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 by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Kenya, Uganda, & Tanzania

1935 Scott 48 10c black & yellow "Lion"
Quick History
The Classic Specialized 1840-1940 Scott Catalogue has these British colonies and protectorates under "Kenya, Uganda, & Tanzania". But it should more properly be called for this time period "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika", as Tanzania was not formed until 1964 with the merger of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. In order not to confuse, I have kept the post title for those that need to know where to find the stamps in the Scott catalogue.

But it is even a bit more confusing than that.

The catalogue puts the 1921 issue of "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" with this group, while earlier issues of the "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" are under their own entry. More about that later.

And the grouping "Kenya and Uganda" is found here also for the years 1922-27.

It was not until 1935-1963, that the stamps had "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika"  as the name on the postage stamps.

Why the changes-and confusion? The stamps reflect the administrative reality of the British governance.

The "East Africa Protectorate" name was changed to "Kenya" in 1920.

Hence, the "Kenya and Uganda" stamps cover the colony (Kenya) and protectorate (Uganda) beginning in 1922.

And finally, "Tanganyika" was added in 1935 to the stamp issues.

1920 map of the Protectorates of Uganda, East Africa, and Tanganyika
All surround Lake Victoria
This  map shows the geographical situation in 1920. The "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" stamp issues discussion can be found here....

Recall that the "East Africa Protectorates" name was changed to "Kenya" in August, 1920.

Map of modern day East Africa
Kenya was named for Mount Kenya, the second highest peak in Africa after Kilimanjaro.  It is warm and humid along the Indian ocean coastline, but has grassland savannas in the interior. Lake Victoria is the ninth largest fresh water lake in the world (by volume).

The East Africa Protectorate, established in 1895, became known as the Kenya Colony in 1920. Nairobi was the Capital, but Mombasa was the largest city, with 32,000 in 1921. The population was 2,300,000 in 1921. Kenya remained a British colony until 1963 when it became independent.

Uganda was a protectorate from 1894-1962. The Capital was Kampala. Stamps were issued exclusively for Uganda from 1898-1902. (These issues will be covered in a later post.)

In 1903, Uganda was under the "East Africa & Uganda Protectorates" stamp issues.

Then, from 1922, Uganda was covered by the 'Kenya and Uganda" issues.

Finally, in 1935,  "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika" stamps were issued for Uganda and the other named territories.

Tanganyika has a slightly more convoluted history. It was part of German East Africa prior to WW I.


German East Africa was mandated to Britain after WW I. (Small parts of former German East Africa became Rwanda and Burundi (Belgium), and Portuguese Mozambique (Portugal).)  The mandated Protectorate was renamed Tanganyika, and stamps were issued from 1921-1931. (These issues will be covered in a later post.)

Then, beginning  in 1935, stamps of "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika" were issued.

The capital is Dar es Salaam.

Tanganyika became independent in 1961, and with the addition of Zanzibar in 1964, the name was changed to Tanzania.

1922-27 Scott 18 1c brown "King George V"
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic Specialized catalogue has 11 descriptions for the 1921 "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates", 30 descriptions for 1922-27 "Kenya and Uganda", and 55 descriptions for 1935-1954 "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika"- all regular issues.

The Postage Dues add 6 descriptions for 1928-33 "Kenya and Uganda", and 6 descriptions for 1935 "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika".

Total = 108 major descriptions (1921-1954).

Of those 52, or 48% are CV <$1-$1+.

• The watermark 3 Multiple Crown and C A 1912-18 "George V" stamps are found in the catalogue under  "East Africa & Uganda Protectorates". But the East Africa Protectorates became the Kenya Colony in 1920. Therefore, the 1921  "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" labeled George V stamps - recognized by the watermark 4 - Multiple Crown and Script C A- are listed under "Kenya and Uganda".

It is imperative that the "East Africa & Uganda Protectorates" 1912-21 designed George V stamps be checked for watermark to determine which  part of the album they should be placed.

All the George V stamps of this design I found in my feeder albums placed in the "Kenya and Uganda" section were, in fact, watermark 3. They should have been placed in the "East Africa & Uganda Protectorates" section. The watermark 4 stamps tend to have a higher CV, and so are less common in albums.

• There are at least 21 minor numbers- because of different perforations- found for the 1938-54 George VI pictorial issues. One should check perforations carefully for this issue.

