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stamp printers by country

Companies L to R 

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    = Understood to be a current stamp printer.

Companies A-D      Companies E-K 
Companies S-Z


McCorquodale Envelopes Limited, Wolverton.
Also known as
McCorquodale Confidential Print Limited, Wolverton.
First stationery traced by compiler: [when?]
Activities English (D&B): Security and Commercial Printers.

There had been no intention to include postal stationery printers in this monograph, but McCorquodale did tender for postage stamp production in Great Britain in the 19th century. They were a part of Bowater, but latterly of Rexam Print when they took-over the Bowater Group companies.

Maclure, Macdonald & Co., Glasgow, Scotland.
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1866 for Uruguay, 1869 for the Brooke Family Administration of Sarawak.

Maclure, Macdonald & Company were, in Victorian times, "Ornamental Printers to the Queen". They invented a power-driven lithographic printing press in 1853, that was quite revolutionary for its day.

They produced 3-penny telephone stamps for Great Britain in many shades of brown-red by intaglio (engraving), in sheets of 12, perf 12, in an initial printing of 125,000, although further printings may have subsequently been made.

Edward Matthews, London.
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1872 for Guatemala.

This company based in Oxford Street, London was awarded the contract to print stamps for Guatemala. It is likely that this firm of stationers, who had supplied paper and pencils to the Embassy, would have sub-contracted to a local printer. The quality of the printing is apparently rather poor.

Metal Box Company, London.
The Metal Box Company acquired
Perkins Bacon and Company into its group.

Nissen & Arnold Limited, London.
Abbreviation known by: NAL.
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1890 for Municipal Post of Shanghai, China.

NAL were better known as bank note printers, rather than stamp producers.

Nissen & Parker, London.
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1861 for Nevis.

Perkins, Bacon & Company Limited, London.
Abbreviation known by: P&B or PBC.
Reformed in 1852 from Perkins, Bacon and Petch
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1852.
Absorbed into the
Metal Box Company [when?]. MB Clarke was taken over by De La Rue in 1994
Main printing process(es): Litho, recess

Perkins, Bacon and Petch, London.
Abbreviation known by: PB&P.
Founded: 1819.
First stamp(s) traced by compiler: 1840 for Great Britain (the "Penny Black").
Last stamp printed under PB&P brand: 1852.

At the time of the creation of the first postage stamp in 1840, Perkins, Bacon and Petch was the leading security printer of the day.

A Press Release from the British Library on 31 December 2002 revealed:

"Hot off the Press - Last surviving Penny Black printing press goes on display
The only surviving printing press used to print the Penny Black stamps has gone on permanent display at the British Library in London.

Dating from 1819, the press was one of several used to print the Penny Black and Two Pence Blue -  the first ever postage stamps to be issued - in May 1840. It was used to print British stamps until 1870 and remained at the works of printers Perkins, Bacon and Petch until it was presented to the Library in 1963.

Invented by an expatriate American from Boston called Joseph Perkins, the press is correctly called a Perkins D cylinder. It was developed for intaglio, recess or line engraved printing and was patented in 1819. The machine allowed the printing process to be done at speed and produced 240 stamps to a sheet.

The press was also used for printing many of the early stamps for British Colonial territories ordered by the Crown Agents from 1853. These includes stamps for the Cape of Good Hope, Mauritius, Trinidad, Western Australia, Ceylon and St Helena, and by direct contract for New Brunswick, New South Wales, Victoria, New Zealand, Ionian Islands and the British South Africa Company.

Examples of stamps printed on the press, including the Penny Black, can be freely viewed in the Library's Philatelic Exhibition cases, at the Library's St Pancras building in London.

David Beech, Head of Philatelic Collections at the British Library, said, "In 1840 Britain's postal service led the world. Reforms of the Post Office brought about an inexpensive service and the introduction of the first postage stamp, the One Penny Black - an idea since copied throughout the world. The British Library is delighted to be exhibiting the only remaining printing press used in its production."

Facts about the world's first postage stamp:
- It and other postal reforms came about as a result of pressure from the Mercantile Committee on Postage, which included among its members Rowland Hill and Henry Cole.
- Before the reforms it cost 12d for a letter travelling between 230 and 300 miles and after the reforms just 1d.
- The inland 1d postage rate for letters lasted until 1918.
- The 1d black was printed by the security printers Perkins, Bacon and Petch who presented the printing machine in 1963.
- The 1d black was printed in sheets of 240: thus a sheet could be purchased for GBP1
- Eleven printing plates were used to hand print 68,158,080 stamps.
- Uniform 1d postage was introduced on 10th January, 1840 and the 1d black was put on sale on 1st May, 1840 and was valid for postage from 6th May, 1840.
- The 1d black was superseded by the 1d red in 1841 in the same design.
- All 1d blacks have letters of the alphabet in the lower corners. They are to help prevent against forgery.
- A rare unissued 1d black for use by government departments has the letters "VR" in the top corners.
- In 1839 the Treasury Competition was held for the public to submit designs for adhesive labels.
- The head of Queen Victoria, by William Wyon, used on the 1d black was taken from the City Medal issued in 1837 to mark the visit of the new Queen to the City of London.

(See also Perkins Bacon & Company entry above.)

Questa Colour Limited, London.
Founded: 1966.
(See House of Questa Limited entry above.)