A short time after the South Kensington Exhibition, Harry Furniss [a noted caricaturist of the time] published his version of the Jubilee Envelope and Card. The purpose of the caricature was to highlight the poor working conditions that many postmen were subject to. In fact in June of 1890, the first major strike of postal workers took place.
At the time of the production of these caricatures 100 “special subscription” copies printed in black were prepared. It is thought that these were sold to pay for the preparation of the 10’000 due to be printed in blue. Each of these envelopes and the insert cards were signed by Harry Furniss and are sometimes sold as “proofs”.
Most examples seen are unused (a listing of all used examples I have recorded are below), though the remainders of the edition of 10,000 were obtained by the Stamp Collector’s Fortnightly. These copies were distributed with the 15th December 1906 edition and are stamped in dull red on the envelope backflap in five lines; “Presented / with the / Christmas Number of the / Stamp Collector’s Fortnightly / December 15th, 1906”.
History: Regency Superior, Aug 2014, lot 2494, realised $357
History: Grosvenor 25th Jan 2007 lot 104 realised £380 plus commission
History: Sold by Special Auction Services, March 2015
History: Corbitts March 2012 lot 1979 realised £115 plus commission
5. 1890 (Jul 26) Harry Furniss Uniform Penny Post Jubilee cover caricature sent to Ramsgate ¹
History: Cavendish June 2016 lot 2275 sold as part of group for £260 plus commission; For sale by Mulready Philatelics for £595 July 2016
History: For sale by Samwells Ltd for £450 in 2016
10. 1890 (Sep 12) Harry Furniss Uniform Penny Post Jubilee cover caricature with 1d lilac tied by London Hoster machine cancel, Leatherhead arrival bs (scan of reverse)
History: Sold on eBay May 2014 for £84
History: Cavendish sale 682 ex lot 1310
13. 1890 (Dec 13) Penny Postage Jubilee “POST OFFICE JUMBLE” satirical envelope by Harry Furniss, sent registered from Eastbourne to Germany with three 1887 1 1/2d (two on reverse), address partly erased, very rare registered use.
History: David Feldman SA September 2012 lot 31575 estimate €500 (unsold)
History: For sale by KC Philatelics for £735
16. 1898 (Dec 27) Harry Furniss Uniform Penny Post Jubilee cover caricature with 1881 1d lilac ¹
17. 1900 (May 13) Penny Postage Jubilee “POST OFFICE JUMBLE” satirical envelope by Harry Furniss from Harrow to Switzerland with six 1900 1/2d green (five on reverse)
History: Sold by Andrew Lajer £400
History: Cavendish sale 676 ex lot 1366
20. 1914 (Apr 14) Harry Furniss Uniform Penny Post Jubilee cover caricature with 1887 2 1/2d and KGV 1/2d sent to the Falkland Islands
History: Grosvenor 21st May 2014 lot 1442 sold £170 plus commission
¹ Thanks to John A. McCulloch for this information
Bibliography / Further Reading