Prestige Philately Auction 170 CatalogueTHE ASIAN SUB-CONTINENT
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Displaying 15 Lots in Category - THE ASIAN SUB-CONTINENT
BURMA: 1852 entire headed "Rangoon Feby 3rd 1852" endorsed "From John Hunter Seaman on/Board HMS Fox" & countersigned "GH Clarke Lieut", to "Cornwall North/America UP Canada", Liverpool lozenge 'L/MR 22/C' on the face, part 'MONTREAL' transit b/s in red overstruck with light 'CORNWALL/ MAY3/1852/=UC=' arrival b/s also in red, endorsed on the flap - apparently by the recipient - "this being the only letter I have/from the deceased I would be/glad to have it returned", some staining. Carried Per P&O "Achilles", departed Bombay 17/2/1852; "Ripon", departed Alexandria 7/3/1852, arrived Southampton 21/3/1852; then probably Cunard Line "Africa", departed Liverpool 27/3/1852, arrived New York 5/4/1852; then by river boat & overland to Montreal normally within 4 weeks. Ex Trevor Davis. An extraordinary (1) origin/destination item; (2) inwards cover to Canada; (3) trans-Atlantic letter; and (4) military letter.The writer gives a vivid eye-witness account of the attack on Rangoon that precipitated the 2nd Burmese War: "...I came here to Receive some money owing to the East India goverment since the last war we got an ansurr from the governer of Rangoon that the would not pay any then we took the only ship the had as a prise She had a few small guns on bord but the men all ran away...we got under way and left the town to gow and blockade the harbour When we got abrest of the battery...the opened fire on us we returned the ball very quick & kept on for 3 hours stedy fireing to we killed 400 men...and not one man on bord of us We should have destroyed 10 times as many if the had not Run away..." Fantastic stuff! [The details roughly conform to the Wikipedia entry, except that it states "The first substantial blow of the Second Anglo-Burmese War was struck by the British on 5 April 1852, when the port of Martaban was taken. Rangoon was occupied on the 12th..." It seems things heated up two months earlier. Richard Cobden, in "How Wars are Got Up in India" blames Commodore George Robert Lambert of HMS "Fox" for starting the war. This letter suggests that he acted under extreme provocation]
No longer available
CEYLON: 1882 cover endorsed "From M Sullivan Skilled Shipt [= Shipwright]/HMS EURYALUS Trincomalee" & countersigned (Commander) 'ERolfe' (h/s), with 2d rose tied by bold '10'-in-diamond of the London Foreign Branch, 'BIRMINGHAM/ 1L /FE11/83' arrival b/s, small piece of the flap missing. Carried per P&O "Thibet", departed Galle 24/1/1883, arrived Suez 6/2/1882; "Tanjore", departed Alexandria 7/2/1883, arrived Brindisi 10/2/1883; mail arrived London the next day (?). Michael Sullivan Fig 10. [HMS "Euryalus" arrived Trincomalee 1/1/1883, departed for Rangoon 8/2/1883]
CEYLON: a very similar cover with 2d rose tied by superb BN '176' of the London Foreign Branch, flap - with the arrival b/s - removed. Michael Sullivan Fig 12. [Sullivan served on HMS "Euryalus" 12/1/1882 to 25/4/1882 and 1/9/1882 to 18/3/1884]
INDIA: 1845 unpaid entire headed "Madras East India/Sepr 7th 1845" & signed "John Lines", endorsed "From J Lines Seaman On Board Her Majesty's/Sloop Serpent" & countersigned "GA Payne Lieut", to England with London transit b/s of 30OC30/1845 in red & '2' h/s for postage due from the addressee, 'NORTHAMPTON' arrival b/s across the flap, soiled. Carried per naval bag from Madras; P&O "Bentinck", departed Bombay 15/9/1845; "Great Liverpool", departed Alexandria 9/10/1845, arrived Southampton 29/10/1845. [The letter states: "...I received your kind letter at Trincomalee [Ceylon]...they cannot keep us out much longer...get in provisions on board for Moulmein [Burma]...a European can get any situation he chooses on shore here every Englishman is well to do...Madras is a beatyfull place and Everything is English fashon governed by English Laws..."]
