Australia: 1927-1988.
Labels - International Telegram

General characteristics:

Heading and notes: Form No. T.G. 63.
INTERNATIONAL TELEGRAM in one or two lines.
Reverse side: Blank.
Colours (text & form): Black on orange paper or
Orange on white or blue on white - reverse printed.
Size of form overall: Varied.
Distinctive characteristics of this form:
 Special forms for International Telegrams were discontinued about 1939 because the international traffic accounted for less than 5% of the total volume. Difficulties in adequate supply to all Telegraph Offices had been noted during the Brown years as a problem and labels were introduced during the early 1930s.

On occasions, labels were used inappropriately (although understandably) - for example an URGENT label on an International or radiogram telegram. A reminder about appropriate use appeared in the Post Office Monthly Circular for December 1952:

19. Attachment of "International Telegram" Adhesive Dockets (TG 63) to "Radio telegrams": Instances have been noticed where urgent adhesive dockets (T.G. 54) have been attached to radiotelegrams. The appropriate docket is an "International Telegram" docket "T.G. 63).

In order to avoid misunderstanding, arrangements are being made to amend paragraph 2110 of Postmasters' Instructions as follows: " ...International telegrams (including radiotelegrams to or from ships at sea) must be received on the appropriate Commonwealth telegram forms (ordinary or urgent) and a docket (Form T.G. 63) bearing the words "International Telegram" must be affixed to the top portion of the form by the receiving officer ...". A serial amendment for the above-mentioned alteration will be issued in due course. (N. 321/1/3).

Delivery form AB-DO-8Cb printed in February 1933.
Message entirely in five character code.

London, UK to Adelaide via Beam (Chief Telegraph Office of
25 April 1934).

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is in one line;
  • printed in black on orange paper;
  • after about 1940, label number T.G. 63 was printed towards the lower left corner. Earlier labels were blank;
  • no schedule number;
  • size of label is
    39 mm × 126 mm.


Also recorded in use in:

  • December 1937 at Canberra;
  • 12 December 1940 at Telegraph Office Geelong;
  • 3 January 1941 at South Brisbane;
  • 17 May 1941 at Ashfield, NSW.
Form printed in November 1938.

Abroad (origin not specified) to Edgecliff, NSW.
23 October 1941.

Used on delivery form

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is in two lines;
  • form number is immediately below the heading on the left;
  • printed in black on orange paper;
  • size of label is
    31 mm × 82 mm.


Form printed July1943.

Berkeley, Calif to Queensland
31 August 1944.

Same size and arrangement of lettering in two lines as for the previous label (AW-LI-2A) but:

  • lettering is much thicker.

See a label of this type used at Tamworth with a special date stamp of 26 November 1942.

Form printed in September 1940.

Overseas to Langhorne's Creek via Imperial
5 November 1942.

Used on delivery form

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is in two lines of smaller font than for previous labels;
  • form number under "IN";
  • printed in black on grey paper;
  • size of label is
    32 mm × 82 mm;
AW-LI-3_single AW-LI-3.

Shows position of form number.

Form printed in July 1942.

Tunbridge Wells to Launceston 26 July 1945.

Used on delivery form
AW-DO-9B (42).

Characteristics of label:

  • reverse printed in orange on white;
  • has form number under heading at left but no schedule number;
  • size is 32 × 81 mm with lowest 8 mm plain white.

Few of these orange labels were printed and it is probable they were only used at selected Post Offices. Certainly the rarest of all the labels.

Also known used on 23 April 1949 at Moreland, Vic on
AW-DO-10BB (47).

Form printed in July 1943.

Buffalo, New York to Brisbane (C.T.O. Brisbane of 9 January 1945).

Used on a delivery form
AW-DO-10A (43).

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is only the word INTERNATIONAL;
  • has form number underneath heading at left;
  • printed in blue reverse on top half only;
  • size is 34 × 82 mm.
Form printed in July 1947.

Singapore to Rockdale, NSW Via Imperial (Telegraph Office of 11 July 1949).

Used on delivery form
AW-DO-10BB (47)

Characteristics of label:

  • Heading is INTERNATIONAL/ TELEGRAM in two lines with form number at left;
  • letters in heading close together (54 mm wide);
  • no schedule number;
  • printed in blue reverse on top half only;
  • size of label is
    31 mm × 83 mm.
AW-LI-6A AW-LI-6A showing position of form number.
Form printed in August 1951.

Wellington, NZ to St. Kilda, Vic
15 June 1954.
Has scarce triple oval TELEGRAPH OFFICE/
ST. KILDA S2 violet date stamp.

Used on delivery form
AW-DO-10B (51)

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is INTERNATIONAL TELEGRAM in two lines with form number at left;
  • letters in heading more spaced (67 mm wide);
  • has schedule number printed in blue zone at right level with form number;
  • reverse printed in blue on top half only;
  • size of label is
    33 mm × 83 mm
AW-LI-6B_single AW-LI-6B showing position of form number and schedule number.

Singapore to West Perth, WA (Rectangular CHIEF TELEGRAPH OFFICE 11 February 1957 - ERD).

Characteristics of label:

  • heading is INTERNATIONAL TELEGRAM in two lines;
  • Schedule number is C. 7567;
  • letters in heading 63 mm wide;
  • has form number above schedule number and both printed in white gummed section at left;
  • reverse printed in blue on top 30% only;
  • size is 30 × 80 mm.
AW-LI-6C_single AW-LI-6C showing position of form number and schedule number.


Details of use and rarity.

Label number. Schedule number Earliest recorded date Rarity rating
LI-1   None. 25 April 1934 at Telegraph Branch Adelaide. RR
LI-2A   None. 23 October 1941 at Edgecliff, NSW. RR
LI-2B   None. 26 November 1942 at Tamworth. RRR
LI-3   None 5 November 1942 at Langhorne's Creek, SA. RRR
LI-4 T.G. 63 None. 5 October 1944 at CTO Brisbane Qld. RRRR
LI-5 T. G. 63 None. 9 January 1945 at C.T.O. Brisbane. RRR
LI-6A T.G. 63 None. 11 July 1949 at Rockdale, NSW. R
LI-6B T.G. 63 C6815/52 15 June 1954 at St. Kilda TO. R
LI-6C T.G. C.7567 Sch. 6968 24 September 1957 at T.O. Burnie, Tas. R
    Sch. C. 7567 12 February 1957 at Chief Telegraph Office, Perth, WA. RR
NOTE: the Rarity ratings are for the label genuinely used on a telegram form and
not for unused, unattached examples (which are common).