Discussion on the stamps and covers etc, of North Korea

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Discussion on the stamps and covers etc, of North Korea

Post by putnum »

.
Can anybody tell me if this stamp is from North Korea or South Korea?

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Re: Is this N. Korea or S. Korea....

Post by nigelc »

North Korea SG N396-N400 / Scott #406-410
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Re: Is this N. Korea or S. Korea....

Post by putnum »

Thanks Nigel!
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by mrboggler »

Putnum,,do you have a Scott or Gibbons world Catalogue, :?:

If so,, its easy in THIS case to work out where they are from.
Just look up the year 1962, in both North and South,one will be there and the other will not,
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by putnum »

mrboggler wrote:Putnum,,do you have a Scott or Gibbons world Catalogue, :?:

If so,, its easy in THIS case to work out where they are from.
Just look up the year 1962, in both North and South,one will be there and the other will not,
I did not have access to one at the time but yes I do have Scotts. :) I wonder is North Korean stamps hard to come by?
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by fromdownunder »

putnum, I think that you will find that most, if not all South Korea stamps start with letters that look like CH, and that North Korean stamps do not and never have.

My understanding is that North Korean stamps are prohibited imports within the USA (like Cuba are/were) and difficult to get hold of in your country. Most of thern, like most stamps of every country have no real value and are readily avaliable elsewhere (outside America), and are as common as they need to be to satisfy market demand at minimum price.

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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by putnum »

fromdownunder wrote:putnum, I think that you will find that most, if not all South Korea stamps start with letters that look like CH, and that North Korean stamps do not and never have.

My understanding is that North Korean stamps are prohibited imports within the USA (like Cuba are/were) and difficult to get hold of in your country. Most of thern, like most stamps of every country have no real value and are readily avaliable elsewhere (outside America), and are as common as they need to be to satisfy market demand at minimum price.

Norm
oh wow so I could get in trouble for owing the north korean stamps in the usa? That is if I get caught??
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by iomoon »

North Korea is listed in Scott and they haven't been taken to task yet!

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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by aethelwulf »

putnum wrote:oh wow so I could get in trouble for owing the north korean stamps in the usa? That is if I get caught??
I remember reading a few years ago that the rules about owning Cuban stamps, and probably DPRK and other 'embargoed' countries, were relaxed, so that ownership "as a private individual for the purposes of collecting" (something to that effect) became OK.

But I hardly think that the FBI/CIA/NSA (police alphabet soup :roll:) have us harmless stamp collectors high on their list of targets to chase after. What if you buy a mixed WW boxlot from overseas, and when you rummage through it you discover some Cuban or DPRK stamps. Are you going to take them to the police station and grovel on your knees for forgiveness, "please officers, I didn't know they were in that junk box of 50,000 stamps".

Rogue nuclear bombs don't use stamps as their explosive. :o Even the most bombastic propagandistic output from the countries slapped with the USA's silly, destructive and leaks-like-a-sieve policies (how many Cubans live legally in Miami?) is more likely to elicit chuckles than hate-mongering and renegade terrorism.

As for buying DPRK stamps, I attended the international stamp shows in Bangkok 2007 and Hong Kong 2009. At both shows were representatives from the North Korean stamp corporation (the post office doesn't have a philatelic dept). They had display binders with every issue going back 15years, you leafed through the pages and pointed out the items you wanted, and they pulled them out of their stock behind the counter...their 'stock' being suitcases full of near-wallpaper. They sold the material at exaggerated prices too, since it was a hard-currency earner for them. If you're interested, I can pass along their mailing address in Pyongyang. :D I used to be on their mailing list for new issue bulletins actually, and had the mail delivered to me at work, the (South) Korean international school in HK. :lol:
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by putnum »

aethelwulf wrote:
putnum wrote:oh wow so I could get in trouble for owing the north korean stamps in the usa? That is if I get caught??
I remember reading a few years ago that the rules about owning Cuban stamps, and probably DPRK and other 'embargoed' countries, were relaxed, so that ownership "as a private individual for the purposes of collecting" (something to that effect) became OK.

