BIOGRAPHY: Thomas Samuel Harrison

Thomas Samuel Harrison (1862-1934) worked at Waterlow Brothers & Layton in London, from 1897 to 1912, before departing for Australia. During that time, he engraved postage and revenue stamps for several countries, including the Belgian Congo, Morocco, Brazil, Costa Rica, Guatemala and Nicaragua. The fact that relatively much is known about this period is that Robson Lowe gained access to the personal files of father and son Harrison.

In his booklet detailing the information in these files, Lowe states categorically that the New Zealand 1901 1d Dominion stamp was also engraved by Thomas Harrison. Other sources however, including the Stanley Gibbons catalogue, mention JAC Harrison as the engraver.

At the end of 1912, beginning of 1913, Harrison moved to Australia where he started to work for the Commonwealth Post Office. His first engravings for them were the stamp portrait of King George V, issued in 1913, and a 6d definitive depicting a Laughing Kookaburra, which was issued in 1914. In a later interview for the Australian Philatelic Record, Harrison said that he thought that Kookaburra stamp was the best stamp engraving he had ever done.

Harrison's final stamp engraving was a single design for the 1925 New Guinea definitive set. In that engraving, he included his initials TH, just to the right of the 'Postage' tablet.

You will find Thomas Samuel Harrison's database HERE.