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Mauritius Postage Stamps and Mauritius Postal History

Mauritius 1850 1d
  • Originally settled by the Dutch in 1638 who had named it Mauritius after Prince Maurice van Nassau of the Dutch Republic. The Dutch abandoned the island in 1710.

  • The French took control of the island in 1715 and renamed it to Isle de France.

  • Mauritius’ first post office was opened on December 21, 1772 when the island was under French rule. Mail was delivered internally and by ship to and from France and India.

  • The British captured the island from France in 1810 and its name was reverted to Mauritius.

  • It was British Crown Colony until 12 March 1968; remaining within the Commonwealth (as a republic since 12 March 1992).

  • Mauritius was in 1847 the first British colony and the fifth country in the world to issue postage stamps; on 21 September 1847 two stamps were issued, the 1d orange-red and 2d deep blue, called the "Post Office" stamps. These two stamps are amongst the rarest stamps in the world.

  • Mauritius was the first colony to order postage stamps via the Crown Agents in 1848.

  • The world's first postage stamp surcharges were prepared by Mauritius in 1854, though not issued until 1858.

  • The definitive issues from 1860 onwards, notably the Queen's head and Arms types, are full of interest for the philatelist and postal historian alike.

  • Also of great interest is the pre-adhesive postal history, of both French (before 1810) and British (after 1810) periods.

  • Philatelic Societies for collectors Mauritius Stamps and Postal History

    Indian Ocean Study Circle (UK)
    The Study Circle was founded in 1970 to promote and encourage the study of all aspects of the stamps and postal history of the islands of the western Indian Ocean. If you collect the stamps or postal history, including postcards from any of these islands, and you are not a member of IOSC, you may be missing out on much that can help to make your hobby still more interesting.
    Countries covered by the IOSC...Mauritius, Seychelles/BIOT, Réunion, Comores and Madagascar

    Mauritius Philatelic Society (Mauritius)
    The Society was formed in 1989 and after more than twenty five years of existence it now has 53 local members and 20 overseas members

    New Issues of Mauritius

    for latest postage stamp issues from Mauritius contact -

    Mauritius Philatelic Bureau

    General Post Office
    Quay Street, Port Louis, Mauritius
    Tel +230 213 7054

    Selected Pages on Mauritius Stamps and Mauritius Postal History

    mauritius Classic Stamps of Mauritius
    by Peter M C Werner
    (archive copy via Way Back Machine)

    The Mauritius "Post Office" of 1847
    When a young French boy went through correspondence files in 1902, he could not realize that he was going to happen upon one of philately’s greatest rarities. He was searching through a batch of dusty letters when he saw a cover franked with 1 penny and 2 pence stamps from the volcanic island of Mauritius. As he examined the cover, he recalled reading about the unusual stamps in a magazine.

    Postage stamps and postal history of Mauritius
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    If you are a collector of Mauritius stamps or postal history you could help by logging onto Wikipedia and improving this page and maybe some others.

    Mauritius "Post Office" stamps
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    Stamps of Mauritius
    The original website has now been taken down, but you can still access it through (version as saved on 22 April 2008). Or you may wish to look at earlier versions

    Rare Stamps: The famous Mauritius “Post Office” issues of 1847
    by "collectorsshopdublin"

    First Stamps of Mauritius

    Blue Mauritius Research Companion
    By Helen Morgan
    This website contains biographical and bibliographical information about the Post Office Mauritius stamps and subjects related to them. It is based on Helen Morgan's research for the book Blue Mauritius: The Hunt for the World's Most Valuable Stamps

    Mauritius Local and Rural Posts 1840-1890
    by Dave Tarry

    Mauritius Postal History - Royal Visit of 1901
    by Eric Hutton
    In 1901 the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall and York (the future King George V and Queen Mary) visited Mauritius on their return from Australia to the UK

    Mauritius Postal History - The first flights between Réunion and Mauritius
    by Eric Hutton
    Details of the first flights and examples of covers

    Mauritius Postal History - First flight Mauritius to France
    by Eric Hutton
    Details about the flight and examples of covers from this flight

    A Mauritius postal stationery newspaper wrapper from Curepipe to Leipzig in Germany with a French Sea Post cancellation Ligne T which was used for the Marseille to Nouméa via Australia route.

    Mauritius Post Offices and Postmarks
    by Eric Hutton
    Detailed listing of present and past post offices with examples of the postmarks
    (archive copy via Way Back Machine)

    Mauritius 1950 Pictorial Definitives
    Notes concering the background and the design of these stamps
    from Stamp Domain

    Gandhi forgery cover from Mauritius?

    Mauritian Philatelic Blog

    Philatelic Corner of Mauritius
    Bits and Pieces on some aspects of Mauritian Philately

    Mauritius Postal History - Perfins and Meter Cancellations
    by Eric Hutton
    A comprehensive listing of the perfins and meter cancellations used on Mauritius.

