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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BERMUDA postal history
1883 mourning cover to Oswego County, New York re-directed to the Palace Hotel, San Francisco with QV 2d dull blue CC wmk and QV ½d stone (SG.3,19) tied HAMILTON K3 "1" duplex dated B/AP 11 83 during the first blue ink period March 1882 to January 1884. Few covers are recorded with this combination.
The OC 1 1876 USA-Bermuda postal convention set a 2d rate effective OC 3 1876 between the two countries but allowed Bermuda to charge 2½d per half ounce. Bermuda had no ½d adhesive until the ½d stone was issued MR 25 1880 and accepted the loss during the interim years.
£275

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

BERMUDA postal history
1884 cover marked per "Nubian" with 1880 QV 4d orange-red (SG.20) pmk'd ST. GEORGES K3 "2" duplex dated A/FE 21 1884 to London locally directed with crowned "R" handstamp to denote no additional charge, reverse with (early) black HAMILTON (H1, first period blue ink ended January 1883) dated B/FE 21 84 and red London MR 13 84. A rare cover from the second voyage of the "Nubian".
The first voyage of the "Nubian", in transit from Virginia on an experimental new service for the Union Line, was announced to call at Hamilton on JA 10 1884. The ship was five days late and single covers are known from St. Georges pmk'd JA 10 1884 and JA 15 1884 and both landed with red LIVERPOOL SHIP cds.
£450



MUSTIQUE ISLAND stamps: The currently only known 10c blue MUSTIQUE COMPANY LIMITED mint sheetlet
Produced circa 1971 in fresh unmounted mint condition, small surface abrasion lower right edge.
550 blue labels were printed and an estimated 525 blue labels used up on the inaugural flight covers which terminated the private conveyance service. Only an estimated 25 labels (or 12 sheetlets) remain unaccounted for. No earlier service 10c blue labels are known on cover. One 10c blue label is illustrated in Nicholas Courtney's book (available internet) alongside later cover which importantly shows the handwriting style of Colin Tennant matching the unique proving cover of the earlier service.
£850


PRIVATE SHIP LETTER 4d RATE, Bermuda postal history
1884 cover with strip of four QV 1d dull rose (SG.22) tied ST. GEORGES "2" numeral duplex dated A/JA 15 84 to St. John's Wood, London showing red LIVERPOOL/A/JA 29 84/SHIP arrival cds, reverse blue HAMILTON B/JA 15 84 and London JA 30 84 cds.
The "Nubian", in transit from Virginia, on an experimental new service for the Union Line, was announced in the local newspaper as calling at Hamilton on 10th January 1884. The ship arrived five days late and sender added this cover to the mailbag (having already written to same addressee with St. Georges B/JA 10 84 on 4 x QV 1d franking cover marked per "Nubian"). Only two covers are known - one dated JA 10 84 (expected arrival) and JA 15 84 (actual arrival)
£725


Rare watercolour "View at IDANRE from Camp", Lagos postal history (Ex John FORREST)
1898 outer wrapper with reverse showing an exceptional rare inclusion of watercoloured painting addressed to Miss Ambrose, Hampstead, London with QV 2½d tied oval of bars with rare POST OFFICE EPE (T.11) cds dated A/JU 7 1898 (ERD), lower left portion of this single sheet torn away. Ex JOHN FORREST.
£825




INTRODUCING THE LADY ANNE COVER, the greatest and most significant item of MUSTIQUE postal history
It was always assumed that the four Mustique Company labels were solely produced for the SP 1 1971 Government run inaugural First Flight covers between Mustique Post Office and mainland, St. Vincent, but this UNIQUE PROVING COVER shows that a Government approved PRIVATELY OPERATED LOCAL CARRIAGE SERVICE existed (by-passing the Mustique post office, and perhaps for only a few months) which REMAINED UNDISCOVERED for nearly 45 YEARS - 1971 commercial cover hand addressed by Colin Tennant to Lady Anne Tennant with MUSTIQUE COMPANY LTD 10c MAUVE label tied by their 10 JUN 1971 company handstamp for air carriage of 18 miles to mainland, and St. Vincent 50c Bird postmarked the next day KINGSTOWN */11 JU 71 to the family home at Tite Street, London. Arrival confirmed by automatic letter sorting machine luminescent dots applied at the London Eastern Central District Office as seen lower right of cover. No early ORANGE, YELLOW, or BLUE labels are known on cover. LADY ANNE TENNANT (formerly Lady Anne Coke), wife of Lord Glenconnor, Colin Tennant, owner of Mustique, was a Maid of Honour to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Her Coronation and is best seen holding the Queen's gown during the procession down the aisle at Westminster Abbey. Lady Anne was also Lady-In-Waiting to H.R.H. Princess Margaret. (Accompanied by early example of the SP 1 71 10c mauve on First Flight cover typewritten address - ie before use of printed address labelling).
This is the ONLY KNOWN COVER leaving just 5 labels unaccounted for as only 70 of the 10c mauve label were printed for exclusive use by the owners of Mustique - the remaining 64 labels known to have been used up on the later First Day Covers for the SP 1 1971 inaugural flight Mustique to St. Vincent. The normal Mustique Post Office was fully operational since 1958 but the company service offered a more flexible air connection to the mainland. The labels were printed in units of two.
£18500

