Thursday, 31 December 2015

Papar D1 FDC

I generally do not collect first day covers as by implication they are philatelic in origin. However, I have a weakness for this cancellation. Its imperfection and distorted nature makes it all the more appealing. 

This is a FDC of the 1949 UPU issue showing a full set of the stamps cancelled at Papar. I do not like large empty spaces on a cover and the the front part of the cover is nicely filled with addresses both in English and Chinese.

A few more examples of this cancellation on piece and stamps. I have trying to work out whether there were different periods when the postmark was in violet and black and concluded that they were used concurrently. 
Another mystery is why the two rings of this cancellation are distorted. One view was that the wrong type of cleaner was used on the rubber temporary handstamp. But then it would have been perfect to start with like the similar ones from Keningau and Semporna. But I have not seen an non distorted cancellation of Papar D1. Was the wrong sort of rubber used which did not set properly? 
The bottom two examples are intriguing. They looked damaged but does not appear distorted with wavy lines. This implies that a different handstamp was used giving a Papar D1 type 2 cancellation.  

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Some very uncommon North Borneo cancellations

Something more to enjoy for Christmas. If you do not have the following two cancellations in your collection, keep on trying. Sooner or later you will find them at an acceptable price.

This Labuk & Sugut cancellation has to be one of my favourites. It is so well constructed. This came courtesy of a friendly dealer. It helps to make friends with them. Apart from being knowledgeable they can help with your collecting in the long run.

The Gantian cancellation is bit more uncommon than the L&S as it was in use for less than a year from December 1899 to about August 1900. The office became obsolete with the founding of Jesselton. Any reader who would like more information on Gantian and early Jesselton cancellations should seek a recent article in the Sarawak Journal.

This festive season gives me a chance to share another collecting interest. I bought this in Paris at their street market a few years ago. I prefer cancellations other than black. Christmas Is cancellations are very uncommon and commands good prices whenever they appear on sale. On cover, they are hardly ever seen. 

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Another North Borneo Singapore paquebot cover

Continuing on this festive season display of maritime mail, this is another prewar paquebot cover which used a North Borneo 1931 50th Anniversary issue stamp.

There is no indication of which town in North Borneo it originated from. If it was commercial mail, the letter would have been written on board ship or at least posted while it was in North Borneo waters bound for Singapore. It has a clear transit Singapore cds date of 16 NO 1931. The paquebot cancellation is a commoner type from Singapore. But with a North Borneo stamp on cover, it is still not that easy to find.
The ship involved here was most likely the SS Darvel. It arrived at Sandakan on 7 November and sailed on the 9 November bound for Singapore via ports eg Kudat, Jesselton and Labuan. The other 2 ships which also served this route were the SS Kajang and the MV Marudu.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Sandakan Singapore paquebot postal stationary card

Another desirable Christmas present! Very few of this type of postal history are in existence especially when commercially used like this one.

This card was in the Hosking collection. I believe it was used in the illustration of the back of the 3rd edition of his book on paquebots. This card was posted on the ship on its way to Singapore. The ship involved would have the SS Tringganu which left Sandakan on the 24 Nov 1908 bound for Singapore. It would seem that it took 6 days for the journey. The SS Tringganu plied the route between Singapore and Jolo via Sandakan.
The card bears a transit Singapore cds as well as a non box paquebot cancellation on its way to Zurich in Switzerland. It was quite likely to have passed through Brindisi in Italy.

As seen at the left bottom part the card was written in Sandakan on  the 24 November 1908. The message in German was written to his parents about an order of a magazine or book. Meier-Rotsehil mentioned was probably Mayer Rothschild, the German banker and founder of the Rothschild banking dynasty.

Thursday, 3 December 2015

A Kudat paquebot cancellation

The X'mas season is upon us once more. I am sharing with you this uncommon cover that I hope will show that Kudat did have a paquebot cancellation. This was originally in the Hosking collection.

It is rather strange that up till now that no paquebot cancellations were recorded from Kudat. It is after all a coastal town with a wharf and a regular stop for ships travelling from the east to the west coast and vice versa.
The above non boxed PAQUEBOT. cancellation was classified by Proud, wrongly in my view, as Jesselton SL3 based on another similar cover which somehow missed the Kudat cancellation and received the Jesselton K2 loose mail cancellation instead. The above cover was correctly endorsed by a Kudat D17 postmark. This is faint and should read 7 JAN 1936. It is very rare to see a Straits stamp with a North Borneo cancellation. By convention, the ship should have been registered in Singapore (part of Straits Settlements) and the letter posted in international waters. But I doubt whether these rules were strictly followed.

The back of the envelop was back stamped at Jesselton the day after. Apparently, it traveled on the SS Kajang. According to the BNB Herald, the SS Kajang left Sandakan on the 6th Jan 1936 on its way to Kudat. There you have it, the only prewar paquebot recorded for Kudat. I have not seen a post war Kudat paquebot either, I think. Rather strange is it not?