Mulready stationery describes the postal stationery letter sheets and envelopes that were introduced as part of the British Post Office postal reforms of 1840. They went on sale on 1 May 1840, were valid for use from 6 May; the Mulready name arises from the fact that William Mulready, a well-known artist of the time, was commissioned to illustrate the part of the letter sheets and envelopes which corresponded with the face area. The design incorporated a munificent Britannia at the centre top with a shield and a reclining lion surrounded on either side by a representation of the continents of Asia and North America with people reading their mail in the two lower corners, bestowing the benefits of mail services to the countries of the world under British control; the Mulready illustration, engraved by John Thompson, was printed such that it appeared on the face of the sheets when folded. The Mulready letter sheets followed the traditional letter sheet design and could be folded as normal while the envelopes were a diamond-shaped sheet which, when the sides were folded to the center, became an envelope and the overlapping edges were sealed.
The Mulready illustration was a elaborate frank indicating that postage had been pre-paid. In the same way that the first postage stamps were issued in two values both the letter sheets and envelopes were issued in sheets of twelve, called Formes; the one penny and two penny values were in the same black and blue colours as the same value postage stamps. Rowland Hill expected the Mulready stationery to be more popular than the postage stamps but the postage stamp prevailed; the design was so elaborate and misunderstood that it generated widespread ridicule and lampooning, in addition was perceived in some areas as a covert government attempt to control the supply of envelopes, hence control the flow of information carried by the postal service. Many caricatures were produced by stationers whose livelihood was threatened by the new letter sheet. Only six days after their introduction, on 12 May, Hill wrote in his journal: "I fear we shall have to substitute some other stamp for that design by Mulready... the public have shown their disregard and distaste for beauty."
Within two months a decision had been made to replace the Mulready designed stationery and they were a folly. As a result of the uproar the Mulreadys were replaced with a simple design, known as the Penny Pink; the Penny Pinks were issued on 10 February 1841. Contrary to published accounts, the Mulreadys were not withdrawn at that time. Supplies in post offices were exhausted. Large supplies remained in the hands of Sub Distributors. In November 1842, the Inland Revenue decided; the withdrawal notice was sent over a period of time so that the store keepers at Inland Revenue would not be overwhelmed with the volume of returned Mulreadys. The withdrawal period lasted several years; the returned Mulreadys were stored at a warehouse. The first attempt was to burn them; that failed. A machine was designed and built to destroy them by punching out the center of the design; the Mulready stationery suffered an inglorious demise. The design was to enclose a letter written on ordinary paper; the Mulready letter sheet was fundamentally akin to the present-day aerogram.
Pre-gummed envelopes as we know them today did not exist. The diamond-shaped sheet and the geometrically more complex short-arm cross-shaped sheet remain the staple designs to this day. Baker, Colin. Great Britain: The Mulready Postal Stationery. Warminster: Postal Stationery Society. Bodily, Ritchie. British Pictorial Envelopes of The 19th Century. Chicago: Collectors Club of Chicago. ISBN 0-916675-02-5. Evans, Edward B.. A Description of the Mulready Envelope and of Various Imitations and Caricatures of Its Design: with an account of other illustrated envelopes of 1840 and following years. Wakefield: S. R. Publishers/Stanley Gibbons. ISBN 0-85409-507-1. Huggins, Alan; the Mulready Postal Stationery Its Genesis and Usage. Sutton Coldfield: GB Philatelic Publications Ltd on behalf of The Great Britain Philatelic Society and The Postal Stationery Society. ISBN 9780907630296. Jackson, Mike. May Dates: A survey of Penny Blacks, Twopenny Blues and caricatures used during May 1840. Melton Mowbray: Mike Jackson Publications.
