The details addressed on this page are:


Design of the 2½d (2/6) stamp.

This is the stamp printed in Row 3, Column 4.
There is a dot between the N and Y of PENNY.

The 2½d multi-coloured stamp was issued to pay the cost of a basic letter sent overseas.

On 26th June 1897 NSW Government Gazette described the design of the 2½d (2/6) stamp as follows:

"The motive of 'restoration' or 'rebuilding' is typified by two figures draped in white, the strong gently leading the weak, while she points to the motto "Redifico'. This vignette is placed in a diamond frame, above which are the words 'Consumptives Home' inscribed on a riband. A circle of gold forms the background, upon which the flannel flower and waratah are displayed. In the left lower corner is a medallion bearing the figures 2/6, while the base of the design is inscribed 'N.S.W. Postage, Twopence Halfpenny". This stamp is printed in gold, blue, rose and carmine".

The Charity stamp was sold for 12 times the face value to raise money for the Consumptives Home Fund.



The standard 2½d. stamps.

There were two 2½d NSW stamps on standard issue in 1897 to pay the cost of a basic letter sent overseas:

  • the Allegorical figure printed in ultramarine had been issued first in 1890;
  • the 2½d Queen Victoria stamp, first printed in purple, was part of the 1897 Jubilee issue,

Hence two N.S.W. 2½d stamps on standard issue complemented the 2½d (2/6) Consumptives Home Charity issue.

Those wishing to send a basic letter overseas therefore had a choice fro these three stamps - depending on whether they wished to pay the extra amount of 12 times the basic rate by using the the Consumptives Home stamp.

1890 ultramarine Allegorical Figure.

1897 2½d purple Jubilee issue of Queen Victoria.


Main details of printing.

Both of the N.S.W. Charity stamps were designed by C. Taylor.

The 2½d (2/6) stamp was also printed by the Government Printing Office, Sydney, using chromolithography in sheets of 30 arranged in six rows of five.
Separate 30-on plates were prepared for each of the four printing colours - gold, blue, rose and carmine.

Date of issue: 28 June 1897 - but valid for postage until 31 August.
Sheet arrangement: 5 rows of 6 stamps.
Watermark: Crown and NSW (inverted and showing NSW from the front).
Perforation: 11 x 11 (line).
Number printed: 15,000.
Supplied to Bern Bureau (UPU): 810.
Destroyed under Treasury Authority: 4,110.
Number issued: 10,080 (336 sheets).

The postal denomination of 2½d covered the foreign letter rate.

When viewed by holding the stamp upright, the watermark is upside down.

Watermark inverted.

Two examples are recorded as singles with watermark upright:


Largest known multiple - block of 12.

Largest multiple recorded - a block of 12.

Corinphila Sale 320 November 2023, Lot 30082 - Dubois Collection Part 3.


Blocks of 4.

The higher denomination stamp was more keenly sought after by collectors and so there are no large multiples still existing - certainly no sheet. The multiples can be summarised as follows:

Selvedge at the right only.
Showing watermark frame-line in selvedge.
MNH, perforations almost perfect.
Stamps 5 and 6 from rows 2 and 3 of the sheet.

Provenance: Burrus,
Status January 2002 Lot 1120.
Johnstone Collection.

Top right corner block with complete selvedge.
MNH, perforations almost perfect.

Provenance: Berry,
Johnstone Collection.

Top right corner bloc with complete selvedge.
MNH, perforations almost perfect. Gum smear on TRC.

Provenance: Prestige Philately April 2009 Lot 353.
Spink Nov 2022 Lot 26.

Spink Jan 2024 (24011) Lot 2086.

Top right corner block.
Has watermark frame-lines in both selvedges.

Prestige Philately August 2012 Lot 262.
Corinphila # 309, November 2023. Lot 47.
Johnstone Collection.

Stamps 3 and 4 from Rows 4 and 5 of the sheet.
Has lower selvedge with "H WALES" inverted watermark.

Dubois Collection, Corinphila Sale 297, November 2022, Lot 10078.
Johnstone Collection.

Other blocks of 4 for the 2½d (2/6) which are recorded are:

Selvedge details Other characteristics Seller/Reference &
Date (lot)
Top and left Upper stamps MLH, lower stamps unmounted.
Has a dot in the selvedge in the top right corner under the gum smear.
Prestige Philately April 2009 Lot 353.
Spink Nov 2022 Lot 26.
Top and left MNH. Status October 2013 Lot 1640.
Only above top pair
  • has gum down nearly half of the selvedge;
  • slight damage above the top left stamp;
  • has gum run above top right stamp and a hinge.
  • Stanley Gibbons December 1970 Lot 1046;
  • Millennium Rarieties October 2004 Lot 12.
  • white spot in the perforations above SOUTH in the lower right stamp;
  • David Feldman Sale 42 April 1986 Lot 20856;
  • Premier Rarities sale January 2003 Lot 221.
  • Corinphila 29 November 2022,
    Lot 10078.
No selvedge Some vertical separation, strengthened.

Millennium February 2005 Lot 51.
No selvedge Good perforations but some roughness
between the upper pair.
Ebay February 2012.
No selvedge Very good perforations and centered left. Prestige Philately May 2008
Lot 16


Used stamps off cover.

Like the situation for the 1d (1/-) stamp, singles are plentiful and MH/unused examples are common. Singles and pairs can only be rated as scarce if they are in good MUH condition with reasonable gum. Unfortunately the majority of stamps off cover are unused (no gum) and/or are in poor condition with thins, creases and stained.

A block of four with a Parkes cds of 2 December 1897, matching the 1d (1/-) block of four is known (Status Auctions July 2002 Lot 1248).

