The first postage stamps used in the Philippines were issued by Spanish colonial authorities in 1854, or 14 years after the world’s first stamps had been issued by Great Britain. Since then, Philippine stamps have followed the country’s history through its many periods. The first Spanish Philippine stamps do not bear the name of the country, but are identified through the portrait of the reigning monarch, in this case Isabella II in profile with a coronet. Denominations are 5 and 10 cuartos, 1 and 2 reales. These were hand­engraved on metal plates, and thus differ from each other in many minute details. One carries the word carros instead of carreos, a genuine error valued by stamp collectors.

During the early Spanish regime in the Philippines, exchange of letters and communications were limited to those belonging to the officials of the government and the dignitaries and priests of the Catholic church, the letters, communications and the documents were carried by “badageros” who rendered free services to the colonial government. Badageros either hiked or rode on horseback in dispatching the early postal service from “Tribunal (town hall) to tribunal or to the “Casa Real” (provincial capital).

The badageros who acted as courier (counterpart of our present postman) were also called the “Polistos” classified as male citizens from 18 years who did not hold any public office like the “Gobernadorcillo” (Mayor), “Teniente primero y segundo” (vice-mayor), the Juez, “Cabesas” (councilors), the Commesarios” and “Cuadrillos” (Policeman) and “Escribanos (clerks). Badageros performed their courier services by rotation. Two Badageros were assigned every day at the Tribunal to be relieved the next day. If letters or communications were rush in nature, the badageros had to go and dispatch them even at midnight.

Ship carrying mail from Manila came to Dumaguete two times a month, but those from Iloilo and Cebu came weekly to Bais and the capital. This same boat that our National Hero Dr. Jose Rizal took for Dapitan his place of exile in 1892.

The beginning of the American Occupation the first samples being current U.S. overprinted with Philippines (1899).In 1906,the first stamps under the American insular  government were issued each one in a set of 14 clearly inscribed with Philippine Islands / United States of America.

In 1920 the American teacher were the one who encourages  the people of the  community to collector Postal Stamp and this also the period in time that our local residents  received airmail postal  services and limited stamps were issued for experimental  and exhibition airmail fights. One of the pioneer American Stamp collector in Dumaguete is the American contactor Clyde V. Powers.

In 1943 during Japanese Occupation and World War II was a normal operation of postal service like other province in the Philippines but close monitor by the Japanese Imperial Forces. Juvenal Villanueva-Somoza and Prof. Leoncio B.Tulabing were among Philatelic collector but some of their collection were given to the Japanese as payment for goods for the family in 1944. Most of the stamp during this era were printed in Tokyo Japan

In 1950s this is a new beginning era of Philatelic collecting worldwide people enjoy collecting for fun and as a hobby among the pioneer collectors  is Dr. Vicente Guzman-Sinco For his distinguished career in public service or educational administration, he received several citations, gold medals of merit, or diplomas of honor from the University of Minnesota in 1956, the Philippine YMCA in 1959, the Jose P. Laurel Memorial Foundation in 1962, the Texas Southern legal Foundation in 1962, the University of the Philippines in 1970, and the Rizal Pro-Patria Award in 1972 from the Republic of the Philippines; in addition to five honorary doctorates from Ohio Northern University (1952), the University of Manila (1958), Silliman University (1962), Central Philippine University (1968) and the University of the Philippines (1970).Mr  & Mrs Manuel Utzurrum Jr a true blue Sillimanian and active church member of Silliman University Church and Mrs Monserat Magbanua a civic leader and girl’s scout executive council.

Marcos Era of the 1970s was the first special issue for Negros Oriental the T.V. Pavilion Requested Philippine Tuberculosis Society Negros Oriental Chapter.80s was also a new Beginning  of stamp collectors  in grade school and high school students were into it exchanging  paper, stationery and sticks. A taste of glory of Negrense personality was in a souvenir sheet of stamps in 1994 Jose Yulo , 1995  Rafael Salas , and our very own Sen.  Jose Romero in 1997.

The fifth of a series  of souvenir sheets and first day covers issued by Philippines Postal Corporation to publicize for the centenary of Philippine Independence Date of Issue June 14,1997 Pantaleon Villegas a native of Bacong Negros Oriental & hero during the Philippine Revolution is included in this series. Sixth of a series of Souvenir sheets and first day of Negros Uprising 1898 issue. November 5, 1998  one of the frame presentation of the Negros Uprising Stamp to Bacolod City for its unveiling with no less than the Chair of the National Centennial Commission Salvador Laurel Jr. and Philippine Centennial Movement Chair Gloria Angara doing the honors. It was a joint project by Cebu Stamp Club, Inc and Negros Navigation attended by Richard Allan Uy, Ricardo Teves and top executives of NN. This event was never an exhibition but an unveiling ceremony. First Dumaguete Philately Society later part of the 90s was organized by   Monserat  Magbanua as President and Richard Rauscher a American Citizen with a French ancestry   as Vice President. I remember a stamp exhibit  about Philippine History and other related topics was held in Lee Super Plaza one of the shopping mall in Dumaguete in the 90s.

