Top five classic vehicle stamps - thematics


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13 January 2017
1-08929.jpg Bosnia & Herzegovina, 1906
Add vintage to your theme by seeking pre-1960s stamps depicting motor vehicles to your stamp collection.

Add vintage to your theme by seeking pre-1960s stamps depicting motor vehicles to your stamp collection. By Ed Fletcher.

1. Bosnia and Herzegovina

In 1906, under the terms of the Congress of Berlin, the Ottoman Empire occupied Bosnia and Herzegovina and shortly afterwards issued Military Post stamps for its new province. One in the set was a 50-heller depicting a postal vehicle driven by a uniformed man, with others, similarly clad, as passengers. The truck had an unusual corrugated metal body and its occupants were in fact military postmen serving in the occupying Austrian army. 

2. New Zealand

A five-stamp set commemorated the Congress of the Federation of Chambers of Commerce of the British Empire, held at Wellington in October 1936. This stamp shows a truck-load of wool bales headed for export from New Zealand in 1936. All five values in the Empire Conference set depict aspects of agricultural work and food exporting by sea.

3. Finland

This 2-markka (+ a 50-pennia charity donation) stamp of 1944 shows an ambulance driving at speed. The vehicle may be a British Ford; and its driver and staff may also have been British; a contingent of the Quaker Friends Ambulance Unit which had offered its services when war broke out between Finland and Russia in December 1939. Funds raised via an appeal in The Times had paid for twenty Ford ambulances, a kitchen-car and a repairs truck; and Swedish rail and steamship companies carried the equipment free of charge across the North Sea to Bergen. 

4. Chinese People's Republic

In 1957 the CPR issued two stamps (4-fen and 8-fen) to mark the successful start-up of an assembly line at Truck Factory No. 1 at Changchun in Jilin Province. They had received generous support (machine tools, engineers, finance) from their allies, the Soviet Union, in getting the line moving to schedule. The trucks that rolled off it (seen on the 8-fen stamp) were Jiefang (Liberation) army trucks, close copies of the Soviet ZIS-150s made on an identical assembly line in Moscow.

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The stamp’s design catches the eye by contrasting the angular ferro-concrete walls and roof of the factory with the curving sweeps of the trucks’ mudguards, engine grilles and cabs, which were reported short on driver comforts. 

5. French Cameroons

This French Cameroons stamp shows a logging truck at work in a hardwood forest in 1953.

There are many more classic vehicles stamps to look out for, including a Skoda saloon on a 1955 Czechoslovakia 45-haleru stamps and a half-trak post truck delivering in the Tunisian desert in 1928.


Article extracted from an in-depth thematic article in the February issue of Stamp & Coin Mart magazine, available from our store.