अनुवाद Übersetzen sie
Traduisez ترجم
перевести Traduca Traduzca 翻译

Telegraph stamps of the World

Click here for a site-map.
Select currency. Default = GBP (1.0)
GB £   US $   Can $   Aus $
Euro   Other DELETE
Up a level Not my site, but
a good reference:
Post Office Telegraphs Ceylon Telegraphs HongKong Telegraphs India Telegraphs Jamaica Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Orange Free State Telegraphs Australia
GB Ceylon Hong Kong India Jamaica Natal OFS Australia and states
Up a level by Dave Elsmore.
Matabeleland Telegraphs Sarawack Telegraphs Sudan Telegraphs Transvaal Telegraphs Uganda Railway NSW Telegraphs Western Australia Telegraphs Western Australia Telegraphs
Other Africa Sarawak Sudan Transvaal Uganda New South Wales Western Australia Other Australia


  I have brought these prices up to date and added currency selection.  
CheckList         Setup



Steve Hiscocks wrote:

The earliest use of telegraph stamps in the Sudan was of the Military Telegraph stamps of Great Britain (Nos. 1 - 10) which were also used in Bechuanaland. These cannot be distinguished for use in the Sudan when mint (hence their listing under Great Britain) but can often be identified by cancellation code letters when used.
Suakin (No.16) from Book Pg 277
The cancellation was as shown and the code letters indicating use in the Sudan are SK (Suakin), QI (Quarantine Island), HQ (Headquarters), WR (Western Redoubt) and ZA (No.1 Post and later, 2nd Brigade HQ). From dates observed the period of use was 20 March to 15 May 1885. More and different code letters were used in Bechuanaland and these are listed in the introduction to the Military Telegraphs of Great Britain.
The use of telegraph stamps was reintroduced during the Sudan Campaign of 1896-8. The provisional issue of telegraph stamps produced by handstamp on Egyptian postage stamps already overprinted for use in the Sudan went on sale around July 1897. Postage stamps without the handstamp had been in use since 1 March 1897. Sources differ on whether the 1, 2 and 3 millieme were issued with the telegraph handstamp and some catalogues omit them. Copies of all these are known however and experts believe them genuine. Their value was so small that there would have been little use for them which probably accounts for their rarity.
The first 'camel' issue was introduced on 1 March 1898. They are perforated down the middle for use across the line between the message and receipt sections of the form as in India, Ceylon, Uganda, etc. When the number of stamps required exceeded the capacity of the form, however, some were simply stuck on the back of the form resulting in both half used stamps and whole used stamps.
While the March 1898 issue was on 'rosette' or 'quatrefoil' watermarked paper, later issues were on 'star and crescent' watermarked paper. The first star and crescent issue in June 1898 was of 30,024 copies of the 10 piastre on Egyptian-type star and crescent paper and this was followed in September 1898 with a further 30,024 of the same value on Sudanese star and crescent paper. Other values followed over the next year on Sudanese star and crescent paper only.
The Egyptian star and crescent paper issue of the 10 piastres presents something of a mystery. In spite of the fact that the numbers printed were comparable with those on the later Sudan star and crescent paper, Egypt paper copies are very rare. A survey of collectors in the UK discovered only nine mint copies, one whole used copy and a few half used copies. Three more have been discovered since then and no doubt more will come to light — one tends not to notice the difference between the two star and crescent paper unless one is looking for it — but there is no doubt that they are relatively very rare. Perhaps some were destroyed in military action or most were used officially and subsequently destroyed.
The use of telegraph stamps ceased in 1902 and they were demonetized on 31 December 1914. Postage stamps, which had been used telegraphically in parallel throughout, were exclusively used thereafter.


The earliest known date for Telegraph stamps used on the Suakin Expedition is now 19/3/85
Suakin (No.16) 2s pair dated 19/3/1885
This pair courtesy of Dr. David Sher.

Hiscocks illustrates this and gives a list of telegraph codes for offices.

Sudan   20.03.1885 to 15.05.1885
QIQuarantine Island   (No.3)
SKSuakin   (No.16)
WRWestern Redoubt
ZANo.1 Post, and later, 2nd Brigade HQ  

Here is a useful map

British Military issues used in Sudan are covered on Army-1.


