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



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GREAT BRITAIN to INDIA postal history combination
1864 cover marked "via Marseilles and Bombay" to Charles Norman Pochin (1826-1870, East India Company Official), Madras c/o forwarders Arbuthnot & Co with GB QV 1d, 4d, 6d tied Bath "53" duplex dated I/NO 3 64, on arrival India QV 2a yellow added tied both ARBUTHNOT & Co company handstamp and MADRAS "1" duplex dated DE 6 for re-direction to Chiglepett, b/stamped red CHIGLEPUT DE 6 dbl-arc arrival clear of missing side flap.
£425

1954 PRESTWICK DISASTER COVER and GREAT BRITAIN AMBULANCE COVER to JAMAICA
1954 charred edge back and front of cover pmk'd London 23 XII 54 together with contents to R.H. Ridler, Barclays Bank Ltd, Kingston, Jamaica, B.W.I. requiring completion of its journey, due such distressed condition, by Great Britain Post Office O.H.M.S. ambulance cover, both covers struck with purple boxed "SALVAGED MAIL/AIRCRAFT CRASH/PRESTWICK 25-12-54"., flap of latter poorly opened.
BOAC Boeing 377 Stratocruiser crashed on landing at Prestwick Airport in the early hours of Christmas Day 1954, 28 of the 36 onboard were killed.
£325

EXHIBITION COVER SHORT-LIVED 14 CORNER DOTS GREAT BRITAIN QV 1d LILAC to BARBADOS
1881 cover with five copies GB QV 1d Venetian red and seven copies GB QV 1d lilac (SG.166,170) pmk'd London S.W/32 duplex dated AU 2 81 to Mrs. Belfield, Chelston, Barbados being the penultimate 1/- rate prior switching to the 4d U.P.U. rate on SP 1 1881, backstamped BARBADOES AU 18 1881 dbl-arc arrival clear of largely missing flap. A spectacular exhibition cover for the short band of use 14 dots in each corner GB QV 1d lilac.
The 1d Venetian red stamps do not have the Orbs watermark error Cat.£27,000 apiece.
£600

GREAT BRITAIN USED TWO DIFFERENT COUNTRIES, Malta postal history
1861 mourning cover to Lt. Colonel Duncan Munro Bethune (1816-1870), 1st Battalion. 9th Regiment, Vernon House, Farnham, Surrey with GB 6d pmk'd "A25" duplex dated A/MALTA/JA 23 61, backstamped Farnham JA 23 61 arrival and forwarded to London with GB QV 1d red pmk'd "292" numeral on JA 25 61 with London transits.
Such GB combination covers are seldom found and extremely rare, and do not exist for most countries and agencies that were supplied with GB stamps.
£1200

GREAT BRITAIN and ANTIGUA "both ways" postal history
1900 cover with GB QV 1d lilac pmk'd Chipping Norton AP 4 00 to Miss Bowen, The Point, St. Johns, Antigua with MY 4 00 (wider fleuron at base) backstamp, returned with Leeward Islands QV 1d pmk'd Antigua MY 9 00 (smaller fleuron at base), backstamped Bristol and Chipping Norton MY 25 00 cds, flap roughly opened.
£275

RARE "BOTH WAYS" COMBINATION COVER, VICTORIA postal history
1858 cover with GB QV 6d pmk'd London S.W. duplex dated DE 21 58 to Melbourne, South Australia arriving MR 20 59, returned with tied 6d Queen on Throne to Shinfield, Reading. Soiling with some perf. toning. 144 days total in the mails.
By THAMES Southampton JA 12 59 to Alexandria, COLUMBIAN sailed JA 30 from Suez to Melbourne MR 20 59. Back home by P&O MALTA Melbourne AP 18 to Suez, CEYLON Alexandria to Southampton JU 10 1859. Mail 89 days out, 54 home.
£425


