Home   Ald   Ant   Bel1   Bel2   Bel3   Bel4   Bel5   Bhu   Bot   Bul   Can1   Can2   Cha   Com   Con   Cze   Dis   Dom1   Dom2   Dom3   Fin   Fra1   Fra2   Fra3   Fra4   Fra5   Fra6   Fun   Ger   GB1   GB2   GB3   GB4   GB5   GB6   GB7   GB8   GB9   Gue   Gui1   Gui2   Gui3   GuiB   Guy   Hun   Ind   Isr   Jap1   Jap2   Jap3   Jap4   Liec   Mal   Man1   Man2   Mon1   Mon2   Neth   NZ   Nic   Nig   ROC   San1   San2   Sao   SH   Sier   Som   SAfr   Spa1   Spa2   Swe   Swi1   Swi2   TC   Uga   US1   US2   US3   US4   US5   US6   US7   Addenda  

Indexes:     Country   Detective / Author   Year of Issue  

Topical (thematic) postage stamp collecting is the hobby of trying to identify and accumulate philatelic items related to a single "theme". (Other examples can be seen on my topical pages about Chess, Saint-Exupéry, Anti-Smoking...)

"Detective Fiction on Stamps" is a relatively small topic, but at least three dozen countries have issued postage stamps (and other philatelic items) which are connected to or commemorating fictional detectives, their creators or cinematic portrayals.

In some cases the stamps were specifically issued with the theme of detective fiction, notably the 1972 Nicaragua set for the Interpol anniversary: the 12 most famous fictional detectives, and the 1979 San Marino issue. Sometimes, as in the case of the Edgar Allan Poe, Georges Simenon, Ngaio Marsh or G.K. Chesterton issues, the stamps were in honor of the authors, without specific reference to their detectives. Still others commemorate screen actors, such as the U.S. Humphrey Bogart (Philip Marlowe / Sam Spade), and Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry), or Great Britain Peter Sellers (Inspector Clouseau - The Pink Panther) issues. There are cartoon detectives, like Dick Tracy from the U.S., Roberto Alcázar and Pedrín from Spain, Detective Conan from Japan...

Some items aren't quite detective stamps... Consider the British Royal Mail Agatha Christie Prestige Stamp Booklet -- for which no Agatha Christie stamp was issued, and the Sherlock Holmes £1 stamp booklets which, similarly, don't contain any Sherlock Holmes stamps... but they're postal items with relevance to the theme, and so they're included. (How far can this be stretched? How about a Canada stamp booklet with a silhouette of Sherlock Holmes on the inside of the cover!)

Of course Sherlock Holmes is the champion, with a page of his own, The Philatelic Sherlock Holmes. Agatha Christie isn't far behind... But in all cases, whatever your interest, you'll find lots of information about the detectives, stories, authors, countries and stamps, as well as close-ups of the stamps themselves.

So now, the game's afoot... Click on a country below to jump to its page... or use the Detective / Author Index to locate your favorite...

