Stamps San Marino, Philately San Marino
San Marino began issuing "its own" stamps only in 1877, after signing the postal agreement with the Kingdom of Italy which called for the cessation of the use of Italian postage on mail originating in the Republic. The first series of stamps reproduced the three towers of Mount Titano, simbol of the Country. The design was created by the firm, Fratelli Pellas of Genoa and the stamps were printed in Turin by the Officina Carta e Valori, on Italian watermarked paper.
The first commemorative issue dates back to 1894 and was dedicated to an important historical event in the history of San Marino: the inauguration of the Public Palace, seat of the government and parliament and heart of the institutional and political life of the Country.
Saint Marino, founder of the Country, was one of the first "icons" in the history of Mount Titano to appear on its stamps; in 1923 an entire series was dedicated to him. A philatelic homage could not overlook Giuseppe Garibaldi, one of San Marino's favorite Italians. He is depicted, for the first time, in a series issued in 1924, which commemorates the 75th anniversary of the famous "Garibaldi escape to safety" on Mount Titano. In fact, during the summer of 1849, the Italian military leader, just outside the border of San Marino, was escaping from the Austrians. Surrounded by the Austrian troops, he, with his men, found refuge in the Republic of San Marino. Thanks to help from the San Marino guides he managed to escape the Austrian hold and reach safety. From then on Garibaldi always showed his gratitude to Mount Titano, especially by respecting its sovereignty during Italy's unification process.
Today, as in the past, San Marino dedicates its periodical emissions to particularly important moments in its history – and not only. Owing to its proximity, particular attention has always been paid to important events and personages in Italy; these too have been commemorated with special series. Nor have other important persons from other countries been forgotten; for example, there is a famous series dedicated to the Presidents of the United States.
Today - Some recent stamps
1) Italy World Soccer Champion 2006
Issued on August 21, 2006, with a circulation of 180 thousand copies, this stamp was sold out in just a few weeks. Thus, San Marino participated in the celebrations of their "neighbors" for the victory of the Italian National Soccer Team in the World Championship held in Germany. Created by designer Valerio Pradal and photographer Renato d'Agostin, the stamp depicts "Granny Isetta", a festive ninety-two-year-old, with an unparalleled "patrimony"; namely, she remembers all four of the Italian Championship Soccer titles from 1934 in Italy, 1938 in France, 1982 in Spain and 2006 in Germany.
2) Presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the European Council 2007
After sixteen years, in the semester from November, 2006, to May 2007, the Republic of San Marino presided over the Committee of Ministers of the European Council. This important political event was commemorated with a medal and a stamp. Issued on January 23, 2007, in 120 thousand copies, the stamp depicts the flag of San Marino on the left and, on the right, the emblem of the European Council on a blue background.
3) 200th Anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Garibaldi
The "Hero of Two Worlds" is one of the Italian historic figures most dear to the population of San Marino and, consequently, most often represented in the philatelic emissions. The first series dedicated to him dates back to 1924. The most recent series, commemorating the 200th anniversary of his birth, was issued on April 20, 2007. This emission consists of three stamps: 0,65, 1,40 and 2 euro and was produced in 100 thousand copies. Each of the three stamps depicts an important episode in the life of the military hero: the military success of the "Mille" (thousand volunteers for the unity of Italy), his permanence in South America and the encounter at Teano with the King of Italy, Vittorio Emanuele II. Lastly, among the other stamps issued in his honor, there is one dedicated to his "escape" to San Marino, where he found refuge in 1849 – event which bonded the life of Garibaldi to San Marino.