A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. Interested? So into the Blues...

Friday, March 4, 2011


Quick History

Barbados is an island country in the Lesser Antilles, 60 miles east of the Windward islands and the Caribbean Sea. The Island is about 21 X 14 miles, the Capital is Bridgetown, and the population in 1947 was 200,000. Barbados was named by the Portuguese, meaning "bearded one". But the Island has been under continuous British rule and settlement since 1627, when it was claimed in the name of James l. Only in 1966 did Barbados become independent, although still a member of the Commonwealth.

Originally settled by the Scots and English, African slaves were imported to work for the sugar cane plantations. By the end of the 18th century, most of the population was of African descent.

Today, tourism is a large part of the economy.

Trivia: There are 4 Farthings to a Penny.

Big Blue Picture

On two pages, Big Blue (1969) has 54 illustrated/descriptive stamp spaces and 3 blank spaces for a total of 57 stamp spaces.
The 2011 Scott Classic Specialized catalogues 210 major numbers for 1940 and earlier.
Big Blue's coverage is 27%.

What a disappointment.  Big Blue neglects the first 30 years of Barbados's stamp issuing history, not including ONE of the magnificently designed "Britannia" stamps. Not a few issues either, but 59 Stamps! Sure some are expensive, but many fit Big Blue's criteria. I count 10 under $5, and and 15 more; the most expensive costing $20+.  Here is my list of inexpensive "Britannia's":

1852-1882 "Britannia's"
(Scott 13,15,16,19,20,21,24,28,29,31,32,33,35,39,42,45,46,48,50,51,52,53,54,55,56,)

Sadly, the coverage is  weak even for Big Blue's  listed issues. Here is the 31 stamp "additional want" list:

62,65,64 ($1+-$2+)

73,76 ($1+-$2+)




1916 Seal of the Colony
131,132,133,134,135 ($1+-$5+)  Five of these large magnificently designed stamps not in Big Blue!

1920 Victory issue
143,145,146,147 ($2+)  Iconic set. Four not in. Wow!



1935 No Silver Jubilee issue!

193A,194A,195A,196A,197A,199A, (<$1) Note: issued after 1940, but part of series.

Big Blue Checklist
60,61 ($1+)

70,91,71,72 or 93, 74 or 96 (<$1)
Note: 1892-03 wmk 2, and 1904-10 wmk 3 series

1897 Victoria Jubilee
81,82,83 (<$1)
Note: Minor "a" on bluish paper for >$30+.

1905-07 Nelson Centenary issue
102 or 110($2+-$5+)


1912 King George V
Two blank spaces: suggest 119($2+) and 120(<$1)

1916 Seal of the Colony
127,128,129 (<$1)

1920 Victory issue
140,141,142 or 151 (<$1)

Blank space: suggest 156($1+)


165,166,167,168,169,170,171 (<$1)

1937 Coronation
190,191,192 (<$1)

193,194,195,196,197,198 ,199, 200a or 200,(<$1)
200a 1sh olive green ($2+) ! Note: color specified in Big Blue; while 200 1sh brown olive is <$1.

202,205,206 ($2+)

Postage Due
J1,J2 ($1+)

War Tax

Kinds of Blue
The 1997,1969,1947 and 1941 editions are identical for content.

Big Blue Bottom Line

Big Blue's goal is "a representative collection", so they don't have to include any and all stamps. And for the most part expensive stamps are not in Big Blue. But to see all the inexpensive wonderfully designed and engraved Barbados stamps left out - it hurts! :-(

Note: I looked at the 1947 Standard catalogue, and the 1sh olive green is Scott "200". Clearly Scott demoted the color to Scott 200a (now-$2+) at some later date, with the color "brown olive"(<$1) given the Scott 200 number. As I have discovered before, once Scott lays down the colors for an issue in Big Blue, they never re-edit the color at a later date; even if their own catalogue now sees the color as a minor-and more expensive-variety.

Note: You will need to consult a Scott catalogue for specific pricing. I only give a very "ball park" price, and never the actual catalogue value.
<$1= less than a Dollar
$1+= more than a Dollar
$2+= more than two Dollars
$5+= more than five Dollars
$10+= more than ten Dollars
$20+..and so on.

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