Egyptian stamps overprinted السودان / SOUDAN (Sudan in Arabic and French) were available since 1 March 1897 in the Sudan.
These were used initially (pre-provisional, not listed by Hiscocks) for Army Telegraphs and examples of them are known from June 1897 according to Langmead & Huggins.

Langmead & Huggins mention these (page 110), but give no illustrations so I will supply some:

There are many forgeries of this overprint, identification is made harder by the variability
of the (presumed genuine) overprint together with the (presumed genuine) Army Telegraph cancel.
(It is much less convincing with an Egyptian cancel). There are also many forged 'TEL' overprints.



Soon after (L & H give 14 September 1897 as earliest known use) the stamps were additionally overprinted 'TEL' in a horizontal oval (provisionals).
All values (1m, 2m, 3m, 5m, 1p, 2p, 5p and 10p) exist with a black overprint (Hiscocks 1-8),
additionally the 5m, 1p, 5p and 10p exist with a blue overprint (Hiscocks 9-12). These overprints can be quite feint.

Note: Forged 'TEL' overprints exist John Barefoot says: "Forgeries are often seen, and tend to be neater than the original,
and often with TEL in thinner letters. On the genuine stamps, the letter 'T' of 'TEL' is always longer than the other two letters".

Sudan Telegraph 10p forgery
Neatness is not something easily quantified, but the cancel can give you a hint. The rest I agree with.
Compare this to the other examples. The Soudan overprint looks genuine though.
Image of 10p with forged 'TEL', courtesy of Armen on eBay.


H4 Sudan Telegraph 5m   Sudan Telegraph 5m   Sudan Telegraph 5m
H5 Sudan Telegraph 1p
H6 Sudan Telegraph 2p   Sudan Telegraph 2p   Sudan Telegraph 2p
Sudan Telegraph 2p   Sudan Telegraph 2p
H7 >Sudan Telegraph 5p Sudan Telegraph 5p
H9 Sudan Telegraph 5m Sudan Telegraph 5m Sudan Telegraph 5m
Sudan Telegraph 1p mint blue TEL Sudan Telegraph 5p grey TEL
Courtesy of Mark Gibson.
Sudan Telegraph 5p blue cancel
5p with blue cancel, courtesy of Armen on eBay.


An unused selection, courtesy Spink and Son.
Sudan Telegraph unused


Al Soodan (backwards) in Arabic.

This overprinting was done at Boulaq, Cairo by the
Imprimerie Nationale.
Stamp panes were in 10 columns of 6 vertical stamps.
Each of the 6 stamps had a slightly different overprint
as shown on the right.

Images courtesy of Simon Andrews of London-stamps.com



'TEL' overprint in black. (Wmk. Egyptian Star)

Hisc. Description Mint Used
H1 1 mil dark brown (SG2) 100.00 75.00
H2 2 mil blue-green (SG3) 100.00 75.00
H3 3 mil yellow (SG4) 100.00 75.00
H4 5 mil carmine (SG5) 15.00 5.00
H5 1 pias blue (SG6) 20.00 10.00
H6 2 pias orange-brown (SG7)   20.00 10.00
H7 5 pias grey (SG8) 20.00 15.00
H8 10 pias mauve (SG9) 25.00 25.00



'TEL' overprint in blue.

Hisc. Description Mint Used
H9 5 mil carmine (SG5) 30.00 15.00
H10 1 pias blue (SG6) 30.00 25.00
H11 5 pias grey (SG8) 50.00 40.00
H12 10 pias mauve (SG9)   100.00 75.00

Special Military Telegraph stamps were provided 1 March 1898 with central perforation for easy bisection.

Sudan Telegraph 5m Sudan Telegraph 5m
Sudan-H18 Sudan-H19
Sudan Telegraph 1p Sudan Telegraph 2p
Sudan-H20 Sudan-H21
Sudan Telegraph 5p Sudan Telegraph 5p half  Sudan Telegraph 5p half
Sudan-H22 Sudan-H22 separately used halves
Sudan Telegraph 10p Sudan Telegraph 25p
Sudan-H23 Sudan-H24


These exist with 3 watermarks,

Initially (1 March 1898) the 'rosette'
for 5m, 1p, 2p and 5p values
(Hiscocks 13-16).
Sudan Watermark 1
Followed by the Egyptian Star and Crescent
(as used on the pyramid and sphinx series)
June 1898, only used for the 10p value
(Hiscocks 17, scarce).
Sudan Watermark 2
Lastly (Sept 1898 for 10p, 1899 for the rest)
by the Sudanese Star and Crescent for the 5m,
1p, 2p (scarce), 5p, 10p and 25p
(Hiscocks 18-24).
Sudan Watermark 3

I have to say that given the presumed importance of cancelling both halves, I wonder why so many have only half cancelled.



