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Bridging Barbados

For this episode in our occasional "village" series, we visit the coral limestone island of Barbados. The ship Olive Blossom arrived in 1625 and took possession for James I.


This “sugar” colony became a centre of the African slave trade until outlawed in 1807.


Postmarks at the time of the Jubilee roughly reflect the parish names, as outlined on the map below. For most of the illustrations, we are again indebted to John Cooper. Thanks also to Jonathan Guy of for his assistance.

St Lucy


Most distant from the capital, Bridgetown, is the less populated parish of St Lucy at the northernmost tip of the island.


Here we have the 1½d empire rate stamp tied to a cover to Scotland by a St Lucy cds for 23 Jy 35.

St Peter


Bordering St Lucy to the south is St Peter, largely devoted to the island’s chief cash crop of sugar cane.


Another example of the empire rate but this time to Canada and tied by a St Peter single ring cds for 8 Oct 35.

St Andrew


Thought to resemble the hills and fields of Scotland, parts of this parish are referred to as Scotland District.


And another cover to Scotland, (Orkney), at empire rate, has its 1½d tied by St Andrew cds for Jy 31 35, with a further strike.

St James


The island was claimed on landing at Holetown, formerly Jamestown, of this parish.


This cover to Australia (via Panama) boasts the double empire rate of 2½d, (1½d 1st oz + 1d 2nd oz), tied by St James cds for Ap 29 36.

St Joseph


Reputed to be one of the prettiest parishes is that of St Joseph.


Another cover to Canada carries a late use Jubilee with two strikes of St Joseph’s double ring cds for 11 Fe 36.

St John


In 1660, to replace the 1645 church destroyed by fire, cost the diocese 110,000 pounds of sugar.


In 1935, to get this cover across the Atlantic to the Leeds addressee, had she been there, cost the sender a mere 1½d. The cancellation is that of St John for 5 Nov 35.

St Philip


Culpepper Island, Barbados’s only dependency, falls within the parish of St Philip.


This 1/- stamp is cancelled St Philip 7 Nov 35. Perhaps it carried a 3lb parcel to somewhere within the Caribbean.

St Michael


The capital, Bridgetown, lies within the parish of St Michael, from which most mail seems to carry the GPO Barbados cancels.

St Thomas


In the middle of the island lie two landlocked parishes, one of which is St Thomas, home of Harrison’s Cave.


This cover overpaid by ½d the empire rate to Scotland and bears the St Thomas single ring cds for 9 Aug 35.

St George


The prominent landmark, Gun Hill Signal Station of 1818, lies in the parish of St George.


Although addressed to Bridgetown, this first day cover carries the cancels of St George.

Christ Church


This is the island’s southernmost parish.


When the church in Dover was destroyed by floods in 1669, the main parish church was moved to Oistins.

Barbados Parishes

And offshore...


AJA - April 2018

Some previous articles are available as PDF's by clicking their titles below:


    "Madame Joseph Forgeries - an Update" - A follow-up to Chris Georgallis's article on Cyprus forgeries

    "Argentinian interference with mail from the Falkland Islands" - by Ralph Riddell-Carre

    “Ceylon Circuit" - Some postmarks of Ceylon

    "Variety Values" - Bruce Davies's campaign to secure values for used examples of varieties

    "Fragmented Fiji" - Some postmarks of Fiji

    "Absentee Rupee" - The Mauritius 1 rupee as a stranger to postal rates

    "Postal Usage of the Egypt Seal" - Nick Levinge looks at the Crowned Circles of the forces bases

    "Over Fifty Shades" - Something wrong with the colour?

    "Ghana Guide" - Some postmarks of Gold Coast

    "Vanuatu Voyage?- A look at Hong Kong used in New Hebrides

    Surfing the Solomon Sea” - The few operating post offices in the Solomon Islands

    “Security Punch” - A look at the Jubilee’s perfins by Jeff Turnbull

    “Morocco Now and Then” - A tour of the British post offices in Morocco

    “Fault lines of the Falklands” - Part two of Ralph Riddell-Carre’s analysis

    “Straddling the Straits” - Some postmarks of the Straits Settlements

    “Set and Match” - Can full set covers be non-philatelic?

    “Boating around The Bahamas” - Some postmarks of The Bahamas

    “Serial Salutes” - Some of the Silver Jubilee’s own anniversaries

    “Mauritius Meanderings” - Some postmarks of Mauritius

    “A Cat among the Penguins” - A suspect Falklands cancel

    “Cycling Cyprus” - Some postmarks of Cyprus

    “Scars of Conflict” - How the Jubilees were affected by war

    “Bech Trek” - Some postmarks of Bechuanaland Protectorate

    “Specimen Specifics” - A look at the various uses of the word SPECIMEN

    “Hong Kong Hike” - Some postmarks of Hong Kong

    “Aden Funnel” - Covers from and through Aden

    “Grenada Guide” - Some postmarks of Grenada

    “In The Frame” - A look at some frame plate flaws

    “Basuto Byways” - Some postmarks of Basutoland

    “Cyprus Cypher” - Chris Georgallis examines the colony’s Madame Joseph forged postmarks

    “Trinidad Tour” - Some postmarks of Trinidad & Tobago

    “Commercial Ceylon” - A look at the perfins of the colony

    “Guiana Panorama” - Some less common British Guiana postmarks

    “Where were they then?” - From the more recent stamp-issuing territories

    “Cautious Mauritius” - A variety of Mauritius perfins

    “Madame Joseph’s Masquerades” - Some examples of forged first day covers

    “Tag Wrestling” - A look at the higher postal rates through parcel labels

    “AR” - An article on Avis de Reception by David Handelman

    “The Fleury Flair” - Hugo Fleury’s designs for the Jubilee

    “Split the Difference” - Some occurrences of bisects among the Jubilees

    “Specimen Fundamentals” - Notes on U.P.U. requirements & some forged examples

    “Windsor Spoofs” - Gerald King’s alternative Jubilees

    “Puncturing Oz” - Some speculations about Australian perfins

    “Perforating the Silver Jubilee Stamps”- An article on GB by Harvey Russell

    “Nauru’s Split Personality”  - Split “B” variety on the 2d value?

    “In Camel’s Clothing” - The Egyptian seal’s booklet

    “Rural Disservice” - The Cyprus low value forgeries

    “Canadian Precancels” - The only precancel involvement with the Jubilee

    “Phoenix-like Sphinx” - Some notes about the Egyptian seal

    “Fag Tax” - Observations on South West Africa’s cigarette duty overprints

    “From the collection of...” - Jubilee items from some illustrious collectors

    “Prize-less Specimens” - Beware of forged specimen stamps

    “Dubious Jubilees” - Spoofs, parodies and bogus overprints