Stamp issuing entities

This section contains a list of stamp issuing entities.

Goal and scope

The goal is to provide a comprehensive list of stamp issuing entities, past and present, within the scope of the four leading worldwide catalogs. As such, the list can be used to manage a worldwide collection. The catalogs used to create the list are:

  1. Michel: Deutschland, Europa and Überseekatalog
  2. Scott: Standard Postage Stamp Catalog
  3. Stanley Gibbons: Stamps of the World
  4. Yvert & Tellier: Catalogue de Timbres-Poste

The list contains the stamp issuing entities that are either listed in or referred to by the above catalogs.


From countries to stamp issuing entities

The starting point are the countries as listed in the Michel catalog, called ‘Major entities’. These are first broken down to departments, cities, shipping companies, airlines, armies and so on that have issued stamps, called ‘Minor entities’. Next, the ‘Minor entities’ are further broken down to different forms of government and periods of issue, thus resulting in ‘Stamp issuing entities’. ‘Major entities’, ‘Minor entities’ and ‘Stamp issuing entities’ are listed under the ‘Country’ heading and are the core of the list.

Snap Countries

Contextual information

Contextual information is provided in other columns under the headings: ‘Continent’, ‘Period’ and ‘Line of succession’. ‘Period’ is the period in which an entity has issued stamps, ‘Line of succession’ shows how entities may have transformed and what their current political situation is.

Snap Continents

Snap Periods

Cross reference of catalogs

A cross reference of catalogs is provided in the columns under the heading ‘Source’. The cross reference indicates in which of the catalogs the stamp issuing entities are listed.

Snap Source

Manage a collection

The column ‘Collection’ allows one to manage a collection. One can indicate which stamp issuing entities one has and which are on a want list. Also, one can refine the scope of a collection by defining stamp issuing entities to be out of scope. In the version of the list on this site I show – as an example – how I have defined the scope of my collection and where I stand in terms of what I have and what is on my want list. At the top of the list, the box ‘Collection summary’ provides statistics about the collection. The image below – as an example – reflects the current status of my personal collection.

Collecion summary

Differences between catalogs

The setup of the catalogs used differs greatly. Thus, a stamp issuing entity that is listed in the Michel catalog under country ‘A’ may be listed in another catalog under country ‘B’, or have a separate listing. Special issues may be listed at the back of a country listing or in between the general issues. In most cases, the description in the columns under the headings ‘Country’ and ‘Period’ should be enough to identify a stamp issuing entity in any of the four catalogs used. In a number of cases a reference is provided to specific catalog numbers.


From countries to stamp issuing entities

The list contains a number of counters. A summary of the statistics of the current version:


Worldwide catalogs compared

Also interesting may be how the four worldwide catalogs compare in their scope. The number of stamp issuing entities listed in each of the catalogs is:


The differences are largely due to the number of local and private issues listed in the catalogs. As such, they are the result of differences in the editorial policies of the publishers. The differences tell something about the scope of the catalogs. They are not, per se, an indication of which catalog should be preferred. For that decision many other factors come into play.


The list, in all probability, will always be a work in progress. New stamp issuing entities may be identified and forms of government may change. I will keep updating the list and will publish new versions periodically.

  • Version 6.7 posted on 1 September 2016. Several minor editorial changes. The development of new country profiles led to 15 entities being removed and 25 being added. One country was removed by adding Gilbert Islands to Gilbert & Ellice Islands.
  • Version 6.6 posted on 1 May 2016. Several minor editorial changes. The development of further country profiles has led to adding 16 entities and removing 5 entities. Two countries were removed by combining Antigua and Antigua & Barbuda to Antigua (& Barbuda) and likewise Saint Kitts & Nevis and Saint Kitts, Nevis & Anguilla to Saint Kitts, Nevis (& Anguilla). Finally, the Mexican Revolution issues have been fully revised.
  • Version 6.5 posted on 1 January 2016. Several minor editorial changes. The development of further country profiles has led to adding 17 entities and removing 4 entities.
  • Version 6.4 posted on 1 October 2015. Several minor editorial changes. The development of new country profiles has led to 1 stamp issuing entity being removed and 12 added for both newly identified forms of government and local and private issues.
  • Version 6.3 posted on 1 August 2015. Several minor editorial changes. Fully lined up the list with the country profiles on this site. Thus 16 entities were added and 11 removed.
  • Version 6.2 posted on 1 July 2015. Several minor editorial changes, 2 stamp issuing entities added – Spanish West Indies/Havana and United Nations/Montreal. Major change: specific start date/end date added for Russian Zemstvo issues as per ‘Russia Zemstvos’, F.G. Churchin, 1984.
  • Version 6.1 posted on 1 June 2015.

