Category: Postcards

Early Railway Picture Postcards of New Zealand

Early Railway Picture Postcards of New Zealand

This is an exhibit of Early New Zealand Railway Postcards which is being shown for the first time in Perth Stamp Show 2023. The postcards are mainly from the first two decades of the 20th Century.

The New Zealand Railways were an essential mode of transport for  a developing nation. There were a number of problems associated with this in that the railway had to traverse the King Country which the Māori King Movement had been banished from the Waikato, and agreement had to be sought from the Māori people to build the railway. Also, the terrain was very difficult, and a number of world-class engineering problems had to be solved, including building the Raurimu Spiral, several large viaducts through the Central Plateau, and building the Rimutaka Incline.

I was awarded a vermeil medal

Frame 1

Frame 2

Frame 3

Frame 4

Frame 5


The American Great White Fleet Voyage 1908-09

The American Great White Fleet Voyage 1908-09

The Great White Fleet was the popular nickname for the powerful Naval battle fleet that completed a journey around the globe from 16 December 1907, to 22 February 1909, by order of United States President Theodore Roosevelt. Its mission was to make friendly courtesy visits to numerous countries, while displaying America’s new naval power to the world.
Since Japan had arisen as a major sea power with the 1905 annihilation of the Russian fleet at Tsushima, the deployment of the Great White Fleet was therefore intended, at least in part, to send a message to Tokyo that the American fleet could be deployed anywhere, even from its Atlantic ports, and would be able to defend American interests in the Philippines and the Pacific.
My interest in The Great White Fleet started because it has a connection with my family. My Great Grandfather, Campbell Johnstone, and his three brothers were a tug-of-war team. The Great White Fleet had a tug of war team which had not been defeated until it met the Johnstone Brothers. The four brothers were very large men, solidly built, and tall with it.

Sharjah 2023: 85 points, Large Vermeil

Exhibiting Classes

Exhibiting Classes


This is by no means an extensive explanation on the different classes of collecting and exhibiting, but is a help to those starting.


Traditional philately is mostly about the study of postage stamps. Traditional Philately has the broadest scope of all the exhibiting categories, allowing all aspects of philately to be included in one form or another. However, the focus remains the postage stamps, and all other aspects should support the basic story of the postage stamps in some way.

Check the following link:

FIP Traditional Philately

Postal History

Postal History is mostly about the routes, rates and marcophily associated with delivery of mail. Marcophily is the specialized study and collection of postmarks, cancellations and postal markings applied by hand or machine on mail that passes through a postal system. 

Check the following link:

FIP Postal History

Postal Stationery

Postal stationery is a postal item such as a stamped envelope, letter sheet, post card lettercard, aerogramme or wrapper with an imprinted stamp on it indicating prepayment of postage. In other words, they are large stamps.

Check the following link:

FIP Postal Stationery


This is the class that encourages youth in philately. There are three classes for youth, and these are dependent on age:

  • Age Class “A” – 10 – 15 years (1 to 3 frames)
  • Age Class “B” – 16 -18 years (2 to 4 frames)
  • Age Class “C” – 19 – 21 years (3 to 5 frames)

New Zealand has a Youth Council and the following link to the website is full of interesting material. There are Youth Groups in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

Youth Council of New Zealand

FIP Youth Philately


Airmail as a collecting area is about aviation history and the impact on communication that aeroplanes and other aerial machines have on the delivery of mail.

Check the following link:

FIP Aerophilately


Thematic Philately is collecting stamps and other philatelic items that illustrate a theme. Thematic Philately is dynamic in that it allows for continuous improvement.

Check the following link:

FIP Thematic Philately

Open Class

Open Class is a relatively new class. It broadens the range of philately in that it allows philatelists to include objects from other collecting fields in support of the philatelic material shown. Philatelic material must be at least 50%.

Check the following link:

FIP Open Philately

Picture Postcards

Picture Postcards is the class that is growing in popularity for a number of reasons. They provide a social historical aspect which is of great interest to the general public, and they are relatively inexpensive.

The following two links provide more details.

FIP Picture Postcards

Postcard Society New Zealand


The Frugal Philately class is not an FIP class. The value of the exhibit at the time of exhibition should not be more than NZ$250.00 per frame.

Frugal NZPF

One Frame

A One frame exhibit is about a subject that is restricted in scope that it can best be exhibited in one frame only. It is often the way that a beginner to exhibiting can put something together with a minimum of cost compared to multi-frame exhibits.

Check the following link.

FIP One Frame

Ruhleben Civilian Internee Camp Postcards

Ruhleben Civilian Internee Camp Postcards


I had been invited to take my one frame of Ruhleben Stamps and Postal History along with one frame of drawings of the camp to the philatelic event organised by the Royal Philatelic Society London and Academie de Philatelie de Belgique, at Ypres, Belgium to commemorate the beginning of World War I in 2014. About a week before leaving, I received a cal from David Holmes, Auckland City Stamps. He said, “I have something you should be interested in”.

It turned out to be a collection of Postcards written by Duncan Donaldson Brown, an internee sent to England and Scotland. He was a little bit different in that he was military, whereas most internees were civilians. After the war, Brown worked for the Commonwealth Graces Commission, and  emigrated to New Zealand, working for the Auckland City Council as Chief Gardener. His work remains today because he designed the Albert Park in Auckland. Added to the postcards that I already had, I was able to put one frame together.

I contacted Patrick Maselis, the Head Commissioner for the exhibition, and told him what I had. He said they would somehow make space. The interesting thing is that the 3 frames of Ruhleben material stopped most people, and I received a wonderful response to it.

Exhibition Results

Adelaide Stampex 2017: 89 Points, Gold

The Capital Stamp Show 2015: 81 Points, Large Vermeil


The Moa and The Lion

The Moa and The Lion

This Postcard was in a collection of cigarette Cards that I recently purchased. It took a lot of work to separate it from the album page that it was well and truly stuck down to!

Artist Trevor Lloyd (1863 – 1937) was a pioneer of etching in New Zealand and one of the leading political cartoonists for 32 years. During the 1905 All Black tour of Britain, he drew one of the first cartoons using the Kiwi as a symbol for New Zealand.