Detective Fiction on Stamps

Country

Alderney 2009, Sherlock Holmes
Antigua & Barbuda 2000, Agatha Christie
Belgium 1991, Blake & Mortimer (Edgar P. Jacobs) (comic strip)
Belgium 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
Belgium 2003, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
Belgium 2004, Edgar P. Jacobs, Blake & Mortimer (comic strip)
Belgium 2008, Stanislas-André Steeman and Jef Geeraerts
Bhutan 1990, Nothumberland Hotel (Sherlock Holmes)
Botswana 2008, The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
Bulgaria 2009, Edgar Allan Poe, 200th anniversary
Canada 1991, Sherlock Holmes on booklet cover
Canada 2008, Raymond Burr (Perry Mason)
Chad 1996, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
Comoro Islands 1980, Sherlock Holmes
Congo 2013, Sherlock Holmes
Czechoslovakia 1969, G.K. Chesterton (Father Brown)
Dominica 1991, Sherlock Holmes: Reichenbach Centennary
Dominica 1996, 100 Years of Cinema: 10 Fictional Detectives
Dominica 2000, Satyajit Ray
Finland 2008, Mika Waltari - Inspector Palmu
France 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
France 1996, 6 Heroes of French Detective Fiction
France 2003, Vidocq
France 2004, Blake & Mortimer (comic strip)
France 2007, Dupondt (comic strip)
France 2013, 36 Quai des Orfèvres (Inspector Maigret)
Funafuti/Tuvalu 1984, Locomotive "Sherlock Holmes"
Germany 2001, Jean Gabin / Inspector Maigret
Great Britain 1985, British Films: P. Sellers (Inspector Clouseau - Pink Panther)
Great Britain 1990, Agatha Christie commemorative cachet and postmarks
Great Britain 1991, Agatha Christie Booklet
Great Britain 1987-88, Sherlock Holmes booklet covers
Great Britain 1993, Sherlock Holmes
Great Britain 1997, Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes)
Great Britain 2005, Inspector Morse
Great Britain 2009, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle / Sherlock Holmes
Great Britain 2013, Peter Cushing / Sherlock Holmes
Guernsey 1996, 100 Years of Cinema: 5 Fictional Detectives
Guinea 1998, The Maltese Falcon (Sam Spade)
Guinea 2001, Murder on the Orient Express (Agatha Christie)
Guinea 2010, 80th Annivary of death of Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Guinea-Bissau 2011, Tribute to Peter Falk (Colombo)
Guyana 1993, Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon)
Hungary 1948, Writers: Edgar Allan Poe (C. Auguste Dupin)
India 1994, Satyajit Ray (Detective Feluda)
Isle of Man 2003, Agatha Christie
Isle of Man 2006, Agatha Christie
Israel 1995, Cinema - 100 Years: P. Sellers (Inspector Clouseau - Pink Panther)
Japan 2006, Detective Conan
Japan 2009, Detective Conan
Japan 2009, Detective Conan - 50th Anniversary of Japanese Weekly Comic Books for Boys
Japan 2014, Detective Conan
Liechtenstein 2012, Sherlock Holmes
Mali 1994, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
Monaco 2009, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Monaco 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
Netherlands 2009, Maigret
New Zealand 1989, Ngaio Marsh (Chief Inspector Roderick Alleyn)
Nicaragua 1972, 50th Anniv. of Interpol: 12 Most Famous Fictional Detectives
Niger 1999, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
Republic of China 2007, Detective Conan
San Marino 1979, Maigret, Mason, Wolfe, Queen, Holmes
San Marino 2009, Auguste Dupin, Sherlock Holmes, Philip Marlowe
São Tomé e Príncipe 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
Sierra Leone 2001, Agatha Christie (Orient Express)
Somali Republic 2000, Agatha Christie
South Africa 2000, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Spain 1998, Mortadelo and Filemón (comic strip)
Spain 2000, Roberto Alcázar and Pedrén (comic strip)
Sweden 2010, Swedish Crime Writers
Switzerland 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
Switzerland 2007, Conan Doyle, The Final Problem
Turks & Caicos Islands 1984, Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes
United States 1949, Edgar Allan Poe (C. Auguste Dupin)
United States 1995, Dick Tracy (comic strip)
United States 1997, Humphrey Bogart (Philip Marlowe, Sam Spade)
United States 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
United States 2009, Dragnet (Sgt. Joe Friday / Jack Webb)
United States 2009, Perry Mason (Raymond Burr)
United States 2012, The Maltese Falcon (John Huston)

