MICHAEL HAMILTON
POSTAL HISTORY
POSTMARKS
STAMPS
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A fascinating "MEANS OF DELIVERY" has been set up in POSTAL HISTORY + Subjects showing all types of British West Indies mail you might encounter.



Country: All
Subject: Pre-stamp entires Clear

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Proofed/unrecorded ERRONEOUSLY APPLIED unique TRINCOMALEE/RETURNED FOR POSTAGE,CEYLON postal history
1845 wrapper from C. Brun fils, Port Louis pmk'd red MAURITIUS POST OFFICE d/ring dated NO 05 1845 marked "via Ceylon" to Veillon Freres, Bordeaux, France with "Paid 1/8" in dark black ink most unusually landed on Ceylon's north east coast (instead of the southern port of Galle) showing prepared for application TRINCOMALEE/RETURNED FOR POSTAGE datestamp for NO 22 1845 erroneously applied, crossed through, and TRINCOMALEE/STEAMER LETTER added for the next day in the same coloured ink. Carried via ALEXANDRIA (JA 7 1846) with 25mm chisels slits and large part PURIFIE AU LAZERET/MALTE handstamp added showing red PAQ. ANG. MARSEILLES (16 JANV 46) on address panel and Bordeaux (10 JANV 46) arrival backstamp with 96 decimes to be collected. Exhibition item collecting cancellations from five different countries.
Similar RETURNED FOR POSTAGE datestamps were proofed for other Ceylon towns but none are known used. This remarkable example only exists due being wrongly applied.
£7250







THE UNIQUE B.W.I. "DOUBLE COUNTRY" JAMAICA and BAHAMAS SAILOR'S CONCESSIONARY RATE ENTIRE
1835 entire "From Alexander Spain on board His Majestys Brig Wasp" to his sister Charlotte Spain in Southampton countersigned on face by J.N. Syke, Lt. Acting Commanding Officer with "Paid 1" in horizontal oval and matching red ink LIVERPOOL AP 14 1835 arrival backstamp. Written at Port Royal, Jamaica 12th February, travelled with him to Belize, with cross-written finish at Nassau, Bahamas 12th March with "since writing the first part we have been with troops to Honduras in New Spain and thence to this place on the same errand". Opening tear into address panel hardly detracts, some small internal splits but clean with delightful content including mention of fond memories of picking buttercups and daisies on their way to school.
No privilege rate countersigned pre-stamp Sailor's letters are currently recorded from Jamaica (which is quite extraordinary for such a large island) or the Bahamas, and the only two recorded entires as such for the B.W.I. group, are from Antigua (HMS Pique MY 26 1845) with rate paid by attached sewn 1d coin, and 1d paid from Alexander to his sister Charlotte Spain on the Wasp while again at Belize 30 June landed Dartmouth 29 August 1835. The "Wasp" was built during 1811-12 and at this time was on duty on the North America and West Indies station with 85 officers and men, 24 boys, 20 marines. Alexander Spain was a first class boy waiting to be rated. He mentions homecoming in about 20 months - the Wasp arrived Portsmouth 15 April 1837 having left Jamaica 11 February but during a gale on 4 April she lost her foremast and straps plus her bowsprit during a mid-Atlantic collision with the Elizabeth due poor visibility.
£2800



SAILOR'S LETTER WITH CONCESSION RATE PAID BY 1d COIN, Antigua postal history
1845 entire headed May 26th 1845 from John King, Master at Arms on board Her Majesty's Ship Pique, Antigua (a naval soldier responsible for discipline and law enforcement aboard a ship) countersigned Horace Baker (Lieutenant & Commanding Officer) to his wife in Devonshire Buildings in Bath without the customary manuscript "1d paid" in red ink (as applied on land) but with his last ("my last") GB QV 1d coin sewn alongside the address panel confirmed by London PAID JU 20 1845 transit (not deemed overweight or subject to additional charge). Although a few dozen Soldier's Letters are recorded for the prestamp period this seems to be the only recorded accepted stampless Sailor's Letter from the BWI prior 1850. Contents include mention of discovery that the Foremast is so rotten, and a portion sent to the Admiralty with expectation of being ordered Home by September unless the mast is ordered to be built at Halifax or Port Royal "which I do not think they will do now the ship is three years in Commission". (Between 1841 and 1846 Pique, a sailing frigate with 36 guns, served on the North America and West Indies Station, on 10 March 1842 the Illustrious (see David Pitts lots 39, 159), with the Pique, Fair Rosamond and Spitfire departed Barbados for Antigua and Jamaica).
A scan of the entire has been mounted on card and an actual 1845 1d coin has been sewn on with hemp, using the original 7 in and 7 out needle holes, to simulate how it could have looked, although it was on reverse in actual transit. Only one other BWI prepayment by sewn 1d coin entire is known written January 24th 1847 and posted on land with ANTIGUA double arc JA 27 1847 on a Soldiers Letter (ex Gerald Sattin) to a shoe maker in Edinburgh, the coin evidently was also sewn to the reverse as the circumference of the sewing holes obscure the frontal addressing.
£6500

BERMUDA postal history
1852 wrapper, no side flaps, to George Clerk, Ireland Island with red HAMILTON+BERMUDA (PM4) dated JA 1 1852 (day slug inverted) struck on face due being a locally addressed letter. Ex TUCKER, ULRICH, "LONGTAIL".
The Forand/Freeland handbook only records two red PM4 entires to Ireland Island (other dated OC 4 1854).
£375





BRITISH GUIANA postal history
Berbice, 6th July, 1815 str. line handstamp (35 x 2mm high), partly doubly struck which displays on upper flap of entire headed Hope & Experiment to Hugh McCalmont in Belfast rated 2/6 changed 3/3. Only five examples currently recorded. Ex LESLIE RAY. The easy-to-read contents from John Lennan mention the cotton crop, multiplying cattle and sheep due low prices, a recent heavy squall which brought no less than 7000 plantation trees to the ground, the current planting of land for plantains which was under water for 3 years, purchase of some Negroes at Vendue, the Negoes being pretty healthy at present, Jack having died from old age, and the woman Quasheba having died, supposed, from the effects of obia, done by the Negro Alfred, a request for a box of pipes for the Negroes plus better jackets.
The four other examples being dated 22 June 1814 (two separate entires), 11 March 1815, and 13 May 1815
£1250


FIRST EVER MAIL CARRIED BY TWEED - PRIOR START R.M.S.P. SAILINGS FROM FALMOUTH 3rd JANUARY 1842
1841 business entire from Messrs. Stewart & Westmoreland, London to Alexander Logan, May Hill P.O., Manchester, Jamaica initially marked “Paid” and rated “8” with red PAID SHIP LETTER/(crown)/17 DE 17/1841/LONDON, but with the “Tweed” leaving for her West Indies station the following day the entire changed to “p. packet” and duly rated 1/- (unpaid) prior precise inscription of “By Ship” (no R.M.S. prefix as the R.M.S.P.Co not officially up and running) and “Steamer Tweed” arriving as a “ship letter” as handstamped KINGSTON SHIP LETTER (SL3) dated JA 17 1842. An exceptional first page item of R.M.S.P. Co. postal history showing all the intricate detail of “first ever” mail carried by the company to the West Indies.
The R.M.S.P. handbook by Kenton & Parsons notes on Page 10 that the Tweed “carried some Ship letter mail to Jamaica and Arr. 17/1”
£5250
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