1956 saw the staging of the Olympics in Melbourne
with the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) being the main stadium. This
Postcard shows a game of
football being played during the construction of the Olympic Stand.
A game of Australian Rules was played as a
demonstration sport on the MCG on day 14 of the Olympics on December 7th 1956.
The ideals of amateurism, so cherished at that time as the Olympic way, meant
that a combined team of amateurs from the mainly professional VFL and VFA,
played a Victorian Amateur Football Association Team (VAFA). The VAFA wore white
jumpers with emerald green collars and the 5 Olympic rings on their chest. The
combined team wore the reverse colouring. The VAFA easily won the game 12.9.81
to VFL/VFA 8.7.55.
Olympic Covers showing the
1st December 1954 and
30th November 1955 Australia issued a
single design stamp of different colours to publicise the Games. AMC Guthrie, a
Western Australian cover producer, released a cover for each stamp. The design
were similar and showed a photograph
of the MCG.
The card below shows the Main Stadium
postmark (APM01166) along with a drawing of the MCG. The Main Stadium Postmark
was one of 52 postmarks showing different sports and used at various venues
during the games from 22nd October to 8th December. No postmark was issued for
The souvenir card below was released by
Mappin and Curran, the largest Philatelic Dealer in Melbourne. It was released
in two colours of black/green, in single colours of black, blue (as shown), Red
and Green. It was also
released as an souvenir envelope
in two colours of
in single colours of black,
Green. The card or envelope was either
blank or contained the text "First Day Cover October 31 1956" in
or "Pictorial Postmark", Shown
below is a blue card with the words "Pictorial Postmark". A
Black card is also know
The cover below was released by an alliance of
six other dealers. It shows a stylised MCG with the second Olympic
Publicity stamp issued on the 30th November 1995 (first stamp shown on Guthrie
Cover above) and the four Olympic stamps issued on the 31st October 1956. It is
cancelled with the Main Stadium Postmark (APM01166) on the 22nd November 1956.
It may be found as an envelope or card, and may contain the text, "Posted at the
main Olympic Stadium.... or
Posted at Olympic City......."
Hand Painted Cover
was also released by AJ (Jack) Peake of Adelaide. (The Cover Collector No 6).
Olympic Aerogramme shows a
stylised drawing of the MCG postmarked with the "Olympex" Philatelic exhibition
postmark (PM 127). The cachet was also used on a cover from
for the 1960 Rome and 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
A cover issued by Pharmaceutical Company,
also features the MCG.
1996 Olympic bid
Melbourne made a bid for the 1996 Olympics and Australia Post issued a set of
3 postcards, on the 22nd June 1990, showing the proposed venues. Naturally this
along with the National Tennis Centre and the Royal Exhibition Building. The
"Olympics For Melbourne 1996" PM.
They were re-released on the 18th September 1990 with
"Games Logo" PM and catchet.
The Games were awarded to Atlanta.
A Hand Painted
Cover by Frans M Geerling of Oregon USA,
showing the MCG and Martin Luther King, was released to congratulate Atlanta on
winning the 1996 games. The cachet maker was Noel Almeida of Limited Edition
Covers. 96 were produced.
showing the MCG
In April 1955 the PMG
announced that three stamps would be issue for the games. The 31/2d was
to be like the eventual 71/2d torch and Southern Cross, the 71/2d was to be an
aerial view of the MCG and the 2s Airmail stamp similar to the previous
publicity stamps. Unfortunately these designs were changed and no view of the
MCG was issued
On 15th November 1956
Liberia issued a series of six stamps to celebrate the 1956 Melbourne Olympics.
The 12 cent air mail stamp (SG 788, Scott C104) showed a stylised Melbourne
Cricket Ground. (Shown at right). Variations with the
exist along with
A small country on
the west coast of Africa, Liberia has been influenced in many ways by the United
States. This influence has its origins in the efforts of the American
Colonisation Society to settle freed American slaves in Africa, beginning in
1822. The government was modelled on that of the United States.
||The Principality of
Monaco issued two stamps for the 1956 Olympics, one for the Winter Olympics in
Cortina, and the stamp illustrated at left, for the Melbourne summer Olympics.
