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First Victoria Cross

The issue commemorates the first Victoria Crosses awarded to Australians. These were awarded in 1900 and 1901 during the Second Boer War (1899–1902). The Victoria Cross (VC) is a military decoration awarded for valour "in the presence of the enemy”. It may be awarded to a person of any rank in any service, and to civilians under military command.

The Victoria Cross was instituted by Queen Victoria in 1856, initially to reward acts of valour during the Crimean War. In 1991 a new but equivalent award was established by letters patent within the Commonwealth of Australia and its Territories, known as the Victoria Cross for Australia.

The Victoria Cross for Australia has been awarded four times: all for actions in the war in Afghanistan. The Imperial Victoria Cross has been awarded to ninety-six Australians—91 were received for actions while serving with Australian forces, and another five were received for actions while serving with South African and British forces during the Second Boer War of 1899–1902.

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Stamp - Brown-olive Victoria Cross 1900

Brown-olive Victoria Cross 1900 stamp

This stamp design is based on a stamp issued by the colony of Victoria in May 1900 to raise funds for the Patriotic Fund for the Boer War. The designs were based on a competition entry. The 1d Brown-Olive sold for 1/- while the 2d Emerald sold for 2/-. Proceeds for the issue yielded £650 for the Boer War. The stamp is based on the original brown-olive stamp of the Victoria Cross. The other stamp, in purple, was designed but never issued.

Stamp - Purple Victoria Cross 1900

Purple Victoria Cross 1900 stamp

This stamp design is based on a stamp issued by the colony of Victoria in May 1900 to raise funds for the Patriotic Fund for the Boer War. The designs were based on a competition entry. The 1d Brown-Olive sold for 1/- while the 2d Emerald sold for 2/-. Proceeds for the issue yielded £650 for the Boer War. This particular stamp, in purple, was designed but never issued.