Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

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Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Hi guys, I found this cake box while hunting through a second hand store yesterday, it contains a tin inside with some fancy paper wrapping.

Was it a common practice to send wedding cake samples this way? are there many of these about? any info would be much appreciated.

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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by fromdownunder »

Wedding cake tins were I believe relatively common up until the WW2 period - I imagine it was much better than putting a loose piece of cake under your pillow, and hoping you would be the next one to be married. My Mother still has one from her own wedding, but I imagine that posting off pieces of cake would be somewhat less common. An interesting piece of ephemera.

I imagine the practice stopped during WW2, when all metals had more important purposes, and was never revived.

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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by DJM »

I hate fruit cake but it lasts for years, so sending a piece through the post would have been no problems. Probably tasted just as bad at the other end.

:lol:
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by vee gee »

I conducted a search on google about the practise of sending cake through the mail, didnt find much but came across a NY times article reguarding sending cake through the British mail. Apparently there is a high rate of complaints recieved of said cake not reaching its destination! :lol:
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by aethelwulf »

vee gee wrote:Apparently there is a high rate of complaints recieved of said cake not reaching its destination!
Postal workers must have gotten the munchies while on duty, and when a box labelled "cake" is in your hands... :D :evil:

In the 'old days' just about everything was sent through the post, even live chicks or honeybees to farmers (parcel post to rural areas was that fast). 8)
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by doug2222usa »

Until the 1920s, in the U.S., fresh eggs were
routinely sent in special boxes through the mail,
and with such frequent rail service, they arrived
at the egg wholesaler's with no problems.

I have a long article showing the boxes and the
instructions, etc., and will look for it.
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by CollectorColin »

In the 'old days' just about everything was sent through the post, even live chicks or honeybees to farmers (parcel post to rural areas was that fast).
I think bees are still sent by post. I buy live crickets as Gecko food and they are sent through the post.

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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by doug2222usa »

Colin, I have a great scientific experiment for
you. Present a couple of your dragonfly stamps
up against the gecko's open cage door and see
if he (she?) tries to eat them.

These should be duplicates, of course. :mrgreen:

And mint, to avoid the cancellation giving the
dragonfly the appearance of road kill. :wink:

You may report the results here without the
fear of derision. :shock:
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by Yobo »

CollectorColin wrote:
In the 'old days' just about everything was sent through the post, even live chicks or honeybees to farmers (parcel post to rural areas was that fast).
I think bees are still sent by post. I buy live crickets as Gecko food and they are sent through the post.

Colin
I have delivered flies (just in greenhouses to kill of the other flies there) on several occasions as a mailman, so I wouldn't be surprised if bees were sent in the post.
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by mcgooley »

Queen bees ARE still sent by post - dunno about a whole hive though :lol:

The wedding cake mini tins didn't last much after the mid 1930s. It was those 'modern manners' that killed the practice.
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by Tanuki »

I used to live in Japan and my dad had the good idea to send me some French goat cheese. It was during summer, it took the parcel at least one week to arrive in Japan and it stayed one more week in the post office because I wasn't there to pick it up.

When I finally got it I went to a friend's place and opened it there. The cheese had melted and my friend almost fainted when I opened the box. She told me: "I've seen what your dad can do to his own son, I don't want to know what he would do to his worse enemy!" :lol:
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by mobbor »

I wouldn't recommend sending eggs by rail in Australia. I know of a stationmaster who when confronted by a compaint said "they were in perfectly good condition when they left my hands". What he didn't say was that he threw them at the guard, who unfortunately dropped them.

A friend of mine send his mother something by rail & wrote on it "FRAGILE: throw underarm".

I doubt that Australia Post sends anything by rail anymore.
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by mrboggler »

Well right up till 1959 I can remember it as Common practice sending Slices of Wedding cake through the mail..
We used to get a few,some on their own like shown and other in homemade wrappings
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by Skippy »

That wedding cake box is great, I never knew they sent things like that in the post .
Very interesting thread

trying to decifer the Postmarks...
Was it sent from North Broken Hill NSW ?
and took 2 days to get to Unley SA ?

Really interesting item vee gee, thanks for showing it :)

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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by vee gee »

The postmarks are indeed Unley/Nth Broken Hill. I had to buy it just for the novelty of it!
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by manfaefife »

mrboggler wrote:Well right up till 1959 I can remember it as Common practice sending Slices of Wedding cake through the mail..
We used to get a few,some on their own like shown and other in homemade wrappings
Used to be fairly common practice over here, it was usually sent to invited guests or people who sent gifts but couldn't come to the wedding, at least thats what it was like in the 50's and 60's
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by doug2222usa »

Too bad it wasn't pound cake. :lol: :lol:
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

How come you could mail a small box for the cost of a standard letter?

