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. Interested? So into the Blues...

Thursday, October 11, 2018

British Guiana Pt A - a closer look

1864 Scott 33B 2c deep orange 
"Seal of the Colony"
Into the Deep Blue
British Guiana is a magical name for stamp collectors because of the 1c magenta, but there are plenty of other rare (read expensive) stamps found for British Guiana during the 1850-1862 period. One can ascribe this situation to the fact that when enough stamps did not not arrive from the London Waterlow printers in time, Edward Thomas Evans Dalton, the Postmaster, would resort to "provisionals", made by the local newspaper printers with their typeset examples and primitive designs. The local printers involved include the office of the Royal Gazette (1850-51 "cottonreels"  & 1862), and the Official Gazette (1856). I count over 15 stamps that were typeset locally between 1850-1862, and have a CV ranging from $1,000+ to $325,000. !! And then there is the 1856 Scott 13 1c black/magenta @ $9,500,000. !!!

Well, have the Baron Philippe von Ferraris and Arthur Hinds of the world scooped up all the interesting British Guiana stamps?

Heck, no, there are plenty of British Guiana stamps and issues that can be the province of the WW collector! (Just don't expect to be filling the first several Steiner page spaces. ;-)

1896 British Guiana
In fact, there are so many attractive and reasonably inexpensive British Guiana stamp possibilities to collect during the classical era (up to 1952), that I've divided the blog post into Part A (this one), and Part B (the next one). Enjoy!

Original British Guiana blog post and BB Checklist

A closer look at the stamps and issues
100 Cents = 1 Dollar
1856 1c black/magenta - Front
Typeset, Imperforate, Unique
Even though the rest of the stamps presented here are well within a WW collector's range, it doesn't seem right unless we say something about the 1c magenta. !!

And I've seen it, as it is encased in glass (both front and back for viewing) with its own display in the William Gross section of the National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. (It is supposed to go back to the owner Stuart Weitzman August, 2018, but hopefully, it will still be available for viewing somewhere.)

Plenty of information about the 1c magenta on the internet. I obtained a recently published (2017) book (The One Cent Magenta - James Barron) that I will be curling up with at our Oregon coast cabin this weekend.

1856 1c magenta - Back
It was larger in size than I expected. And because of the dim lighting to protect the stamp, not that easy to study. Nevertheless, it was exciting to see the markings of the owners on the reverse (Ferrari, Hind, Weinberg, DuPont).

1864 Scott 33B 2c deep orange , Perf 12 1/2
"Seal of the Colony"; Medium paper
Wide Space between Value and "Cents"
The first stamps for British Guiana that the WW collector might find fitting the pocketbook has this Waterlow of London design with the coat of arms, and BRITISH : GUIANA: POSTAGE along the side and upper margins. This stamp was issued between 1860-1865, and is specifically characterized by "Wide space between Value and Cents". (This determining characteristic is illustrated in SG 1840-1970 Commonwealth & British Empire catalogue.)

Scott lists some 23 major numbers with five denominations, color changes, perforation changes (Perf 12, 12 1/2 and 13, 10), and paper thickness (thick, thin, medium) determining the catalogue number.

This 2c deep orange shown above has the least CV ($30+), while 13 others have a CV up to $80+.

1866 Scott 50 1c black, Perf 10
"Seal of the Colony"
Narrow Space between Value and "Cents"
The second grouping of stamps (1860-1876) are similar in design to the first grouping (1860-1865), except for "Narrow space (~1mm) between value and "cents"", and/or changes in perforation and paper thickness.

There are 18 major Scott numbers, 16 minor numbers (color variations), and five denominations. SG offers more color variations that are given major SG numbers.

1866 Scott 51 2c orange, Perf 12 1/2
"Seal of the Colony"
Narrow Space between Value and "Cents"
Note this 1866 2c orange has a narrower space between "two" and "cents" compared to the 1864 2c deep orange shown earlier.

This grouping of 1860-1876 stamps have a CV of $5 - $20+ for nine stamps.

