Tag Archives: North Korea

Tok Islands on North Korea

Originally published February 27, 2012.

My previous blarticle on a set of North Korean stamps, raised an issue of finding genuinely used stamps from North Korea.  It got me thinking that I have a ton of CTO stuff but haven’t seen much that has gone through the mail.  Then I came across the following sheet of 3 stamps with a label.

I know it passed through the mail because it was on piece before I soaked it off.  It is a First Day Cancel so most likely this was philatelic mail between collectors.
The subject matter of the stamps is the Tok Islands.  These are 2 small rocky islands and reefs located in the Sea of Japan between Honshu and the Korean peninsula.  The status of these islands is under dispute with both Japan and Korea claiming sovereignty over them and the related mineral and fishing rights.
The 3₩ value features a 19th-century map of Korea.  the 12₩ value shows the Western Island and the 106₩ value shows the Eastern Islands.
The stamps were issued on April 20, 2004, and are perforated 11½.

North Korean Ships

Originally published December 29, 2011.

On May 5, 1978, North Korea issued 5 stamps to commemorate their maritime heritage.  The stamps depict 5 ships and various aircraft and other modes of transportation (A very topical minded issue ;).  The stamps were perforated 13.25 and were also issued in a Sheet of 5 plus 1 label.

Sheet of 5 plus label.

The first ship identified is the Cargo Freighter Man Gyong Bonk.  Google provided that the ship may be misidentified in the Scott Catalogue and should be the Man Gyong Bong.  Not to be confused with a ship with the same name constructed in 1992, this one was recently touted as possible the worst cruise ship in the world.  You can read the article here: http://www.news.com.au/travel/holiday-ideas/is-north-koreas-man-gyong-bong-the-least-luxurious-cruise-ship-in-the-world/story-e6frfqf9-1226127814789

2ch Man Gyong Bong

The 5ch value depicts the freighter Hyok Sin.  Originally the Kyokuyo Maru completed in 1957, she was sold to North Korea in 1974.

5ch Hyok Sin

The next ship is the freighter Chong Chon Gang on the 10ch value.  Completed according to one source in 1977, as of 2009 she was still registered to a North Korean owner.

10ch Chong Chon Gang

The tanker Son Bang is featured on the 30ch value.  I have yet to get further information on this ship, if you have some please email me and let me know.

30ch Son Bang

The last stamp features the freighter Tae Dong Gang.  Completed in 1976 she was built in North Korea and as of 2009 was still in service.

50ch Tae Dong Gang

The designs of the stamps are visually appealing and as stated earlier appeal to a wide variety of thematic or topical collectors.  Not worth very much in terms of catalogue value, as far as I am concerned they are a nice addition to my general worldwide and ships on stamps collection.