Surely it was double weight or greater?
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by dukeprince »

Has anyone noted how well centered the stamp is , send it to the US for grading.

A nice little item from the past, charming.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by fromdownunder »

Global Administrator wrote:How come you could mail a small box for the cost of a standard letter?

Surely it was double weight or greater?
Maybe it was Fairy Cake, and did not weigh much. :D

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by DJM »

How come you could mail a small box for the cost of a standard letter?

Surely it was double weight or greater?
Maybe the postal workers had a bite to make up for the unpaid postage..

:lol:
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

The store i purchased it from said they were common and they used to get them in all the time! although i have been keeping an eye out but have yet to come across another one.

As for the rate unfortunately the ACSC doesn't list KGV on cake :lol: but it would be great to find any info relating to sending such a parcel or another example!
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Re: KGV on cake box?

Post by selvedge »

mobbor wrote:I wouldn't recommend sending eggs by rail in Australia. I know of a stationmaster who when confronted by a compaint said "they were in perfectly good condition when they left my hands". What he didn't say was that he threw them at the guard, who unfortunately dropped them.

A friend of mine send his mother something by rail & wrote on it "FRAGILE: throw underarm".

I doubt that Australia Post sends anything by rail anymore.
Did you know that you can no longer write "Fragile or breakable" on any mail now? My Postmaster told me that because mail is carried by contractors notes about the fragility are tested to see if it's true.

Reminds me of a friend who used to be a mail sorter for the post office. He said that when they saw an envelope that said "Photographs Do not bend" They would fold it and write underneath "Oh yes they do"
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Philanthropist »

I too can remember wedding cake being sent to friends, relatives etc who could not attend.
A similar size box was also used to mail out military medals at the end of the war.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Allanswood »

You were probably allowed to send them for the price, but only in the right box as a special "celebration" discount from AP at the time.

Much the same as the, very slight discount, you get at Christmas time with sending a card in an envelope.

It may be that when they stopped the discounted delivery, the cakes stopped being sent.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

Allanswood wrote:You were probably allowed to send them for the price, but only in the right box as a special "celebration" discount from AP at the time.
Love to see a copy of the applicable rate sheet covering that! And rate sheets exist for EVERY rate from 1901.

The only exceptions I can think of seeing were - Articles For The Blind, Active Service Military, Printed Papers, and that type of thing.

Not chunks of wedding cake. :lol: :lol:
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vikingeck »

In the immediate Post war years ( 1948-50), My parents mailed complete, full feathered (but dead) poultry at Christmas from the rural North of Scotland to relatives in the city (Glasgow) with a stamped addressed label simply tied to the legs.

These usually got delivered safely by post within 2 days of mailing.

Only one got delayed by a week or two ------and that stopped the family sending any more !
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Allanswood »

5 pence charged... 1911

"And by far, it's the oldest wedding cake ever found that still looks good! I don't know if it's still edible though. According to reports, while cataloguing the Ararat's Langi Morgala Museum's thousands of historical items, volunteers uncovered a piece of wedding cake posted to the region in 1911. The cake, still wrapped in wax paper and housed in a metal tin, was posted in a cupid wedding cake box to a J Hamilton at Tatyoon via Ararat in 1911.

Inside the tin, a card announced the marriage of Mr and Mrs Tim McInerney on May 24, 1911. While the postmark is not clear enough to determine where the cake was posted from, the five pence stamp indicates it was posted from somewhere in Australia. The piece of cake remains intact, with the artefact as a whole showing little signs of deterioration"



I can't tell what thickness the box is, but if it was within maximum thickness and weight then 2 pence would be ok, wouldn't it? Makes for a very thin slice of cake though.
(Nowadays we have a regular letter max of just 5mm)

The box is also tiny - look how big the stamp is compared to the box.

How much was a letter in 1935 ish?
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

Yes 5d in 1911 was 5 times the standard letter rate.

So 5 times 2d in the 1930s was 10d ... about right for a small packet. Given the large number of 9d and 1/- Roos that survive, more likely one of those covered this weight rate?

2d seems wildly under-paid for 1935, it would seem to me.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by aethelwulf »

vikingeck wrote:In the immediate Post war years ( 1948-50), My parents mailed complete, full feathered (but dead) poultry at Christmas from the rural North of Scotland to relatives in the city (Glasgow) with a stamped addressed label simply tied to the legs.
:shock: :shock: :lol: :lol:
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by saphilatelist »

Glen has asked me to comment on the wedding cake box.