In case you are interested in a change log of entities added/removed please leave a reply and I will send you a copy.

View the list

Below you can view the list. The box to view the list is probably not the most suitable way to view the list, given the size of the list. Please click on the icon on the extreme right of the bottom of the box. This allows you to view the list in Excel Online. From there you can download the list and customize it for your personal use.


19 Responses to Stamp issuing entities

  1. Mike Warre

    There is much of what I have had in mind such, the maps, the flow charts, political & philatelic histories. My scope may be deeper as I have over 10000 entities in the America. Example I did not see it on your list but do you have the UN, Montreal, or Ultramar ie Cuba, Scott #2 & 3 was issued for used in Cuba, Puerto Rico & the Philippines. Santo Domingo ie the Dominican Republic was a included in Ultramar from March 18, 1861-Sept. 14, 1863, but no new issues at that time! Also all the 1/4r Cuba/Ultramar were issed for Havana only! Talk soon!

    • Gerben

      Hi Mike

      Thanks for your reply. I guess your scope must indeed go well beyond mine. I have deliberately limited my scope to what is listed in the worldwide catalogs to keep my worldwide collection sort of manageable. And even then it presents quite a challenge……

      As far as the entities you mention:

      • The UN is listed under the Americas – UN/New York – and Europe – UN/Geneva and UN/Vienna.
      • Montreal: can you elaborate?
      • The earlier issues that Scott lists under Cuba (Scott 1-53) are in the Michel catalog listed under Spanish West Indies and are found in my list as such.
      • I missed the 1/4 real issues for Havana city mail – I will add them to list, thanks for pointing them out. (I intend to update the list every few months so maybe you will not see the change for a while yet).


      If you have any other suggestions, please let me know. I am well aware that the list can be improved. Many of the details are only in the description of the individual issues and I must have missed some – such as the Havana issues.


      • Mike Warre


        Per my previous reply, I mentioned that Ultramar ie Spanish West Indies listed as #2 &3 under Cuba in Scott was used for Cuba, Puerto Rico & the Philippines and all the 1/4r’s is only for the city mail of Havana! Also that the Dominican Republic ie Santo Domingo was part of Ultramar between 1861-63 but no new issues during that time!

        Also mentioned the United Nation issues for Montreal.

        The United Nations in Montreal, Canada was in 1967 when Montreal hosted the World Expo. The UN had it’s own pavilion there and issued 5 stamps under special agreement with the Canadian government. All 5 stamps were issued/expressed in Canadian currency in denominations of 4c, 5c, 8c, 10c & 15cents. They are listed in Scott as UN #170-74. They were issued, valid & used at the UN pavilion only from April 28-October 27.
        Another UN note is that UN Scott #2 is overprinted with “New York” it is a precancel and when listed in Scott it is #2a.


        • Gerben

          Hi Mike

          Thanks for your reply.

          I have noted your comment on the use of the early Cuba/Spanish West Indies issues. I guess for me that doesn’t constitute a different stamp issuing entity. The use on the Philippines and in the Dominican Republic is however absolutely relevant for the country profiles of the respective countries. I will adjust the existing profile of the Philippines accordingly.

          Thanks also for your explanation about the Montreal issues. I will add them to the list of stamp issuing entities.

          Thanks again for your valuable contributions!


    • Rich

      Gerben, Great website and list!!!

      Mike Warre; you mention in you comment that you have a list of over 10,000 entities in the Americas alone. Do you have a complete list of world entities that issued stamps that you could send to me?


      • Gerben


        Thanks for the kudos. Chances that Mike will read your comment, I think, are slim. What I could do to facilitate you, is send Mike an email with your email address and your question. Of course it will be up to Mike to decide whether he responds or not. Let me know if you want me to do this.

  2. Mike Warre

    Hello, Gerben,

    I will happy to help you with information on various issuing entities.

    I like to make aware of one of the errors in philatelic history and that is the so-called Sinaloa issue in Mexico. This was actually a revolt in Torreón, Coahuila, Mexico. The general that lead the rebels was born in Sinaloa and I believe that is why this error occured and was never corrected.

