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...

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Ceylon - Bud's Big Blue

Adam's Peak White Tea
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Sri Lanka rejected its colonial name in 1972, but their tea still is called Ceylon -- my standard breakfast beverage, usually Ceylon OP Black but SFTGFOP* when I have extra cash. Were I inclined to topical collecting, tea stamps would be my first choice, and I’d start with six stamps on these pages.

A tea picker appears twice on page 3 and, with an overprint, once on supplement page 2.  

“Adam’s Peak” (also two stamps, page 3) is located in Ceylon’s tea-growing mountains. Likely the lower mountainside has tea bushes. A tea company recently adopted Adam’s Peak as a trade name. It’s a holy mountain with a sacred footprint (Sri Pada) formed in stone at the top.  Some say Adam stood there during his 1000-year penance, others think Buddha’s foot made it, Hindus claim Shiva left the print. Some Christians mention St. Thomas as a possibility. (May their grace gently fall upon all tea-topical collectors.)  

The last tea stamp is not as obvious (supplement page 1, row 6, first stamp). Its violet handstamp reads “…n Estate, Maskeliya” which I take to mean “Banyan Estate”, a 19th century tea plantation near Adam’s Peak and Maskeliya. Experts say companies used such handstamps to keep local couriers from ripping off and reselling the postage. “CAVE” overprints (same page) provide further examples, these being traceable to a publishing concern in Colombo.

Opportunities for specialization abound. “Ancient tank” stamps offer one possibility, as do the corporate protective overprints. Ceylon’s queen and king series merit study. The next opportunity for such an array comes in the Gambia scans.

Census: 78 in BB spaces, seven tip-ins, 77 on supplement pages.

Error: First stamp on page 2 is incorrect, should be Scott #199.

*Super Fine Tippy Golden Flowery Orange Pekoe tea, the best.

Jim's Observations
A warning:  There are TWO printing errors in Big Blue.

A) In the Victorian stamp section, one will find under "1886-93" a designated space "30c violet and orange brown". This is for A24 design Scott 140 30c violet and orange brown ('93). No problem there; put it in.

BUT, you will then find, under "1899-1900", a designated stamp space for another "30c violet and orange brown". Doesn't exist, no stamp like this for the 1899-1900 date range. 

HOWEVER, there IS an A24 design Scott 141 75c black and orange brown ,1900 issue. I'm fairly certain this is the stamp BB intended for the space. Of interest is this printing error has been embedded in BB's DNA in all the editions:'41,'47,'69,'97.

(Bud placed a copy of the 75c black and orange brown on Supplement page 1, and placed two examples of the 30c violet and orange brown on page 1.)

B) Under the George V issues for "1912-27", there is a printing error that crept into the '69, and has persisted in the '97 edition.

The designated space in the '69 and '97 editions says: "12c green on yellow". No such stamp exists. It should say: "15c green on yellow", as it does for the '47 & '41 editions. Put the Scott 236 15c "green on yellow" there.

Ceylon Blog Post and Checklist

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