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THE FORMAT INTERNATIONAL SECURITY PRINTERS LTD. ARCHIVE

Information and Reference of What was Found in the Archive

Stamp issues for Liberia printed by the Format International Security Printers Ltd. and items found in the Archive

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LIBERIA 1969-1975

Liberia stamps printed by Format International Security Printers Ltd.
Links to pages with information on items found in the archive

Noting for Liberia that Stanley Gibbons nor any other catalog seems to note who the printers were during the time that Format printed stamps for Liberia. By scanning thousands of images looking for clues like the color guides and logo's and analyzing archival material I am able to present this page.
A point that simply amazes me is that all the specialized philatelists for Liberian stamps have not to this day figured out that all the following sets were produced by the Format Printers! Are they simply relying on stamp catalogs and old writings to inform collectors? Just now discovering varieties that have been here for years? Incomplete and inaccurate descriptions of what exists? It is a bit sad that one such as myself who does not specialize in the subject reveals what some call new discoveries of things that have been circulating on the market for years!

It is not noted in Scott Catalog, from 1960 onward the majority of sets were produced in limited numbers as imperforates, on deluxe sheetlets etc. Not only did Format have orders to produce them but E.A. Wright Banknote Company also had the same orders long before Format ever made stamps for Liberia. The evidence is the stamps themselves. Again I state that many other printing companies of the time were producing imperforates, deluxe sheetlets, specimen's, color proofs etc. in limited quantities exactly as the Format printers were. The quantities they produced were just never exposed because they were never put on trial. Therefore valuation of these varieties should be equal no matter who printed them.

For Liberia the popularity of imperforates becomes quite evident starting in 1971. I note that deluxe sheetlet sets are produced quite sparingly in the early 70's. Mainly being produced for Olympic game stamp issues and several Space topical issues.

1969 PAINTINGS (1st issue)
Scott #489-96, SG #488-92

The stamps were issued in panes of 8.
No varieties for this set seem to exist other than the panes.

Liberia 1969 Paintings (1st issue) Stamps

1969 PAINTINGS (2nd issue)
Scott #502-9, SG #488-92

The stamps were issued in panes of 8.
No varieties for this set seem to exist other than the panes.

Liberia 1969 Paintings (2nd issue) Stamps

Panes of 8 Set
Liberia 1969 Paintings (2nd issue) Panes of 8

1970 EXPO '70 INTERNATIONAL EXHIBITION, OSAKA, JAPAN
Scott #516-22, SG #1025-30, MS1031

No varieties for this set seem to exist.

Liberia 1970 EXPO '70 International Exhibition, Osaka, Japan Stamps

Ricoh Pavilion with "eye," and Mount Fuji
Liberia 1970 EXPO '70 International Exhibition, Osaka, Japan Souvenir Sheet

1970 200TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BIRTH OF NAPOLEON BONAPARTE
Scott #525-31, SG #1034-9, MS1040

The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. The souvenir sheet only exists imperforate
The stamps exist in two different perf sizes. Perf 11 and perf 14. Perf 14 according to general printing practices are the reprints.
A small number of uncut press sheets were found in the archive for this set. Intact pieces from them as in crossgutters, gutters and large selvage pieces are very rare. There were several press sheets of the souvenir sheet. All were cut into imperf between pairs, blocks and large selvage singles.

Liberia 1970 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Napoleon Stamps

Napoleon's Coronation, by Jacques Louis David
Liberia 1970 200th Anniversary of the Birth of Napoleon Souvenir Sheet

1970 75TH BIRTHDAY OF PRESIDENT TUBMAN
Scott #532-3, SG #1041, MS1042

No varieties for this set seem to exist. The souvenir sheet only exists imperforate

Liberia 1970 75th Birthday of President Tubman Stamp

President Tubman
Liberia 1970 75th Birthday of President Tubman Souvenir Sheet

1970 CHRISTMAS
Scott #534-40, SG #1043-8, MS1049

No varieties for this set seem to exist. The souvenir sheet only exists imperforate.