• During 1941-42, four stamps of South Africa/Suid Afrika were overprinted/surcharged for use in Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika. Was this done because of wartime shortages? These are collected as pairs, as they are found printed on both English and Afrikaans script stamps.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
East Africa & Uganda Protectorates
1912-18 Scott 40 1c black "King George V"
Watermark 3, "Multiple Crown & C A"
The first issue for the "Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania" section in Scott is actually the 1921 "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" George V with watermark 4, "Multiple Crown and Script C A". Remember, the watermark 3 stamps go rather in the "East Africa and Uganda" portion of the album.

Imaged above is the watermarked 3 issue (as I have no wmk 4 stamps) to give one an idea of design.

1922-27 Scott 24 15c carmine rose "King George V"
Beginning in 1922, a George V "Kenya and Uganda" issue was produced. This 30 stamp issue has this design for the 11 lower denominations.

Some of the higher denominations (image not pictured) have a very high CV- from $1,500- $100,000!!! Not of much interest to the WW classical generalist, I suspect. ;-)

1922-27 Scott 20-22-25-25
Cancelled "Kenya", "Nairobi", "Kampala","Uganda" respectively
Although one can collect without regard to postmarks, here is a small selection. I find African colonies postmarks particularly exotic and attractive. ;-)

1935 Scott 47 5c green & black "Dhow on Lake Victoria"
In 1935, a nice pictorial "George V" issue was released. The 5c and 50c values had this design.  In Type I (illustrated), the left rope does not touch the sail. In Type II, it does.

The fourteen stamp issue has a CV of <$1-$1+ for nine stamps.

I should mention here that all of the issue stamps were engraved, except for the 10c and one pound denominations- which were typographed. The Scott 48 10c black and yellow with Lion design at the post header shows an example.

1935 Scott 46 1c red brown & black "Kavirondo Cranes"
Another example from the George V pictorials showing the Kavirondo Cranes. Otherwise known as the gray crowned crested crane, it is the national symbol of Uganda.

1935 Scott 50 20c red orange & black "Kavirondo Cranes"
Cancelled "Dar es Salaam", and Kilimanjaro" respectively
Cancellations on the large stamps of this issue are attractive and educational. The example on the left shows a 1936 cancellation from the Capital of Tanganyika. And since I will probably never see or climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, having a cancellation is the next best thing. ;-)

And now for a little bit of real history mixed in with the postal history..

Letter from Lord Francis Scott
February 15, 1936, Franked with 1935 Scott 48 & 50
Lord Francis George Scott (1879 - 1952) was a prominent local settler and politician. Danilo Marquez from California, a collector of memorabilia, and a reader of this blog, sent this scan pic. Interesting!

1950 Scott 82 3sh gray black & ultramarine "Lake Naivasha"
The 1938-54 George VI issues have the same scenes and frames as the 1935 George V series, which is mildly disappointing. The series was issued for 16 years, and can be found with denominations reissued in new colors.

Lake Naivasha, meaning "rough water", is found in the Great Rift Valley at 6,200 feet northwest of Nairobi.

 1943 Scott 72 15c carmine & gray black "Mt. Kilimanjaro"
Mount Kilimanjaro, at 19,340 feet, is the highest free standing mountain in the world. One can trek the mountain in 6-7 days, although high altitude pulmonary edema or cerebral edema are risks.

1952 Scott 98 10c green & black "Lake Naivasha"
In 1952, Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh toured Kenya on a royal visit, including, naturally, a safari. Two stamps of the pictorial George VI designs were issued with the overprint as shown.

But King George VI had died in his sleep. When the frantic telegram reached Kenya, she had, at that time, ascended a lookout tower to watch the sunrise. As the saying goes, she ascended Treetops as a Princess, and descended to the forest floor as Queen.

1938-54 Scott 81a 2sh red violet & orange brown
"Mount Kilimanjaro"
As mentioned earlier, the George VI issues often come in a variety of minor number perforations. Here the Scott 81a 2sh red violet & orange brown has perforation 13 (CV $2+), while the major number has perforation 13 1/2 X 13 (CV <$1).

1941-42 Scott 88 20c on 6p orange & green
Vertical pair
During 1941-42, four South Africa/Sud Afrika stamps were overprinted and surcharged as shown. A shortage of stamp supplies during the war? They are collected as pairs, and, for some reason, horizontal pairs have a higher CV than vertical pairs.

Postage Due 1935 Scott J11 40c ultramarine
Some simple postage due designs were issued in 1928-33 and 1935. Of the 12 stamps total, only 5 are CV $1 or less.

Deep Blue
1922-27 "George V" issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 10 pages for the various categories under the "Kenya, Uganda, Tanganyika" heading. All the major Scott numbers have a space.

