"History in Miniature: The 150th Anniversary of Stamp Issuance in Hong Kong" exhibition
19.12.2012 – 16.01.2013
Jointly presented by
Leisure and Cultural Services Department
Hong Kong Museum of History
1/F Lobby, Hong Kong Museum of History
When the world's first postage stamps were introduced in 1840, it marked the start of more convenient and rapid correspondence between countries. The Hong Kong government launched its postal services in 1841, although postmarks were initially used for the pre-payment of postage, and it was not until 8 December 1862 that Hong Kong's first stamps were issued.
To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of Hong Kong stamps, the Hong Kong Museum of History has joined hands with Hongkong Post to stage this exhibition that, through the selection of some 300 pieces of Hong Kong stamps supplemented by historical photographs, tells visitors another fascinating chapter in "The Hong Kong Story". Chronicling the images of British monarchs that were depicted on early Hong Kong stamps, the exhibition traces how the stamp designs featuring royal portraits that had been adopted as standard for over a century were gradually replaced from the 1960s onwards, and it also showcases the various elements drawn from Chinese culture and Hong Kong life that have been used as motifs since local Chinese were first commissioned to design the territory's stamps. Today, stamps are not only used for the pre-payment of postage, but are collected and treasured by people from all walks of life as valuable works of art, while they continue to play the role of cultural ambassadors, serving as an elegant medium through which people around the world first come into contact with Hong Kong.