The Jubilee of Penny Postage
South Kensington Card
2nd July, 1890

The South Kensington envelope also included a card shown previously. Some thought these cards were valid for postage and as such were posted with the usual 1/2 d, or left unfranked.


This unfranked card not only made it through for domestic postage, but avoided the 1 1/2 d additional for foreign transmission. Someone at the Leadenhall St .Box Office was either tired or unknowing about the validity of the south Kensington card some weeks after the celebration.



Sweet are the uses of adversity
Which, like the toad, ugly and venemous
Bears yet a precious jewel in its head.

A slight misquote of the lines from Act 2, Scene 1, 12-17 of
Shakespeare's "As You Like It".

Sweet are the uses of adversity,
Which, like the toad, ugly and venemous,
Wears yet a precious jewel in his head;
And this our life, exempt from public haunt,
Finds tongues in trees, book in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones, and good in every thing.

Nothing is found about the recipient, but the card was posted unfranked, thus properly getting a 2d postage due marking at the South Tottenham Post Office.
The cancel is a Cohen type LS/220 3rd I D-1 CT {Scarce}



Alliance Assurance Co. located in Bartholomew Lane, London, EC requested to purchase 5,000 of the South Kensington envelopes and cards directly from De La Rue. The intent was to send one of them to each of their agents. These cards were to have an advertising message.

After a reply from the Comptroller of Stamps, Mr. Purcell, the firm was directed to acquire them from one of the principal London Post Offices.

Rarely seen now, this effort was seemingly duplicated in 1906, this time from their Regent Street Office. The card at that time came offering a "Bonus" for renewals of the 'current quinquennial term' policies if done before 31st December, 1906.

This apparently second use of the SK envelopes and cards by Alliance Assurance was joined by the County Fire Office Ltd and The Westminster Fire Office in similar usages. Presuming that Alliance Assurance still had a stock of these on hand for their 1906 mailing, the two latter companies using them would have their stocks come from the large number of unsold bundles still on the market.

The Stamp Collector's Fortnightly acquired a similar supply in 1906 and used them, with the back flap overprinted, as a Christmas Bonus with the 15th December issue to subscribers. However these were the remainders of the Harry Furniss Caricature.



Technically the correspondence cards within the envelopes should, as had been the Guildhall postcard, considered a 'Letter Card' and thus charged 1d for postage. Many were mailed with only the QV Jubilee 1/2d stamp as full franking, escaping any surcharge.

The above is an envelope and card pair, the envelope being sent to Lawyer Edward Jones Trustram's London home/office at 61, Cheapside, E.C. and the card sent to his Eltham, Kent home. He was born 20th September, 1865 and married Florence Elizabeth Appelton on 2nd June 1891, the daughter of the Mayor of Stockton, Mr. R. H. Appleton.

Both are appropriately back stamped, the London EC double ring '7' on the envelope being in red and apparently the stamping surface slightly 'dirty', caused the upper left reddish smear.



Edward Trustram had also posted a Guildhall Jubilee postcard on the 19th of May, that item receiving the type P-4 1 PM cancel. This is a 'late use' of the Guildhall card as they were 'Sold Out' early on the evening of the 16th May.



Some were intercepted and those were surcharged 1d or twice the deficiency. Note the Inspectors Branch double ring and the manuscript charging instructions. This also contains a partial strike of the scarce LONDON E.C. double ring '7' in red. This example is from the Trustram envelope.





22nd November, 2018