Detective / Author

Agatha Christie
Antigua & Barbuda
Dominica (Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple)
Great Britain 1990 (Agatha Christie birthday - cachet and postmark)
Great Britain 1991 (Agatha Christie booklet)
Guinea (Murder on the Orient Express)
Guernsey (Miss Jane Marple)
Isle of Man 2003 (Agatha Christie's 'Manx Gold')
Isle of Man 2006
Nicaragua (Hercule Poirot)
Sierra Leone (Murder on the Orient Express)
Somali Republic
Uganda (Murder on the Orient Express)
Arsène Lupin
France
Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Alderney
Comoro Islands
Dominica 1991
Dominica 1996
Great Britain 1987-88 booklet covers
Great Britain 1993
Great Britain 1997 (Hound of the Baskervilles)
Great Britain 2009
Guernsey
Guinea 2010
Liechtenstein 2012
Monaco
Nicaragua
San Marino 1979
San Marino 2009
South Africa
Switzerland
Turks & Caicos Is.
Auguste Dupin
Hungary (Edgar Allan Poe)
Nicaragua
San Marino 2009
United States (Edgar Allan Poe)
Blake & Mortimer
Belgium 1991
Belgium/France 2004
Charlie Chan
Dominica
Guernsey
Nicaragua
Chief Inspector Roderick Alleyn
New Zealand (Ngaio Marsh)
Colin Dexter (Inspector Morse)
Great Britain
Colombo (Peter Falk)
Guinea-Bissau 2011
Dashiell Hammett (Sam Spade)
Dominica
Guinea
Nicaragua
Nicaragua (Humphrey Bogart)
United States (Humphrey Bogart)
Detective Conan
Japan 2006
Republic of China
Japan 2009
Japan 2009 (50th Anniversary...)
Japan 2014
Dick Tracy
Dominica
United States
Dirty Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood)
Chad
Mali
Niger
Disney
Disney
Dorothy L. Sayers (Lord Peter Wimsey)
Nicaragua
Dupondt (Detectives Dupont & Dupond (Hergé)
France
Earl Derr Biggers (Charlie Chan)
Dominica
Guernsey
Nicaragua
Edgar Allan Poe (Auguste Dupin)
Bulgaria 2009
Hungary 1948
Monaco 2009
Nicaragua 1972
San Marino
São Tomé e Príncipe 2009
United States 1949
United States 2009
Edgar Pierre Jacobs (Blake & Mortimer)
Belgium 1991
Belgium/France 2004
Ellery Queen
Nicaragua
San Marino
Erle Stanley Gardner (Perry Mason)
Canada
Nicaragua
San Marino
United States
Fantômas
France
Father Brown
Czechoslovakia
Nicaragua
Feluda
India
Dominica
Gaston Leroux (Rouletabille)
France
Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
Belgium / France / Switzerland 1994
Belgium 2003
France
Nicaragua
San Marino
G.K. Chesterton (Father Brown)
Czechoslovakia
Nicaragua
Håkan Nesser (Van Veeteren, Inspector Barbarotti)
Sweden
Hercule Poirot
Dominica
Great Britain (Agatha Christie booklet)
Nicaragua
Hergé [Georges Prosper Remi] (Dupond & Dupont)
France
Henning Mankell (Kurt Wallander)
Sweden
Inspector Barbarotti
Sweden
Inspector Clouseau (The Pink Panther)
Dominica
Guernsey
Great Britain
Israel
Inspector Maigret
Belgium/France/Switzerland (Georges Simenon)
Belgium 2003 (Georges Simenon)
France 1996
France 2013 (36 Quai des Orfèvres)
Germany 2001 (Jean Gabin)
Netherlands
Nicaragua
San Marino
Inspector Morse
Great Britain
Inspector Palmu
Finland
Jean Gabin
Germany 2001 (Inspector Maigret)
Jef Geeraerts
Belgium
John Huston
United States 2012 (The Maltese Falcon)
Kurt Wallander
Sweden
Léo Malet (Nestor Burma)
France
Lord Peter Wimsey
Nicaragua
Manfred Lee & Frederic Dannay (Ellery Queen)
Nicaragua
San Marino
Martin Beck
Sweden
Maurice Leblanc (Arsène Lupin)
France
Mika Waltari (Inspector Palmu
Finland
Miss Jane Marple
Dominica
Great Britain (Agatha Christie booklet)
Guernsey
Mortadelo y Filemón
Spain
Nero Wolfe
Nicaragua
San Marino
Nestor Burma
France
Ngaio Marsh (Chief Inspector Roderick Alleyn)
New Zealand
Nick Charles
Dominica
No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
Botswana
Peter Cushing (Sherlock Holmes
Great Britain
Perry Mason
Canada (Raymond Burr)
Nicaragua
San Marino
United States
Philip Marlowe
Dominica
Guernsey
Nicaragua
San Marino
United States
Pierre-Alexis Ponson de Terrail (Rocambole)
France
Pierre Souvestre and Marcel Allain (Fantômas)
France
Raymond Burr (Perry Mason)
Canada
United States
Raymond Chandler (Philip Marlowe)
Dominica
Guernsey
Nicaragua
San Marino
United States
Rex Stout (Nero Wolfe)
Nicaragua
San Marino
Roberto Alcázar and Pedrín
Spain
Rocambole
France
Rouletabille
France
Sam Spade
Dominica
Guinea
Guyana
Nicaragua
United States
Satyajit Ray
India
Dominica
Sherlock Holmes
Alderney
Bhutan
Canada
Comoro Islands
Congo
Dominica 1991
Dominica 1996
Funafuti/Tuvalu (locomotive)
Great Britain 1993
Great Britain 1987-88 booklet covers
Great Britain (Hound of the Baskervilles)
Great Britain 2009
Great Britain 2013 (Peter Cushing)
Guernsey
Guinea 2010
Liechtenstein 2012
Monaco
Nicaragua
San Marino 1979
San Marino 2009
South Africa (Conan Doyle)
Switzerland (Conan Doyle)
Turks & Caicos Is.
Sjöwall-Wahlöö (Martin Beck)
Sweden
Stanislas-André Steeman
Belgium
Van Veeteren
Sweden
Vidocq
France
Vincke and Verstuyft (Detectives Eric Vincke and Freddy Verstuyft)
Belgium