    I have a lot of details on Zemstvo’s of Russia. I see you are using the generic dates of 1864-1917 for all of the Zemstvo’s. There is no general date for all, the dates vary wildly with some continuing into the 1920’s. I could supply the dates if you’d like!

    More later, Mike!

    • Gerben


      Thanks again. I would very much appreciate your help on improving the list. You obviously have studied the subject in detail.

      When it comes to the Sinaloa issues: do you mean the 1914 civil war issues or the 1929 insurgents issues?

      I would love to be able to add more detail to the Zemstvo issues. What would be the resource you use?

      Thanks again for your contribution, it is much appreciated.


      • Mike Warre


      • Mike Warre

        “Russia Zemstvos”, by F.G. Churchin, 1984. This is a reissue of the “Catalogue of the Russian Rural Postage Stamps” in 1925.

        Akhtyirka 1872; Alatyir 1867-75; Alexandria 1869-1906; Ananief 1875-1896; Ardatof 1878-1914; Arzamas 1874-1908; Atkarsk 1869-81 *Note Atkarsk was closed/stopped in 1881 stamps were still issued through 1885″; Bakhmut 1901; Balashof 1876-80; Belebey 1890-1908; Berdyansk 1870-82; Bielozersk 1868-1915; Bobrof 1872-79; Bogorodsk 1871-96; Boghuchary 1871-73; Borisoglyebsk 1872-82; Borovichy 1869-1912; Bronnytzy 1868-1905; Bugulma 1882-1918; Bugurusian 1879-1916; Buzuluk 1876-1915; Byezhetsk 1872-96; Chembary 1874-88;
        Cherdyn 1889-1918; Cherepovets 1869-1912; Cherkassy 1879; Chern 1871-75; Chistopol 1906-1911; Dankof 1873-1916; Demiansk 1868-78; Dmitrief 1871-74; Dmitrof 1874; Dnieprovsk 1866-95; Donez 1879-90;
        Dukhovstschins 1873-82; Gadiach 1884-1913; Gdof 1874-1912; Glazof 1868-1914; Griazovets 1878-1914;
        Irbit 1874-1914; Kadnikof 1871-1914; Kamyishlof 1903-17; Kashira 1907; Kassimof 1869-71, stopped restarted
        in 1875; Karzan 1895; Kharkof 1870-1904; Kherson 1867-1914; Kholm 1906-11; Khvalyask 1901-14; Kirillof 1871-1910; Kobelaky 1908; Kologrif 1888-1891; Kolomna 1871-1916; Konstantinograd 1913; Korcheva 1876-1911; Kotelnich 1869-1916; Kozelets 1867-74; Krapivna 1870-1871; Krasnoufimsk 1893-1919; Krasney 1890-1912; Krememchug 1875-1915; Kungur 1890-96; Kuznetsk 1880-1904; Lahishef 1896-1904; Lebedian 1872-1913;
        Lebedin 1884-1916; Lgof 1881-1902; Livney 1871-1903; Lokhvitza 1899-1916; Lubny 1879-1903; Luga 1869-1918; Malmyzh 1869-1897; Maloarkhangelsk 1871-76; Mariupol 1871-78; Melitopol 1867-78; Morshansk 1875-1904; Nicolsk 1884-1915; Nolinsk 1871-1917; Novaya Ladoga 1867-83; Novgorod 1868-89; Novomoskofsk 1886-98; Novorzhef 1890-93; Novouzensk 1897; Odessa 1878-81; Okhansk 1871-1913; Opochka 1876-91; Orgheef 1871-93; Osa 1889-1911; Ostashkov 1878-97; Oster 1885-87; Ostrogozhask 1871-85; Ostrof 1875-1910;
        Pavlograd 1869-84; Penza 1901-14; Pereslaf 1874-81; Pereyaslaf 1871-1915; Perm 1872-1920; Petrozavodsk 1901-16; Piriatin 1868-69; Podolsk 1871-95; Poltava 1903-16; Porkhof 1876-1905; Priluky 1879-93; Pskof 1871-1910; Pudozh 1903-13; Rostof 1871-91; Ryazan 1867-80; Ryazhak 1882-98; Rzhef 1867-96; Samara 1908;
        Sapozhok 1870-1913; Saransk 1908; Sarapul 1893-94; Saratof 1869-79; Shadrinsk 1869-1917; Shatsk 1871-1916;
        Shchigry 1882-86; Shlisselburg 1865-66; Skopin 1871-1916; Smjeinogorsk 1917-20; Smolensk 1894; Solikamsk 1887-1915; Soroki 1878-98; Spassk 1883-1913; Staraya Russa 1881; Starobyelsk 1876-1895; Stavropol 1894-1912; Sudzha 1882-90; Sumy 1868-72,98; Syzran 1872; Tambof 1870-76; Tefyushy 1911; Tikhvin 1871-1903;
        Tiraspol 1878-79; Totma 1894-1904; Tula 1888; Twer 1869-89; Urzhum 1891-1905; Ustiuzhna 1889-1897; Ustsysolsk 1872-1916, Valdai 1871-88; Vasil 1871-81; Veliki Ustyug 1901-08; Velsk 1886-1915; Verkhnednieprovsk 1866-77; Verkotor 1889-1902; Vesslegonsk 1871-1913; Vetluga 1906-13; Viatka 1896-1905;
        Volchansk 1872-83; Volsk 1885-98; Yarensk 1911-12; Yassy 1879; Yegoryevsk 1868-98; Yekaterinburg 1895-1912; Yekaterinoslaf 1872-76; Yelets 1873-99; Yelisavetgrad 1870-1902; Zadonsk 1878-1914; Zemilansk 1874-80; Zienkof 1878-1916; Zolotonosha 1880-1916.

