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...

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Barbados - A Closer Look - Part 2

1950 Scott 218 3c slate & brown
"Public Buildings"
Into the Deep Blue
Happy New Year!

This is the second of two posts examining the stamps of Barbados, and, through the stamp portal, the history of Barbados.

The preceding post is here.

The original post with checklist is here.

This post takes a good look at the "Seal of the Colony" stamp issues (56 stamps) of 1916-18, 1921-24 (Wmk 4 & 3), 1925-35, and 1938-47.

And we will review the George VI 1950 pictorial set.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
4 Farthings = 1 Penny
12 Pence = 1 Shilling
20 Shillings = 1 Pound
100 Cents = 1 Dollar (1950)
1916 Scott 133 4p red/yellow; A15 design
"Seal of the Colony"; Wmk 3
Between 1916-1947, there were a series of definitive issues featuring the "Seal of the Colony".

The 1916-18 Wmk 3 engraved issue has thirteen stamps, and is in a larger format (30 mm tall).

CV is <$1-$10+ for eleven stamps.

Seal of the Colony
One will note the monarch, now male and representing George V, is sitting in a seahorse drawn car.

The Latin phrase, which initially appeared on the 1663 original seal, and is derived from a line in Virgil's first Eclogue, and translated here "and the British ruling throughout the whole world".

Wow, the very definition of imperialism. ;-)

1920 Scott 146 4p gray green & black
"Victory"; Wmk 3
The "Seal of the Colony" motif was interrupted by a 1920 twelve stamp engraved set celebrating victory in WW I.

If one wants to pay careful attention to watermarks for this issue, the "Multiple Crown And C A" (Wmk 3) can be found inverted and/or reversed. They have a much higher CV.

CV is <$1-$5 for nine stamps.

"Winged Victory"
Eleven of the twelve stamps show "Winged Victory" from the Louvre.  The 1sh yellow green & black has a different image, the "Victory from Victoria Memorial, London" (not pictured).

1921 Scott 155 2p gray; A18 design
"Seal of the Colony"; Wmk 4
Back to the "Seal of the Colony" issues.

Between 1921-24, a nine stamp set was produced on Wmk 4 "Multiple Crown and Script C A" paper.

This set does without the Latin inscription, and is in a small format (21.5 mm tall).

CV is <$1-$4+ for six stamps.

1921 Scott 162 3p violet/yellow; A18 Design
"Seal of the Colony": Wmk 3
Also, there were three additional stamps in the 1921-24 issue that were on Wmk 3 paper.

CV is $2+-$7.

Two of the denominations are unique for the Wmk 3 issue (3p violet/yellow; 4p red/yellow).

But the Wmk 3 1sh black/green is too similar to the Wmk 4 1sh black/emerald to confidently differentiate. Watermark the 1sh specimens for positive identification.

1932 Scott 168 1 1/2p orange; A19 Design
"Seal of the Colony"; wmk 4
 Perf 13 1/2 X 12 1/2
Between 1925-1935, a fifteen stamp set was produced in medium format ( 26 mm). The Latin inscription is back, but the scroll pattern on the frame surrounding the vignette is different than preceding issues.

Some of the stamps issued in 1932 are Perf 13 1/2 X 12 1/2 (as the example above), but generally the Perf is 14.

CV is <$1-$8 for thirteen stamps.

1927 Scott 180 1p carmine lake
"Charles I and George V"
The first permanent settlers arrived in 1627 on Barbados. To recognize the Tercentenary, a single engraved stamp with Charles I and George V portraits was released. There appears to be pineapples illustrated between the vignettes? (Update: No, coconuts.)

1938 Scott 197b 3p brown; A21 Design
"Seal of the Colony"; Wmk 4
Perf 14
Between the years 1938-47, another large 16 stamp set was released in medium format.

Note the "Postage & Revenue" upper tablet found for the preceding issue has been dropped for this issue.

Five stamps with minor Scott numbers were issued between 1938-43 with Perf 14.

Closeup of the 1938-47 Issue: a clean shaven George VI!
There is another difference, not necessarily apparent unless one pays close attention.