HRH Prince Alfred round-world-voyage ended by Fenian assassination bullet, Gibraltar postal history
1867 cover from Tinahely to W.H. Symes, HMS 'Galatea', Gibralter (sic) with pair GB QV 1d red Plate 84 and strip of three, single Plate 85 pmk'd Rathdrum "388" diamond numerals when Ireland was a part of Great Britain, Tinahely and Rathdrum backstamps for MR 16 67 with London MR 18 67 transit. Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh, Queen Victoria's second son (1844-1900) was never expected to be King and joined the Royal Navy as a midshipman aged 12. In 1867 he commissioned and commanded the 'Galatea' for a voyage around the world which would include the first royal visit to Australia. On FE 26 1867 the 'Galatea' left Plymouth Sound for the Mediterranean with stops at Lisbon, Gibraltar (MR 14 to 26), Malta, a stay at Marseilles prior a crossing to Rio de Janeiro, returning via Tristan Da Cunha, staying at Cape of Good Hope prior onwards to Adelaide, South Australia with subsequent stays at Melbourne, Victoria and Tasmania. The tour was abruptly curtailed in Sydney NSW on MR 12 1868 when Henry James O'Farrell, a Fenian sympathiser, attempted to assassinate the Prince - the Duke fell forwards on his hands and knees exclaiming "Good God! I am shot; my back is broken". On board was surgeon James Young, M.D. and Assistant Surgeons William L. Powell and William H. Symes (1851-1933 of Tinahely), the two former names being mentioned as giving immediate assistance to His Royal Highness who was tended back to health by six recently arrived nurses trained by Florence Nightingale.
Full details of the voyage can be found in the 487 page book entitled "The Cruise of H.M.S. Galatea" by John Milner and Oswald Walters Brierly. Prince Alfred was the first serious stamp collector in the royal family. He sold his collection to King Edward VII who shared his enthusiasm, who in turn gave it to his son King George V. Keenly expanded by the latter the two collections became the basis of what is now the Royal Philatelic Collection.
£1250

Cardiff, Wales to Gibraltar postal history
1872 wrapper to Gibraltar with GB QV 2d blue strip of three, single Plate 13 attractively displaying CORY/C perfins pmk'd CARDIFF duplex dated JU 14 72.
At this time the circled "S" handstamp to identify mail routed via Spain was not used (July 1870 to July 1875) as the 8d rate alone was sufficient to identify mail received by the more expensive and thus uncommonly used overland route. John Cory came to Cardiff as a shipbroker and shipowner in 1872 and established 'John Cory Sons & Co". On his death in 1891 he owned 21 steamers with another three large steamers being built on the Clyde.
£350


CEYLON postal history
1869 OFFICERS CONCESSION RATE OF 10d cover (1 of 2 known) endorsed "Chichester/Cap. A.D.C." at lower left to his daughter Amy in Cleobury-Mortimer RE-DIRECTED THREE TIMES on arrival with Ceylon QV 10d orange pmk'd black "B" showing red TRICOMALEE PAID AU 18 69 cds alongside and b/stamped red COLOMBO PAID A/AU 21 69. On arrival b/stamped LONDON N7/SP 20 69 and LONDON X10/SP 20 69 with re-direction to a Square in London S.W with circled "1d" due handstamp; further re-direction to Army Agents Cox & Co, Craig Street with free re-direction within London crowned "R" applied plus CHARING CROSS W.C. A6/SP 20 69 cds, finally re-posted with GB QV 1d red Plate 108 pmk'd BEWDLEY SP 21 69 duplex to Tiverton, Devon. Flap removed plus minor faults.
Officers did not mark their mail for the privilege postage rate of 6d per ½oz (plus any Foreign Rate) unless there was a savings. There was no advantage on U.K. mail when rates were 6d via Southampton and 10d via Marseilles, but increases to 9d and 1/1d respectively on FE 1 1868 allowed a savings of 3d (as seen on the above cover). The concessionary rate was withdrawn DE 31 1869 so savings were only possible over a 23 month period.
£3250


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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