Liberia 1970 Christmas Stamps

Andrea Mantegna (triptych)
Liberia 1970 Christmas Souvenir Sheet

1971 AFRICAN TRIBAL CEREMONIAL MASKS
Scott #541-8, SG #1050-7

No varieties for this set seem to exist.

Liberia 1971 African Tribal Ceremonial Masks Stamps

1971 APOLLO 14 MOON LANDING
Scott #549-54, C186, SG #1058-63, MS1064

Issued in panes of 15 stamps.
The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. The souvenir sheet exists only as imperforate. Deluxe sheetlet set around 2-3,000 sets.

The deluxe sheetlets appear to exist in only one type. They are fairly common as far as availability. This is the first set of deluxe sheetlets the Format Printers made for Liberia.

Liberia 1971 Apollo 14 Moon Landing Stamps

Moon, Earth and Star
Liberia 1971 Apollo 14 Moon Landing Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set
Liberia 1971 Apollo 14 Moon Landing Deluxe Sheetlet Set

1971 PRE-OLYMPIC GAMES, MUNICH
Scott #557-62, C187, SG #1067-72, MS1073

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1971 Pre-Olympic Games, Munich Stamps

Olympic Yachting Village, Kiel, and Yachting Scene
Liberia 1971 Pre-Olympic Games, Munich Souvenir Sheet

1971 13TH INTERNATIONAL SCOUT JAMBOREE, JAPAN
Scott #563-8, C188, SG #1074-9, MS1080

Issued in panes of 15 stamps.
The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

A small number of uncut press sheets were found in the archive for this set. Intact pieces from them as in crossgutters, gutters and large selvage pieces are very rare.

Liberia 1971 13th International Scout Jamboree Stamps

Boy Scouts of Various Nations Cooking and Girl Scouts
Liberia 1971 13th International Scout Jamboree Souvenir Sheet

1971 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF UNICEF, WILD ANIMALS WITH THEIR YOUNG
Scott #571-6, C189, SG #1083-8, MS1089

The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. The souvenir sheet exists only as imperforate.

Liberia 1971 25th Anniversary of UNICEF, Wild Animals and Their Young Stamps

UNICEF Emblem and Bengal Tigress with Cubs
Liberia 1971 25th Anniversary of UNICEF, Wild Animals and Their Young Souvenir Sheet

1971 11TH WINTER OLYMPIC GAMES, SAPPORO, JAPAN AND TOPICAL ANIMALS IN HOKKAIDO
Scott #577-82, C190, SG #1090-5, MS1096

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1971 11th Winter Olympic Games, Sapporo, Japan Stamps

Japanese Royal Family
Liberia 1971 11th Winter Olympic Games, Sapporo, Japan Souvenir Sheet

1972 20TH SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES, MUNICH
Scott #591-6, C192, SG #1106-11, MS1112

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. Deluxe sheetlet set around 2-3,000 sets.

The deluxe sheetlets appear to exist in two types. The deluxe sheetlets with white backgrounds are common as far as availability. Sheetlets with green backgrounds appear to be quite rare. At this time appearing to be sold by only one dealer. It is possible and most probable that they are hoarding the stock.

Liberia 1972 Summer Olympic Games, Munich Stamps

View of Olympic Stadium and symbol of "Motion"
Liberia 1972 Summer Olympic Games, Munich Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set with White Background
Liberia 1972 Summer Olympic Games, Munich Deluxe Sheetlet Set with White Background

Deluxe Sheetlet Set with Green Background
Liberia 1972 Summer Olympic Games, Munich Deluxe Sheetlet Set with Green Background

1972 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE INTERNATIONAL Y'S MEN'S CLUB
Scott #597-8, SG #1113-14

The stamps do not appear to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1972 50th Anniversary of the Y's Men's Club Stamps