The 1938-47 issue shows a clean shaven George VI, naturally, rather than the bearded George V of the 1925-35 issue. !!

1938 Scott 201 2sh6p brown violet; A21 Design
"Seal of the Colony"; Wmk 4
Perf 13 1/2 X 13
Most of the 1938-47 issue stamps are found with Perf 13 1/2 X 13.

CV ranges from <$1 to $6+ for the 16 stamp denomination set.

1939 Scott 202 1/2p deep green
"Charles I, George VI, Assembly Chamber and Mace"
For the 300th anniversary of the General Assembly, a five stamp engraved set was released in 1939.

CV is <$1-$2+.
1947 Scott 209 1p on 2p bright rose red
In 1947, the 1943 issue 2p bright rose red stamp was surcharged as shown (CV $2+).  Broken and short letters can be found on some stamps. These command a much higher CV.

1950 Scott 216 1c slate "Dover Fort"
One of the highlights of British Colonies is the George VI pictorial sets produced for many of them. Part of the reason the WW collector looks forward to the pictorial set is the contrast they exhibit vis-a-vis the relative monotony of the monarch stamps.

The Barbados George VI engraved set was released in 1950 with the new currency: 100 Cents = 1 West Indian, later Barbados Dollar.

The set consisted of 12 stamps with 12 scenes/pictorials. CV is <$1-$10+ for 11 stamps.

The scene above, "Dover Fort" is actually hard to find on an internet search.

Signal stations across Barbados
Note "Dover Fort"
The purpose of the signal stations across Barbados, erected around 1818, was to warn the plantation owners of approaching ships, sugar cane fires, and slave rebellions.The communication was by signal fires and semaphore.

Dover Fort was in St. Peter's Parish on the coast. It apparently was an old small British military fort that protected the settlement of Speightstown from the "overlooking cliff to the east".

I was unable to verify if "Dover Fort" as such, still exists.

1950 Scott 217 2c emerald 
"Sugar Cane Breeding"
Sugar Cane was a big part of Barbados history. Initially, the sugar cane was used for feeding livestock, as fuel, and for the production of rum. But, by 1644, the larger plantations were exporting sugar.

Barbados Plantation
Sugar Cane had to be harvested by hand, and slaves were an essential part to the enterprise.

This continued until the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833.

Barbados Sugar Cane
In the 1800s, there were ten sugar factories in Barbados, but declined to two by the 1900s.

1950 Scott 219 4c carmine 
"Admiral Nelson Statue"
In Bridgetown, Barbados, the statue of Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson was erected in 1813.

Lord Nelson Statue, Barbados
Why a statue of Lord Nelson in Barbados? 

If Nelson had not gained victory off Cape Trafalgar on the southern coast of Spain in 1805 during the Napoleon Wars, assuring British naval supremacy for the Britain to Barbados trade route, Barbados would have become a French colony, in the minds of the "Bajans" (Barbadians).

To show appreciation, funds were raised, beginning in 1806, and the land on which the statue was erected in 1813 was named Trafalgar Square. Wreaths were laid at the statue on the anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar (October 21st) for many years.

1950 Scott 220 6c blue "Casting Net"
Barbados is known as the "land of the flying fish" (See "Out of the Blue" header stamp). There are some 500 fish species in Barbados waters. Most of what is caught is White Marlin, Mahi Mahi, Wahoo, Sailfish, Yellowfin Tuna, and Barracuda.

As depicted by this stamp, fishing from the shore is done by casting from the beaches and catching fish (Bonefish) in the surf.

1950 Scott 221 8c chocolate & blue
"Inter Colonial Schooner"
Sloops and Schooners were used between Caribbean islands, including, unfortunately, transporting slaves in earlier times locally.

1950 Scott 223 24c gray & red
"Old Main Guard Garrison"
The Garrison in Bridgetown was the headquarters for the British West India Regiment in Barbados.

Clock tower on the main guardhouse
Garrison Savannah built 1803
The stamp has an image of the clock tower on the main guardhouse.

