Milestones of paleontology related Philately.

List of the first: stamp, FDC, post stationery etc. depicted prehistoric animals, dinosaurs, paleontologists ....


Flying around the world to find and collect these stamps would be almost impossible. Even if you found business class tickets online for all your flights you would still spend quite a bit. Business class airfare specials can be found daily. At least you would enjoy the flights more than a coach flight


193x  USA,  First post item with dinosauer image

first meter farnking with dinosaurs on it
Images above are from Stampedout.nl website

From the nineteen thirties until the fifties, the Sinclair Oil Company used this meter franking, as well as regular ad  to advertise their motor oil. They chose a dinosaur as company logo as a symbol of the great length of time their oil spent in the ground.

 On 1935, 1938  Sinclair Refining Company run an ad compain. As part of it, set of comercial stamps depicted various dinosauers have been issued. This is the first commersial set of stamps depicted prehistoric animals

These were intended for children.  In each program when you went to a Sinclair station on week one you would be given a stamp album.  Then on each 8 following week you would be given a new sheetlet of stamps. The books had some advertising material but mostly contained scientific and historical  information to explain the dinosaurs and petroleum to children.

1946 USA, First envelope / FDC with a dinosaur image 

first meter FDC (First Day Cover) with dinosaurs on it

09.08.1946 , with this American FDC, and that the theme 'Prehistoric life in Philately' was born on this date.
On this date, a stamp was issued to celebrate the centenary of the Smithsonian Institution.
The stamp itself shows the Smithsonian's buildings in Washington (Actually this stamp  itself can be consider as a stamp of paleontologic tematic as the Institue has very large Paleobiology Department ). As illustration on the left side of the FDC shows a sauropod,  most likely a Diplodocus.There are  some variation of this FDC envelope, quite many various illustration are used at left side .

Feb. 7 1996 another stamp with corresondent  FDC has been issed at USA to sign 150 years of the institue. This time Tyranosauer is depicted on the left side

 

 

1947 USSR, First paleontologist on stamps 

first paleontologist on stamps

The first stamp (known to me) shows a paleontologist has been issued in USSR on 1947. Actually  it is a set of two stamps 30 kopejka(100 kopejka = 1 rubel)s, green and 50 kopeja braun. These  stamps are shows A.P. Karpinskij, who is most known as First elected president of Russian Science Academic. Hovewer, he was also  great geologist and paleontologist, who made some important discovers at Ural mountaints area of Russia. 

The second stamp wit ha title "Greatest russian scientist bilogist-paleontolog: W.O. Kovalevskij" has been issued at USSR on 1952, with a value of 40 kopejka. This is actually the first stamp dedicated to paleontologist.

The fisrt stamp of scientists with a prehistoric animal fossiel on a backround has been issued in Romania on 1967, as part of set of famous Romanian people. Green stamp with a value of 40 bani shows  Romanian biologist and director of  Museum of Natural History  Grigores Antipa. Some web sites and even philatelistic books/catalog mentioned this stamp as the first stamp depicted paleontologist on it.  Actually, Grigores Antipa was not a paleontologist at all - he was the zoologist, ichthyologist, Hydrobiology, economist, ecologist, oceanology, museology. He founded the Romanian school of Hydrobiology, ichthyology and oceanology, pioneer in the field of museology, the author of modern concepts in ecology, biosociologiei, Bio biosphere. He was director of the Museum of Natural History in Bucharest, where he had an important contribution to the organization on a phylogenetic and ecological collections. As a token of gratitude for his work in the museum since 1933, Museum of Natural History bears his name. The missleading is caused by fossil of Dinotherium giganteum depicted on a background of the stamp. It is there just because it is  the most impressive exponats of the museum.

 

 

1949 Monaco, First stamp with cave painting, first stamp with paleontologic museum, fsirst stamp with antropologic museum 

First stamp with cave painting, first stamp with paleontologic museum, fsirst stamp with antropologic museum

In 1949, the Monaco post issued a set of stamps shows various area of interest of Prince Albert I, who had a keen interest in the origins of man and who founded the "Institute for Human Paleontology" in Paris that was responsible for a number of archeological digs. Three stamps of the set represent  an aurochs from the famous Lascaux cave, and an Institute for Human Paleontology and Musee Antroologique bildings

 

 

1951 India, First reconstruction of a prehistoric animal 

first reconstruction of a prehistoric animal on stamp

stamp of 150 anniversary of Indian
Geological Survey

 On commemoration of Indian Geological Survey centenary on 13th January 1951 Indian Postage released The stamp shows two individuals of Stegodon ganesa, the first ever reconstruction of a prehistoric animal on a stamp.It was valued 2 Anas.Ana the olden Indian coin was in use before 1956. In 1956 Indian Government introduced Paise the hundredth fraction of Rupee the currency.16 Anas are equal to One Rupee. An FDC envelope with these stamp has been issued as well.

On March 4, 2001 a another  stamp was issued by the Department of Post, Government of India , to commemorate 150 anniversary of Indian Geological Survey.  This time  geological motive has been choosed.