1972 APOLLO 16 MOON MISSION
Scott #599-604, C193, SG #1115-20, MS1121

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1972 Apollo 16 Moon Mission Stamps

Lt. Cmdr. Thomas K. Mattingly, 2nd Capt. John W. Young and Lt. Col. Charles M. Duke Jr.
Liberia 1972 Apollo 16 Moon Mission Souvenir Sheet

1972 80TH BIRTHDAY OF EMPEROR HAILE SELASSIE (ETHIOPIA)
Scott #605-7, SG #1122-4

The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1972 80th Birthday of Emperor Haile Selassie (Ethiopia) Stamps

1972 FAMOUS SAILING SHIPS AND THEIR FIGUREHEADS
Scott #608-13, C194, SG #1125-30, MS1131

The stamps and souvenir sheet do not appear to exist imperforate. It is odd for this set not to exist imperforate and possible they are stored somewhere.

Liberia 1972 Famous Sailing Ships and Their Figureheads Stamps

Lord Nelson's Flagship Victory and Her Figurehead (1765)
Liberia 1972 Famous Sailing Ships and Their Figureheads Souvenir Sheet

1972 PRESIDENT WILLIAM R. TOLBERT JR. SWORN IN AS 19TH PRESIDENT OF LIBERIA
Scott #614-15, C195, SG #1132-3, MS1134

The stamps and souvenir sheet do not appear to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1972 President Tolbert Sworn in as 19th President of Liberia Stamps

President Tolbert Taking Oath
Liberia 1972 President Tolbert Sworn in as 19th President of Liberia Souvenir Sheet

1973 20TH SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES GOLD MEDAL WINNERS
Scott #616-22, SG #1135-40, MS1141

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. Deluxe sheetlet set around 2-3,000 sets.

The deluxe sheetlets appear to exist in two types. The deluxe sheetlets with white backgrounds are common as far as availability. Sheetlets with pink backgrounds appear to be quite rare. At this time appearing to be sold by only one dealer. It is possible and most probable that they are hoarding the stock.

Liberia 1973 Summer Olympic Games Gold Medal Winners Stamps

Hans Winkler, Germany, Grand Prix Jumping
Liberia 1973 Summer Olympic Games Gold Medal Winners Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set with White Background
Liberia 1973 Summer Olympic Games Gold Medal Winners Deluxe Sheetlet Set with White Background

Deluxe Sheetlet Set with Pink Background
Liberia 1973 Summer Olympic Games Gold Medal Winners Deluxe Sheetlet Set with Pink Background

1973 APOLLO 17 MOON MISSION
Scott #623-8, C196, SG #1142-7, MS1148

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1973 Apollo 17 Moon Mission Stamps

Apollo 17 Badge, Moon and Earth
Liberia 1973 Apollo 17 Moon Mission Souvenir Sheet

1973 LOCOMOTIVES
Scott #629-34, C197, SG #1149-54, MS1155

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1973 Locomotives Stamps

Swiss Locomotive
Liberia 1973 Locomotives Souvenir Sheet

1973 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE ORGANIZATION FOR AFRICAN UNITY (O.A.C.)
Scott #635-40, SG #1156-61

The stamps appear not to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1973 10th Anniversary of the Organization for African Unity (O.A.C.) Stamps

1973 25TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (W.H.O.)
Scott #641-6, C198, SG #1162-7, MS1168

The stamps and souvenir sheet appear not to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1973 25th Anniversary of the World Health Organization (W.H.O.) Stamps

WHO Emblem, Paul Ehrlich and Poppy Anemones
Liberia 1973 25th Anniversary of the World Health Organization (W.H.O.) Souvenir Sheet

1973 HISTORICAL CARS
Scott #647-52, C199, SG #1169-74, MS1175

The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. At present it appear the souvenir sheet does not exist imperforate.

