Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Letter on Queensland joining the Universal Postal Union - 1892

Brisbane Courier (Qld.), Friday 5 February 1892, page 6

Postal Matters

Sir,—Now that this colony has joined the Universal Postal Union, we may hope to have our post-cards out to the union regulation sizes, which are, I believe 120 x 75 millimetres for inland, and 140 x 90 millimetres for foreign transmission. Hitherto, excepting perhaps those of Western Australia, our colonial postcards appear to have been cut "anyhow," each colony fixing its own standards, and not always adhering to them. The inconvenience in many ways of this absence of system need not here be enlarged upon; it is palpable. The same variation from uniformity is manifest in the newsbands issued for the first time in December. At that time they were issued gummed and with the inscription an inch and three-quarters from the end of the band. Now they are being issued ungummed, and with the inscription about a quarter of an inch from the end. Whichever may best suit the publishers of newspapers, the wrapper as first issued is most convenient for the general public, and should be reverted and adhered to.

The new rates of postage have rendered it desirable that one or two additions be made to the present stamps, a 3d. stamp for the registration fee and parcel post rates, and a 5d. stamp for inland postage and registration fee combined, and for double weight foreign letters, are needed. I would therefore suggest that the entrance of Queensland into the Postal Union might fittingly be commemorated by the adoption of an improved issue of stamps. The existing series has many defects, chief among which may be noted the superfluity of scrollwork in the background and label. A less prominent groundwork would throw up the designation and values of the stamps with a clearness they do not now possess. Neither is there sufficient reason why we should go on perpetuating the profile of her Majesty as she may have appeared fifty-four years ago. More suitable would be a reproduction-full length if possible of the jubilee portrait (a copy of which hangs in the Brisbane Museum), with straight labels across the top and bottom of the stamp for the designation and values, which should be printed in coloured letters and not in white ones as at present. Such a design on a simple background of line crossed lines, or something equally inconspicuous, the plate and counters engraved by Perkins, Bacon, and Co., De la Rue, or Bradbury; produced in brilliant shades of suitable colours, and comprising the value of ½d., 1d., 2d., 2½d., 3d., 4d., 5d., 6d., 9d., 10d., and 1s., would provide a utilitarian and uniform series of stamps worthy of the Queen's land, and creditable to the artistic tastes of its people.

I am , sir, &c,


4th February