But I hardly think that the FBI/CIA/NSA (police alphabet soup :roll:) have us harmless stamp collectors high on their list of targets to chase after. What if you buy a mixed WW boxlot from overseas, and when you rummage through it you discover some Cuban or DPRK stamps. Are you going to take them to the police station and grovel on your knees for forgiveness, "please officers, I didn't know they were in that junk box of 50,000 stamps".

Rogue nuclear bombs don't use stamps as their explosive. :o Even the most bombastic propagandistic output from the countries slapped with the USA's silly, destructive and leaks-like-a-sieve policies (how many Cubans live legally in Miami?) is more likely to elicit chuckles than hate-mongering and renegade terrorism.

As for buying DPRK stamps, I attended the international stamp shows in Bangkok 2007 and Hong Kong 2009. At both shows were representatives from the North Korean stamp corporation (the post office doesn't have a philatelic dept). They had display binders with every issue going back 15years, you leafed through the pages and pointed out the items you wanted, and they pulled them out of their stock behind the counter...their 'stock' being suitcases full of near-wallpaper. They sold the material at exaggerated prices too, since it was a hard-currency earner for them. If you're interested, I can pass along their mailing address in Pyongyang. :D I used to be on their mailing list for new issue bulletins actually, and had the mail delivered to me at work, the (South) Korean international school in HK. :lol:
Wow this is all very interesting to me. Yes I would like the information about the mailing list. :)

What other countries like North Korea are prohibited in the US?
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by aethelwulf »

putnum wrote:Wow this is all very interesting to me. Yes I would like the information about the mailing list. :)

What other countries like North Korea are prohibited in the US?
I don't have any of the covers at home anymore, I gave them all to a friend who's all-out obsessive over anything North Korean...he even teaches himself Korean, and can do a spot-on imitation of the DPRK newcasters. 8) I'll ask him for the details. Maybe I have the address in my email archive...interesting thing, the stamp corporation apparently shares a gmail address with another DPRK company who handles export sales of North Korean art (amazing to think that a large section of the bureaucracy is sharing one email account :lol:).

Countries who are persona non grata with the USA, and therefore importation of their stamps was prohibited (though this is softening now) are, AFAIK: Cuba, DPRK, Libya, Iran. Iraq used to be on that list, in the period between the two Gulf Wars/Bush's follies.

I remember reading in Linn's a few years ago that the US government amended the JFK-signed embargo on Cuba to allow "reasonable quantities" of stamps to be imported...as is typical of bureaucracy, they were simply catching up to reality, in that there were lots of Cuban stamps floating around the marketplace already. For many years Scott listed the items, ie. gave them catalogue numbers, illustrated them, and listed all the face-values in the set, they just didn't give any catalogue values, since it was technically illegal to own them thus placing a value on them would be moot.

The whole "Americans are not allowed to travel to Cuba" thing is easily circumvented...Canada has no such restriction, so Americans hop across the border to Toronto or Montreal, and happily catch a flight to Havana. At the airport, the immigration officer will put the entry stamp on a sheet of paper and staple it in the American tourist's passport, so that there's no record to show they were ever there. 8)

Back to DPRK, I remember a Regency-Superior auction a few months ago that offered, as one lot, something like 20kg of proofs, colour trials and printer's waste for DPRK issues. So if a major auction house will come right out and offer such things, it must be OK. But then, the stamps themselves are probably printed in China, thus you can be pendantic and argue that its not an importation from DPRK, its an import from China, and the fact that they have North Korea's name on them is beside the point.
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by putnum »

aethelwulf wrote:
putnum wrote:Wow this is all very interesting to me. Yes I would like the information about the mailing list. :)

What other countries like North Korea are prohibited in the US?
I don't have any of the covers at home anymore, I gave them all to a friend who's all-out obsessive over anything North Korean...he even teaches himself Korean, and can do a spot-on imitation of the DPRK newcasters. 8) I'll ask him for the details. Maybe I have the address in my email archive...interesting thing, the stamp corporation apparently shares a gmail address with another DPRK company who handles export sales of North Korean art (amazing to think that a large section of the bureaucracy is sharing one email account :lol:).