        • Gerben


          Thanks a million, this is great! I will update the list of stamp issuing entities and post a new version!

          One small question: Yvert lists a city called Valki. Is that not in Churchin’s ‘Russia Zemstvos’? I did not see it on your list.

          BTW: This is exactly how I would have hoped that StampWorldHistory can be improved through the contributions of its visitors!


  3. keijo

    Gerben – it’s amazing how much/big your list has grown since we swapped and compared our country databases. And I’m definitely loving these new additions (be guaranteed that I will ‘steal’.. eh, include them with my listings some day as well) ;)


    • Gerben


      The list has definitely grown. Digging into the subject I kept finding new ways to identify entities. Comparing it to your list alone resulted in dozens of new entities. It’s somewhat stable now but it will always be a work in progress. Many of the special issues are in the catalogs only identified in the descriptions of the general issues – some of those mentioned in the index but not nearly all. So new entities will keep coming up. Like the ones Mike pointed out the other day.

      And of course: I’d be only to happy to see others like yourself ‘stealing’ from my work. I guess that’s more or less what this site is all about.


  4. Tim Threlfall

    Hello. I came to this page, very helpful, in search of a list of all the “entities” that have ever issued stamps, as a “skeleton” for my collection of a stamp from as many countries as possible. I’m interested in presentation / arrangement: Do you recognize the difference between an entity issuing its own stamps, and using those of a “predecessor” overprinted – 2 examples here: (a) Stamp of “Nouvelle Caledonie et Dependances” overprinted “ILES WALLIS et FUTUNA”; (b) se-tenant pairs of South Africa/Suid-Afrika stamps overprinted “Basutoland” ? Would you suggest “filing” (classifying) these under the entity named in the overprint, or the predecessor, or as a separate class of entity altogether? Comments appreciated.

    • Gerben


      Interesting question. In the examples you give, my approach would be to file the overprints with the issuing country. In this case Wallis & Futuna and Basutoland. The overprints are issued by these countries for use in these countries. The fact that, to be able to issue stamps in time, issues from a predecessor were used would seem to be a less relevant practicality. I think you will find this is the standard approach also of the worldwide catalogs.

      The discussion is very different for occupation issues. In that case there is a difference between the stamp issuing country – the occupying country – and the country where the stamps are used – the occupied country. You will find that in this case the approach of the worldwide catalogs differs. Both between countries in one catalog and between catalogs. In the setup of my collection – and the content of this site, including the list of stamp issuing entities – I have avoided theorizing about what would be the best approach. I decided to follow the catalog I use as a standard – which is the Michel catalog.

      I hope this is of use for you.

  5. Matthias Van Campe


    I’d like to congratulate you for this wonderful website. It’s a terrific resource.
    As I’m intrigued by stamp issuing entities the same way you are, I’d like to receive a change log, if possible.

    Kind regards,

    • Gerben


      Thank you for your kind words. I am glad you find the site of use. I will send you the change log through email. Please note that the change log contains only entities added or removed, not the smaller, ‘editorial’ changes I have made. If you have any further questions, please let me know.

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