In 2008 during 108th Silliman University Founder Day celebration was the idea to bring an exhibit to Dumaguete City was a result of email communications between Richard Uy and CSCI Board member Aidalyn Arabe who hails from this city. Once it was decided to pursue the project, letters were sent to Dr. Elizabeth Susan Vista-Suarez, Cultural Officer of Silliman University and Mr. Dinno Depositario, the Vice President of Student Life and External Affairs of the Foundation University.

The exhibit was titled “Philippines, The Land Of Heroes.. A Retrospect Through Stamps.” With the sponsors coming in, everything was in place. The exhibit title was changed to “Selyo At Kasaysayan.. A Retrospective of Filipino Heroes Through Stamps.” The exhibit posters, tarpaulins, invitation letters and programs were printed by Silliman University. Cebu Stamp Club came out with its own posters, tarpaulins and invitation programs.This unique exhibit retells and miniaturizes Philippine history. It is like a picture story book but instead of using pictures, we use stamps to portray our history. One of the exhibit materials taken from my collections has been a winner in a National Competition as well as in Regional Competitions.  Sometime in May, Penn Villanueva Larena invited his uncle, Postmaster General Hector RR. Villanueva of the Philippine Postal Corporation to grace the occasion. True enough, the postmaster came to the opening of the exhibit.

The well attended program opening in Dumaguete City started at 3:00 PM with the Invocation and National Anthem sung by Silliman’s Ating Pamana led by Dr. Elizabeth Susan Vista-Suarez. The Welcome Address was done by Prof. Isabel Dimaya-Vista who was the former chairman of the Cultural Affairs Committee. Year after Cebu Stamp Club members based in Dumaguete organized a corps. group of five persons lead by Gary Rosales,Richard Rauscher,Penn Larena Aidalyn Arabe and Midfred Ong.

A monthly meeting started in July of 2009 and share of taught was held at the Girls Scout of office near the Capitol Building.The first stamp exhibits for the newly established stamp club was held at Colegio de Santa Catalina de Alejandria ( COSCA ) during the 50th anniversary  of the institution at the Main Library sponsored  by COSCA, Matiao Transport Co. and Expressions Flowers.

Dumaguete Stamp Collectors Club  in partnership with Foundation University, Philipost ( Dumaguete Post Office ), and  Matiao Transport Co.Presents “Thematic and Accumulation” A non-competitive Philatelic Exhibit on Olympics, Philippine Christmas, Tourism, lighthouses , Japanese Occupation 1940s-1950s ,Aviation and UP Past Presidents. The grand opening will be on Dec 14,2009,viewing time is from 8:30am- 5:00pm .Come and Visit this one in a lifetime exhibit and learn world of stamp collecting.



Filed under Stamp Club


  1. St. Paul University

    Congrats 4 d new Dumaguete City Stamp Collecters Club

  2. Kaibigan(s),
    Please let me introduce myself. My name is George Lowe and I live in Washington State in the US. I just finished reading your article about the Dumaguete Stamp Club Opening and the history of postage stamps in Negros and enjoyed it very much. I have an American friend who lives in your city now named Vincenting Alcazar and one of his daughters attends Silliman University. He moved there about two years ago and he gave me the website that I found your article on. I also see that one of your members, Penn Villanueva Larena, has an iterest in stamps from other countries. Maybe some others there do also.

    In 1965 – 1966 I was very fortunate to have spent 18 months in the RPI on Luzon and, best of all, Mactan near Cebu. I met many wonderful people there and my favorite memories, now that I am nearly 68 years old, are of my time spent there.

    I have been a stamp collector since I was 9 years old although I have not been very active in the last few years. But I do have lots and lots of foreign stamps and one of my favorite collections is from the Philippines. While I was there I collected as many as I could afford to buy. My collection pretty much ends when I left to return to the US so I have many blank spaces to be filled. If you Mr. Larena can let me know what you would be interested in having, particularly from the US I am willing to send them to you. They will be used stamps, not new (mint). In turn if you like what I send perhaps you would be willing to send me some from the RPI. If that appeals to you or someone else there let me know at my email address and send me your email address and I will contact you seperately.

    Thank you so much for your time and the wonderful memories that I have of your land and people.

    George Lowe

    • I am Prof .Penn Larena ,stamp collector and the PRO of the Dumaguete Stamp Club ,i love to rcvd ur extra available stamps, i collect American Stamp from 1900 to 1980s in the US ,Puerto Rico & Guam and any foreign stamps too. thank you so much

      More Power & God bless

      My Dumaguete Mailing Address:

      Prof. Penn Larena ,MPA
      College of Arts & Education
      St. Paul University Dumaguete
      Veterans Ave National Highway
      Bantayan ,6200 Dumaguete City
      Oriental Negros, Philippines

      • It is wonderful to hear from you and to learn of some of your stamp collecting interests. If you wish to you may want to contact me at my email address in the future so that we don’t clutter up this blog. I will leave that to you to decide but if you do you can reach me by
        Having said that I have three notebooks filled with duplicates of US stamps and in the next few days I will get them down and make up a package of them for you. Let me know if you have others that might be interested and I can send two or three of each of most of them to you so you can share with others.
        God bless you till we talk again.
        George Lowe

      • Wow Thank you Sir i am interested in stamps themes like bridges, lighthouses,architecture and trains

        More Power

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