It showed a stylised drawing of the MCG.
an athelete with a stylised stadium,
another the Australian Flag. A
shows the stadium in the middle
surrounded by athletes.
commemorate the 17th Olympics in Rome in 1960 Haiti issued a series of stamps on
th 18th August 1960 showing combinations of the Olympic Victors in Athens in
1896, the 1956 torch, the 1956 athlete's parade at the MCG and the founder of
the modern Olympics, Pierre de Coubertin. The issue included 4 normal, 3 airmail
and an imperforate
4 values were later reprinted with a 25c surcharge. Four of the stamps with
images of the MCG are the
Olympic Victors Athens, MCG and
torch (Scott 462 SG 708),
Pierre de Coubertin, Olympic Victors
Athens and MCG (Scott 464 SG 710),
Airmail Pierre de Coubertin,
MCG and Olympic torch (Scott C163 SG 712) and
Olympic Victors Athens and MCG
(Scott C165 SG 714).
||On the 23rd October 1979,
Romania issued a series of six stamps showing Stadia used for previous Olympic
Games. The .55 stamp (SG 4489 Scott 2862) showed a stylised MCG. (Shown at right
FDC) The issue
was used as a lead up to the controversial Moscow Olympics whose stadium was
shown on the miniature sheet.
Australia left the decision to attend the Moscow
games to individual sports rather than as one team. Australia and Greece remain
as the only countries to attend all the Modern Games.
of a series for the Atlanta Olympics, Guyana issued a $30 stamp on the 25th July
1996 of the 1956 Olympic Stadium the Melbourne Cricket Ground. (SG 4740 Scott
Guyana, as part of the West Indies, would
appreciate the MCG for its great cricketing history.
& covers showing athletes at the MCG
Dominican Republic Issues
Between 1957 and 1960
The Dominican Republic issued 40
Olympic stamps with 32 commemorating the
Melbourne Games. There were also several surcharge overprints and Miniature
1956 Russian Issue
In 1957 the USSR issued a set of 6 stamps to commemorate the Melbourne
Olympics. Three sports,
showed the MCG in the background. Another of the series, showed
the sport of
gymnastics with the MCG in the
background, although the competition was held in the West Melbourne Stadium.
As part of the
Celebrations a cover showing the MCG and celebrating the 1956 Olympics was
1996 Centenary of Modern Olympics
Australia released three stamps to commemorate the Centenary of the Modern
Olympics. Two 45c se-tenant stamps showed Edwin Flack, Australia's only
representative at the 1896 games, and Fanny Durack, the first Australian woman
to win a Gold medal. The $1.05 design shows a wheelchair racer. One of the three
Publicity Card for Olymphilex 96
Post Office Pack
shows Betty Cuthbert winning Gold at the 1956 Olympics.
1998 Olympic Legends
On 21st January 1998 Australia issued the Annual
Legend stamps series for Australia Day, 26th January, to commemorate 6
Olympians, with a sheetlet of 12 stamps. Two First Day Covers, of the same
design, were released by Australia Post. The Cache showed the Australian
Team marching at the
MCG, in the
1956 Olympics. (Legends cover with
and back of the Stamp pack also showed the same photo. The Booklet included
overprints for the
the 2000 Games and
front of the stamp pack
showed Ron Clarke and the
showed the team marching. Five maximum cards were also released. There cards of
showed them winning Gold at the 1956 Olympics. Covers with
cachet of the athletes were also produced and
showed them winning Gold at the MCG. The IOC also issued a
Alpha covers issued three covers showing
and another of
In 2006 Australia Post released a set of stamps with the cover
showing Betty Cuthbert. Covers of
with the legend stamps are shown.
On the 15th March 2000 Russia issued a 12 stamp
sheetlet to honour
20th Century Sports.
The sheetlet includes the Russian Soccer Team and
Vladimir Kuts, dual winner of the 5000 and 10000 klm race, both at the Melbourne
Olympics in 1956.
2004 Athens Olympic
On the 25th August 2004 Elite
Sports Properties produced three limited Edition Special Event Sheets. The
surrounds of the sheet,
The Golden Era, showed the Australian
Team walking into the MCG and Betty Cuthbert running. First Class Collectables
issues covers of
2006 50th Anniversary
Ireland released a stamp and
to commemorate Ronnie Delany winning th 1500m Gold Medal at the Melbourne
On 1st November 2006
Australia Post issued a set of 4 stamps, 2
50c stamps and 2
$1 stamps based on the 1956 issues with the MCG in the background.
The POP showed Ron Clarke lighting the
on the cover and Australia
marching into the stadium on the inside. The
shows Betty Cuthbert. Lawrence Bove (Lobo8) issued a cover of the
torch. GHI stamps issued two
covers signed by Governor
John Landy. Another
used the original stamps as the catchet.
Original 1956 Olympic covers
VPA with the Anniversary stamps
were produced as was the 1999
cover with the torch stamps.
2007 Annual Legends Issue
The annual Legends issue on the 24th
January 2007 included a Prestige Booklet of the previous 10 issues.
The second issue in
the Olympic Legends. The athletes included Betty Cuthbert shown on a
Text and Shirley Strickland
shown on a
won Gold Medals on the MCG in the 1956 Olympics.
The booklet was
for the Fishers Ghosts Philately Show.