ISBN 0-952827-41-7. Lowe, Malcolm G.. The Mulready Advertisements. Laguna Hills, Calif.: Mulready Research Foundation. ISBN 0-9114510-0-5. Wears, Thomas Martin; the History of the Mulready Envelope. Bury St. Edmunds: C. H. Nunn. First Day of Issue, 6 May 1840, Mulready letter sheet Royal Insight Mulready's, Lampoons & Caricatures Propaganda Envelopes, Hand-Painted Envelopes and Forgeries Proof of One Penny Mulready lettersheet Larger image British Postal Museum and Archive Proof of One and Two Penny Mulready envelopes Larger image British Postal Museum and Archive
The Stanley Gibbons Group plc is a company quoted on the London Stock Exchange and which specialises in the retailing of collectable postage stamps and similar products. The group is incorporated in London; the company is philatelic publisher. The company's philatelic subsidiary, Stanley Gibbons Limited, has a royal warrant of appointment from Queen Elizabeth II; the company has a long corporate history, having started as a sole trader business owned by Edward Stanley Gibbons in 1856 and now being a quoted company with a number of subsidiaries. The business started when, employed as an assistant in his father's pharmacy shop in Plymouth, Gibbons set up a counter selling stamps. In 1863 he was fortunate enough to purchase from two sailors a sackful of rare Cape of Good Hope triangular stamps. In 1874 Gibbons moved to a house near Clapham Common in South London and in 1876 he moved again to Gower Street in Bloomsbury near the British Museum. By 1890 Stanley Gibbons wished to retire and the business was sold to Charles Phillips for £25,000.
Phillips became Managing Director, with Gibbons as Chairman. In 1891 a shop was opened at 435 Strand in addition to the Gower Street premises, in 1893 the shop and offices were amalgamated at 391 Strand where the company's retail premises remained for many years until they moved to 399 Strand. A new issue department was opened in 1906. In 1914 the company received a royal warrant from George V. In 1956 the company celebrated its centenary with an exhibition at the Waldorf Hotel opened by Sir John Wilson, it is in that year that Queen Elizabeth II granted her royal warrant to Stanley Gibbons Ltd as her philatelist. In 1967 the firm expanded into the United States in a joint venture with Whitman Publishing. A magazine and catalogues were produced. In 1968 the privately held Stanley Gibbons Limited was floated on the stock market through a tender arranged by S. G. Warburg & Co. Ltd; the offer was oversubscribed five times. The shares were sold at 20 shillings rather than the minimum tender price of 12 shillings and six pence.
It was estimated that there were 30 to 35 sharesholders before the offer and they still owned 66% of the equity after the offer, worth at least £1.8 million before trading began. Prices subsequently slipped back, however in the year. In 1970 The Crown Agents acquired a 20% stake in the company and appointed two Directors to the Gibbons board; the stake was sold in 1976. In 1977 Stanley Gibbons acquired the stock of the firm Chas Nissen, once run by the eminent stamp dealer and philatelist Charles Nissen. In 1979 Gibbons was bought by Letraset for £19 million in an attempt to diversify away from their dry-lettering business, but the acquisition did not go smoothly and like Flying Flowers Letraset faced difficulties integrating Gibbons into its core business; the Chairman of Letraset blamed "indiscriminate expansion" and "imprudent" investment decisions for the problems at Gibbons and was quoted in The Times as saying "We overpaid for what we got." The US$10 million paid by Gibbons for the Marc Haas collection was questioned.
In 1981 Letraset was taken over by Esselte after Esselte fought a takeover battle with Mills & Allen International for the company. Letraset had been fatally weakened by losses sustained in its Stanley Gibbons subsidiary; the same year Gibbons was put up for sale by Esselte as they said it did not form a logical part of their long-term development. In 1981 Gibbons bought the stock of the late H. F. Johnson. In 1982 Clive Feigenbaum staged a management buy-out followed by an application in 1984 for a listing on the UK's Unlisted Securities Market in order to raise funds for new acquisitions. Following the buy-out, the Chairman, had owned over 50% of the shares with the others owned by the rest of the board; the listing went ahead but the shares were suspended within moments of their debut before trading had begun, following concerns about Feigenbaum's background highlighted in an article in the Sunday Times. The suspension was said to be the fastest on record at that time; the concerns had surrounded Feigenbaum's expulsion from the Philatelic Traders Society for breaching their code of ethics and his sale of "23 carat gold" stamps of no postal validity from the island of Staffa.
U. S. government tests had shown the stamps, sold at £10 each, to have a gold value of about 5c each. The debacle was said to have caused considerable embarrassment, not just to the company but to its USM brokers Simon & Coates. Shortly afterwards, Feigenbaum resigned as Chairman and was bought out by a consortium of institutions and individuals for £3 million. A further attempt at a listing did not go ahead. In 1989 Paul Fraser began to invest in the firm, he purchased a further 30% stake in the company from New Zealand businessman Sir Ron Brierley, a stamp collector. Paul Fraser was appointed Executive Chairman in 1990. By 1995 Fraser had acquired 76.83% of Gibbons shares and he purchased the rest of the shares in December 1995. In June 1998 the company was sold for £13.5 million to Flying Flowers. Paul Fraser took shares in Flying Flowers instead of cash and was left with an 8% stake in the enlarged company following the deal; the merger was not a success and in 2000 the two companies were demerged again after a series of profits warnings and trading problems.
