Hawaii Karate Museum

"Karate" Stamp Series. Ryukyus.

These were the first stamps issued in Okinawa depicting the art of Karate. The Japanese characters in the right hand corner read: "Ryu Kyu Yubin" or "Ryu Kyu Postage." Okinawa is the main island of the Ryu Kyu chain. The stamps are in the United States denomination (three cents) because Okinawa was administered by the United States after World War II. Okinawa prefecture reverted to Japan in 1972.

Originals of these stamps and first day covers are in the collection of the Hawaii Karate Museum. Please do not copy or distribute these materials.

"Naihanchi", a form in Karate
October 5, 1964

Designed by Koya Oshiro

Karate training with Makiwara
February 5, 1965

Designed by Shin Isagawa

"Kumite", Simulated Combat
June 5, 1965

Designed by Masayoshi Adaniya


Various First Day Covers:


st-c1f
combined announcement (front)
st-c1b
combined announcement (back)
st-c2
combined first day of issue cover
st-c3
combined last day of use cover

st-n3

Caption: KARATE is the art of self defense which can be used to kill or maim. Introduced into the Ryukyus from China in the 14th century, it was widely practiced and perfected about 200 years ago. Proficiency is derived by practicing four fundamental forms but no actual contests can be held as the blows are lethal.

st-m7

Caption: The second stamp in the karate series shows the practicing of "machi wara." This is one of the fundamentals in karate training and is done to harden the knuckles which eventually become calloused enabling one to strike bare wood without injury.

st-y2

Caption: The third KARATE stamp depicts the "Kumi-te" (sparring). Karate blows being destructive and even lethal, bouts are ony simulated contests, each taking his turn in attacking the other with prescribed [???] of blows which are stopped just short of making actual contact.

st-ne
metal engraving
st-me
metal engraving
st-ye
metal engraving
st-n1
st-m1
st-y1
st-n4
st-m2
st-y3
st-n2
st-m3
st-y4
st-n5
st-m4
st-y5
st-n6
st-m5
st-y6
st-n7
st-m6
st-y7
st-n10
st-m8
st-y8
st-n8
st-n9

The spirit of Karate is the Aloha spirit


Copyright Hikari Institute, a Hawaii non-profit corporation and federally tax exempt organization under IRC 501(c)(3). All rights reserved.