Year of Issue


(most recent first)

2014
Japan 2014, Detective Conan
2013
Congo 2013, Sherlock Holmes
Great Britain 2013, Peter Cushing (Sherlock Holmes)
France 2013, 36 Quai des Orfèvres
2012
Liechtenstein 2012, Sherlock Holmes (Famous Figures from Classical Literature)
United States 2012, The Maltese Falcon (John Huston)
2011
Guinea-Bissau 2011, Tribute to Peter Falk (Colombo)
2010
Guinea 2010, 80th Anniversary of death of Conan Doyle
Sweden 2010, Swedish Crime Writers
2009
Alderney 2009, Sherlock Holmes
Bulgaria 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
Great Britain 2009, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Japan 2009, Detective Conan
Japan 2009, Detective Conan - 50th Anniversary ... Comic Books for Boys
Monaco 2009, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Monaco 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
Netherlands 2009, Maigret
São Tomé e Príncipe 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
San Marino 2009, Dupin, Holmes, Marlowe
United States 2009, Edgar Allan Poe
United States 2009, Dragnet (Sgt. Joe Friday / Jack Webb)
United States 2009, Perry Mason (Raymond Burr)
2008
Belgium 2008, Stanislas-André Steeman and Jef Geeraerts
Botswana 2008, The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency
Canada 2008, Raymond Burr (Perry Mason)
Finland 2008, Mika Waltari - Inspector Palmu
2007
France 2007, Dupont & Dupond
Republic of China 2007, Detective Conan
Switzerland 2007, Conan Doyle, The Final Problem
2006
Isle of Man 2006, Agatha Christie
Japan 2006, Detective Conan
2005
Great Britain 2005, Inspector Morse
2004
France 2004, Blake & Mortimer (comic strip)
Belgium 2004, Edgar P. Jacobs, Blake & Mortimer (comic strip)
2003
Isle of Man 2003, Agatha Christie
Belgium 2003, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
France 2003, Vidocq
2001
Germany 2001, (Jean Gabin - Inspector Maigret)
Sierra Leone 2001, Agatha Christie (Orient Express)
Guinea 2001, Murder on the Orient Express (Agatha Christie)
2000
Somali Republic 2000, Agatha Christie
South Africa 2000, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (Sherlock Holmes)
Spain 2000, Roberto Alcázar and Pedrén (comic strip)
Antigua & Barbuda 2000, Agatha Christie
Dominica 2000, Satyajit Ray
1999
Niger 1999, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
1998
Guinea 1998, The Maltese Falcon (Sam Spade)
Spain 1998, Mortadelo and Filemón (comic strip)
1997
United States 1997, Humphrey Bogart (Philip Marlowe, Sam Spade)
Great Britain 1997, Hound of the Baskervilles (Sherlock Holmes)
1996
France 1996, 6 Heroes of French Detective Fiction
Dominica 1996, 100 Years of Cinema: 10 Fictional Detectives
Chad 1996, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
Guernsey 1996, 100 Years of Cinema: 5 Fictional Detectives
1995
United States 1995, Dick Tracy (comic strip)
Israel 1995, Cinema - 100 Years: P. Sellers (Inspector Clouseau - Pink Panther)
1994
Belgium 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
Switzerland 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
India 1994, Satyajit Ray (Detective Feluda)
Mali 1994, Clint Eastwood (Dirty Harry)
France 1994, Georges Simenon (Inspector Maigret)
1993
Great Britain 1993, Sherlock Holmes
Guyana 1993, Sam Spade (The Maltese Falcon)
1991
Great Britain 1991, Agatha Christie Booklet
Dominica 1991, Sherlock Holmes: Reichenbach Centennary
Canada 1991, Sherlock Holmes on booklet cover
Belgium 1991, Blake & Mortimer (Edgar P. Jacobs) (comic strip)
1990
Great Britain 1990, Agatha Christie commemorative cachet and postmarks
Bhutan 1990, Nothumberland Hotel (Sherlock Holmes)
1989
New Zealand 1989, Ngaio Marsh (Chief Inspector Roderick Alleyn)
1987
Great Britain 1987-88, Sherlock Holmes booklet covers
1985
Great Britain 1985, British Films: P. Sellers (Inspector Clouseau - Pink Panther)
1984
Turks & Caicos Islands 1984, Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes
Funafuti/Tuvalu 1984, Locomotive "Sherlock Holmes"
1980
Comoro Islands 1980, Sherlock Holmes
1979
San Marino 1979, 5 Fictional Detectives
1972
Nicaragua 1972, 50th Anniv. of Interpol: 12 Most Famous Fictional Detectives
1969
Czechoslovakia 1969, G.K. Chesterton (Father Brown)
1949
United States 1949, Edgar Allan Poe (C. Auguste Dupin)
1948
Hungary 1948, Writers: Edgar Allan Poe (C. Auguste Dupin)