Countries who are persona non grata with the USA, and therefore importation of their stamps was prohibited (though this is softening now) are, AFAIK: Cuba, DPRK, Libya, Iran. Iraq used to be on that list, in the period between the two Gulf Wars/Bush's follies.

I remember reading in Linn's a few years ago that the US government amended the JFK-signed embargo on Cuba to allow "reasonable quantities" of stamps to be imported...as is typical of bureaucracy, they were simply catching up to reality, in that there were lots of Cuban stamps floating around the marketplace already. For many years Scott listed the items, ie. gave them catalogue numbers, illustrated them, and listed all the face-values in the set, they just didn't give any catalogue values, since it was technically illegal to own them thus placing a value on them would be moot.

The whole "Americans are not allowed to travel to Cuba" thing is easily circumvented...Canada has no such restriction, so Americans hop across the border to Toronto or Montreal, and happily catch a flight to Havana. At the airport, the immigration officer will put the entry stamp on a sheet of paper and staple it in the American tourist's passport, so that there's no record to show they were ever there. 8)

Back to DPRK, I remember a Regency-Superior auction a few months ago that offered, as one lot, something like 20kg of proofs, colour trials and printer's waste for DPRK issues. So if a major auction house will come right out and offer such things, it must be OK. But then, the stamps themselves are probably printed in China, thus you can be pendantic and argue that its not an importation from DPRK, its an import from China, and the fact that they have North Korea's name on them is beside the point.
wow this is all very amazing to me. :) I never knew that Americans could not travel to cuba.

Thanks for passing along this information. :)
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by aethelwulf »

putnum wrote:wow this is all very amazing to me. :) I never knew that Americans could not travel to cuba.

Thanks for passing along this information. :)
Canadians (of which I'm proudly one :o) love Cuba...who wouldn't, everything is generally inexpensive. If you get out of the gated all-inclusive resort and wander the cities, you feel like you're in a bit of a time warp. Kennedy signed the embargo on Cuba in 1961 (?), so American imports stopped at that point, meaning Cuba is home to a huge collection of 1950s American autos. Kept in running order by mechanics who must work magic. After all, the alternative was to drive a Soviet Lada. :oops:

I remember a few years ago (maybe 8?), a bit of rubbish legislation that passed the US Congress...maybe this was Helms-Burton...in part it said that "directors of foreign companies who do business in Cuba will not be allowed into the USA"...sure enough, a couple weeks later an executive with a major Canadian mining company, with operations in several countries including Cuba, was denied entry at the US border, which for Canadians is usually a whistle-stop.
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by mrboggler »

I remember reading a few years back that the Nth Korean Post Office had SOLD ALL of its OLD STOCK to a Dealer from Europe,????

Also is Vietnam still on the USA,s list of banned imports,??
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by putnum »

wow I wonder if that's true?? Where did you read about that do you remember?
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Re: Are these stamps from North Korea or South Korea?

Post by mrboggler »

It would have most likely been in the Stamp Monthly or the Stamp News,both Australian Publications,but then again,I do read a lot of other Mags that come my way,
But I DO remember reading about it and it also was quoted as saying there was a Shipping container involved.and from Memorey it was a Scandanavian Dealer who bought it all
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DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

Hello all,

I found some stamps from DPKR on a box. Are someone collecting this ?

If yes, could someone indicates me how to evaluate such things ?

