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: Interrupted Mail Clear

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An exceptional entire to ST. VINCENT during the 1810-11 FALMOUTH MUTINY
1810-11 entire written Horse Guards and Golden Square, London with copy of 12 November 1810 (sailing from both Plymouth and Falmouth), copy of 28 November 1810 (sailing from Plymouth), and original dated 13 February 1811 (on FIRST SAILING Leewards Island resumed service packet from Falmouth) to Major General L.S. Order, Commanding, St. Vincents rated 2/- unpaid. Military content respecting the discharge of Private Thomas Booth of the 1st Battalion 90th Regiment.
As a consequence of the OC 24 1810 Mutiny at Falmouth, Cornwall (see Britnor P.93, Robertson E.86) the Falmouth packets were transferred to the Hamoaze at Plymouth, Devon on NO 6 1810 where a temporary office was set up by Post Office Agent Saverland and staff at the Fountain Inn until the packets at Plymouth were transferred back FE 4 1811 arriving Falmouth FE 15 1811. The NO 12 1810 copied letter was sent from PLYMOUTH by "Express" Jamaica packet on NO 23 but owing to 'bad weather' the sailing was interrupted and the packet put back to FALMOUTH on NO 20 and finally sailed NO 27 arriving Barbados DE 28, the NO 28 1820 copied letter was sent by "Francis Freeling" Leeward Islands packet from PLYMOUTH DE 1 to 3 (sailing dates vary) arriving Barbados DE 28, the FE 13 1811 original was sent on FE 16 by the "Duke of Kent" Leeward Islands packet from FALMOUTH (being the first resumed service packet to the West Indies).
£525

DOUBLY DELAYED (39 days, missed packet plus stopped for coal at Azores), JAMAICA postal history
1856 wrapper docketted "John Mcnains letter" to James Mcnain in Glasgow rated unpaid "6" showing on reverse KINGSTON AP 28 1856 dbl-arc, KINGSTON-JAMAICA AP 28 1856/inverted "V" dbl-arc and arrivals for 39 days later for London and Glasgow JUN 4 1856.
Missed Clyde at Jamaica AP 26 1856 and held over for Conway MY 11 1856 arriving St. Thomas MY 17 1856 where transferred to Solent arriving Southampton JU 5 1856 having put into Fayal, Azores for coal on MY 29 1856.
£150


BRITISH HONDURAS via DUBLIN to GLASGOW postal history
1892 interrupted mail cover with W. BINNEY & Co., Belize colourless embossed flap to Glasgow, Scotland with QV 6c tied "0" obliterator with BELIZE A/JA 15 92 despatch, postmarked DUBLIN FE 2 92 and on reverse GLASGOW FE 3 93 arrival.
£175


Registered mail found opened/sealed losing secure status, TURKS ISLANDS postal history
1895 cover to J.C. Crisson (former Postmaster), Turks Islands with 3 x Germany 20pf pmk'd Leipzig 16.12.95. Leipzig reg. label, red and black London reg. ovals (DE 18), Halifax N.S. cds (DE 28), St. John N.B. cds (DE 30), New York reg. label and NY reg oval (JA 2 96) but WITHOUT ARRIVAL MARKS being most unusual for secured mail. Red wax ties fourteen "Post Office Department/OFFICIALLY SEALED./United States of America" perforated labels affixed to seal edges.
Once the transit had been interrupted with the application of the labels being applied in America this cover SEEMINGLY LOST ITS SECURE STATUS and travelled as normal mail thereafter.
£300



VICTORIOUS "PORTLAND" RAN AGROUND in RIVER SHANNON and STRANDED, ANTIGUA INTERRUPTED PACKET MAIL
This entire is headed “Antigua 28th Octr 1796” and marked “by Portland packet” from the Tudway correspondence to Wells, Somersetshire with handstruck S:KITTS rated 2/- changed 3/2. The “Portland” had left Falmouth with the mails for the Leeward Islands on AU 29 1796 and when off Barbados was attacked by a French privateer in which she beat off the attacker and preserved the mails. The Cook, William Thomson, lost a leg during the fighting and subsequently died of his injuries. In calm seas, near Guadeloupe, another armed privateer, the “Temeraire”, of much superior force gave chase. At daylight on October 18th the enemy hoisted her French colours and came alongside to board. The Master, Nathaniel Taylor, organised the passengers to open their musquetry upon her killing or wounding 41 of 68 on board. Captain Taylor was killed in the moment of victory. The “Temeraire” was taken into Montserrat as a prize, and the “Portland” left St. Kitts on 30th October bound Falmouth. Due a shortage of fresh water she put into the River Shannon on the west coast of Ireland on 6th January 1797. Sailing shortly after she had to put back because of bad weather, and whilst sheltering she was driven from her moorings and higher up the river ran aground. Stranded and waiting to be refloated on the Spring Tides she eventually arrived at Falmouth on 25th March. In the interim the Mate, Richard Leonard, personally took the mails from Limerick to London and they were placed in the post JA 14 97 per backstamp. This is the first recorded “Portland” interrupted mail entire clearly documenting its journey. The full story can be found in “The History of the Sailing Packets to the West Indies” by Len Britnor Pages 72-73 published by the BWI Study Circle 1973.
£2250

CHOLERA CHISEL SLITS and VINEGAR SPLASHING, Nevis to St. Christopher postal history
1854 NEVIS to ST. CHRISTOPHER disinfected against cholera: two entires, both with contents, written in the same hand addressed to Wigley & Burt in neighbouring Basseterre. First with no dateline or indication of origin heavily splashed with a disinfection agent, probably vinegar, and showing two 1¼ inch chisel slits spaced approximately two inches apart having been applied from reverse (penetrating through enclosure and envelope face) conforming with the officially prescribed methods of treatment of the period. Almost certainly written during the 1853/54 cholera outbreaks which spread through the islands leaving 3,920 dead in St. Christopher; 4,000 dead in Trinidad, and over 20,000 in Barbados. Exact dates for the outbreak are not established but a letter from Jamaica dated FE 24 1854 states upwards of ten cases of cholera in Kingston. The second entire, both written by Charles Kenney, is date-lined Nevis 8th July 1854 and was delivered without disinfection as the cholera epidemic had evidently abated by this date. Due the Royal Mail Steamer calling fortnightly, correspondence between the two islands could be exchanged swifter by means of private sloop. Neither entire shows indication of Post Office charge or private conveyance fee. Examples of disinfected mail from one Caribbean island to another are seldom encountered - this being the only recorded entire treated by both splashing and chisels slits which counts as interrupted mail. An marvellous eye-catching exhibition item.
British Parliamentary Papers state St. Kitts escaped the cholera of 1853, while it prevailed in the adjacent island of Nevis, from which it is distant only six miles. A strict quarantine has been kept up, nothing being allowed to land from Nevis except letters, which were first fumigated … Communication continued the whole time, but St. Kitts remained unscathed for many months after its cessation in the adjacent island.
£1650
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