The cartoon is by the Danish cartoonist, Storm-P.
But who are these sleuths?

1       2       3       4       5       6       7       8

1. Porfiry Petrovic (Dostoevski) (Crime and Punishment)
2. Inspector Maigret (Georges Simenon)
3. Father Brown (G.K. Chesterton)
4. Sherlock Holmes (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)
5. Hercule Poirot (Agatha Christie)
6. Inspector Cardby (David Hume)
7. Lord Peter Wimsey (Dorothy L. Sayers)
8. Reggie Fortune (H.C. Bailey)


Let me know if you have a different idea...

4/11/10 - Verner Andersen writes that some members of The Danish Baker Street Irregulars (Sherlock Holmes Klubben i Danmark) don't agree with my choice for #7 either, since "Storm-P was not very fond of Lord Peter Wimsey." They think that he's Arsène Lupin.

2/9/10 - Bill Huey thinks #7 is more likely to be Rocambole than Lord Peter Wimsey: Wimsey had no moustache and wasn't as tall and thin.

10/3/12 - James Gibbs suggests, "Could #7 be Philo Vance?"

(I'm sticking with Lord Peter because of the similarity to the image below (rear left)... ST)


While looking for more images of Peter Wimsey and/or Rocambole, I ran into this!:

by Henry Lauritzen. The key can be found where the image was found - on the front page of Swedish Crime Writers' Academy (Svenska Deckarakademin) - or below


Although there's not too much on the web
combining Detective Fiction and philately,
here's one that's close: The Mystery Box.

Other topical stamp pages at this site:

The Philatelic Sherlock Holmes
Chess on Stamps
Robert Louis Stevenson on Stamps
Anti-smoking on Stamps
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

back row: Lord Peter Wimsey, Gideon Fell (by John Dickson Carr), Jules Maigret, Sherlock Holmes, Charlie Chan, Ellery Queen front row: Jane Marple, Father Brown, Auguste Dupin (= Edgar Allan Poe), Hercule Poirot, Nero Wolfe

e-mail
updated