Some examples :

Image was deleted by the original post from the host location

Thank you in advance :)

Regards;
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Re: DPKR CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by muruk »

I don't know the stamps, but have some suggestions. :D

Try a different heading. DPKR will confuse people, DPRK will be better, but many of us don't know abbreviations, so "North Korea" would be even better.

Also better to put an image that we can actually see ... much better than a thumbnail link, which many of us won't chase.

Like this:

Image
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

yes, thank for the tips :)

for the image, my hosting websites does not allow me to resize pictures so it were too high (>850px). I will open a photobucket account I think ;)
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gavin-h »

According to my Korea Stamp Corporation catalogue (2006), these are catalogued at:

Philimpex = €1.50
Olympics = €2.50
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by doug2222usa »

For future reference, Scott numbers are #1855a for the Olympics, and #2135 for the Philexfrance; US $8 and $7.50 respectively, mint, in 2008.
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

oww thanks,

Is there any online reference to find it ? because I do not have this catalog :(
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by aethelwulf »

Going back to the OP, "Does anyone collect this stuff?", I would say that thematic collectors, obviously, will go for the items which have, again obviously, been issued with them in mind. However from what I've seen, thematic collectors almost always want Mint. I have a friend obsessed with all things North Korean; he's not a philatelist, so just saves whatever stamps he comes across in a stockbook along with currency and museum tickets and other ephemera. He particularly goes for the propaganda-inspired stamps.

Why North Korea does these trainloads of CTO, and who buys them, I don't know. Sometimes dealers will try to market them as "exotic stamps from North Korea".

But really the stuff has seen as much of its "home country" as 99% of their population has seen of the outside world: zero. This stuff is printed in China or maybe Europe.

At a couple stamp exhibitions I've attended, the North Korean stamp agency has had a booth amongst the various postal administrations. Their English-speaking rep is a rather nice gentleman. He always brings along a suitcase with bundles of miniature sheets and sheetlets, and small binders with illustrated pricelists. Reflecting the country's desperate scrabble for hard currency, at the last big international here in HK, they had a handwritten sign on the counter saying "discount offered for wholesale purchases".
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by doug2222usa »

Most of the animals, birds, and fish on their topical stamps, the average peasants would gladly EAT. In North Korea, it's the citizens who are endangered, not the wildlife. :wink:
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

I have also stamps about the legend of Kim Yong-Il, its very very funny :)

I will scan it soon :mrgreen:
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

Here is more :)

If you can help me identifying this :)

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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

the funny stamps :D

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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by gugusg »

Image
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by Sisophon »

These are 1970s/80s CTO, printed in N.Korea, not China or Europe.

Since 1970s N.Korea has been issuing tons of "export stamps" which are primarily for hard currency, and because of trade embargo, most of these paper bits just ended up in China as China always maintains a good relationship with Pyongyang.

Now in China, your pretty CTO sheetlets are all retailed at less than 0.5USD per.

For the western world, N.Korea is exotic and mysterious, and so dealers often mark up a bit, usually a dollar or more per.

Just like the sand dunes, these CTO catch the eyes of beginners. Advanced collectors go for postal covers and items from the early period.

FYI, SG has an online world catalogue: http://www.allworldstamps.com
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by doug2222usa »

"AllWorldStamps" is virtually kaput unless you cough up big bucks.

All World Stamps - Subscription Information

We are no longer accepting new subscriptions to All World Stamps.

We have recently launched My Collection, a revolutionary new tool which has been developed by the team at Stanley Gibbons to help collectors manage, view and value their collections online...[more]...A subscription to My Collection is available to purchase at only £49.95.
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by aethelwulf »

A Dutch dealer, Postbeeld, offers Freestampcatalogue at http://www.postbeeld.com/en/fsc/home/
Freestampcatalogue (FSC) is a world stamp catalogue free for everyone to use. Almost all official stamps issued from about 1920 to the present day are shown in the catalogue. However, this includes only stamps and blocks.
It can be a bit awkward to use, if you have an unknown stamp you have to click year by year through the listings for the country to find a 'match'.
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Re: DPRK/NorthKorea CTO ? Someone collect that ?

