Sweden Scout Errors
Hans Gerlach

Sweden finally got it’s first Scout stamp set in 1975. Originally the set was to have been issued in June but a strike at the printers, in England, forced a delay in issue.  The plan was changed to issue the stamps at the annual Stamp Day, and this is when the stamps were actually issued.  The delay in issue coupled with the fact that Sweden was one of the host countries for the 1975 World Jamboree in Norway has led to the mistaken belief that the stamps were issued to commemorate the Jamboree.  This is not true, the stamps were issued to honor the Swedish Scouts.  However, it may be fair to say that the Scout stamps may not have been issued if the World Jamboree had not been held in a Scandinavian country.

Sweden Scout Stamp, Arrow points to missing eye
Sweden Scout Stamp

There is an error on the canoeing stamp, a missing right eye on the boy in the front boat.  The error occurs every 23rd stamp on one of the ten rollers used to simultaneously print the ten strips of stamps.  In other words, the error occurs 21 times every 5,000 stamps, or if you are lucky enough to get one of the coils printed from the erroneous plate, you get 4 errors for each coil of 100 or 20 errors for each coil of 500.

First Printing Postcard
Sweden Postcard Reverse, First Printing

The post card has it's own history.  It is normal for Sweden to print post cards with the stamp motif for distribution free of charge.  The design or layout for the back of the card is found in two varieties.  The first printing was printed for the original issue date of the stamps (June, 1975) and some additional 50,000 were printed due to the delay in getting the card.

Second Printing Postcard
Sweden Postcard Reverse, Second Printing

The reason for the second printing is simple: I wanted to be able to use the cards with machine cancellation.  With the printing located as it was on the first printing, the cancellation would be difficult to read.  The postal officials agreed to move the printing to the lower left corner and thus created the second version.  Also note that on the second printing, an outline box for locating the stamp was added to the upper right corner.

No Swedish post card before or since has been treated this way and it therefore makes a more interesting and unusual happening.  Of the 200,000 cards of the second printing, 50,000 were provided for use of the Scouts of Sweden and the remainder were distributed to the local post offices.


SOSSI Journal, VOL 29, No. 6, June 1980
Created by Keith Larson