Paul Fraser's stake was reduced in value from £13.5 million to £4 million. The de-merged Stanley Gibbons became Communitie.com and was listed on AIM. The chairman of Flying Flowers was quoted as saying the deal "...was at the wrong price and at the wrong time." In August 2007, Paul Fraser resigned as Executive Chairman and in April 2008 he sold his re
London is the capital and largest city of both England and the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans; the City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of the London Assembly. London is considered to be one of the world's most important global cities and has been termed the world's most powerful, most desirable, most influential, most visited, most expensive, sustainable, most investment friendly, most popular for work, the most vegetarian friendly city in the world. London exerts a considerable impact upon the arts, education, fashion, healthcare, professional services and development, tourism and transportation.
London ranks 26 out of 300 major cities for economic performance. It is one of the largest financial centres and has either the fifth or sixth largest metropolitan area GDP, it is the most-visited city as measured by international arrivals and has the busiest city airport system as measured by passenger traffic. It is the leading investment destination, hosting more international retailers and ultra high-net-worth individuals than any other city. London's universities form the largest concentration of higher education institutes in Europe. In 2012, London became the first city to have hosted three modern Summer Olympic Games. London has a diverse range of people and cultures, more than 300 languages are spoken in the region, its estimated mid-2016 municipal population was 8,787,892, the most populous of any city in the European Union and accounting for 13.4% of the UK population. London's urban area is the second most populous in the EU, after Paris, with 9,787,426 inhabitants at the 2011 census.
The population within the London commuter belt is the most populous in the EU with 14,040,163 inhabitants in 2016. London was the world's most populous city from c. 1831 to 1925. London contains four World Heritage Sites: the Tower of London. Other landmarks include Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, Piccadilly Circus, St Paul's Cathedral, Tower Bridge, Trafalgar Square and The Shard. London has numerous museums, galleries and sporting events; these include the British Museum, National Gallery, Natural History Museum, Tate Modern, British Library and West End theatres. The London Underground is the oldest underground railway network in the world. "London" is an ancient name, attested in the first century AD in the Latinised form Londinium. Over the years, the name has attracted many mythicising explanations; the earliest attested appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae, written around 1136. This had it that the name originated from a supposed King Lud, who had taken over the city and named it Kaerlud.
Modern scientific analyses of the name must account for the origins of the different forms found in early sources Latin, Old English, Welsh, with reference to the known developments over time of sounds in those different languages. It is agreed; this was adapted into Latin as Londinium and borrowed into Old English, the ancestor-language of English. The toponymy of the Common Brythonic form is much debated. A prominent explanation was Richard Coates's 1998 argument that the name derived from pre-Celtic Old European *lowonida, meaning "river too wide to ford". Coates suggested that this was a name given to the part of the River Thames which flows through London. However, most work has accepted a Celtic origin for the name, recent studies have favoured an explanation along the lines of a Celtic derivative of a proto-Indo-European root *lendh-, combined with the Celtic suffix *-injo- or *-onjo-. Peter Schrijver has suggested, on these grounds, that the name meant'place that floods'; until 1889, the name "London" applied to the City of London, but since it has referred to the County of London and Greater London.
