A blog about the stamps and postal history of Nigeria as we know it today and all its component colonies, protectorates and territories prior to 1914. My mission is to create awareness of the amazing possibilities that are open to collectors of Nigerian stamps. The entire collection shown in this blog will be sold at public auction at a date to be announced - sometime in 2019 or 2020.
Temporary Hiatus in Posts
My apologies to those of you who regularly read my blog. Almost a month has gone by since my last post. My personal life right now is a bit of a mess, but I expect to be able to start adding additional posts by the last week of this month. So no, this blog isn't a flash in the pan.
I welcome comments from you and requests for articles. So if there is an issue you want me to talk about or show you, please comment.
I had said in my last post that I am working on a comprehensive study of two sets from Nigeria, of which the Queen Victoria Lagos definitives was one. The second set is the first definitive set issued after the country switched from sterling currency to the new currency of Naira and Kobo, in 1973. The standard postage stamp catalogues have not given this set a name, but I call it the Industry and National Pride Issue, as it depicts the various industries of Nigeria, and one gets a sense of the immense pride in their country that Nigerians felt a mere 13 years after independence in 1960.
This set proved to be very popular and was in use continuously until it was replaced in 1986. There was a brief period of time during the inflationary period in the early 1990's when most of the values appeared again. Why they appeared during this time is somewhat of a mystery, since the massive inflation, had rendered the denominations unsuitable for all postage rates in effect at the time.
The next major definitive issue that appeared after the death of King George VI was issued on September 1, 1953 and featured industry scenes from contemprary Nigeria, but in the form of stylized artists drawings. It is the last definitive issue to appear before independence in 1960. Either the Tudor crown, or the Queen's portrait appears off to one corner of the design. This is a very beautiful set, and serves as one of the better examples of Waterlow and Sons' work. Of all the major printers - De La Rue, Waterlow, and Bradbury Wilkinson, Waterlow's designs have tended to be my least favourite; perhaps because their frames are usually very simple. On this set though, the designs have been integrated into the frames seamlessly, which is very pleasing to the eye. Also, nearly all values are bi-coloured, which makes the colours pop nicely.
In common with other definitive issues that preceded this one, there are some points of interest for the specialist. There are shade varia…
Last week I wrote a broad overview of the first King Edward VII Issue of Lagos, which was issued in 1904. I left off with an examination of some of the potentially constant plate flaws that occur on the issue, that are not listed in Gibbons. This week, I will show you some of the cancellations and postal history that can be found on these stamps.
Before I get into the specific cancellations, a word on the rarity of the high values in postally used condition. This issue had a useful life of no more than 9 or ten months. Last week we saw that there were no more than between 720 and 1,680 stamps issued in total - mint and used. The high values would have seen very little usage, as they would really only have been required on very valuable registered items. So it is highly doubtful that more than 5% or 10% of these stamps would have been used during the life of this issue, so the number of total extant used stamps is probably not more than 150 or so of each of the 5/- and 2/6d and maybe …