Wmk. 'rosette'.

Hisc. Description Mint Whole Used Half Used
H13 5 mil lilac-brown and violet 15.00 15.00 3.75
H14 1 pias black and red 15.00 15.00 3.75
H15 2 pias green and lilac-brown   15.00 15.00 3.75
H16 5 pias violet and black 10.00 15.00 3.75


Wmk. 'Egyptian Star and Crescent'.

Hisc. Description Mint Whole Used Half Used
H17 10 pias rose and green   40.00 100.00 25.00

I have reduced the mint price on these due to several recent finds of mint blocks and a sheet.


Wmk. 'Sudanese Star and Crescent'.

Hisc. Description Mint Whole Used Half Used
H18 5 mil lilac-brown and violet 5.00 5.00 1.50
H19 5 mil brown and pale blue 7.50 10.0 2.00
H20 1 pias black and red 5.00 5.00 1.50
H21 2 pias green and lilac-brown   38.00 40.00 6.00
H22 5 pias violet and black 5.00 5.00 1.50
H23 10 pias rose and green 7.50 7.50 1.50
H24 25 pias pale blue and brown   8.00 8.00 2.00


Sudan 5m - brown & violet Sudan 5m - brown & violet - detail Sudan 5m - brown & blue - detail Ashraf, a member of the EGYPT Study Circle, points out a constant variety on the 5m stamp.
The corner block shows the position of it.
There is a white dot above the Arabic script below the camels.
Images courtesy of Ashraf (nasrstamps on Delcampe, click images for listing)
Sudan 5m - brown & blue


Sudan Cancel G- G-
G- 28.XI.99. G- unknown location with a total of 134 half-stamps.
(Source: Andrew Higson)


A Sudan Telegraphs Form No. 1 Receipt dated 25th May 1900 to Omdurman.
Sudan 1900 telegram Receipt to Omdurman
Ex Andrew Higson, courtesy of Spink & Son.


Sudan Telegraph QN 5m Sudan Telegraph QN 1p
Sudan Telegraph QN 2p Sudan Telegraph QN 5p
This is -Q  -N which could easily be confused with O  -N of Omdurman. I have not heard of it before.
I recently got the (rosette wmk.) set of these all together in an eBay lot.
They all have the same date so were probably 'by favour'.


Most of the examples that I show here are cancelled by the British Army and are taken from the Army-2 page.

Sudan had their own cancels for Sudanese Army and civilian use.
Most of these were CDS cancels similar to the British Army, but with Arabic inscriptions.
There are also more ornate examples.

Kassala cancel
Kassala cancel courtesy of Ken Doig.


Suakin cancel Kerma cancel Kerma cancel
Part of Suakin cancel 1899. Kerma cancel 22 DEC 1898. Courtesy Ken Doig. Kerma cancel 9 FEB 1899. Courtesy Rolf Lamprecht.


Halfa cancel
Part of Halfa cancel.


A Sudan Military Telegram Receipt dated 19th November 1899 to Berber.
Sudan 1899 telegram Receipt to Berber
Ex Andrew Higson, courtesy of Spink & Son.


A Sudan Government Telegraphs Form T. No. 1 / 1929. dated 5th May 1931 used at Malakal Radio.
This has a printers imprint of "—McCorquodale & Co., Ltd.—64,000 Pads,   8/29."
Sudan 1900 telegram Receipt to Omdurman
This was used to provide a receipt. Image courtesy of GV PHILATELIAN on eBay (click image for listing).



Comments, criticisms, information or suggestions are always welcome.


Please include the word 'Telegraphs' in the subject.


Last updated 26th. August 2023

©Copyright Steve Panting 2012/13/14/15/16/17/18/19/20/21/22/23 except where stated.
Permission is hereby granted to copy material for which the copyright is owned by myself, on condition that any data is not altered and this website is given credit.


Valid XHTML 1.0 Transitional  Valid CSS!