Liberia 1973 Historical Cars Stamps

Franklin 10 HP Cross-engined 1904-5 Models
Liberia 1973 Historical Cars Souvenir Sheet

1974 300TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE BIRTH OF NICOLAUS COPERNICUS
Scott #653-8, C200, SG #1176-81, MS1182

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. They are very common!

Liberia 1974 300th Anniversary of the Birth of Nicolaus Copernicus Stamps

Copernicus and Concept of Orbiting Space Station Around Mars
Liberia 1974 300th Anniversary of the Birth of Nicolaus Copernicus Souvenir Sheet

1974 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF RADIO ELWA
Scott #659-62, SG #1183-6

The stamps appear not to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1974 20th Anniversary of Radio ELWA Stamps

1974 CENTENARY OF THE UNIVERSAL POSTAL UNION (U.P.U.)
Scott #663-8, C201, SG #1187-92, MS1193

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. They are quite common! Deluxe sheetlet set around 2-3,000 sets and possibly more. They too are being sold by many. A very popular set.

Liberia 1974 Centenary of the U.P.U. Stamps

UPU Emblem and English Coach (1784)
Liberia 1974 Centenary of the U.P.U. Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set
Liberia 1974 Centenary of the U.P.U. Deluxe Sheetlet Set

1974 DOMESTIC DOGS
Scott #669-74, C202, SG #1194-9, MS1200

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The quantity of imperforates that exist is in question. Standard practices would produce 5,000 sets. For this issue only one seller seems to have them. The seller offers a full set of panes of 25 of them at a very high cost and also is offering blocks at extremely high prices with no reference to how many exist. The seller also claims that only 8 imperforate souvenir sheets exist. What happened to all the others? Perhaps they are still in storage somewhere. I guarantee the practices of the printers were not to produce only 8 imperforate souvenir sheets.
Please be wary of such claims without proof. I have seen many collectors fooled by such claims only to find thousands exist.
Another seller offers the master proofs that were found in the archive which are pretty much unique.

Liberia 1974 Domestic Dogs Stamps

Hungarian Sheepdog (kuvasz)
Liberia 1974 Domestic Dogs Souvenir Sheet

1974 WORLD CUP SOCCER CHAMPIONSHIP, MUNICH
Scott #675-82, C203, SG #1201-8, MS1209

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. Once again they are quite common! Deluxe sheetlet set around 2-3,000 sets and possibly more. They too are being sold by many. A very popular set.

Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Championship, Munich Stamps

World Soccer Championship Cup and Munich Stadium
Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Championship, Munich Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set
Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Championship, Munich Deluxe Sheetlet Set

A set of supposedly locally overprinted stamps. These were supposedly done by the Liberians United for Reconciliation and Democracy (L.U.R.D.) in 2000. There are other sets that were also overprinted in the same way. I have seen this type of overprinting made on many other issues for different countries. They are considered unauthorized overprints and usually made for or produced by a stamp dealer not even associated with the subject of the overprint to gain profits from unsuspecting collectors. Let's get real folks! The L.U.R.D. was a group of Rebels at the time who had no interest in stamps!
Unless proof is shown that the profits from these were retained by the L.U.R.D. to help in their cause it stands that these and all future shown overprints are bogus overprints and are not to be considered anything but a novelty item.

Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Stamp Set with Unauthorized Overprints
Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Championship, Munich Stamps with Unauthorized Overprints
Liberia 1974 World Cup Soccer Championship, Munich Souvenir Sheet with Unauthorized Overprints

1974 TROPICAL BUTTERFLIES
Scott #683-8, C204, SG #1210-15, MS1216

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. Once again the quantity of imperforates that exist is in question. Standard practices would produce 5,000 sets. For this issue a number of sellers have them. One seller claims only 75 pairs issued and asks extreme prices. That is a rediculous statement. Another seller (different one than the one selling the dogs issue souvenir sheet) claims that only 8 imperforate souvenir sheets exist for this issue. What happened to all the others? Perhaps they too are still in storage somewhere. Once again I guarantee the practices of the printers were not to produce only 8 imperforate souvenir sheets.
Again, please be wary of such claims without proof. They will probably tell you they were told this by someone else and have no proof.

