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Gambia   By: (1882-1940)

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First Page:

GAMBIA

BY FRED J. MELVILLE,

PRESIDENT OF THE JUNIOR PHILATELIC SOCIETY.

MDCCCCIX PUBLISHED BY THE MELVILLE STAMP BOOKS, 47, STRAND, LONDON, W.C.

[page 7]

INTRODUCTORY NOTE.

In collecting the stamps of Gambia one cannot too strongly emphasise the necessity for guarding the stamps of the "Cameo" series against deterioration by the pressure of the leaves in an ordinary unprotected album. In their pristine state with clear and bold embossing these stamps are of exceptional grace and beauty. Sunk mounts or other similar contrivances, and a liberal use of tissue paper, should be utilised by the collector who desires to retain his specimens in their original state. A neat strip of card affixed to each side of the page in an ordinary album will have the effect of keeping the pages above from flattening out the embossing, but tissue paper should be used as an additional safeguard.

We have to express thanks to Mr. Douglas Ellis, Vice President of the Junior Philatelic Society, for his notes on the postmarks of which he has made a special study and also for the loan of his entire collection of the stamps of Gambia for reference and illustration; to Mr. H. H. Harland for a similar courtesy in the loan of his collection; to Mr. W. H. Peckitt for the loan of stamps for illustration; to Mr. D. B. Armstrong for interesting notes on the postal affairs of the Colony; and to Mr. S. R. Turner for his diagrams.

To the first two gentlemen we are also indebted for their kindness in undertaking the revision of the proofs of this handbook.

[page 8]

TABLE OF CONTENTS.

INTRODUCTORY NOTE, 7

CHAPTER I. THE COLONY AND ITS POSTS, 11

CHAPTER II. CAMEO ISSUE OF 1869, 16

CHAPTER III. ISSUE OF 1874, 20

CHAPTER IV. ISSUE OF 1880, 25

CHAPTER V. ISSUE OF 1886 87, 37

CHAPTER VI. QUEEN'S HEAD SERIES, 1898, 45

CHAPTER VII. KING'S HEAD SERIES, 1902 1906, 50

CHAPTER VIII. PROVISIONAL ISSUE, 1906, 53

CHAPTER IX. BIBLIOGRAPHY, 56

CHAPTER X. CHECK LIST, 58

APPENDIX. NOTES ON THE POSTMARKS, by Douglas Ellis, 66

[page 11]

GAMBIA.

CHAPTER I.

The Colony and Its Posts.

The British West African possession known as the Colony and Protectorate of the Gambia occupies a narrow strip of territory (averaging 12 miles in width) on both sides of the Gambia river. The territory comprises the settlement of St. Mary, where the capital Bathurst is situated, British Cambo, Albreda, M'Carthy's Island and the Ceded Mile, a protectorate over a narrow band of land extending from Cape St. Mary for over 250 miles along both banks of the river.

The Gambia river was discovered by a Portuguese navigator in 1447; under a charter of Queen Elizabeth a company was formed to trade with the Gambia in 1588. In the reign of James II. a fort was erected by British traders at the mouth of the river (1686), and for many years their only traffic was in slaves. The territory became recognised as a British possession under the Treaty of Versailles, and on the enforced liquidation of the chartered company it [page 12] was incorporated with the Crown as one of the West African settlements. Until 1843, when it was granted separate government, it was administered by the Governor of Sierra Leone. In 1868 it was again annexed to Sierra Leone, and not until twenty years later was it created a separate Crown Colony with a Governor and responsible government of its own. At present the staple trade of the Colony is ground nuts, but efforts are being made to induce the natives to take up other products... Continue reading book >>




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