One can see the white Coade stone, with the carving of the George III Coat of Arms.

1950 Scott 225 60c brown carmine & blue green
The Careenage is in the center of Bridgetown, and is an area where traditionally ships were careened onto a side to be repaired or painted. The busy area was often filled with docked ships, unloading merchandise for the nearby warehouses.

Careenage, Bridgetown, circa 1952
Here is a pic of the Careenage at about the time the stamp was issued.

1950 Scott 226 $1.20 olive & carmine "Map"
Besides a map of Barbados, the stamp depicts a "wireless mast".

Wireless Mast
This is a communication tower radio mast with aerial antenna.

But why on a Barbados stamp?

Barbados became a major telecommunications hub in 1944 with transmitting and receiving stations for high-frequency (HF) signals propagating through the ionosphere.

1952 Scott 231 4c rose pink & blue
"Stamp of 1852"
Finally, Barbados celebrated their 100 year stamp history with a four stamp set in 1952.

Each of the four 1952 issue denomination stamps had an example of the 1852 "Britannia" in deep green (1/2p), dark blue (1p), slate blue (2p), and brown red (4p), respectively.

So closes, in a very pleasing ending, our journey through the classic era Barbados issues.
1950 Scott 222 12c olive & aquamarine
"Flying Fish"
Out of the Blue
Wow! I've developed a new appreciation for the classic era stamps of Barbados, and the interesting history that the stamps reveal.

Note: Pics of the Careenage, main guardhouse clock tower, Lord Nelson, sugar cane field, and Barbados Plantation slave drawing, and signal station map: All appear to be in the public domain.

Comments appreciated!

Friday, December 29, 2017

Epirus - Bud's Big Blue

Epirus Local Chimarra Stamp
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations

That, of course, is what the skull and crossbones mean. Originally the printers of these scarce stamps wanted to threaten enemies of Epirus, a war-torn and short-lived Balkan country. 

Now the warning applies to anyone who is thinking of collecting local Chimarra stamps, of which eBay usually has several on offer. Don’t buy them! Or buy fakes (about $5 or so for all four). Don’t be a victim collector. BB doesn’t provide space for them anyway.

The same might be said, sadly, of most Epirus cancels, errors, and some of the overprints.

Census: 20 in BB spaces, 22 on supplement page.

Jim's Observations
What a convoluted history- see blog post. Naturally the provisional government stamps show fighting ( Infantryman), and a call to nationalism ( Epirus flag). The flag design borrows the white cross on blue image of Greece with the double headed eagle overlaying.

Epirus Blog Post and Checklist

Page 1 (Click and enlarge for examination)



Page 1

Comments appreciated!

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Elobey, Annobon and Corisco - Bud's Big Blue

The Ages of Alfonso XIII
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Located in the Atlantic bay of Equatorial Guinea’s Mitémélé River, these obscure Spanish colonial islands had their own stamps for only seven years (1903-10).  The likeness of King Alfonso XIII appears on all 60 stamps listed in Scott’s catalog.

Since Alfonso XIII was King from birth, Spain and the colonies record his maturation in philatelic detail -- infant, tousled child, youth, and maturity. He departed Spain in 1931 voluntarily after the Republic gained control and eventually renounced his throne.  EA&C has only the second and fourth of the above -- child and the “of full age” youth; BB has spaces only for the latter.

Census: seven in BB spaces, one tip-in. Three have been added on a new supplement page since the scans were made.

Jim's Observations
Obscure, but alive in Big Blue! Adding some additional stamps should not be a financial burden.

Now, finding them, well, that could be another story. ;-)

Elobey, Annobon and Corisco Blog Post and Checklist

Page 1 (Click and enlarge for examination)


Comments appreciated!

Friday, December 22, 2017

Barbados - A Closer Look - Part 1

1875 Scott 51b 1p gray blue "Britannia"
Into the Deep Blue
The original blog post and BB checklist for Barbados is here.

The purpose of this post (and the next) is to take a more in depth look at the classical era Barbados issues.