1882 Scott 107 1c slate "Seal of the Colony"
Type of 1876; Wmk 2, Perf 14
This new typographic De la Rue of London  design with the value on a white background  was issued in 1876 (nine stamps - Wmk 1) and 1882 (five stamps - Wmk 2). All major numbers are Perf 14.

1882 Scott 108 2c orange
Type of 1876; Wmk 2, Perf 14
Obviously, because the stamp can be found as Wmk 1 (1876), or Wmk 2 (1882), one will need to look at the watermark.

CV ranges from <$1 to $6+ for ten stamps.

1890 Scott 131 1c green, Wmk 2
A new design - but still showing the Coat of Arms - was issued with nineteen stamps on Wmk 2 paper between 1889-1903.

1889 Scott 142 24c lilac & green, Wmk 2
There is a note in Scott that revenue cancellations or pen cancellations for this issue sell for much less. This is a fiscal cancel?

CV ranges from <$1 to $10+ for 15 stamps.

1890 Scott 151 1c on $4 green & black,
Type of 1889 with Red Surcharge
In 1899, eighteen stamps ( without value in lower label) were overprinted "Inland Revenue" in black, and surcharged. I don't have any at the moment in my collection. Some are expensive (CV $400 - $2,440 - six stamps). But others are inexpensive (CV <$1-$8 -nine stamps).

What I do have is the 1890 issue (five stamps), which applied a "one cent" red surcharge on the $1-$5 denomination 1899 surcharged issue. CV is <$1-$10+.

1905 Scott 160 1c gray green, Wmk 3
The 1899-1903 design was used again between 1905-1910  on eleven stamps, but on Wmk 3 paper.

(If you need a refresher on British Colonial watermarks (Wmk 1-Wmk 4), see Gibraltar, or other British colonies.)

The issue is further divided by Scott into chalky paper (major numbers), and ordinary paper (minor numbers).

1910 Scott 171A 1c blue green  Wmk 3
Ordinary paper
I include this stamp to show that the Scott catalogue is a living thing: it can change or alter in large or small ways with each new edition.

The 1c shown here is a blue-green color variation. It was Scott 160a (minor number) in the 2011 catalogue. But my 2017 catalogue has it as Scott 171A (major number).

Additionally, the 2011 catalogue has the 1905-10 "chalky paper" issue without a catalogue listing of the ordinary paper varieties, but only a note placed: "2c-60c exist on ordinary paper".  With the 2017 catalogue, the 1905-10 ordinary paper varieties have their own (minor) numbers listed.

1905 Scott 162 4c lilac & ultramarine
Wmk 3, Chalky paper
The 1905-10 Wmk 3 "Chalky Paper" (major numbers)  have a CV of <$1 to $10+ for eight stamps.

1907 Scott 172 2c red, type I
Ship Type of 1889-1903; Ordinary Paper
There were five additional stamps of the 1889-1903 (Wmk 2) & 1905-10 (Wmk 3) design issued between 1907-10, but in different colors for the denomination (1c, 2c, 4c, 6c, 12c).

They are on Wmk 3 ordinary paper. CV is <$1-$8.

Interesting for the WW collector is the 2c red exists as two types.

2c red Type I Close-up
Only the upper right corner of the flag touches the mast
Type I (Scott 172) has only the upper right corner of the flag touching the mast (CV $1+).

1907 Scott 172b 2c red, type II
Here is the 2c red, Type II.

2c red Type II Close-up
The entire right side of the flag touches the mast
The flag on the right side completely touches the mast (CV <$1).

1913 Scott 183 12c orange & violet "George V"
Wmk 3
1913 marks the end of the "Coat of Arms" motif for British Guiana stamps.

Between 1913-16, a twelve stamp "George V" set (Wmk 3) was released. Note that an Edward VII (The "Baldies") stamps was never issued for British Guiana.

CV for the "George V" (Wmk 3) stamps range from <$1 to $4+ for eight stamps.