"London" is sometimes written informally as "LDN". In 1993, the remains of a Bronze Age bridge were found on the south foreshore, upstream of Vauxhall Bridge; this bridge either reached a now lost island in it. Two of those timbers were radiocarbon dated to between 1750 BC and 1285 BC. In 2010 the foundations of a large timber structure, dated to between 4800 BC and 4500 BC, were found on the Thames's south foreshore, downstream of Vauxhall Bridge; the function of the mesolithic structure is not known. Both structures are on the south bank. Although there is evidence of scattered Brythonic settlements in the area, the first major settlement was founded by the Romans about four years after the invasion
Morris Giwelb was a British stamp dealer from the Province of Warsaw in Russian Poland, who, in his prime, became one of the most important dealers in the great rarities of philately. He emigrated to England in 1882 and became a naturalized British citizen in 1887. Giwelb was noted for his genial and unassuming nature which contrasted with the rarity of the material in which he dealt, he owned a modest shop in Leicester Square and the Strand, before retiring to Brighton with his wife Natalie. Giwelb was responsible for the unmasking of the forger Dr. Bernhardt Assmus, after he bought forged Penny Black VR official stamps from Assmus, he accompanied the police on a visit to Assmus' premises at 12 Church Street and assisted them at Vine Street Police Station in sorting the seized material. His wife was Natalie Giwelb. Interview with Giwelb in the Philatelic Journal of Great Britain, Vol. I, p. 159. Herst, H. Forensic Philately. Lake Oswego, Oregon: Herman Herst Jr
United States dollar
The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States and its territories per the United States Constitution since 1792. In practice, the dollar is divided into 100 smaller cent units, but is divided into 1000 mills for accounting; the circulating paper money consists of Federal Reserve Notes that are denominated in United States dollars. Since the suspension in 1971 of convertibility of paper U. S. currency into any precious metal, the U. S. dollar is, de facto, fiat money. As it is the most used in international transactions, the U. S. dollar is the world's primary reserve currency. Several countries use it as their official currency, in many others it is the de facto currency. Besides the United States, it is used as the sole currency in two British Overseas Territories in the Caribbean: the British Virgin Islands and Turks and Caicos Islands. A few countries use the Federal Reserve Notes for paper money, while still minting their own coins, or accept U. S. dollar coins. As of June 27, 2018, there are $1.67 trillion in circulation, of which $1.62 trillion is in Federal Reserve notes.
Article I, Section 8 of the U. S. Constitution provides that the Congress has the power "To coin money". Laws implementing this power are codified at 31 U. S. C. § 5112. Section 5112 prescribes the forms; these coins are both designated in Section 5112 as "legal tender" in payment of debts. The Sacagawea dollar is one example of the copper alloy dollar; the pure silver dollar is known as the American Silver Eagle. Section 5112 provides for the minting and issuance of other coins, which have values ranging from one cent to 100 dollars; these other coins are more described in Coins of the United States dollar. The Constitution provides that "a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time"; that provision of the Constitution is made specific by Section 331 of Title 31 of the United States Code. The sums of money reported in the "Statements" are being expressed in U. S. dollars. The U. S. dollar may therefore be described as the unit of account of the United States.
The word "dollar" is one of the words in the first paragraph of Section 9 of Article I of the Constitution. There, "dollars" is a reference to the Spanish milled dollar, a coin that had a monetary value of 8 Spanish units of currency, or reales. In 1792 the U. S. Congress passed a Coinage Act. Section 9 of that act authorized the production of various coins, including "DOLLARS OR UNITS—each to be of the value of a Spanish milled dollar as the same is now current, to contain three hundred and seventy-one grains and four sixteenth parts of a grain of pure, or four hundred and sixteen grains of standard silver". Section 20 of the act provided, "That the money of account of the United States shall be expressed in dollars, or units... and that all accounts in the public offices and all proceedings in the courts of the United States shall be kept and had in conformity to this regulation". In other words, this act designated the United States dollar as the unit of currency of the United States. Unlike the Spanish milled dollar, the U.
S. dollar is based upon a decimal system of values. In addition to the dollar the coinage act established monetary units of mill or one-thousandth of a dollar, cent or one-hundredth of a dollar, dime or one-tenth of a dollar, eagle or ten dollars, with prescribed weights and composition of gold, silver, or copper for each, it was proposed in the mid-1800s that one hundred dollars be known as a union, but no union coins were struck and only patterns for the $50 half union exist. However, only cents are in everyday use as divisions of the dollar. XX9 per gallon, e.g. $3.599, more written as $3.599⁄10. When issued in circulating form, denominations equal to or less than a dollar are emitted as U. S. coins while denominations equal to or greater than a dollar are emitted as Federal Reserve notes. Both one-dollar coins and notes are produced today, although the note form is more common. In the past, "paper money" was issued in denominations less than a dollar and gold coins were issued for circulation up to the value of $20.