Location of Barbados
The 2017 Scott Classic 1840-1940 catalogue has, for Barbados 1852-1952, 241 major number descriptions. Of those, 88 are CV <$1-$1+, or 36%. Noted is the less expensive stamps are skewed to the later issues: the "Britannia" stamps of 1852-1878 (57 major numbers) are mostly in the $tens-$hundreds category.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
4 Farthings = 1 Penny
12 Pence = 1 Shilling
20 Shillings = 1 Pound
100 Cents = 1 Dollar (1950)
1876 Scott 50 1/2p yellow green "Britannia"
Wmk 1
Unlike other colonies, Barbados did not use British stamps at any time. The colonial authorities took over the internal postal responsibilities in 1851, while the British continued to operate the Mail Packet Agency at Bridgetown until 1858 for mail overseas.

The "Britannia" general design for Barbados was shared by Mauritius and Trinidad. The design was based on a Henry Corbould watercolor. Corbould was also responsible for the sketch of Queen Victoria from which the penny black was derived.

The first engraved imperforate Perkins, Bacon & Co stamps were released April 15, 1852.

The "Britannia" issues can be found with blued paper, white paper, multiple shades,various perfs, and watermarked/unwatermarked. Clearly, these issues, because of complexity and expense, tend to be the province of the specialist.

After 1874, De La Rue printed further stamps from the plates.

My 1/2p yellow green example above is such a De La Rue printed stamp with perforation 14, and  British colonial "Crown and C C" (Wmk 1) watermark. Actually, the Perf 14 De La Rue seven stamp issue of 1875-78 is rather inexpensive: CV $1-$10+.

1882 4p slate "Victoria"
Wmk 2
The more generic conventional typographic "Victoria" issue of nine stamps was released between 1882-85. CV ranges from $1+ to $8+ for six stamps.

1892 Scott 69 1/2p on 4p brown "Victoria"
In July, 1892, the 4p brown, originally issued in 1885, was surcharged "half-penny" by the West Indian Press. Be aware that errors exist for the overprint, and are worth much more than the usual CV $2+.

1892 Scott 78 10p blue green & carmine
"Seal of Colony"; Wmk 2
Between 1892-1903, an eleven stamp typographic set was released featuring the "Seal of Colony".

Note the watermark is "Crown and C A" (Wmk 2). There will be a later issue with a different watermark (Wmk 3).

CV ranges from <$1 to $10 for nine stamps.

I might want to mention here a "Dag Hammarskjold invert" situation that happened to Barbados much earlier- in 1907.

Here is the story:

The sole 1907 semi-postal stamp for the classical era for Barbados used the underlying 1899 Scott 73 2p slate & orange of this 1892-1903 issue, and surcharged it in red "Kingston Relief Fund 1d".

 A sheet of inverted surcharges was found in the initial supply. In order to devalue for stamp collectors any inverted surcharge stamps, an entire large printing of inverted surcharge stamps was produced on Feb 25, 1907. They are now quite numerous, and, in fact, are less valuable CV wise than the upright surcharge ( $2 vs $7).

A version of the Barbados badge as published by the Admiralty
The seal or badge of the colony was designed in about 1880, and shows the ruler in a seahorse drawn car. The image was that of a crowned queen with orb and trident, obviously representing Victoria during her reign. The badge remained in use until 1966, when a new flag was adopted for independence.

1897 Scott 84 2 1/2p ultramarine
"Badge of Colony"; Wmk 2
Victoria Jubilee Issue
In 1897, for the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria, a nine stamp set was released.

CV is <$1-$1 for four stamps. The rest of the stamps are CV $20+-$60+.

There are also minor number bluish paper varieties extant.

1904 Scott 90 1f gray & carmine
"Seal of Colony"; Wmk 3
Badge Type of 1892-1903
Between 1904-1910, a "Badge type of 1892-1903"  twelve stamp issue was released. This issue was on watermarked "Multiple Crown and C A" (Wmk 3) paper. Since some of the stamps are identical in denomination/color to the 1892-1903 set, watermarking will need to be done for identification.

CV is <$1-$3+ for six stamps.