1918 Scott MR1 2c scarlet
War Tax Stamp
On Scott 179 Overprinted
Only one war tax overprint stamp was released for British Guiana, on January 4, 1918. This was overprinted by The Daily Chronicle, Georgetown, on the 1916 released 2c scarlet. 

1921 Scott 195 6c ultramarine "George V"
Wmk 4
Between 1921-27, an eleven stamp "George V" issue was produced on Wmk 4 paper. Some of the stamps are identical in color to the 1913-16 (Wmk 3) issue, while others have different colors.

Clearly, one will need a watermarking tray for this issue.

1921 Scott 197 24c dull violet & green "George V"
Wmk 4, Chalky paper
CV ranges from <$1 to $4+ for eight stamps.

This particular 24c dull violet & green example (CV $5+) is no doubt less: obviously the crease, but also because of the pen cancellation.

Deep Blue
1921-27 "George V" Issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) provides, for British Guiana 1850-1952, 17 pages. All of the major Scott numbers have a space, including the 1c magenta. ;-) I only count three stamps in  my collection inhabiting the first six pages of British Guiana, and I suspect, for the WW collector generalist, that is somewhat typical.

1882 Scott 111 8c rose "Seal of the Colony"
Type of 1876; Wmk 2, Perf 14
Out of the Blue
For Part B British Guiana (next post), we will focus on the interesting pictorials!

Note: The 1c magenta pic scans appear to be in the public domain.

Comments appreciated!

Monday, October 8, 2018

Gibraltar - Bud's Big Blue

Gibraltar from the Spanish Province of Cadiz
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Currency kerfuffles bedeviled 19th century Gibraltar.  Actually, onward from 1704 when Anglo-Dutch forces captured Gibraltar from Spain, the coins of Spain and Britain circulated concurrently with Gibraltar’s. Exchange rate chaos ensued. In 1872, Spanish currency became the exclusive legal tender. Then, as a result of the Spanish-American War (1898), the Spanish peseta collapsed and the British pound replaced it.

Meanwhile in 1886, Gibraltar’s first postage stamps, the Bermuda overprinted varieties as well as those inscribed Gibraltar, were issued in British (not Spanish) currency denominations. Three years later, stamps in Spanish currency were release, first with overprints on the 1886 stamps and then with Spanish currency inscribed. Spanish money was, after all, legal tender at the time. The British and Spanish denominated stamps apparently coexisted until 1898.

BB’s top row for Gibraltar sorts out these developments as best as it can. The first three spaces, headed “1886-98”, can be used for the early stamps or the later reissues. Then follows five spaces for the 1889 stamps with Spanish coinage inscribed. The overprints get no spaces, but a few examples appear on the supplement page.

The larger complicating issue, of course, is that Spain has never gotten over having a British colonial thorn in its Mediterranean butt. Throughout the 20th century Spain made several attempts to regain some level of sovereignty, but Gibraltar had to accept. The courtship always failed, spectacularly so. Gibraltare├▒os would have none of it. Even a huffy border closing didn’t work. The two 1969 stamps (above) showing Gibraltar from the Spanish Province of Cadiz seem, in light of these rebuffs, sadly forlorn.

Census: 40 in BB spaces, one tip-in, 15 on the supplement page.

Jim's Observations
The British have claimed the Rock of Gibraltar (1,400 feet) on the southern coast of Spain, about 2 square miles in area, since 1713. The promontory juts out at the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. A very strategic location, this has been a key location for the British Royal Navy for many years.

As Bud says, Spain has not been happy with this reality, a legacy from when the British Empire ruled the seas. 

Gibraltar post and BB Checklist

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Comments appreciated!

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

British Central Africa - a closer look

1891 Scott 3 4p red brown & black "Coat of Arms"
On Rhodesia (British South Africa Company) 1891 Scott 5 
Overprinted in Black
Into the Deep Blue
British Central Africa (proclaimed 1889), on the west shores of Lake Nyassa, and nestled between Northeastern Rhodesia, Mozambique, and German East Africa, existed as a stamp issuing British protectorate between 1891-1907.

