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Precancels of the Queen Victoria Period
Smith, Elder & Co., W.H. Smith  & Sons., Henry S. King & Co.,  and  William Dawson & Sons were permitted to use their own obliterators.   This enabled these firms to cancel their own mail and deliver it directly to the trains for dispatch.   This practice began in about 1865 and continued at least into the 1880s.  Below are examples showing the range of values that these cancellations appeared on.  I have also found the Smith, Elder & Co. cancellation on the 5s value during this same period.  Although the usage may not have been restricted to only newspapers and printed matter, this seems to have been the primary use of these obliterators.

 Smith, Elder & Co.

1867 3d.  Rose 
 Plate 9
1867 3d.  Rose
Plate 10
1873 3d.  Rose
Plate 17
1865 4d.  Vermilion
Plate 12
1869 6d. Mauve
Plate 8
1873 6d. Gray
Plate 12.
1867 1s. Green
Plate 4

Henry S. King & Co.

1873 3d. Rose
Plate 18

W.H. Smith & Sons

3d. Cut Square with W.H. Smith Advertisement Collar

William Dawson & Sons

1883-84 Green & Lilac Issue 3d.
1883-84 Green & Lilac Issue 5d.

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