Lanarkshire Philatelic Society


Mr D. Robertson


"A Victorian Evening"


David Robinson gave members a most interesting display of “Victoriana” at our latest meeting.

He started with a brief resume of Queen Victoria’s accession to the throne, followed by a Penny Black stamped cover to the Royal Household which had contained an invoice for £137 19 shillings (£137.95), a considerable sum in 1840! He showed us free franked mail for 11 Prime Ministers of the period, all signed, and a photo, from the “Illustrated London News” showing the state funeral of the Duke of Wellington. Electoral reform, during the 1830’s, came next with documents showing the voting records of Scots MPs, an 1832 voters roll and even “Notices of Objection” (to someone being included on the roll). An 1860’s document explaining how a secret ballot was conducted also featured. The reform of postal services featured with material related to Robert Wallace, Greenock MP, a vociferous postal reformer of the time followed by the introduction of the “Uniform Penny Post” with “Mulready” envelopes and a first use of the postcard (1/10/1870). The formation of the U.P.U. standardised foreign postal rates (from 1/7/1875) and David completed his first round with covers to Spain; Russia; Denmark; Italy; Finland & Australia.


David’s second round consisted of an item representing each year of Queen Victoria’s reign. 

These items included:-

A letter, from Mauritius, to France via Greenock (1844);

A genuine “Mourning” cover from Beith to Ayr (1850) which was delivered the same day!!;

A letter from South Australia to Bath via Liverpool (1852);

An “Illustrated London News” item on the introduction of pillar boxes (1855);

Another “Illustrated London News” photo showing the start of building work on the Edinburgh GPO Building (1861);

1860’s “Junk Mail” from Germany promoting the Austrian Lottery (and we thought junk mail was a modern phenomenon!!);

An 1860’s letter, from India, regarding the selling of Military Commissions;

An 1864 letter querying a tax declaration regarding dogs;

An 1870 letter from Paris to London carried by balloon mail due to the Prussian siege of Paris;

An 1878 photo showing the opening of the GPO Building, George Square, Glasgow;

An 1890’s postcard from an Edinburgh stamp collector to a Finnish collector complaining he hadn’t received his, promised, swaps;

And an 1890 card, with stamps, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the postage stamp, which also continued a debate as to who, actually, had invented the adhesive postage stamp.


Terry Woods proposed a warm vote of thanks to David for an excellent display.