Quick reference

General issues: Republic 1884

Country name on general issues: Stellaland

Currency: 1 Shilling = 12 Pence 1884

Population: 37 500 in 1884

Political history Stellaland

Please click on the image to enlarge

Please click on the image to enlarge

Stellaland is a Boer republic located in southern Africa. Its history was short but eventful. In 1882, Boers from the South African Republic support one of the Tswana rulers in his fight against competing Tswana rulers, and in return for their support are given part of his land. Since the 1881 Convention of Pretoria, signed by the Boer and the British, forbade the South African Republic to extend its territory further into Tswana land, two new republics were formed by the Boer: the State of Goshen and the republic of Stellaland. Goshen and Stellaland, subsequently, joined to form the United States of Stellaland in 1883.[1]Some resources suggest the union between Stellaland and Goshen was negotiated, but never effectuated.

In 1884, in the aftermath of the First Boer War, the Convention of London is signed thus redefining the relations between the Boer and the British. As per this convention, part of the territory of Stellaland is ceded to the South African Republic. Both the British and the South African Republic have an interest in the remainder of Stellaland – both declaring Stellaland to be a protectorate. The British interest is that Stellaland is located on a trading route that is 0f importance to the British. In late 1884, the British invade and occupy Stellaland to protect their interests. In 1885, Stellaland is annexed to the British colony of Bechuanaland formed the same year.

Postal history Stellaland

Postal history Stellaland

1884 – Coat of arms of Stellaland

Stellaland has, in 1884, issued a set of 5 definitives and one overprint with a new face value – all of the same local design and print. The stamps were valid for domestic use until late 1885. The remaining stock was sold to the collectors market. Used items have substantially higher catalog values than their mint counterparts.





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6 Responses to Stellaland

  1. Admir Arnautović


    I think this is wrong flag of Republic of Stellaland. Based on online resources at that time official flag was green with a white 5-pointed star.

    P.S. You are doing great job. This is THE BEST stamp history site on web!

    • Gerben


      Thanks you for your kind words. I think the flag is correct – at least for the period in which Stellaland issued stamps. Stellaland had three flags shortly after another. See: Worldstatesmen and Flags of the World on Stellaland.

  2. Admir Arnautović

    But I found these two links showing green flag with white star:


    Also, I doubt about Burgers’ „Sovereign Flags of Southern Africa“ as reliable source because there is no other source mentioned Stellaland flag with six point star. The official coat of arms of Republic of Stellaland shows five-pointed star two times – on top and on green field in top right corner.

    Further, I found this interesting site where they explain potentially 3 different flags of Stellaland (or Land of the Star) – green flag with five-pointed star, green/red flag with 8-pointed star, and green flag with state coat of arms. They prefer first flag as official, and others as variants.

    • Gerben


      I guess, when one digs deeper than the two reference sites I commonly use for the flags, there is quite a bit of discussion on the Stellaland flag. And indeed, the resources you mention seem to conclude in favor of the green flag with a five pointed star as the flag of Stellaland. So I replaced the flag. Thanks for sharing this. These same resources also seem to suggest that the union between Stellaland and Goshen was negotiated but never effectuated. I made a note of that too.

      • Admir Arnautović

        I just want to help to create better site which is already for me most reliable resource for stamp history on the web.


        • Gerben


          Thanks, your comments are much appreciated. I wish more visitors would take the time to contribute to the quality of StampWorldHistory.

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