1893 Hawaii Overprints
Document Political Changes
On January 17, 1893, Hawaii’s ruling monarchy was overthrown by forces who wanted their nation to be annexed by the United States. These leaders were left in a lurch when the planned speedy annexation stalled in Washington, D.C. The new leaders formed a provisional government to preside over Hawaii in the meantime.
Stamps featuring portraits of former ruling monarchs were an embarrassment to the provisional government. So, on April 5, 1893, it was decided to overprint these stamps. The first overprinted stamps were placed on sale on May 20, 1893.
During the overprinting process many varieties occurred. These include double overprints and other scarce varieties prized by collectors of Hawaii stamps.