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The Kingdom of Prussia was established in 1701 from a Duchy, and the House of Hohenzollern ruled the territory for centuries. It was a central force behind the German States' union in 1871 and formed, under its leadership, the German Empire. It was legally abolished in 1947, although it had already been effectively abolished over a decade earlier. Its territory was roughly today’s northern part of Germany, up to Lithuania.
The first stamps of Prussia were issued in the 15th of November of 1850, featuring King Frederick William IV (the kingdom's ruler at the time), intaglio/recess-printed, imperforated and watermarked with an oak wreath. There was no inscribed country name, but rather “Freimarke” on the top, and the denomination at the bottom. Re-prints occurred in 1864 and 1873, where the new stamps were either 0,5-1mm wider or a bit narrower than the originals (respectively). The main differences between the originals and the reprints can be seen on the background (chalked in the original) or the paper type used.
It is also noteworthy that the first stamps of Prussia are not numbered 1 by neither Scott nor Michael Catalogues. While Scott number 1 is from 1856, Michael's is from 1851, ordering the series according to the denomination rather than chronologically.
Catalogue Value: Unused **, Used *
* 0.1 - 49 USD
** 50 - 99 USD
*** 100 - 499 USD
**** 500 - 999 USD
***** 1'000 - 9'999 USD
****** + 10'0000 USD
The First Issues Blog is a place to discuss about the stamp number 1 of each country, territory, district, etc. Each additional item to my new collection shall receive a small description about the item, its history and curiosities.
Note that I may add more than 1 'number one' stamp to a place. This happens as I judge that in the case of independence or any other political issue that changed the postal history or when I deemed interesting to do so. This will be noted on the posts when it happens.