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Cape of Good Hope: Cork Cancellations


Dear Yannis,
Thank you for your comments. I suspect that you were the successful bidder at the 'Franschhoek' Collection at Spinks in 2012. I for a few seconds had them in my hands when I viewed them and loved the Kimberley items. I did bid for them in the roomon the day, but they went to a person on the phone standing next to me!!! Hence my name "Underbidder" . Love your material.

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Yes I was the successful bidder for the lot, but I bid I think at the time over the internet. There was a lot of competition for this lot. I was unsuccessful for most of my bids on that day but got lucky with this one. I don't normally bid aggressively, as there is always another day, and as I collect "Cape"  for all periods there is always something to pick on. 

Coming back to the cork cancellations I am posting an item that must have gone through some hard times, but is a proving label for the Cape cork canceler. (lucky find, cost next to nothing at the time)

I really appreciate it, you taking the trouble to come and post some of your findings and give us your thoughts. Also I must thank Steve and Jamie again for their efforts to set up the Club and the website. I don't remember when last I spoke to a philatelist, as in this part of the world there are only a few and it took the isolation of COVID-19 for me to find a corner in the world that I can have a decent conversation about Postal History! What a world!

If you have anything related to the Cape or Kimberley Exhibition there is another thread and would love to see some other examples. I know there must be out there... 



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That is a wonderful cork canceller proving piece, if well-travelled in hard times. The thing is that parcels by their very nature are more roughly treated than covers. I think that its appearance goes with the territory it occupies - an utterly enviable piece of parcel postal history. And its tied to the cover as well, no doubt about that! :>)

Thanks for your kind words. We are pleased that we have helped you maintain a philatelic life during this time. Staying in touch with philatelists in isolation was the reason we started the website. The virus had a huge hand in this. I think I am speaking for Jamie and myself when I say that we feel good about the growing sense of global philatelic camaraderie that the South African Philately Club website is engendering. Importantly, Yannis, your contribution has made us feel we are getting somewhere now, not wasting our time. There were times when we, certainly me, questioned what we were doing. Please, lets keep the discussion going. A little every now and then goes a long way.

This is just to say a double thank you to you and the others who have supported us.  I don't say much on your sites but I do enjoy your posts - keep up the good work!  One day others will be here doing their research!  Where else can they go?

Regarding Yannis' "key" cancellers which I could not find in Putzel, Bob Hill has sent a note that says "the "Key Impression" (or Spyglass) is shown on Page 21 of Volume 1, (A-B) of Ralph Putzel's "The Postmarks of South S Africa...."". Incidentally, on going to that page, I recognised the manuscript cancelled cover at top from Lily Fountain (Leliefontein) as belonging to Bob. If not, he certainly owns one, possibly two, very much like it. This is wonderful - South African Philately Club members owning 2 out of 3 covers on one page in Putzel's reference books. I hope that this is more than just mere coincidence. I hope it means we are getting somewhere at last!

Yannis, here is the last of my  cork cancellations that I can contribute to your list of known "cork cancellations" . I am disappointed that  some are muddled up so please ignore the headings which do not always fit the canceller described. With regards to naming, their are some obvious already-used categories - buns, crosses, diamonds and towns. Hopefully, this will prove useful to you and others.

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And these are the last of what I can contribute.

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Thanks for the additional pages. They are very well written. I have a few more on blocks and singles but they are not written-up. When I get a chance will post some more. In the meantime here is one used in the ZAR during the Boer War period (c1900). One can clearly see the ZAR under the "R" of the registration mark.


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Yannis, thanks for sharing this lovely item. Is it a proving piece? If yes, where? It has a very attractive cork postmark. I have a few ZAR and OFS cork cancellers which I found among pages of Cape, ZAR and OFS stamps. My interest has always been Cape Cork cancellers but when I see an item like this I am tempted to start collecting cork cancellers much more widely.

Indeed, a "lovely item". However, coming from the ZAR, it is inappropriate here, lovely as it is, in this Cape Cork Canceller forum. (Please leave it up - don't take it down!). I am thinking that given the success of this Cape Cork Canceller forum, we need to start a dedicated sub-forum for Non-Cape cork cancellers like this. I will do so now. I have a few non-descript bits and bobs I can add to it at some point. Please see NON-CAPE Cork Cancellers sub forum.