stamp I have on offer is no exception…

The Stanley Gibbons catalogue price in 2008 was £2,750 ($3,575). In the 2018 catalogue it is listed at £4,750 ($6,175). That’s growth of 72.7% (5.6% per annum).

The Stanley Gibbons catalogue states that prices are for examples in "mounted mint" condition.

Well, this is catalogue condition alright. Mint. Well-centred. Still with a large part of its original gum. One of the finest examples you’ll see.

From my experience, it is these exceptional quality examples that can sell for way above catalogue prices when they appear at auction.

In short, I think it is worth much more than my asking price.

And what is that price? 

Whenever possible, I try to offer my stamps at a discount to Stanley Gibbons’ catalogue prices.

That’s why you can own this stamp for just £4,250 ($5,525)

Your chance to own an exceptional quality rarity

To summarise: 

  • One of the most iconic stamps of the world
  • Of exceptional quality, rarely seen
  • At a price below catalogue value

Buy Now

Looking to own an iconic Roo stamp at a more modest price? 

I have three further Roos you can buy today. Each rare. Each a philatelic treasure. Each a joy to own.

Australia 1915 5s grey and yellow, watermark 5, watermark inverted

Australia 1915 5s grey and yellow, watermark 5, variety watermark inverted, large part original gum, with lovely fresh colour and perforations and centring far above average.

The watermark variety easily detectable from the face. Scarce so fine. Mint. SG 30w

Price: £1,300 ($1,690)

Click here to buy now

Australia 1931-36 10s grey and pink, watermark 15

Australia 1931-36 10s grey and pink, watermark 15, very fine large part original gum. Mint. SG 136

Price: £425 ($553)

Buy now - click here

Australia 1915 5s grey and yellow, watermark 5

Australia 1915 5s grey and yellow, watermark 5, lightly cancelled by two part strikes of 'WHIM CR(EEK)' circular date stamps with excellent perforations and centring. Scarce so fine. Used. SG 30

Price: £295 ($384)

Buy here

Seen a stamp you want?  

Call me immediately on +44(0)117 933 9500. 

Or reply to this email now.

Thanks for reading,

Kind regards 

Mike Hall

CEO, Just Collecting

PS. Remember – you get free, fully-insured delivery wherever you live in the world. And 28-day no quibble returns. 

 Enjoyed this email? You may also like:

May 18, 2019: Weekly Collecting News: The Blue Boy

May 17, 2019: The Weird and Wonderful World of Stamps

May 16, 2019: New in: a secret plot signed by a great author

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