The term eagle was used in the Coinage Act of 1792 for the denomination of ten dollars, subsequently was used in naming gold coins. Paper currency less than one dollar in denomination, known as "fractional currency", was sometimes pejoratively referred to as "shinplasters". In 1854, James Guthrie Secretary of the Treasury, proposed creating $100, $50 and $25 gold coins, which were referred to as a "Union", "Half Union", "Quarter Union", thus implying a denomination of 1 Union = $100. Today, USD notes are made from cotton fiber paper, unlike most common paper, made of wood fiber. U. S. coins are produced by the United States Mint. U. S. dollar banknotes are printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and, since 1914, have been issued by t
Sir Rowland Hill, KCB, FRS was an English teacher and social reformer. He campaigned for a comprehensive reform of the postal system, based on the concept of Uniform Penny Post and his solution of prepayment, facilitating the safe and cheap transfer of letters. Hill served as a government postal official, he is credited with originating the basic concepts of the modern postal service, including the invention of the postage stamp. Hill was born in Blackwell Street, Worcestershire, England. Rowland's father, Thomas Wright Hill, was an innovator in education and politics, including among his friends Joseph Priestley, Tom Paine and Richard Price. At the age of 12, Rowland became a student-teacher in his father's school, he earned extra money fixing scientific instruments. He worked at the Assay Office in Birmingham and painted landscapes in his spare time. In 1819 he moved his father's school "Hill Top" from central Birmingham, establishing the Hazelwood School at Edgbaston, an affluent neighbourhood of Birmingham, as an "educational refraction of Priestley's ideas".
Hazelwood was to provide a model for public education for the emerging middle classes, aiming for useful, pupil-centred education which would give sufficient knowledge and understanding to allow a student to continue self-education through a life "most useful to society and most happy to himself". The school, which Hill designed, included innovations such as a science laboratory, a swimming pool, forced air heating. In his Plans for the Government and Liberal Instruction of Boys in Large Numbers Drawn from Experience he argued that kindness, instead of caning, moral influence, rather than fear, should be the predominant forces in school discipline. Science was to be a compulsory subject, students were to be self-governing. Hazelwood gained international attention when French education leader and editor Marc Antoine Jullien, former secretary to Maximilien de Robespierre and wrote about the school in the June 1823 issue of his journal Revue encyclopédique. Jullien transferred his son there. Hazelwood so impressed Jeremy Bentham that in 1827 a branch of the school was created at Bruce Castle in Tottenham, London.
In 1833, the original Hazelwood School closed and its educational system was continued at the new Bruce Castle School, of which Hill was head master from 1827 until 1839. The colonisation of South Australia was a project of Edward Gibbon Wakefield, who believed that many of the social problems in Britain were caused by overcrowding and overpopulation. In 1832 Rowland Hill published a tract called Home colonies: sketch of a plan for the gradual extinction of pauperism, for the diminution of crime, based on a Dutch model. Hill served from 1833 until 1839 as secretary of the South Australian Colonization Commission, which worked to establish a settlement without convicts at what is today Adelaide; the political economist Robert Torrens was chairman of the Commission. Under the South Australia Act 1834, the colony was to embody the ideals and best qualities of British society, shaped by religious freedom and a commitment to social progress and civil liberties. Rowland Hill's sister Caroline Clark, husband Francis and their large family migrated to South Australia in 1850.
Rowland Hill first started to take a serious interest in postal reforms in 1835. In 1836 Robert Wallace, MP, provided Hill with numerous books and documents, which Hill described as a "half hundred weight of material". Hill commenced a detailed study of these documents and this led him to publish, in early 1837, a pamphlet called Post Office Reform its Importance and Practicability, he submitted a copy of this to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Thomas Spring Rice, on 4 January 1837. This first edition was marked "confidential" and was not released to the general public; the Chancellor summoned Hill to a meeting in which the Chancellor suggested improvements, asked for reconsiderations and requested a supplement, which Hill duly produced and supplied on 28 January 1837. In the 1830s at least 12.5% of all British mail was conveyed under the personal frank of peers and members of parliament, while censorship and political espionage were conducted by postal officials. Fundamentally, the postal system was mismanaged, wasteful and slow.
It had become inadequate for the needs of industrial nation. There is a well-known story apocryphal, about how Hill gained an interest in reforming the postal system. At that time, letters were paid for by the recipient, not the sender; the recipient could refuse delivery. Frauds were commonplace: for example, coded information could appear on the cover of the letter; each individual letter had to be logged. In addition, postal rates were complex, depending on the distance and the number of sheets in the letter. Richard Cobden and John Ramsey McCulloch, both advocates of free trade, attacked the policies of privilege and protection of the Tory government. McCulloch, in 1833, advanced the view that "nothing contributes more to facilitate commerce than the safe and cheap conveyance of letters." Hill's pamphlet, Post Office Reform: its Importance and Practicability, referred to above, was circulated in 1837. The report called for "uniform rates" according to weight, rather than distance. Hill's study reported his findings and those of Charles Babbage that most of the costs in the postal system were not for transport, but rath