British Central Africa - Stamp World History
Used by permission
A nice map of British Central Africa is found here at Gerben's StampWorldHistory site. (Note: SWH's site is down at present, so I am including the map here. I had general permission from him to use his maps for my blog topics.)

In 1907, the territory was renamed the Nyasaland Protectorate. It is now present day Malawi (1964).

The original British Central Africa & BB Checklist post is here.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
12 Pence = 1 Shilling
20 Shillings = 1 Pound
1891 Scott 1 1p black "Coat of Arms"
On Rhodesia (British South Africa Company) 1890 Scott 2 
Overprinted in Black
Rhodesian (British South African Company) issues were overprinted "B.C.A." between 1891-1895. Altogether, seventeen stamps were issued.

CV ranges from $5 to north of $4000. But the higher denominations with fiscal cancellations are found more commonly, and sell for a fraction of the CV of those with postal markings.

1895 Scott 24 6p ultramarine & black , Unwatermarked
"Coat of Arms of the Protectorate"
A new lithographic issue proper for British Central Africa of eleven stamps featuring the "Coat of Arms" for the protectorate was released on unwatermarked paper in 1895. (Scott says the issue is typographic, but is clearly wrong.)

The designer was Sir Harry Johnston of De La Rue printers, London.

One needs to check for a lack of watermark for this stamp issue, as the next similar issue (1896) is watermarked (Wmk2, Wmk 1 sideways).

CV ranges from $10+ to $16,000!

Again, one should note that the higher Shilling and Pound denominations were used for fiscal purposes, for the most part, and fiscal cancellations (undated double circle cancel with the words "British Central Africa" between the circles, and a town name in the center) sell for much less than the CV in the Scott catalogue for postally used stamps.

1896 Scott 32 1p black , Wmk 2
"Coat of Arms of the Protectorate"
The 1896 issue, similar in design to the 1895 issue, is on watermarked paper (Wmk 2, Wmk 1-sideways).

There were eleven stamps for the 1896 issue, and CV ranges from $4+ to $26,000!

What about the "Coat of Arms" design?

I will borrow Bud's trenchant comments from Bud's Big Blue British Central Africa post....

"A motto “Light in darkness” (irony noted) is inscribed beneath a coat of arms on the 1895-96 stamps, although dropped from those that follow. Two Bantu men stand on tiger pelts holding European-style mining tools but, as it turned out, prospecting was bleak."

1897 Scott 46 4p carmine rose & black, Wmk 2
"Coat of Arms of the Protectorate"
Between 1897-1901, a fourteen stamp typographic bi-color issue, still showing the "coat of arms", but changing the frame design, was released.

CV ranges from <$1 to $2,750!

1897 Scott 45 2p yellow & black, Wmk 2
"Coat of Arms of the Protectorate"
SON: "Chinde"
Now this is interesting.

Chinde was a port for British Central Africa  on the Chinde channel in the Zambezi delta, and was located  40 miles south of Quelimane in Mozambique (Portuguese East Africa).

So why is there a BCA stamp and postmark for Chinde deep into Portuguese Mozambique territory?

Because, as part of the Anglo-Portuguese Treaty of 1891, the British obtained a 99 year concession to establish a port (Chinde) where the ships could transfer their cargoes to river steamers.

By 1922, however, the rail link between the port of Beira and Nyasaland made the Chinde concession moot, and the lease was cancelled, and the port reverted to Portuguese control.

1903 Scott 62 4p black & gray green, Wmk 2
"King Edward VII"
The first "Baldies", the King Edward VII design, arrived for BCA  between 1903-1904 with a ten stamp issue. The lower denominations were on Wmk 2 paper, while the higher denominations showed Wmk 1.

CV is $2+ to $5 for five stamps.

1903 Scott 63 6p orange brown & black, Wmk 2
"King Edward VII"
Doing a bit of sleuthing on the postmark...

Fort Johnston - BCA
I think this might be a postmark for Fort Johnston in the South Nyasa region of BCA.

Barracks at Fort Johnston circa 1895
Further sleuthing found a pic of Fort Johnston circa 1895.