Liberia 1974 Tropical Butterflies Stamps

Pierella nereis
Liberia 1974 Tropical Butterflies Souvenir Sheet

1974 PRESIDENT TOLBERT, RECIPIENT OF THE 1974 FAMILY OF MAN AWARD
Scott #689-90, SG #1217-18

The stamps appear not to exist imperforate.

Liberia 1974 President Tolbert, Recipient of the Family of Man Award Stamps

1975 CENTENARY OF THE BIRTH OF SIR WINSTON CHURCHILL
Scott #691-6, C205, SG #1219-24, MS1225

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. They are very common!

Liberia 1975 Centenary of the Birth of Sir Winston Churchill Stamps

Winston Churchill at Easel Painting Landscape
Liberia 1975 Centenary of the Birth of Sir Winston Churchill Souvenir Sheet

1975 INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S YEAR
Scott #697-702, C206, SG #1226-31, MS1232

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. Once again they are quite common.

Liberia 1975 International Women's Year Stamps

Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit, Women's Year Emblem and Dais of UN General Assembly
Liberia 1975 International Women's Year Souvenir Sheet

1975 BICENTENNIAL OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
Scott #703-8, C207, SG #1233-8, MS1239

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. Once again they are quite common! Deluxe sheetlet set around 3-5,000 sets and possibly more. They too are being sold by many. A very popular set.

Liberia 1975 Bicentennial of the American Revolution Stamps

Mayflower and U.S. Stamp
Liberia 1975 Bicentennial of the American Revolution Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set
Liberia 1975 Bicentennial of the American Revolution Deluxe Sheetlet Set

1975 CENTENARY OF THE BIRTH OF DOCTOR ALBERT SCHWEITZER
Scott #709-14, C208, SG #1240-5, MS1246

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets or more. Once again they are quite common.

Liberia 1975 Centenary of the Birth of Doctor Albert Scweitzer Stamps

Albert Schweitzer as Surgeon in Lambarene Hospital
Liberia 1975 Centenary of the Birth of Doctor Albert Scweitzer Souvenir Sheet

1975 APOLLO-SOYUZ SPACE TEST PROJECT
Scott #715-20, C209, SG #1247-52, MS1253

The stamps and souvenir sheet exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets. I note that not a lot are offered. Deluxe sheetlet set around 3,000 sets. They too are not being offered as much as some earlier issues.

Liberia 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Space Test Project Stamps

Apollo-Soyuz Link-up and Emblem
Liberia 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Space Test Project Souvenir Sheet

Deluxe Sheetlet Set
Liberia 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Space Test Project Deluxe Sheetlet Set

Here again is another set with unauthorized overprints.

Liberia 1975 Apollo-Soyuz Space Test Project Stamps Overprinted for L.U.R.D.

1975 MANO RIVER UNION AGREEMENT
Scott #721-6, SG #1254-9

The stamps exist imperforate. The imperforates exist in quantities of around 5,000 sets.

Liberia 1975 Mano River Union Agreement Stamps

I will produce separate pages for later issues produced by Format. They were the main printers of Liberian stamps up to 1988.

As you can see virtually every set has imperforates that were made as do most sets made by other printers during the same time era. This is proof that the printers were under contracts that allowed them to be made for promotional reasons and for sale to collectors. Therefore any discrepancy with pricing them for less because they were made by the Format Printers and more because they were made by another company should be disregarded because the quantities that exist are equal no matter who made the stamps.

References taken from:
Scott Catalog
Inventory list for the Format Archive by Robson Lowe
Internet Research

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UPDATED LAST ON: 25-Jan-2015 07:03 AM