The four colour stamp shows bauxite (aluminium ore), chalcopyrite (copper ore) and psilomelane (manganese ore). The denomination of the stamp is 300 paise (Rs.3.00)

 

1952 Algeria, First fossiel on a stamp

First fossiel on a stamp

In 1952, the XIX International Geological Congress was held in Algeria. Two special stamps  and several MC  were issued 11.8.1952, in order to sign this event. The ammonite fossil is depicted on  15 Francs stamp is of genus Berbericeras sikikensis. The second stamp with value of 30f shows on of the most famous geological site of the country - The Hoggar Mountains

Ammonites are excellent index fossils, and it is often possible to link the rock layer in which they are found to specific geological time periods, therefore they appears on several philatelic items related to some geological events.

 

 

 

1955 USA, First stamp with a bones, skeleton of prehistoric animal

First stamp with a bones and skeleton of prehistoric animal

First stamp with a bones, skeleton of prehistoric animal issued on 5.1.1955 in USA and shows the famous painter and fossil collector Mr. Charles Willson Peale.( 1741-1827, USA) On the background to the right you will find a skeleton of a mastodon (Mammut americanus), which found its way via London to Darmstadt in Germany and is still exhibited at the Hessisches Landesmuseum The stamp is reproduction of The Artist in His Museum  painted in 1822 . Toward the end of his career, beginning in 1822, he painted seven self-portraits that together formed the final motif of his art and the final flourishing of his talent. The Artist in His Museum is a large-scale work painted in about two months, and is the most emblematic of Peale's many self-portraits. For more info click here

 

1958 China, First stamp of Dinosauer 

First stamp of Dinosauer

  Lufengosaurus became the first complete dinosaur skeleton to be mounted in China and displayed in Beijing. A commemorative postage stamp was issued in 1958 to celebrate the event in set of 3 stamps shows also a trilobite and the giant deer of China.

Lufengosaurus, meaning Lufeng lizard, is a genus of sauropod dinosaur from the Early and Middle Jurassic Period of what is now southwestern China. It was named by C. C. Young in 1941. This is one of the few prosauropod dinosaurs to survive from the Early Jurassic  eras.

 

 

1961 Switzerland, First plant fossiel on stamp

First plant fossiel on stamp

 The fisrt stamp depicted fossiel of plats is from Switzerland, and is a part of 5 stamps set shows some fossiel and minearls. Four stamp sets depicted minearls and fossilies have been issued by Switzerland between 1958-1961. One set a year, next comming 40 years, till 2004 no single stamp of fossiel or dinousauer has been issued

 

 

 

1965 Poland/San Marino, First pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric animals

First pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric animals

First pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric animals

The first pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric animals were issued in 1965, the Polish (left)  issue just predating the one from San Marino(right). Both issues had only one purpose: to be collected.

The illustrations on the Polish stamps are after the famous Czech painter Z. Burian, famous Czech artist who made many pictures and ilustration on paleontologic tematic.

 

1965 Tanzania ,

First stamp with prehistoric human fossiel

 On December 9 1965 Tanzania issues a set of 14 stamps shows some tipical animals, landscapes and some historical episodes to show development of the country.  (Some of these stamps have been overprinted later on)

1.30 S., Zinjanthropus skull and Olduvai Gorge.

 

 

1967 Cuba, First pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric human

First pictorial stamps depicting prehistoric human

 First stamp set depicted reconstruction of prehistoric human and it's evolution is issued by Cuba on 1967

 

 

 

 

 

1970 Lesotho First stamps with dinosauer's footprint

First stamps with dinosauer's footprint

 The first stamp set depicted dinosauer or another prehistoric animals footprint is issued by Lesotho in 1970.

 

 

 

1970 Poland, First post stationery swith fossiel illustration

First post stationery swith fossiel illustration

On June 19, 1970 Post Authority of Poland printed out a post card in order to commemorate  the 50-th anniversary of the Polish geological institute (face value 40 gr., quantity 100.000). The building of the institute depicted on the left side of the card. Printed stamp show an ammonite of  genus Perisphinctes, specie panthieri.polonicus  from collection of the institute. The ammonite is about 30cm in size and van be founded in various loaction in Poland.s

Trilobite of genus Marrolithus ornatus featured on a special post mark issued in Kielce. This blind trilobit is only 2 cm in size, probably borrowed in the mud of Ordovician sea floor.s

 

 

 

 

 

1970 Angola, First stamps at diamond shape with some fossils on it

 First stamps at diamond shape with some fossils on it

  Most of the stamps issued around the world have rectangular or quadrat shape.  Hovewer, from time to time some post authorities produce stamps with different shapes.

On 31.10.1970, Angola issued a set of definitive stamps with titel "Geology, Mineralogy, Paleontology"  shows some minerals and fossils found in the country. All 12 stamps of the set have diamond shape.

