Barbuda: On the Map

Barbuda is one of many small Islands in the Caribbean that form a chain known as the Leeward Islands. It is now part of the sovereign nation of Antigua and Barbuda, with Barbuda located just north of its larger sister island. The first stamp issues were released on 13 July 1922 – stamps of theContinue reading “Barbuda: On the Map”

The Bahamas: 1967 Definitive Issue

In 1966 the Crown Colony of The Bahamas introduced decimal currency, transitioning from the former imperial currency used almost extensively across the British Commonwealth, to The Bahamas dollars and cents. On 25 May, an earlier 1965 definitive issue was overprinted with surcharges in the new currency. Later that year, three commemorative issues celebrating the WorldContinue reading “The Bahamas: 1967 Definitive Issue”

Thematics: Jeffryes, Benjamin and Sarpy

Forgeries might be regarded as the bane of the philatelist. Many are difficult to spot and are perceived as a threat to the integrity and value of a collection. However, in some cases the history and events associated with a forgery can actually add to a stamp’s value. The operations of a trio of forgersContinue reading “Thematics: Jeffryes, Benjamin and Sarpy”

Haiti: Toussaint Louverture Remembered

Haiti (officially Republic of Haiti) has appeared in in the 21st century news bulletins for all the wrong reasons having endured a coup d’état in 2004 and a sequence of catastrophic earthquakes, most notably in 2010 that killed more than 250,000 people. However the country, located on the island of Hispaniola in the Greater AntillesContinue reading “Haiti: Toussaint Louverture Remembered”

El Salvador: Early 19th Century Issues

Sadly for philatelists who stumble across the late 19th century stamp issues of El Salvador, they generally hold very little value. However, this takes nothing away from the intricate and stunning designs. The early issues were printed by the American Bank Note Company and Hamilton Bank Note Engraving and Printing Company in such great quantitiesContinue reading “El Salvador: Early 19th Century Issues”

Thematics: Child Welfare

The first child welfare stamp was issued in Switzerland in 1913 and became known as the Pro Juventute issues because of their Latin inscription meaning ‘for youth’. The stamp, featuring an image of the Matterhorn and Helvetia (the female national personification of Switzerland), was denominated 5 centimes but was sold for 10 centimes with theContinue reading “Thematics: Child Welfare”

Spain: A Monarchy in Profile

Any philatelist with an interest in Spain cannot ignore the changing portraits that grace the early stamp issues. The profiles belie a period of political turmoil in the country that can be traced from the first stamp issue of 1850. Modern Spain is of course a culturally rich and politically stable country and retains itsContinue reading “Spain: A Monarchy in Profile”

Denmark: Recovery of Northern Slesvig

One of the fascinating aspects of philately is discovering issues of countries that no longer exist. A little research often unveils an interesting history and a link to a region with its own unique culture. One such region is Slesvig and in this post we’ll visit it’s history and culture through the 1920 Denmark issueContinue reading “Denmark: Recovery of Northern Slesvig”

St Vincent: Island Fortifications

A few weeks ago I posted a blog about the rather bizarre commission of HMS Diamond Rock, The Unsinkable ‘Stone Frigate’, as a fortification off the coast of Martinique. However, it seems that the propensity to occupy otherwise barren and hostile rocks in the Caribbean Sea for military purposes is not unique. A set ofContinue reading “St Vincent: Island Fortifications”

Greece: A Blot on Proceedings

Articulating political sentiment through postage stamps has been common theme throughout philatelic history and continues to this day. In some cases this is blatant – imperial and propaganda stamps of the early twentieth centre immediately spring to mind. In other cases, it’s more subtle as is evident in the featured image of a 2.5dr stampContinue reading “Greece: A Blot on Proceedings”