NEW SOUTH WALES to CAPE OF GOOD HOPE postal history
1883 reg. cover "per direct ship Parramatta" to Cape Town, Cape of Good Hope with QV 1d, 2d pmk'd GRAFTON duplex dated A/FE 24 83 and pair QV 6d tied 2-line "REGISTERED/GRAFTON" showing London 4 MY 83 and on reverse Sydney A/MR 2 83 and Cape Town Registered Letter Office JU 2 83 arrival.
£275






THE SEARCH FOR EXPLORERS BURKE and WILLS, South Australia postal and social history
1862 cover to Mr. Edward Palmer, McKinlays Exploring Expedition, Adelaide G.P. Office with pair QV 1d (one defective corner) pmk'd PORT-AUGUSTA OC 6 62 with handstruck "UNCLAIMED", reverse GPO OC 8 1862/7 datestamp. Filing crease crosses adhesives as the unclaimed letter was placed in the accompanying "Returned Paid Letter" back to Mr. H. Mildred, Port Augusta making an exceptionally rare "round trip" pair. In 1859 the South Australian Government offered £2,000 for the first successful south-north crossing of the continent west of the 143rd line of longitude. In 1860-61 Robert O'Hara Burke and Willian John Wills led an ill-fated expedition of 19 men with the intention of crossing from Melbourne (south) to the Gulf of Carpentaria (north), approx. 2,000 miles. At that time most of the continent had not been explored by non-indigenous people. The south-north crossing was successful but both of the expedition leaders died on the return journey. Only one man, John King, made the eventual return to Melbourne. Six expeditions were sent to search for Burke and Wills. One left August 1861, under McKinlay, and found the remains of Charles Gray, one of the expedition, and a partially empty grave in the Cooper Creek area. McKinley sent part of his group back to report only to find that another expedition under Howitt, which had left June 1861, had already found the graves of both Burke and Wills in that same area. In December McKinley visited the site of the graves and then went on to explore the lakes region around Lake Moolionburinna. In February he left the Cooper region following Burke and Wills track to the Eyre Creek and the Gulf before turning east to a station on the Bowen River near Port Denison in Queensland, and the part returned by sea to Adelaide
Edward Palmer was the bullock driver with the McKinley led "South Australian Burke Relief Expedition". Accompanied by previously owned Sarah Murgatroyd's book THE DIG TREE, the extraordinary story of the ill-fated Burke and Wills Expedition (372 pages) and 150th anniversary commemorative stamps.
£1425

Combination first types HLABISA and LOWER UMFOLOSI, Zululand postal history
1895 exceptionally rare and perhaps unique side-by-side combination purple Resident Magistrate's Office (R.M. OFFICE) cds for HLABISA 16 NOV 1895 and LOWER UMFOLOSI NOV 19 1895 on GB ovp'd 1d Post Card written by Edith Turnbull at "Bush View 15th Nov. 1895" to Cockington, Torquay with ESHOWE and DURBAN transits. Exhibition item.
£2400

BRITISH HONDURAS postal history
1878 cover front with Germany 10pf red, 20pf ultramarine strip of four and single confirmed by red crayon "1 10" pmk'd HAMBURG 14/12 77 cds to Wm. Guild & Co., Belize showing blue sender's cachet, red London Paid 17 DE 77 transit, BELIZE JA 9 78 arrival. Exceptionally attractive.
£625