 

1971 Yemen-North, Fisrt Miniature sheet depicted prehistoric animal

First Miniature sheet depicted prehistoric animal

The first miniature sheets (or souvenir sheets) were issued before W.W. II, usually with a surtax for raising funds for a charity rather than for sale to collectors. They became more of a collectors item with pictorial issues around 1970.
In 1971 the first stamp set with miniature sheet with a prehistoric animal was issued by Manama, North Yemen, Fujeira and other countries followed quickly.

 

 

 

 

 

1980 State of Oman, Dhufare, First unofficial/ illegal issue of stamps with prehistoric animals

First unofficial/ illegal issue of stamps with prehistoric animals

In the nineteen seventies and -eighties, rebel groups attempting to overthrow the Oman government took control over parts of the country on the Arabian peninsula. In order to raise funds and to establish themselves as rightful rulers, stamps were issued under the names 'State of Oman' and ' Dhufar'.
In 1980, a set of prehistoric animals was issued under both names. Both issues consist of eight values in a sheet (perforate and inperforate ) and an inperforate miniature sheet. 'Used' covers exist, but all are addressed to a stamp dealer. . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1991 Guyana First stamp Sheet with prehistoric animals

 Firts stamp Sheet with prehistoric animals

Sheets are a great step forward for postal authorities: instead of selling stamps one at a time, you sell them wholesale. They also enable designers to let their imagination run wild over a larger area. For collectors, they are a mixed blessing at best, and they certainly hit you hard financially.
Anyway, the first sheet with a prehistoric theme is this one, issued in 1991 by the South American country of Guyana, with twenty South American prehistoric animals in one go.

By the way, most stamps of prehistoric animals thematic is issued by Guyana and have just one target - to be collected. Thre are no real story behund these stamps - just a nice colorfull images of dinosauers and Co

 

 

 

 

1982 Sweden/Thailand, First stamp booklet with prehistoric animals

First stamp booklet with prehistoric animals

First stamp booklet with prehistoric animals

 

 on January 1st 1992, the Thai Department of Mineral Recources celebrated its centenary, and a set of four stamps  and FDC envelope was issued. The 2 B. value shows the skeletons of a theropod and a sauropod, and palaeontologists excavating bones. The booklet contains five stamps.

In October 1992, the Swedish post issued 4  stamps with a value  2.80 K. each , showing prehistoric animals in a stamp booklet, regular stamp set and FDC.

 

 

1983 Australis, First self-adhesive stamps with prehistoric animals

First self-adhesive stamps with prehistoric animals

Australia was the first country to depict prehistoric animals on self-adhesive stamps in 1993. A set and miniature sheet were issued, the two letter-rate 45 cent stamps were issued both in coils and in stamp booklets.

 

 

 

 

 

1998 Singapore, First ATM stamps depicted prehistoric animals 

First ATM stamps depicted prehistoric animals

 On 22nd of April 1998, Post Authority of Singapore introduce first ATM stamps depicted dinosaurs.  The sheet of15 stamps was sold exclusively  via OCBC (Oversea Chinese Banking Corporation) ATMs for limited  period of time. They were designed with exactly the same dimensions(156mmx74mm) as the currency note of SGD 50  and very thin (less than 0.13mm ) so that they can be issued through the same aperture.

 

2009 South Africa, First set with 3D stamp depicted prehistoric animals

First set with 3D stamp depicted prehistoric animals

 The first 3D stamp set has been issued by South Africa in 2009.  Ther are two mini-sheets 4 and 6 stamps each as well as two FDC cards. 

The South African Post Office is combining pre-history with modern technology by using the anaglyph method to create a three-dimensional effect.

This set of stamps is the first ever with a 3D effect to be issued by the South African Post Office. It will also be the first time that a pair of viewing glasses will be supplied with each stamp sheet and commemorative cover.

An anaglyph is a stereo image that requires special glasses with red and green (or blue) lenses for 3D viewing. To achieve the effect, two views of a picture are printed in two colours, usually red for the left eye and blue or green for the right eye.

The stamps were illustrated by Chantelle Basson, a second-year Graphic Design student at the Open Window Academy in Pretoria. Five of the stamps depict skeletons of different types of dinosaurs, while the other five stamps show images of what scientists believe these creatures most probably looked like. All the dinosaurs depicted on the stamps have an African connection.

 

2010 South Korea, First stamps with perforation in form of dinosaur

First stamps with perforation in form of dinosaur

  On 05th of August 2010, Korean Post issued the stampset "The Age of Dinosaurs Series (1st Issue)" with perforations in the shape of dinosaur.

 

 

 

 

2012 Turkey, First hologram-motion stamps depicted dinosaur

First hologram-motion stamps depicted dinosaur

  On 05th of June 2012, Post Authority of Turkeey  issued a stamp set "World environment day (Dinosaurs)" . The set is a mini-sheet of 4 stamps. Aditionaly, souvenir book with one more plastic Lenticular  (3d hologram) stamp and several post cards are printed out. The Lenticular stamp, depict running T-Rex is the first Lenticular depicted dinosaur on it.. Even though it sold with the booklet only is a valid post stamp, and can be used for postage.

 
 

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