Guam Guard Mail Stamps 

US #GM2 was issued on this day in 1930.

On April 8, 1930, Guam Guard Mail stamps were introduced for inter-island mail.

Guam became a possession of the United States at the end of the Spanish-American War in 1898. As a result, the United States Post Office Department took over mail delivery to and from the Pacific island.

US #GM3 – Only 1,000 stamps were issued.

In 1929, Guam’s newly appointed governor Willis W. Bradley, Jr., learned that the US Post Office had ceased mail service on the island. So Bradley instructed the postal system to institute a service specifically for inter-island mail. He also ordered his assistant to produce new stamps for local use.

US #GM4 – Only 2,000 stamps were issued.

This new mail service, dubbed Guam Guard Mail, began on April 8, 1930. The first two stamps, GM1 and GM2, were overprints of Philippines stamps and were issued on that day. Only 2,000 of the 2¢ (GM1) stamps and 3,000 of the 4¢ (GM2) stamps were produced, and they both sold out on the first day of issue.

US #GM5 – 20,000 stamps issued.

The postal service was also tasked with creating new stamps for release that July. The new Guam Guard Mail stamps were produced in sheets of 25 in a labor-intensive, two-step process. The amateur technique required 50 separate impressions for every sheet of 25 stamps – the first for the Seal of Guam and another in a second color ink for the logo and denomination. Those stamps (GM3 and GM4) were issued on July 10 in very limited quantities and also sold out on the first day they were made available.

Because the quantities of these stamps were so low, more Philippines stamps were overprinted – GM5 and GM6 in August 1930 and GM7-11 that December. There were 1,000 GM7 stamps with print errors – 500 stamps misspelled “GRAUD” and 500 misspelled “MIAL.”

The local mail service was discontinued exactly a year after it started, on April 8, 1931. After that, the US Post Office Department handled local mail.


US #GM6 – 80,000 stamps issued.

US #GM7 – 50,000 stamps issued.

US #GM8 – 50,000 stamps issued.

US #GM9 – 25,000 stamps issued.

US #GM10 – 25,000 stamps issued.

US #GM11 – 25,000 stamps issued.

Click here to see what else happened on This Day in History.


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  1. I have never heard of these before and enjoy learning new things about stamps. Thanks Mystic. Do you know why the USPO ceased mail delivery on Guam? Why it was called “Guam Guard Mail”? And why the USPO resumed service after 1 year? Any additional information you can provide will be much appreciated.

    1. I’ve been collecting for 70 years and didn’t know about Guam Guard. I also would like to know why the name etc

  2. What I find extremely interesting is the fact that sometimes stamps that appear to be foreign, or non-United States postage are actually very rare US Postage. I never before thought to look at countries that appear to be foreign for the over stamp, such as these Guam Guard Mail stamps. This is really a history lesson in spades and a lesson in stamp collecting. Thank you Mystic.

  3. Mystic is a great source of mail history as well as U.S History…I receive return
    mails, from my email friends which attest to this…Love you Mystic!!!! And I am a male!!! And I have
    been a stamp collector for 65 years!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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