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January 22, 2019

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PRC milestones put their stamp on local museum

Postage stamps issued during the first six years of the People’s Republic of China were donated to the Shanghai History Museum yesterday.

The donation of 175 stamps was made by Wang Liwei, 50, a stamp collector and chairman of an investment company, to mark the country’s 70th anniversary.

The 42 sets of stamps were printed between October 1949 and February 1955.

They include the first set printed in the PRC, issued on October 8 in 1949 to celebrate the success of the first plenary session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.

The stamps had very high denominations as they were issued according to the currency values of the time, which were very high due to inflation. The government introduced a new currency with new denominations in 1955, 1/10,000 of the old ones.

“The stamps in old denominations are very special and valuable as they witness a special period of history when China’s economy became more stable,” said Qiu Zhengping, vice curator of the museum.

“The donation also enlarged our collection as we had only stamps issued before the founding of the new China,” she added.

Shanghai played an important role in stamp history as the first set of Chinese stamps was produced here 141 years ago and most stamps issued in the early years of the PRC were also printed in the city, Qiu pointed out.

She added that many of the stamps were produced by local printing houses, such as the Shanghai Commercial Press and the Shanghai No.1 Printing Factory.

Shanghai was also the cradle of China’s numerous stamp collectors. Early in the 1920s, many philately clubs were established here.


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