MICHAEL HAMILTON
POSTAL HISTORY
POSTMARKS
STAMPS
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SPECIALISING IN THE UNUSUAL - WHETHER IT BE VILLAGE POSTMARKS, THE UNEXPECTED WITH BASIC STAMPS, UNUSUAL POSTAL HISTORY, OR EXCEPTIONAL QV COVERS



Country: Turks & Caicos Clear
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ST. BARTHELEMY (French reoccupation, 2nd year) postal history
1879 entire headed "St Barths 11 Septr 1879" to The Post Master, Grand Turk, Turks Islands, enclosing a letter for Mr. Gibbs (presumed George Gibbs, the Salt Merchant, and Commission and Forwarding Agent at Grand Turk). Conveyed to neighbouring St. Christopher for onward transit where QV 6d green affixed and tied by the "APMY" dumb cds with weak ST. KITTS despatch (thought SP 12 79), rated red "4". On arrival most unusually handstruck internally with pristine TURK'S-ISLAND code removed/OC 10 79 cds probably as a record of receipt to show date acted upon for any future reference. Additionally unique for being the only known St. Christopher UPU member cover to a non-UPU member commanding a 6d rate (St. Christopher was full member from JY 1 1879, Turks Islands did not join the UPU until JA 1 1881). An exceptional showpiece conveyed through British Colonial Post Offices during the second year of French reoccupation.
On NO 26 1781 St. Eustatius was captured by the French under Marquis De Bouille, St. Martin was seized the following day, and Saba and St. Bartholomew soon after. The latter island remained French until 1784 when it was suddenly sold by one of Louis XVI's ministers to Sweden in exchange for trading rights in the Swedish port of Gothenburg. In 1877 France bought back the island from Sweden for 400,000 francs with the agreement ratifield in Stockholm NO 9 1877 and in Paris MR 4 1878. On MR 16 1878 the French officially reoccupied St. Barthelemy. A census in 1875 indicated there were around 2,300 inhabitants on the island. (Note: this is similar to the expectation of how a Cayman Island cover for the period would travel, if one existed, and equally as rare).
£12500
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