I checked through my small collection of Australian Post Office Guides ranging from 1912 to the 1970s to find there was no specific rate for sending pieces of wedding cake.

There are numerous references to say that cakes should be packed in tins.

For mailing to Australian addresses wedding cakes were accepted as merchandise or sample post rate - which in the 1930s was 1d per 2 ounces.

For foreign addresses cakes had be sent as parcel post.

As a frequent scrounger amongst Adelaide's secondhand shops I would agree that wedding cake boxes like these are quite plentiful but in my experience examples that have been through the mail, and have survived in good condition are far from common. I tend to buy the odd-ball items when I see them and have similar examples for false teeth and spectacles sent through the mail!

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by pelmen »

Global Administrator wrote:How come you could mail a small box for the cost of a standard letter?

Surely it was double weight or greater?
You use one of those bundles of KGV heads tied with cotton?...the rest of the bundle must have fallen off that one ;)

Either that or one slice of cake for the parcel and one slice for the post master :)
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

saphilatelist wrote:
For mailing to Australian addresses wedding cakes were accepted as merchandise or sample post rate - which in the 1930s was 1d per 2 ounces.
Amazing bit of info Martin, and I like to learn at least one new thing each day, and this was my piece for today. :)

So this was between 2 and 4 ounces it seems?

vee gee - can you please email me scans of both sides - ozstamps at gmail.com - I'll use this in my next 'Stamp News' article I'm wiritng this weekend .. a great bit of "social philately" .. .and an item I am sure would get a decent price if ever sold. :)
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Thanks for all the info guys as always much appreciated! And as requested Glen i have sent an email of the scans. :D
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

Vee gee .. nothing received .. could you try again please?
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

I have resent them hope its gone through this time.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

Got it!
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Skippy »

Found some Old newspaper articles regarding Wedding cakes in the Post.
Thought others might find them an interesting read too :)

1909
Image
Image

Feb 1910
Image
Image


March 1910
Image

May 1910
Image

Dec 1916
Image

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Global Administrator »

Great finds Skippy. Loved this bit - :mrgreen:

The PO insisted on the use of the tins, as otherwise the cake: "attracts mice and rats, exudes grease, casts off crumbs and is unpleasant to handle."
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Skippy »

:lol: yes, seems the rats were a real problem, all blamed on wedding cake

another snippet from 1909

The Postal Commission
Letter-Sorters and Tuberculosis
Rats After Titbits


...stated that in the last 20 years 80% of the deaths among letter sorters had been due to tuberculosis....
...
...
...
Rats swarmed all over the Post Office...
They come and sit on the gas brackets while we are working, waiting for titbits in the way of wedding cake




I didn't save this article as a jpg, but this link should open it
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/15098443

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by Skippy »

A little bit more...

in 1902 after a postal sorter contracted the Plague at the Post Office, massive fumigation measures were put in place using carbolic acid and formalin lamps

Mr Unwin was next asked if the sending of Wedding cake and other sweets by letter through the Post Office was an inducement to rats to congregate about the mail branch. He replied that some years ago it was found necessary to put parcels containing wedding cake in baskets and suspend them from the ceiling to keep the rats from getting the cake. but such a process was unneccesary now, as cats were kept on the premises....

link to article on Trove >>
http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/14478349

I hope no one ate the cakes when they eventually arrived at their destinations :shock:

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Thanks for your input Skippy, I cant believe some of the info dug up on this item, lets see so far covered:

Sending chickens, eggs, geckos, dragonfly's, false teeth spectacles, toxic goat cheese, bees, non delivery due to postal workers eating the cake, rats eating the cake, the plague and postal workers dropping dead from TB! (I think i might get all my shots updated before handling the box again :shock: )
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by GlenStephens »

Vee Gee .. so inside the cardboard outer there is a tin box of sorts?
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Yep, there is a plain thin plate tin box.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by admin »

All part of the current Stamp News mailed this week . . thanks to all members for their great input!

http://www.glenstephens.com/snmarch11.html

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Found another example, from what i can make out is posted 1941 and also paying the applicable 2D postal rate.

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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by GlenStephens »

How interesting .. you must get to some neat second hand shops David. :)

Have never seen these before myself.
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

"How interesting .. you must get to some neat second hand shops David."

Actually the name is "Jason" :lol:

I work an even time roster (9 days on/9 days off) and this gives me plenty of time to scrounge around and pursue Philatelic and other not so desirable interests. (I might add to the displeasure of the other half! :P )
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

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Skippy wrote:
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Re: Australia KGV 2d red stamp on Wedding Cake box?

Post by vee gee »

Interesting web page with samples of cake from royal weddings, sent through the mail

http://www.ediblegeography.com/cake-in-the-mail/
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