Post by Sisophon »

doug2222usa wrote:"AllWorldStamps" is virtually kaput unless you cough up big bucks.
All World Stamps - Subscription Information
We are no longer accepting new subscriptions to All World Stamps.
We have recently launched My Collection, a revolutionary new tool which has been developed by the team at Stanley Gibbons to help collectors manage, view and value their collections online...[more]...A subscription to My Collection is available to purchase at only £49.95.

£49.95 is a nasty surprise. But the online catalogue is free to use, those N.Korean stamps have the issuing year on them, so just look up the relevant year session and you will spot the listing.

Personally I think everything in UK has a crazy price tag ("£49.95" says all!) and so I do not take SG as reference. In simple, most 1980s Asian CTO (except China) are no treasure, 1 USD or so per full set including stamps, S/S, sheetlets and whatever is reasonable enough if you plan to sell them.
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Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

Hi,

I am wondering if anybody collect North Korea covers/postal history in here?
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by aethelwulf »

If you go for the 'early' material, the 1950s issues with their rough-looking stamps, have relatively deep pockets, those covers are ca. $200USD each items. I don't collect DPRK, but have seen a lot of the material in auctions here in HK the last couple years. Sure the place fell into doing a mountain of 'thematic mill' rubbish later on, but there's a lot of interest in the early years. The same for my 'pet' country, Mongolia, one has to willing to sell their mother-in-law nowadays to acquire early postal history. :evil:
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

aethelwulf wrote:If you go for the 'early' material, the 1950s issues with their rough-looking stamps, have relatively deep pockets, those covers are ca. $200USD each items. I don't collect DPRK, but have seen a lot of the material in auctions here in HK the last couple years. Sure the place fell into doing a mountain of 'thematic mill' rubbish later on, but there's a lot of interest in the early years. The same for my 'pet' country, Mongolia, one has to willing to sell their mother-in-law nowadays to acquire early postal history. :evil:
Yes the early issues on covers are very rare, it is however a very interesting field of study. What is especially rare are the local covers. Actually even for the recent issues such local covers are extremely rare. I would love to hear from anybody collecting North Korean cover. I will post examples of such covers in the near future if there is some interest.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by maturin »

I'm interested, but I never see anything that isn't a first day cover or similar philatelic stuff.

Yet, others tell me there's no shortage of the real thing. Genuine mail is just sitting in collections and shoe boxes in Asia, where North Koreans would naturally send mail.

Are DPRK covers hard to come by, or just hard to come by in the USA?

I assume there are few if any commercial covers from a land with no private enterprise.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by aethelwulf »

drseg wrote:What is especially rare are the local covers. Actually even for the recent issues such local covers are extremely rare.
The people are too hungry to lift a pen and write a letter. :o

I can just imagine what domestic correspondence would be like, filled with praises to "Dear Leader" and not even the thought of saying anything remotely critical about life, for fear of the DPRK's version of the NKVD knocking on the door.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by CGOD1 »

Hey I just collect NK stamps for the hilarity of it all... the ones making "Dear Leader" or "Dear Father" or whatever his latest name is sound like some sort of benevolent humanitarian. Uh huh. Riiiiiiiight.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

maturin wrote:I'm interested, but I never see anything that isn't a first day cover or similar philatelic stuff.

Yet, others tell me there's no shortage of the real thing. Genuine mail is just sitting in collections and shoe boxes in Asia, where North Koreans would naturally send mail.

Are DPRK covers hard to come by, or just hard to come by in the USA?

I assume there are few if any commercial covers from a land with no private enterprise.
Yes covers from North Korea (aka DPRK) are difficult to find, especially if they are non-philatelic. Internally used cover are especially hard to find. Postmarks from cities other than the capital Pyongyang are also very hard to find, as for the past few years most international mail is postmarked in Pyongyang, independant of where it is mailed in the country. It does not seem to be the case for mail to China, but it is definitely the case for mail to North America. I could confirm that when I visited a few years ago.

