In 1875, the Hamburg-America Packet Company (HAPAG) issued this stamp for use on letters delivered by its steamers to the Caribbean and South America.
The first, 1875 printing (MiNr. 1) and the second, 1879 printing (MiNr. 2) differ slightly in color shade. The center is embossed with the company symbol.
The original issues are perf 12.5.
In 1938, commemorative reprints were made for the Exhibition of the Deutschen Sammlergemeinschaft (German Collectors Community). The reprints are in unwatermarked imperforate sheets of 12, with “Nachdruck” (Reprint) at lower right. Total quantity printed is 20,048.