New Zealand Post - official issuer of New Zealand stamps & commemorative coins

Newspaper Stamp

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Originally there was no charge for newspapers forwarded through the post for delivery within New Zealand. A rate of 1d was, however, imposed in 1864 but the measure met with such opposition that fee was dropped the following year.

Issue information

1d rate on newspapers was again reintroduced in 1867 and continued until a reduction in the price to 1/2d on 1 January 1873. In conjunction with the reduction in price a special stamp was issued for payment of this fee.

The stamp design was completed by John Davies, the Government Printer, who based his design on that of a contemporary 1/2d stamp of Great Britain. A woodblock die was carved in Melbourne, Australia, and electrotypes produced from it by W H Kirk in Wellington.

Printings continued of this stamp over a period of 22 years.


New Zealand Post would like to acknowledge the following for their assistance and guidance in bringing together this stamp issue:

Historical information included on this page sourced from The Postage Stamps of New Zealand published by the Royal Philatelic Society of NZ. Their web site offers further information useful to those interested in the stamps and postal history of New Zealand. Link:

Product Listing for Newspaper Stamp

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Image Title Description Price
Single Stamp

Single 1/2d 'Rose' gummed stamp.

Side face view of Queen Victoria.


Technical information

Date of issue: 1 January 1873
Designers: John Davies, Government Printer
Printers: Government Printing Office, Wellington
Stamp size: 23mm x 20mm
Sheet size: 240 stamps per sheet
Process: Surface printed - Typography
Perforation gauge: A rotary machine gauging 10 and the line machine gauging 12.5 were originally used either together or separately to produce the perforations, later printings were perforated nearly 12 and 12.5
Paper type: De La Rue, NZ watermark and star watermark; Paper watermarked with a six-rayed irregular star