If one needs to review the watermarks, check Gibraltar or other British colony posts.

1906 Scott 106 2 1/2p ultramarine & black
"Lord Nelson Monument"; Wmk 1
For the centenary of Lord Nelson. a seven stamp engraved set was released in 1906, showing the first monument erected in Barbados to Nelson's memory in 1813.

Note the watermark is "Crown and C C" (wmk 1). A later similar issue will have a different watermark.

CV is <$1-$3 for four stamps.

Death of Nelson by Daniel Maclise (Houses of Parliament, London)
"England expects that every man will do his duty": Lord Nelson
Vice Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson was a naval war hero, known especially for his exploits during the Napoleonic Wars. He was killed during his final victory at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. By his death, he became one of Britain's most heroic figures. His body was brought back to England for a state funeral.

1906 Scott 109 1p black,green & blue
The "Olive Blossom"
Tercentenary of  the 1st British landing
For the tercentenary of the first British landing in 1605*, a single engraved tri-color stamp was issued in 1906 by De la Rue of London. CV is <$1.

*Of interest, many historical accounts had an erroneous date for the 1st British landing: It was in fact 1625, not 1605.

Janet Klug, the well known prolific writer of articles for Linn's, believes, that, after the Canada 1929 Schooner Bluenose stamp, the "Olive Blossom" stamp might very well be the most striking.

The stamp was designed by Lady Gertrude Carter, an accomplished American artist, and the second wife of Sir Gilbert Thomas Carter, the governor of Barbados.

Her grandson, Nick Carter, became the president of the American Philatelic Society for 2007-08!

Well, what about the history that the stamp commemorates?

"The Olive Blossom",an English ship, landed in Barbados in 1625, and the ship's crew claimed the land in the name of King James I. Settlers arrived in 1627.  Barbados became, first, a prosperous sugar colony, then the regional center of the African slave trade, until slavery was outlawed in 1897.

1907 Scott 110 1f gray & black
"Lord Nelson Monument"; Wmk 3
Nelson Type of 1906
In 1907, a "Nelson Type of 1906" engraved issue of three stamps was released. Note the watermark is "Multiple Crown and C A" (Wmk 3).

CV is $6+-$10 for two stamps.

1912 Scott 123 6p violet & red violet
"George V & Seal of Colony"
With George V on the throne of Great Britain, a typographic eleven stamp issue with his visage and the seal of Barbados was released in 1912. There were actually three designs, with a larger format stamp for the higher denominations.

CV is <$1-$7 for seven stamps.

The definitive issues to come (1916-1947) did away with portraits of monarchs, and featured the "Seal of the Colony" design. This will be explored further in the next Barbados blog post.

1934 Scott J2 1p black
Between 1934-1947, a three stamp typographic postage due issue, very utilitarian, and similar to other British colonies, was issued for Barbados.

Be on the lookout for 1p bisects (for 1/2p usage), that were authorized for use between March, 1934-February,1935. Properly franked commercial covers have a CV of $2,500!

1950 Scott J4 1c green
With the currency change to Cents/Dollars in 1950, a new three stamp issue of postage dues was released in 1950.

CV is <$1-$1.

1917 Scott MR1 1p carmine
1912 Scott 118 Overprinted
War Tax Stamp
Finally, the sole "War Tax" stamp issued by Barbados is this one: a 1917 1p carmine. Contrast that with the Bahamas, which had 14 War Tax stamps!

Deep Blue
1935 Silver Jubilee Issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 24 pages for the 1852-1952 stamps of Barbados. All the Scott major numbers have a space.

For the general WW collector, perhaps the Steiner pages are  a bit overkill for the earlier issues. My "Britannia" holdings only begin after three empty pages!

1892 Scott 79 2sh6p slate & orange
"Seal of Colony"
Out of the Blue
Do you think the 1907 "Olive Blossom" stamp is in the same league for beauty as the Bluenose?

I will continue with Part 2 for Barbados in the next blog post.

Note: "Death of Nelson" painting image, Barbados badge image, and map all appear to be in the public domain.

Comments appreciated!