But, more interestingly, the 1938-54 George VI pictorial issue has an abundance of minor number stamps with different perforations. Deep Blue offers them spaces with two pages and 21 additional spaces. Most appreciated. ;-)

1942 Scott 76 30c deep blue & gray black
"Jinja Bridge, Ripon Falls"
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on two pages, has 15 spaces for "Kenya and Uganda", and 35 spaces for 'Kenya-Uganda-Tanganyika". Total = 50 spaces. Coverage is 45%.

• Only two postage due stamps crossed the $10 threshold.

• Watermark 4 1921 "George V" stamps should go in BB in this section. All of my BB feeder albums had "George V" stamps in the spaces, but they were all watermark 3.  Wmk 3 stamps should be in the "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" section. Watermark 4 stamps are generally more expensive, but the 1c black and 10c orange are CV <$1-$1+, so check for those especially.

• The 1938-54 George VI pictorial issue can be challenging for BB collectors.
- Many of the denominations were re-issued in different colors. If one would like to stay true to BB's intentions, only the earliest color combination stamp for a denomination should be put in the space. I list which one "should" go in, and which one(s) "should not" in the comments section after the checklist.
-The denominations were also reissued in different perforations with minor numbers. One should pay attention to perforations for this issue.


Kenya and Uganda

("East Africa and Uganda Protectorates")





Next Page


Postage Due



A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
1928-31 Scott J4 30 olive brown ($10+)
1935 Scott J12 1sh gray ($20+)

B) (  ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.

C) * 1921- remember the "East Africa and Uganda Protectorates" George V stamps are for watermark 4 - Multiple Crown and Script C A. The watermark 3 Multiple Crown and C A 1912-18 stamps go in the "East Africa & Uganda Protectorates" BB section.

D) 1922-27- the "blank spaces" choices- Scott 23,24,28- really are not choices, as these are the only stamps that will fit these spaces. ;-)

E) *1938 George VI pictorials have later stamp issues (mostly color changes) that are not given a space in Big Blue.
So: 76 (30c deep blue & gray black) in, but not 77 (brown & purple).
:67 (5c green & black) in, but not 68 (red orange & brown).
:69 (10c orange & brown)  in, but not 70 (green & black), 71 (gray & red brown).
:72 (15c carmine & gray black) in, but not 73 (green & black).

F) *1928-31 Postage Due is actually a "Kenya and Uganda" issue, although is in BB under "Kenya-Uganda-Tanganyika".

1941-42 Scott 89 70c on 1sh light blue & olive brown
Horizontal pair
Out of the Blue
Interesting part of Africa, interesting pictorials, and enough complications (watermarks, perforations) to keep a philatelist happy.

Note: Maps appear to be in the public domain.

Kenya - Bud's Big Blue

Would like a comment!  


  1. Hi, You might like to look at my East African Stamps, Postal History & Stationery website to see more of these issues. Stanley Gibbons lists all the British East African Stamps 1890-1976, apart from separate Independence issued, under Kenya, Uganda & Tanganyika.

  2. Very nice write-up and presentation Roger!

    It certainly makes sense to list all the East African and subsequent(non independence) issues together.

  3. "Big Blue '69, on two pages, has 19 spaces for "Kenya and Uganda", and 30 spaces for 'Kenya-Uganda-Tanganyika". Total = 49 spaces. Coverage is 45%."

    Hummmm. My '69 has 15 spaces for Kenya and Uganda, and 35 spaces for Kenya-Uganda-Tanganyika." Do you suppose that they have different pages in the same edition?

  4. Hi Bud- Nice to hear from you. :-)

    Oops, I made a mistake. It is in fact 15/35 for the spaces. If one looks at the checklist- which is correct- one will indeed come up with 15/35. ;-)

    I changed the count. Thanks Bud.


  5. Why do my used KGV East Africa & Uganda stamps have holes punched in them...? Were they used as fiscals or revenues?


  6. I don't know.
    I don't believe I have any examples.
    Fiscals? The higher values definitely are known with fiscal cancellations.
    Bosnia & Herzegovina had, as I recall, stamps issued with holes punched. One had to pay a premium at the post office to receive a non punched stamp. ;-)

  7. I have a afew letter's from Lord,Francis Scott, Doloraine, Rongai, Kenya colony. I have two original stamps from his truly. Would like to share!

    1. Lord Francis George Scott (1879 - 1952) was a prominent local settler. Very interesting - Congratulations!

      If you would like, scan the letters and the stamps (on envelopes?) and send them to me as an email attachment, and I will publish them here. Or submit the scans to a stamp forum, such as Stamp Community Forum or The Stamp Forum.

      If you elect to send the scans to me, my email is..
      and now some words so an email bot doesn't pick this up...

  8. I am studying English language variation. Could you please explain why you write "then" instead of "than"?