Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Recently acquired the most exciting and impressive stamps set issued by the by the Territory to date , undoubtedly those of the 1967-68 definitive series showing historical ships

The whole concept of the stamp series was evolved by the administration and all stamps were printed in multicolour photogravure by Harrison and Sons, London. The stamps were placed on sale in small groups in 1967 and 1968 and they gradually replaced the similar denominations of the definitive series.

The summary below outlines the series and includes short notes concerning the fourteen ships.

Issued 7 June 1967

* 1c HMS Resolution. Captain James Cook in the Resolution discovered Norfolk Island on 10 October 1771.
* 2c La Bossole and L’Astrolabe. These were two vessels of the de la Perouse Pacific expedition of 1785-88, which visited Norfolk Island on 13 January 1788, while en route to Botany Bay.
* 3c HM Brig Supply. This ship, Commander Ball, carried Lieutenant P. G. King to form a settlement in Norfolk Island early in 1788.
* 4c HMS Sirius. This was the flagship of the ‘First Fleet’ which founded the first settlement in New South Wa les in 1788. In March 1790, laden with troops and stores, it arrived off Norfolk Island and, while endeavouring to land the latter, struck a rock and became a total wreck.

Issued 14 August 1967

* 5c Norfolk. This was a 25-ton sloop built on the island in 1789. Taken to Sydney, it was fitted out for a voyage to confirm the discovery of Bass Strait. Matthew Flinders and George Bass, with a crew of eight, accomplished the task in the Norfolk in 1799.
* 7c HM Survey Cutter Mermaid. Following the re-opening of the penal settlement on Norfolk Island in 1825 the Mermaid was used to carry part of the first contingent of convicts and guards from Sydney.
* 9c Lady Franklin. This vessel was mentioned at the beginning of the article. It had been built at Port Arthur, Van Diemens Land, in 1841 and was used mainly for conveying stores between Van Diemens Land and Norfolk Island.
* 10c Morayshire. Also mentioned earlier in the text, this ships was specially chartered by the British Government to transfer the Pitcairners to Norfolk Island.

Issued 18 March 1968

* 15c Southern Cross. This ship, owned by the Melanesian Mission, and used between 1863 and 1873 to visit mission stations in the Pacific, regularly carried mails to and from Norfolk Island usually via New Zealand.
* 20c Pitcairn. This was a schooner owned by the Seventh-day Adventist Church. On at least one occasion in 1891 it brought mails from residents of Pitcairn Island to relatives and friends at Norfolk Island.
* 25c Whaleboat. Whaling was carried out by Norfolk Islanders for many years after 1856. The whaleboats used were mainly built on the island from local timber.

Issued 18 June 1968

* 30c HM Cable Ship Iris. The first association of this ship with the Island was in 1907 when a new shore end to the Norfolk-Suva cable was laid.
* 50c Schooner Resolution. Built on Norfolk Island in 1923-25, and named after Cook’s Resolution, this vessel made many trading voyages to Auckland.
* $1 SS Morinda. This Burns Philp vessel served Norfolk Island between 1931 and 1951, being engaged on the Sydney-Lord Howe Island-Norfolk Island-New Hebrides route.

Details from Pitcairn Island Study center.

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