South Australia - Colonial period: 1855-1900.
The use of postage stamps to pay telegraph charges.


PAYMENT FOR TELEGRAMS.
Adelaide Advertiser, 21 June 1902.

South Australians dispatching telegrams will have to accustom themselves to an entirely new departure after June 30. Instead of tendering money as payment for a telegram, the sender must affix postage stamps to the form. This is the practice in Victoria and New South Wales and the Federal Postmaster-General has decided to apply the system to all the States. After the beginning of next month, stamps will be sold at the Adelaide Telegraph Office, the customer will affix the required number to his message, and the receiving officials will obliterate them at once.

As only one format of a South Australian transmission form has been located, it is a matter of conjecture as to if and when postage stamps might have been used to pre-pay costs of sending a telegram. The close link between South Australia and New South Wales through E. C. Cracknell having been so closely associated with both Colonies leads to the hypothesis that stamps might have been used from 1885.

1886 issue.

The 1886 issue is distinguished by the heading being POSTAGE & REVENUE. There were 13 denominations ranging from 2/6 to £20. An example of some of the more likely denominations which might have been considered follows:

2&6 mauve 5 bob 10 bob green 15 bob
2/6 mauve (SG 185).
Status sale 294 Lot 1887.
5/- rose-pink 10/- green (SG 197a).
Status Sale 294 Lot 1887.
15/- brownish yellow
one pound £2 venetian red    
£1 blue

£2 venetian red (SG200a)

Beautiful example of this rare stamp.
Status Sale 294 Lot 1892.

50/- dull pink £3 sage green

 

1902-11 issues.

A new issue with the same basic design was printed from 1902. The main design difference was the use of POSTAGE in the heading. The lettering was in thin letters until 1904 and then in thick letters. As Interim transmission forms were printed in this period which were consistent across the States, it is certain that these South Australian issues would have been used on transmission forms.

The 11 denominations ranged from 3d to £1.

3d NT 1908 4d POST thin 6d POST thin 8d POST thick
3d olive green.
Powells Creek (NT).
4d red-orange - thin letters. 6d blue-green - thin letters. 8d ultramarine.
9d POST thick   1 bob 2 and 6
9d rose-lake - thick letters. 10d dull yellow 1/- brown - thin letters.
Port Adelaide Railway Station
11 December 1902.
Prestige Auctions Sale 177 Lot 716.
2/6 pale-violet - thick letters.
5 bob 10 bob £1 blue thin  
5/- rose - thick letters. 10/- green - thick letters. £1 blue - thin letters.