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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Flag Day , "Flags on Stamps; Facts File - Part 2"

Issued in 1962 to commemorate 150 years of Argentine Flag
Gen. Manuel Belgrano - the creator of the Flag

To-day June 20, is happened to be Argentine Flag Day.
 The Argentine flag was raised for the first time on February 27, 1812 by Gen. Manuel Belgrano. Legend goes that its creator Gen. Belgrano, was inspired by the colour of the sky or the Virgin’s cloak when he chose its colours. On a rainy day of May 25, 1810, Argentine patriots were demanding freedom from Spain. As they stood about in one city square at the banks of the Paraná River, someone handed out blue and white ribbons (Escarapela). Presently word came to the people that the Viceroy had resigned and at that moment, the Sun burst through the clouds and shone down on the people. In honour of these patriots, the first military flag of Argentina had blue and white stripes. On June 20, 1816 the Congress officially declared the flag designed by Gen. Belgrano as the national symbol. In 1918 the “Sol de Mayo” (Sun of May) was added on the white strip to be used in case of a war. In 1938, June 20 was declared The Flag’s Day and a national holiday, in homage to its creator Gen. Belgrano, who died on June 20, 1820.
(In the year 1920, in commemoration of Gen. Belgrano's centenary of death, Argentina issued a set of three stamps of which the 2c. value depicts the scene of "Creation of Argentine Flag", again on the occasion of  200th. birth centenary of Belgrano in 1970 a set of two stamps was released wherein, the 50c. stamp reproduces the art work of Jose Floravanti's bas-relief "Creation of Argentine Flag").

Flags on Stamps; Facts File. Part -II

World’s smallest Miniature Sheet (Perforate) featuring flags; Fiji

First water-marked paper with 'Flag motif' used for stamp production. India 1854 (4 stamps of denomination 1/2a, 1a, 2as & 4as) 

Flag at half-mast on Stamp; Burma 
Issued in 1948 to commemorate the first anniversary of the assassination of Burma’s leaders in the fight for freedom.

Most Flags at Half-mast on a single Stamp; Bhutan

First Stamp featuring Flags of Foreign Nations USA in 1919 ‘Victory issue’- flags of the Allies (Successful outcome of WW-I)

 First Indian National Flag in stamp issued abroad Rep. of Korea (South Korea) in 1951

First British Stamp to depict “Union Jack” On the shield of “Britania” on the high value Sea-horse issues of 1913.

Flag wrong way up (Up-side

This Jamaican stamp was printed the British ‘Union Jack’ up-side down in 1921. But immediately the error was noticed and the flag design was corrected.

The first British stamp to commemorate an overseas leader and the first to be designed by an overseas artist ; Mahatma Gandhi in 1969 using Indian National Colours as back drop of the design (The Indian-born designer of the stamp was Biman Mullick (his autograph appears above). The designer had met Gandhi as a child in Calcutta).

Most celebrated Flag Raising Events of the World
[A] Raising the American Flag over Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima on February 23,1945
( Original photograph by Joe Rosenthal. The US stamp was issued on July 11, 1945. More than 150 million were sold)
[B] Raising the Soviet Red Flag over Reichstags, Berlin.
(There are numerous stamps issued from all over the world depicting the above ‘Flag events’ to mark the end of World War II).

First Stamp to show ‘Lowering of Flag’- Canada
Scouting Year-1983.
(Normaly, we see picturisation of flag raising events on stamps) 

Real 'hole' in Flag Stamp; Hungary issued in 2006
During the Uprising of 1956, the centre ‘Communist Emblen’ was ‘torn out of the Hungarian flag’ by the nationalist patriots but when Communist rule was restored; it was decided to have no 'ARMS’ on the flag.
I thank Mr. Kenneth Sequeira of Dubai, UAE for bringing to my notice certain factual errors and typographical mistakes that cropped up in the list of Indian flag on foreign stamps published earlier in this blog. I shall issue a corrigendum to the list  in due course along with some more new items.


  1. Please note: In 1969 when I designed Gandhi Stamp for the British Post office I was a citizen of India.

    Biman Mullick

    1. My heartiest congratulations and a very very big "Thank You". I never expected that my blog will catch your attention.You have made us proud.

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