Item Description

3694a-d HAWAIIAN MISSIONARY Full Mint US Stamp Sheet

The Hawaiian Missionaries souvenir sheet, containing four 37-cent First-Class stamps, reproduces examples of Hawaii's first four postage stamps, which were issued in three denominations: 2 cents, 5 cents and 13 cents.

Called the Hawaiian Missionaries by philatelists, most of these rare stamps were used on correspondence mailed by Christian missionaries from Hawaii to their families, friends and business associates. Only 28 covers bearing Missionary stamps are known to exist, and only one surviving cover bears the 2-cent stamp: the famous "Dawson cover" shown on the 2002 souvenir sheet.

First sold in October 1851, Missionary stamps paid postage on Hawaiian mail to foreign destinations. The 2-cent stamp usually paid the Hawaiian portion of the rate for a newspaper or printed circular. The 5-cent stamp usually paid the Hawaiian portion of letter postage. The typical use of the 13-cent stamp was to prepay all the postage for a letter from Hawaii to the East Coast of the United States by way of San Francisco, applying 5 cents for the Hawaiian charge, 2 cents for the ship captain's fee and 6 cents for a U.S. letter sent more than 3,000 miles.

Used in this way, the 13-cent stamps were unusual because a single stamp prepaid rates in two countries: Hawaii and the United States. (Hawaii was annexed by the United States in 1898, became a U.S. territory in 1900 and a state in 1959.) Originally reading "Hawaiian Postage," the 13-cent stamp sometimes confused U.S. postmasters and was redesigned in 1852 to read "H.I. & U.S. Postage."

The Hawaiian Missionaries were replaced in 1853 by stamps bearing an image of King Kamehameha III. However, surviving examples of Missionary stamps indicate their use as late as 1856.

Hawaiian Missionary stamps have been previously reproduced on the postage stamps of other countries. Ajman, an emirate on the Persian Gulf that is now a member of the United Arab Emirates, issued a stamp in 1965 that featured an image of a 2-cent Missionary stamp alongside that of an early stamp catalog. In 1979 the Ivory Coast issued a stamp featuring a 13-cent Missionary stamp alongside a portrait of Sir Rowland Hill (1795-1879) and a picture of a locomotive. (Hill was a British postal reformer who is credited with the invention of the adhesive postage stamp.)

The header image on the 2002 Hawaiian Missionaries souvenir sheet features a detail of a wood engraving of Diamond Head. According to an archivist at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, the engraving appeared in an 1862 book titled "Hawaii: The Past, Present, and Future of Its Island Kingdom."

Also on the souvenir sheet is a photograph of an envelope sometimes known as the Dawson cover (the only surviving envelope to bear a 2-cent Hawaiian Missionary stamp). Addressed to Eliza A. Dawson of New York, the envelope bears 2-cent and 5-cent Hawaiian Missionary stamps as well as two 3-cent U.S. George Washington stamps. The Dawson cover was found around 1905 among papers stuffed into a furnace; evidence of slight charring is visible on the left edge.




Scotts Number: 3694a-d
Denomination: $0.37
er of stamps on sheet: 4
ndition: Mint never hinged

This is from personal collections at a Smoke Free Home

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On Oct-10-06 at 00:10:04 PDT, seller added the following information: