The Sarawak Specialists' Society

Philatelic and Postal History of Labuan

Labuan Flag

24th December 1846Labuan ceded to Great Britain
by 1849Official acted as Postmaster
1st August 1860Agreement with British Post Office to exchange mails. Hong Kong and Indian stamps used for mail from Labuan.
1867Straits Settlements stamps used.
16th April 1877Labuan joined Universal Postal Union.
22nd November 1877Straits Settlements postage rates adopted + 3d for transit from Labuan to Singapore.
May 1879First Labuan stamps issued. 1982 2c SG 39
1881First postal card issued
1st January 1890Labuan administration transferred to British North Borneo Company.
1892North Borneo stamps valid for use in Labuan.
May 1894New Labuan stamps issued with designs
the same as North Borneo but colours changed
and Labuan engraved on vignette plate.
1894 Labuan 8c SG 67
24th September 1896Set of six stamps issued to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of cession to Great Britain. 1896 Silver Jubliee of Cession 3c SG 85
April 1897New Labuan definitives issued with revised frames containing Chinese and Jawi inscriptions. 1897 Labuan 8c SG 93
September 1902New definitive stamps issued with a unique design. 1902 4c SG 120c showing lines through B
1st January 1906Control of Labuan administration reverted to the British Colonial Office.
30th October 1906Labuan incorporated in Straits Settlements.
Straits Settlements stamps used thereafter.
Straits Settlements 1912 3c SG 196 cancelled in Labuan
1st January 1942Japanese invaded Labuan
Japanese and overprinted Brunei, North Borneo and Sarawak stamps valid for postage
10th June 1945Australians landed in Labuan
Australian Military Mail used by civilians
1945Japanese Surrender
British Military Administration established.
15th August 1946Labuan transferred from Straits Settlements to the Crown Colony of North Borneo
1949Victoria, the main town in Labuan, renamed Labuan Town
31st August 1963North Borneo (including Labuan) became self-governing
16th September 1963North Borneo joined the Federation of Malaysia and was renamed Sabah
16th April 1984Labuan made Federal Territory Federal Territory 1983 10c SG K11
25th October 1986New Federal Territory definitives issued Federal Territory 1986 SG K17

More detailed information on the postal history of Labuan is contained in
Edward Proud's book "The Postal History of British Borneo"