1907 Scott 70 1p carmine & black, Wmk 3
"King Edward VII"
In 1907, four "Edward VII" stamps, but with Wmk 3, were prepared. Only the 1p carmine & black (above -CV $3+) and the 6p (CV $40+) were actually issued. The other two stamps (2p, 4p) were not issued, but are found in the Scott catalogue for CV $19,000! According to the SG catalogue, there are no more than a dozen examples each in collectors hands.

British Central Africa stamps were replaced by those of Nyasaland Protectorate in 1908.

Deep Blue
1903-04 Issue in Deep Blue
Five pages are offered by Deep Blue (Steiner) for the 1891-1907 stamps of British Central Africa. All of the (Scott) major numbers have a space. Because of the cost of BCA stamps, the WW collector may find a surfeit of empty spaces. ;-)

1901 Scott 47 4p olive green & violet  Wmk 2
"Coat of Arms of the Protectorate"
Out of the Blue
This little dead country could offer a lot of interesting history/postal history.

Note: Pic and map appear to be in the public domain.

British Central Africa Stamps Website
British Central Africa - Bud's Big Blue

Comments appreciated!

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Germany - Semipostals, BOB - Bud's Big Blue

Germania is far from home
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Early German semi-postals, starting in 1919, have a kindly quality about them. Germania is surcharged a few pfennigs in behalf of her war wounded. A female figure (a demilitarized Germania?) plants a shrubbery and feeds the hungry. Other stamps feature local symbols and restored architecture. Germany is in post-war healing mode.

Likewise beginning in 1919, Germany’s air mail stamps reflect soaring hope and technological momentum, culminating with the zeppelin series.  All stamps shown on the zeppelin scan are original except the row marked “reprints.”

Both semi-postal and airmail stamps appear to have leaped over the hyperinflation years and landed in the emerging Nazi era in time to promote Hitler’s so-called “charities.” Collectors must have bought these later semi-postal unused in great numbers. Feeder albums swarm with mint examples; good cancels are few and expensive.

BB concludes the BOB pages with sections for Germany’s occupation by Belgium (overprints on Belgian stamps) and German offices in China and Morocco (a reprise of the Germania series). A few Germanias overprinted in Polish (for Polish occupied Posen) are tacked on at the end. For some reason, BB places Turkish offices stamps before the main Germany pages, although logically they belong here, too. German banks printed currency for use in foreign offices, such as China (see above).

Occupation and office stamps, including examples on supplement pages, stir little interest in me, so these spaces filled up slowly. There would still be blanks, no doubt, were it not for good feeder albums.

Germany issued overprinted Germania stamps for both its offices and the countries it occupied; so her hawkish image pops up throughout BB. For German colonial stamp designs of the same time period, however, the Kaiser’s yacht Hohenzollern was chosen -- less pugnacious, perhaps, but more usurpacious.

Census: see comment for Germany 1872-1919. 

Jim's Observations
One would think the "Occupation stamps" category for Germany would be overflowing. ;-)

For WWI, Germany occupied, in whole or part:

For WWII, Germany occupied in whole or part:

Many stamps were issued for these occupied territories by Germany. So why aren't they found here?

Because the Scott catalogue  lists any "Occupation Stamps" under the the country that was occupied. 

So one would have to go to "Belgium" for instance, to find the overprinted Germania stamps of Germany there. It makes sense in a way. as these are the stamps of the country, however unpleasant for them, for that period of time.

But collectors have different agendas. 

If one collects Germany, than the "occupied" stamps of a country that Germany occupied are quite popular to collect. But popularity for German collectors of stamps issued  by another country (Belgium)  while occupying Germany? Not so much.

Who wants to be reminded of the time when another country was occupying one's own? 

So one often finds very little "Occupation of Germany" stamps in a German collection, when filled by a German collector. On the other hand, a Belgian collector from Belgium might very well like to collect these stamps.

Human Nature.

Germany - Semipostals, BOB & BB Checklist

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Comments appreciated!