Imperial British East Africa Company "One Rupee"Bud's Big Blue
Tracking present day Kenya through BB requires stops at four album headings with stamps from five different authorities. They are:
· * British East Africa 1895-1896
o Imperial British East Africa Company (IBEAC) 1890-94
o British East Africa Protectorate (BEAP) 1896
· * East Africa and Uganda 1903-12 (tucked between Cuba and Cyprus in BB)
· * Kenya and Uganda 1921-27
· * Kenya, Uganda and Tanganyika 1935-38
This comment bears on IBEAC and BEAP only.
IBEAC, a commercial association that held an Imperial charter, was founded to develop trade in East Africa. The charter permitted a postal system using the company’s name, the first of its kind for a British commercial enterprise. Stamps and coins were issued, both emblazoned with a sun radiant beneath St. Edward’s crown. An apt choice for the company’s badge, the sun rises handsomely on Kenya’s shore from the Indian Ocean at 0° latitude. The red one rupee (see supplements) earned its canceled status in Mombasa.
Currency was denominated in annas and rupees, likely because the coast of Kenya had many settlers from India.
The promise of IBEAC’s motto, “Light and Liberty”, went largely unfulfilled. By the mid-1890s bankruptcy loomed, made inevitable by military misadventure. The British Foreign Office took control and BEAP was proclaimed. BEAP issued new stamps with the likeness of Queen Victoria, appearing older than in any contemporaneous Great Britain images, between two British lions rampant. A single lion became BEAP’s badge. Annas and rupees continue as the denomination.
Census: eight in BB spaces, nine on supplement page.
The philatelic history of British East Africa and the British East Africa Company activities are closely intertwined here. Essentially, British East Africa consisted of all the territory in East Africa under control of the British. The British East Africa Company issued stamps from 1890 through 1895. Then India Stamps 1874-95 were overprinted "British East Africa" or surcharged in 1895. The "British East Africa Protectorate" stamps were issued in 1896 and 1898, while the stamps of Zanzibar were overprinted "British East Africa" in 1897. Finally, the territory was incorporated as the East Africa and Uganda Protectorate. With Kenya, the area was known as the Kenya Colony. Got all that? ;-)
British East Africa and Checklist
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