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...

Monday, December 16, 2019

Cayman Islands 1900-1947 - a closer look

1935 Scott 90 2 1/2p deep blue & black
"Hawksbill Turtles"
Into the Deep Blue
The earliest blog posts I published were long on information, but short on illustrating the stamps of the countries themselves. The Cayman Islands have delightful stamps (for a British colony), and it will be a pleasure to review them.

The original post has more on the history, as well as the BB checklist.....

Cayman Islands

This Cayman post will cover the 1900-1947 era. The next Cayman post will review the bi-color 1950 pictorial issue, as well as the War Tax stamps category.

A Closer Look
12 Pence = 1 Shilling
20 Shilling = 1 Pound
1900 Scott 2 1p carmine rose "Victoria"
Between 1889-1901, stamps of Jamaica were used in the Cayman Islands, and they can be found with postmarks identifying use there. Scott lists them (A1-A28) in the catalogue, and they all have a high CV (up to $8,000). They are for the specialist, not for you and me.

BTW, Cayman Islands remained a Dependency of Jamaica until 1962, when it became a Crown Colony.

The first issue proper for the Cayman Islands was a two stamp typographic release in 1900 showing Victoria. Note the white side panels and the "Postage...Postage". CV is $4+-$15. This De La Rue design is similar, if not identical, to other British Empire issues of the era.

I'm reminded that, in general, stamps on cover today are much more valuable then those (the vast majority) that are now off cover. Here, Stanley Gibbons values 1p carmine rose @ 25X if on cover.

1905 Scott 8 1/2p green "Edward VII"
Wmk 3
In 1901-03, a five stamp Wmk 2 issue, and in 1905, a five stamp wmk 3 issue was released with this "Edward VII" design: which is identical- save for the portrait- to the 1900 Victoria issue. CV ranges from $5+ to $70+.

1908 Scott 31 1/4p brown
June 30, 1908, a 1/4d stamp was issued. CV is $1 ($6 unused). Of interest, during October, 1908, there was a shortage of 1/4d stamps, and the famous manuscript provisionals were produced by the postmaster (CV- up to $15,000 -See Stanley Gibbons).

1914 Scott 43 5sh green & red/yellow
"George V", Wmk 3
Between 1912-20, a thirteen stamp "George V" issue was released. The higher denominations are on chalky colored paper. CV ranges from <$1 to $100+.

1913 Scott 46 1sh black/green "George V"
Surface-colored Paper, Wmk 3
But, for the first printing of the 3p, 1sh, & 10sh stamps on November 19, 1913, the stamps had a white back. Scott calls these "Surface-colored paper" stamps, and gives them major numbers (Scott 45-47). CV is $4+-$130.

1sh Black/green Reverse Side Wmk 3
Left- 1913 Scott 40 (Colored through Paper)
Right - 1913 Scott 46 (Surface-colored Paper)
Here are the backs of the 1sh black/green, showing the difference.

1922 Scott 55 2 1/2p ultramarine "George V"
Wmk 4
Between 1921-26, a fourteen stamp issue (Wmk 4) and a five stamp issue (Wmk 3) was released with this attractive "George V" design. CV is <$1-$10+ for ten stamps.

1932 Scott 70 1/2p green 
"King William IV, King George V"
For the Centenary of the formation of the Cayman Islands Assembly, an engraved Waterlow set (one design) of twelve stamps was issued on December 5, 1932. CV is $1+-$10+ for eight stamps.

1935 Scott 87 1p carmine & ultramarine
"Red-footed Boobies"
On May 1, 1935 and January 1, 1936, a total twelve stamp five design "George V" bi-color pictorial issue was released for the Cayman Islands. Of course, "George V" 1935 pictorial sets was also released for many British colonies, but the engraved Waterlow stamps for the Caymans are nice indeed.

Red Footed Booby
The Red Footed Booby breeds on tropical ocean islands, but spends most of its time at sea.

1935 Scott 89 2p brown violet & ultramarine
CV for the twelve stamp issue ranges from $1+ to $20 for nine stamps. The 10sh carmine & black is @ $125!

A Catboat is a sailboat with a single mast set well forward.

1935 Scott 91 3p olive green & black
"George V & Map"
The population of Cayman Islands is now 60,000*, but was 6,000 in 1934, when this stamp was issued. The vast majority today live on Grand Cayman, with only some 2,000 living on Little Cayman or Cayman Brac. Half of the population is found in George Town. No doubt similar demographics existed when this stamp was issued.

*Cayman Islands, because of its wealthy Tax haven and offshore banking status, has many expatriates living there. Specifically, the 1999 census shows Jamaica (8,800), United Kingdom (3,000), United States (2,000), Canada (1,500), and Honduras (800).

1938 Scott 103 1 1/2p black "George VI"
"Beach View, Grand Cayman"
Beginning in 1938 (and lasting until 1943), a twelve stamp five design engraved pictorial "George VI" issue was released, as it was for many British colonies.

Grand Cayman is 22 miles (35 km) long by 8 miles (13 km) wide. It is relatively flat, going from sea level to 60 feet above sea level.

1938 Scott 105 2 1/2p ultramarine
"Cayman Schooner"
CV ranges from <$1 to $10+ for the issue.

Western Union - Built in 1939 in the Caymans
Shipbuilding was a thriving industry in the Caymans. Over 300 schooners were built there. Cayman mahogany was used for the frame.

1943 Scott 107 6p dark olive green
"Hawksbill Turtles"
Of interest, De La Rue was responsible for the 1/2p, 2p, 6p, 1sh, and 6sh; while Waterlow did the rest.

The Hawkbill sea turtle has a wide range, bur found mostly among tropical reefs in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. It is critically endangered.

1938 Scott 108 1sh reddish brown
"Dolphin (fish - Coryphaena hippurus)"
Although the stamp image is a "Dolphinfish" - not related to true Dolphins, the truth is Dolphins are loved (like Whales) with the tourist population. Today on Grand Cayman, there are "Dolphin Discovery" and "Dolphin Cove": places where one can get up close and personal.

1947 Scott 114 2 1'2p orange "Cayman Schooner"
Types of 1938
On August 25, 1947 a 2 1/2p orange and a 3p ultramarine stamps were issued as "Types of 1938". CV is <$1.

Deep Blue
1912-20 Issue "George V", Wmk 3, in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has eleven pages for the classical era (1900-1950) for Cayman Islands. All of the Scott major numbers have a space.

1932 Scott 69 1/4p brown
"King William IV, King George V"
Out of the Blue
I think I will add a trip to the Cayman Islands to my bucket list. ;-)

Note: Red footed Booby pic is by Kelvin Boot, and found on the Galapagos Conservation Trust site. It is used here for educational purposes. Western Union Schooner pic used for educational purposes.

Cayman Islands - Bud's Big Blue

Comments appreciated!

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