Office Postal Stationery 1873 to 1922
The OUS also made use of Post Office postal stationery, “the
Society’s postcards” (Ref. 126).
Four postcards, the first two in the Donaldson collection, have
been found handstamped OXFORD/ UNION SOCIETY in black on the back at the top
- ½d lilac inland card Huggins and Baker (Ref. 127) CP2
(1870) used 6 December 1873 to Frodsham (in Cheshire)
- ½d brown inland card Huggins and Baker CP4 (1875) used 8
December 1877 to Mrs Massingham at Norwich (see Chapter 4) - Figure 37
and Figure 38
- 1d brown foreign card Huggins and Baker CP10 (1879) used
28 January 1881 to Cannes (author's collection)
- 1d brown foreign card Huggins and Baker CP15a (1883) used
4 Feb 1885 to Dresden (Hudson collection).
For the first three the handstamp is wide (43 x 8 mm.); for
the last it is narrow (35 x 8 mm).
A postcard has also been found handstamped “O.U.S.” in black
on the back at the NE corner:
1d brown foreign card Huggins and Baker CP15a (1883) used 22 Nov
1890 to Munich (Hudson collection).
The handstamp had to be on the back as otherwise the card
would have contravened Post Office regulations and been charged as a letter.
Cummings noted the OUS provision of postcards and letter
cards (Ref. 128). They were not to be used for “places within the messenger
radius” (Ref. 129) - which was as described in Chapter 5 (in 1886) “less than
half a mile” - as these were served by the free Oxford notes. The following postcards
(but no reply cards) have been found embossed with the OUS arms dated 1823 on
the back at the NE corner (there were no Post Office restrictions on
- 1d red foreign card Huggins and
Baker CP27 (1892) - two unused and four used: 10 May 1892 to France
(Harman collection), 26 February 1899 to San Marino (Donaldson
collection), 6 December 1899 to Rotterdam (author’s collection - Figure 36)
and undated (uncancelled) to Bordeaux with the message "Just a card
partly to break my long silence partly to take another plum out of the
Union" (Donaldson collection)
- ½d brown inland card Huggins and Baker CP30 (1899) - one
unused (Ref. 129a) and two used: 30 April 1901 to London (Ref. 129b) and 6
May 1901 locally in Oxford (latter Harding collection)
- 1d carmine foreign card Huggins and Baker CP35 (1899) - four
- ½d green inland card Huggins and Baker CP38 (1901) - one
unused, one used 27 November 1901 locally in Oxford (Harding collection).
- 1d carmine foreign card Huggins and Baker CP46 (1902) – two
unused, one used 22 April 1906 to Zurich (Davey collection)
- ½d yellow-green inland card Huggins and Baker CP48 (1904)
- one used 25 June 1905 to Birmingham (author’s collection)
- 1d carmine foreign card Huggins and Baker CP56a (1908) – one
unused and two used: 22 May 1909 to Bavaria (author's collection) and 10
June 1909 to Germany (Davey collection).
- ½d green inland card Huggins and Baker CP59 (1911) - one
used 21 January 1915 to Hampstead (author’s collection)
- 1d scarlet foreign card Huggins and Baker CP62 (1912) - one
used 19 June 1913 to Cambridge, redirected to Harlesden in London (Harding
- 1d carmine inland card Huggins and Baker CP73 (1918) – one
used 22 October 1922 to Brussels and charged 30c postage due (author’s
Three letter cards have been found embossed with the same OUS
arms but on the front at the NW corner:
- Queen Victoria 1d carmine card Huggins and Baker LCP1
(1892) – one used 26 April 1896 to Leytonstone (sold on Ebay April 2018)
- Edward VII 1d carmine card Huggins and Baker LCP3a (1904
De La Rue printing) - one unused (Harding collection)
- George V 1d carmine card Huggins and Baker LCP6 (1913) –
one used 23 December 1914 to Kensington (author's collection).
The letter card, folded in two and sealed round the edges,
allowed a short message to be sent with the same privacy as a letter.
Ordinary (non-Post Office) stationery has also been found
embossed with the OUS arms dated 1823. There is a postcard embossed on the
front at the top centre, with a George V ½d green Profile Head stamp, used 12
February 1915 to London (Harman collection).
Last updated 18 Jan 2020