Here's an example of a cover that I posted earlier on another post. It is an internally used registered cover with the rare 2009 overprinted stamps.

Image.

I will post more covers in the next few days.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

maturin wrote:I assume there are few if any commercial covers from a land with no private enterprise.
To answer this specific question, I must say that there is quite a bit of mail that originate from governmental agencies and corporations, actually they are easier to find than letters from individuals.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by steevh »

A few months ago I saw a DPRK cover from 1950s on eBay.
Terrible condition, but still fetched US$50+.
Next time family or friends visit I'll inists they send me a pile of postcards!
But I suspect easier said than done.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by sageyelm »

I have a few North Korean stamps. I am pretty interested. I would really like to collect more but i have a hard time finding them. I can only find them for sale online :(

I think this is one of the countries on the top of the list ( where i wanna collect)
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

sageyelm wrote:I have a few North Korean stamps. I am pretty interested. I would really like to collect more but i have a hard time finding them. I can only find them for sale online :(
They can be bought from the Korean Stamp Corporation, Yonggwang Street, Central District, Pyongyang, DPR of Korea (North Korea).
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

Image

This a philatelic cover but amazing none the less. It is a cover sent from Tristan Da Cunha to North Korea; unique for sure. There is a postal label from North Korea and on top on this the cover has a postage due marking from Tristan Da Cunha.
Last edited by drseg on 09 Aug 2012 12:55, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

Image
Image

Another nice internal cover from 2003 (Note that the cancel says 92 but in North Korea a different calendar is used - year 0 is the year Kim Il Sung was born). There are a lot of stamps on this cover as in Aug 2002 the postal rates were changed the internal rate going from 10 chon to 3 won. The other interesting thing with this cover is that all stamps are "locals". Indeed in the 1990's and early 2000's there were 2 printing of most stamps: locals on a "rough" non-glossy paper and "foreign/philatelic" on glossy paper.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by Stewie1980 »

CGOD1 wrote:Hey I just collect NK stamps for the hilarity of it all...
Haha, same reason why I collect them! Especially those with a big smiling Kim!
In what quality do you collect them? I only collect MNH and postally used, no CTO. Postally used is hard ofcourse. I have only two from the 60s so far. MNH I mostly have new issues from the last 10 years and a few sets and sheets from the 90s.

drseg,
Interesting to see a cover from there. Hope to see more!
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by gavin-h »

I'm smiling at drseg's decision to blank out the receiver's name and address on that cover - presumably to protect his "privacy" - the one commodity there's undoubtedly no shortage of in North Korea :D

If you let us know who (s)he is, maybe we could all send something to relieve the grind and tedium of having to live in the "Democratic People's Republic" :lol: :lol:
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by Allegheny »

It will be interesting to see if there is any censor label on the early North Korea covers. Or they just opened them and taped them back up.
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by nasia »

drseg wrote:Image

This a philatelic cover but amazing none the less. It is a cover sent from Tristan Da Cunha to North Korea; unique for sure. There is a postal label from North Korea and on top on this the cover has a postage due marking from Tristan Da Cunha.
What is the date on the Tristan Da Cunha postmark cancelling the stamp?
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Re: Anybody collect North Korea covers?

Post by drseg »

nasia wrote: What is the date on the Tristan Da Cunha postmark cancelling the stamp?
It is impossible to tell because of the North Korean label that covers the part of the postmark with the date. However, there is a very clear strike at the back of a "local" postmark in Korean from Hamhung that says 92.5.15 (i.e., 2003 May 15), and a very faint postmark on the label from Pyongyang of 29 May 2003 (it is an "international" postmark in English that uses the Gregorian calendar; used on all outside mail except sometime to China)
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