Nation's journey shown in stamps

Nation's journey shown in stamps
PHOTO: The Straits Times

The first stamp issued by the new Republic shows four men, one of them carrying a briefcase, against a backdrop of housing blocks and factories. It was released in 1966 to mark the first anniversary of Singapore's independence.

Stamps and related items showing Singapore's progress through the years are now on display at a new exhibition by the Singapore Philatelic Museum to celebrate the nation's Golden Jubilee.

Called The Singapore Journey: 50 Years Through Stamps, the exhibition is being held at the museum in Coleman Street from today to July 31 next year.

It was launched yesterday by Mr Sam Tan, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth.

More than 240 philatelic items, including stamps, postcards and 66 original artworks featuring the designs of stamps, will be on display.

It is the largest showcase of Singapore stamps and other philatelic artefacts. Items on display include an original artwork of the first stamp issued by the Republic and a printing plate of the 1999 stamp that features Singapore's first president, Mr Yusof Ishak.

Most of the items on display are from the national and museum collections, while some are donated by private collectors.

Ms Tresnawati Prihadi, general manager of the Singapore Philatelic Museum, said: "Our stamps showcase what the country has gone through and what we have - our multiracial society, the food, the architecture and so on.

"We hope it will bring back fond memories for those who have gone through the years, and for our younger generation, to look at how far we have (come)."

Artist Don Low, 45, whose 2012 series of stamps titled Reservoirs of Singapore will be put on display, said: "It's quite overwhelming and I'm very excited to be part of a 50-year collection."

For stamp collector Alan Chong, 46, the exhibition reminds him of his childhood.

Mr Chong, a lecturer, said: "I've been collecting stamps since I was in Primary 2. I used to go from office to office during the weekends to ask for unwanted envelopes so I could collect the stamps.

"I hope the museum can also produce a book featuring the stamp collection to tell the Singapore story."

Admission to the exhibition is free for Singaporeans and permanent residents.

Singapore Post also launched a limited-edition commemorative folder of stamps in celebration of SG50. They are priced at $50, excluding GST, and available from today at all post offices and at

This article was first published on July 21, 2015.
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