    International Postage Meter Stamp Catalog/Mauritius
    from wikibooks International Postage Meter Stamp Catalog

    Philatelic Books on Mauritius Stamps and Mauritius Postal History

    The B-53 Obliterators of Mauritius
    by Ken Baker, Harry Hayes, 1976, 32pp, ISBN 0905222091

    A backward glance on Mauritius: For my display at the Royal Philatelic Society, London, 5th October, 1961
    by Alfred J Stevens, Herald Press, 1961, 10pp

    The Blue Mauritius
    Vernon Warren, Gifford, 1954, 189pp
    A thriller with a philatelic theme

    Blue Mauritius: The Hunt for the World's Most Valuable Stamps
    by Helen Morgan, Atlantic Books, 2009, 336pp, ISBN 1843544369
    The book follows the history of each surviving example of the "Blue Mauritius" in great detail.

    Classic Mauritius: The Locally Printed Postage Stamps 1847-59
    by Hiroyuki Kanai, Stanley Gibbons, 1981, 132pp, ISBN 0852592515
    An illustrated work on the author's famous Mauritius collection, including photos of reconstructed plates, postmarks and postal history.

    Mauritius KGV 2r50c The Coat of Arms Issues
    by Ken Baker, 1965, 45pp

    Encyclopaedia of Rare and Famous Stamps
    by Leon Norman Williams, David Feldman, Geneva, Vol 1 - 1993; Vol 2 - 1997

    Mauritius: Maritime Mail 1815-1868
    by J W B Ruffle, Indian Ocean Study Circle, 1987-1988, 100 pages

    Mauritius: The to Pay Manuscript and Handstamp Markings 1860-1876
    by J W B Ruffle, Indian Ocean Study Circle,1985, 38pp

    The Postal History and Stamps of Mauritius
    by Peter Ibbottson, Royal Philatelic Society, 1991, 238pp, ISBN 0900631244

    Mauritius Postal History and Stamps: Revisions and Additions
    by Peter Ibbottson, published by Indian Ocean Study Circle, 1995, 128pp, ISBN 0952640708

    Post Office Mauritius - 1847 The Tale of Two Stamps
    by Michael Harrison, Stamp Collecting, 1947, 52 pages
    This little publication which was printed on the occasion of the 100th birthday of the famous "Blue and Red MAURITIUS" and tells the story of the few surviving stamps of this issue known. It contains a little sheet with two reprints of the famous stamps.

    Mauritius stamps, Mauritius, Mauritius stamp images, Mauritius resource page "Post Office Mauritius" and Its Legend: A Philatelic Study
    by Alfred S De Pitray, Editions de l'Ocean Indien, 1992, 40pp, ISBN 9990300712

    The Postal History of Mauritius
    by E B Proud, Proud Bailey Ltd, 2001, 448pp, ISBN 1872465323
    Postal History of the period from 1810 to Independence in 1968

    The Provisional Stamp Issues
    by Ken Baker, 1965 27pp

    Stamps of Fame
    L N & M Williams, Blanford Press Ltd, 1949, 280pp
    Rare and valuable stamps of the world, includes rare stamps from Mauritius

    The Stamps of Mauritius
    by Christian le Comte, 2006, 78pp, ISBN 0955028531

    Meter Marks of Mauritius
    by Patrick Kwan Cheung, self published 2014, 76pp, over 250 illustrations
    (available from the author, email
    Detailed listing with colour illustrations.

    Articles in Journals and Magazines on Mauritius Stamps and Mauritius Postal History

    June 1994 issue of Gibbons Stamp Monthly, pp 29 - 31
    New research by the author provides additional information on the unique Mauritius cover to Bordeaux with the 1d and 2d 'Post Office' stamps. The cover was sold at an auction in Zurich on 3 November 1993 when it realised 5.75 million Swiss francs or about £2.59 million (including the 15% buyer’s premium).

    January 1995 issue of Gibbons Stamp Monthly, pp 54 - 55
    MAURITIUS - THE 1925 LOCAL SURCHARGES by Peter Ibbotson
    There was a reduction in postal rates on 1 October 1925 on Mauritius. As a result stamps and postal stationery were overprinted pending the arrival of new printings. The author examines in detail the items which were overprinted.

    April 1996 issue of Gibbons Stamp Monthly, pp32 - 33
    The author gives details of the post offices opened in 1847 and the handstamps issued for postal marking which were in use during the period 1847 to about 1864. The three postmarks discussed are (i) the 'Penny Post', (ii) the framed two line handstamp with bevelled corners - name of office in italic - date in roman, and (iii) the numeral in two concentric circles. The first post offices opened in 1847 were Mahebourg, Flacq, Pamplemousses, Souillac, Plain Wilhems, Curepipe, Ville Bague, Poudre d'or, Grand Bay, Black River and Moka. Additional offices were opened during 1848-51 in Riviere du Rempart, Grand River, Petite Riviere and Eastern Suburb (Port Loius).

    Philatelic Museums

    Mauritius Postal Museum
    Place Du Quai
    Port LouisBlue Penny Museum
    Caudan Waterfront
    Port Louis