MONTSERRAT - PREPARATION SHEET on UNISSUED VERTICAL LAID PAPER
Montserrat 1866 QV 1d pale rose INLAND REVENUE on unissued vertical laid paper, a fine and fresh gummed and perforated sheet numbered "251" showing the two units of six stamps misaligned. Contemporary ink blobs noted on stamp seven and to the right of stamp twelve. The lower selvedge deliberately removed both to indicate spoilage and to ensure the grammatically incorrect "Each" sheets did not get into circulation. Minor perf. splitting at margin edges. Note: The initial delivery is thought to be Sheets 1 to 250 making a total of 3,000 stamps being issued on horizontal laid paper with base inscription reading One Penny each - One Shilling per Sheet. - the change from Each to each being made at preparation stage due Victorians being fussy about incorrect grammar. Only three imperforate sheets (numbered 256,257,258) are currently known with the original "Each" setting, and each showing differing adjustments to the lining up of the two units. Morley in 1910 reported the existence of these stamps on vertical laid paper but both Britnor (1965) and Robson Lowe (1990) were unable to confirm their existance in their handbooks. Sheets 251 to 260 are therefore printer’s unissued preparation sheets. The "Each" error was not noticed by philatelists until 2001 (135 years later!).
£825

BRITISH GUIANA to FRANCE
1859 cover with GB QV 1d, 6d pmk’d “A03” dated DEMERARA A/MR 11 1859 to Dieppe, France showing London AP 5, AMB Calais, Le Havre A Paris, and Paris 6 AVRIL transits. Flap removed by recipient to show his hand-written notes re content.
Only one other GB QV 1d, 6d combination is recorded dated JA 23 1860 ex Paramaribo via Demerara to Dunkerque
£2500

"54" used JAFFNAKACHCHERI, Ceylon postal history
1883 QV 2c brown complete Newswrapper with added QV 2c pale brown (SG.146, creased) tied "54" numerals to The Catholic Mission, Lyon, France with JAFFNAKACHCHERI PAID JU 30 83 cds, red framed TOO LATE and red MODANE A PARIS 31 JUIL 83 d/ring alongside.
£375



"33" used UDA PUSSELLAWA, Ceylon postal history
1883 opened for display reg. mourning cover with superb intact UDA PUSSELLAWA/(crown)/POST OFFICE wax seal on reverse to The Vicarage, Fremington, North Devon with QV 4c rosy mauve x 3, QV 24c green tied "33" numerals with NO 9 83 PAID cds alongside, some faults.
£325

ANTIGUA postal history:
1887 cover to South Brooklyn, New York with QV 4d blue CA wmk (SG.23) neatly pmk'd ANTIGUA A/DE 20 87 cds, delightful appearance.
£550

BRITISH GUIANA to FRANCE
1859 cover with GB QV 1d pair, QV 6d pmk’d “A03” dated DEMERARA A/JU 25 59 to Dieppe, France re-directed to 47 Avenue des Champs Elysees, Paris showing London JY 19, AMB Calais 20 JUL, Le Havre A Paris 22 JUIL transits. Flap removed by recipient to show his hand-written notes re content.
Thought to be a unique GB used abroad combination (use of 8d rate to France is confirmed by double rate entire (1/4d) from same correspondence bearing GB QV 4d, pair QV 6d dated OC 10 1859.
£3500

JAMAICA USED ABROAD
The currently unique trio of “C51” (used St. Thomas) on QV 1d Pine wmk, the unrecorded on GB used abroad “D60” (whereabouts of use unknown, RPS certificate) on QV 6d Pine wmk, and “E88” (used Colon) on QV 2d CC wmk. Similar to the accepted use of Trinidad stamps at Ciudad Bolivar, it is now thought that Jamaica stamps may have had permitted or accepted use on correspondence back to the island – see Foster Page 31. (A red ink “D63” is also recorded on Jamaica QV 6d Pine wmk). The "D60" illustrated Parmenter & Gordon handbook Page 3 / 52
£4000


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

ST. VINCENT stamps:
1883 DLR QV 1d drab ovp'd "Revenue" with OVERPRINT INVERTED (PML.9), the only example showing clear date of "31/12/83", minor blemish one perf. tip. Only four examples from a single sheet of 60 stamps are currently known to have survived.
The three other examples dated "15/12/83" (faults, Peter Jaffe lot 537), "15/12/83" (fine), and "29/12/83" (illus. PML handbook Page 147)
£2400
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