As listed below, there are at least than 30 good used examples of single 2½d (2/6) stamps - but there are probably less than 50 examples of good, collectable items.

The earliest recorded date for a 2½d (2/6) stamp off cover is 22 June 1897. Most recorded dates are to December 1897 although, like with the 1d (1/-) stamp, some are known with date stamps a long time out of the validity of the stamp - for example 17 March 1909 at Sydney (Status Auctions December 2002 Lot 1005) and 27 September 1937 at Melbourne!! (Sandafayre October 2913 Lot 5341).

There are a number of cancelled examples with only the barred ray cancellation but no date is included. These, together with partial or indistinct cancellations, have been ignored on account of a doubt over their validity.


Listing of known date stamps on 2½d (2/6) stamps.

Date on stamp From Image and description Seller/Reference & Date (lot)
22 June 1897.

First Day of Issue of the 1d stamp
but 6 days before the issue of the 2½d.
Full gum. MNH.

The top of the date stamp is near the
sick person's head and it is
rotated 10 degrees anti-clockwise.
Provenance: Duncan Manins, Johnstone.
22 June 1897.

First Day of Issue of the 1d stamp
but 6 days before the issue of the 2½d.
Full gum. MNH.

Tenterfield Provenance: Duncan Manins (June 2014).
22 June 1897.

First Day of Issue of the 1d stamp
but 6 days before the issue of the 2½d.
Full gum. MNH.


Ebay Nov 2022

  • Status September 2022 Lot 2779;
  • Status January 2023 Lot 2617 and through Ebay May 2023.
29 June 1897 Sydney Date stamp centered, rotated counter-clockwise about 50 degrees and struck at 1:00 pm. Ebay (techgifts) December 2017.
30 June 1897 Sydney 3 at 4:30 pm. Rotated slightly counter clockwise.
N of NSW duplex extends to EE of JUBILEE.
Ebay September 2018.
1 July 1897 Sydney 32 Date stamp centered slightly left and rotated about 30 degrees. Time is 4 pm. Ebay May 2018.
1 July 1897 Parramatta 2 duplex
at 7:30 pm.
Poor centering (moved to left). Quarter of date stamp missing at left. Ebay August 2019 (techgifts).
2 July 1897 Parliament House Has date stamp of duplex almost upside down in top left corner with 1741 duplex diagonally across the design Prestige Philately
August 2012 Lot 263;
August 2013 Lot 358;
Status November 2013
Lot 1641.
3 July 1897
Delegate duplex 202 rays. Prestige Philately January 2005
Lot 394.
3 July 1897 Goulburn Duplex 35 (Freeman type 5) struck sideways at 3:30 pm with date stamp at the base. Status September 2016 Lot 1650.
5 July 1897 Sydney (Registered) Date stamp rotated 90 degrees counterclockwise Spink May 2018 Lot 62.
6 July 1897 North Sydney. On piece - nice item. Status February 2012 Lot 1499.
6 July 1897 Park Street 924 duplex Placed vertically with numeral at top.
Marginal seldevge at top.
Ebay March 2015.
6 July 1897 Summer Hill In the center and rotated clockwise about 100 degrees.
Top just touches T in ...PTIVES.
Ebay March 2017.
6 July 1897 Broken Hill In the center and rotated clockwise about 140 degrees.
Top just touches top of VES.
Ebay March 2017.
6 July 1897 Ashfield 193 BN duplex BN just visible on top right side.. Techgifts (Ebay) March 2018.
Status Oct 2019, Lot 1969.
7 July 1897 Sydney 36 NSW duplex
Duplex on LHS of stamp.
Status November 2013 Lot 1641.
8 July 1897 Sydney Sydney 41 - centered but rotated 70° counter-clockwise. NS(W) duplex in top RHC (partial S). Ebay Oct 2019.
10 July 1897 Summer Hill. Prestige Philately April 2011 Lot 394.
17 July 1897 Grafton 90 duplex.
Date stamp is diagonal
with '90' duplex in top right corner.

DnJays September 2013.
19 July 1897 Sydney   Matthew Bennett February 2003 Lot 560.
19 July 1897 Nowra Date stamp in the center, faint and
rotated just more than 90 degrees counterclockwise
Ebay May 2017
22 July 1897 Murwillumbah.   Status December 2002 Lot 1005.
23 July 1897 Parramatta   Status July 2003 Lot 1246.
24 July 1897 Kempsey (West)   Prestige Philately March 2005 Lot 257.
29 July 1897 King Street Date stamp centered but rotated 130 degrees clockwise. Ebay August 2018.
31 July 1897 Oxley Centered - nearly touching frame below CONSUMPTIVES HOMES. Rotated 10° clockwise. Ebay Sept-Oct. 2019.
2 August 1897 Warialda   Velvet Collectables June 2014 Lot 1668.
5 August 1897 Haymarket
Time is 1750 PM.
Richard Allen, September 2013.
6 August 1897 Rockdale duplex 1127.   Status May 2002 Lot 1174.
19 August 1897 Penrith Ebay November 2023.
31 August 1897 George Street West.   Harmers of Sydney Sale 269 Lot 423.
31 August 1897 Registered Sydney Ebay September 2022.

Beyond postal validity.

2 December 1897 Parkes. Block of four.   Status July 2002 Lot 1248.
2 December 1897 Parkes. Single with top cutting H of SOUTH and rotated 10 degrees clockwise.   Status July 2002 Lot 1249.
10 January 1898 Hillgrove Centered right across larger figure   Abacus July 2020 Lot 1144.
16 August 1901 Sydney 26 NSW duplex Single on piece. Rough perfs at the base. S of duplex just visible at right.   Ebay (techgifts) March 2018.
27 September 1937 Melbourne.     Sandafayre September 2013 Lot 5341.