INDIA: 1857 cover endorsed "From James Young Yeoman of Signals/HMS Sans Pareil Kedgeree East India" but not countersigned, to England with GB 1d Stars (rubbed at upper-right) cancelled with "socked on the nose" octagonal 'B/102' cancel of 'KEDGEREE/10/NOV/1857/PO' (cds at left), light 'MADRAS' cds & superb boxed 'INDIA UNPAID' h/s, 'LONDON/DE19/57' transit & superb 'BATH' arrival b/s. Carried to Ceylon; per P&O "Bengal", departed Galle 18/11/1857; "Nemesis", departed Alexandria 5/12/1857, arrived Southampton 18/12/1857. A rare and highly desirable sailor's letter posted in the civilian mails with British stamp & Indian cancellation. Despite 1d paid, the cover should have been taxed for two reasons: 1) because it was not countersigned; and 2) because it was underpaid for the civilian non-concession rate to England.
INDIA: a similar cover endorsed "From Chas Allen MSC [= Medical Staff Corps] Navel Brigade" but not countersigned, to England with GB 1d Stars cancelled with "socked on the nose" octagonal 'B/58' cancel of 'SKEVAN/ 18/NOV/1857/PO' (Sewan?, cds in red on reverse), 'PATNA/PO' b/s in red, boxed 'INDIA UNPAID' h/s, superb ' KM /LONDON/JA-6/58' arrival b/s in blue & '28'-in-diamond of the Foreign Branch struck over the Indian cancellation, vertical fold & staining. Carried to Ceylon; per P&O "Alma", departed Galle 2/12/1857, transferred at sea to the "Adjaha"; "Indus", departed Alexandria 23/12/1857, arrived London 5/1/1858. A significant cover from a little-known naval force.Charles Allan was in the Medical Staff Corps, an Army unit. However, he was assigned to the Naval Brigade, as a supernumerary aboard HMS "Pearl". Forces from HMS "Pearl" & "Shannon" were engaged in inland operations during the Indian Mutiny, most notably in the campaign that led to the relief of Lucknow. The Navy Records Society refers to this as "an under-studied and poorly remembered episode of British maritime history".
INDIA: 1876 cover endorsed "James Rossey S [= Senior] Steward/HMS Jumna" but not countersigned, to Hampshire with GB 1d Plate '140' tied by bold Levick Rotary Obliterating Machine '1'-in-bars of the London Foreign Office, not taxed, very fine 'PORTSMOUTH/ 1H /DE29/76' arrival b/s, repaired opening tear at the top. Ex Gerald Sattin (private transaction). Carried per P&O "Pekin", departed Bombay 20/11/1875; "Poonah", departed Alexandria 8/12/1876, arrived Southampton 28/12/1876. [HMS "Jumna" was stationed at Bombay. There is a faint pencil endorsement in the appropriate space that suggests the cover was, in fact, countersigned]
INDIA: 1878 cover endorsed "From TH Marshall Capts Steward/HMS Spartan Bombay" & countersigned "JEB" (= Captain John E Bearcroft), to England via Brindisi but not taxed, with 1d Plate '178' (?) tied by bold 'FB'-in-bars of the London Foreign Branch, 'LONDON SE/ W7 /NO18/78' arrival b/s in red, two vertical folds & soiled. Carried per P&O "Hydaspes", departed Bombay 28/10/1878 for Suez; "Pera", departed Alexandria 11/11/1878, arrived Brindisi 15/11/1878 (the "direct" mails arrived Southampton 24/11/1878).
INDIA: 1882 cover from Wales "Via Brindisi" to an artillery officer aboard the troopship HMS "Crocodile" at Bombay with 1d lilac x5 tied by 'ABERGELF/MR23/82 - 181' duplex, 25mm 'SEA/POSTOFFICE/ F /4APR' & five different Bombay transit b/s, redirected to "Watson Hotel", then to "Mhow" - as instructed by the sender at upper-left - with light arrival b/s. Ex Geoffrey Osborn (part of Lot 19). [The ship's log records arriving at Bombay 9/4/1882 so this cover must have just missed being delivered there. The rate was UPU foreign letter rate 2½d x2]
INDIA: 1883 cover endorsed "From M Sullivan Skilled Carp Mate/HMS EURYALUS Calcutta/East Indies" and countersigned (Commander) 'ERolfe' (h/s), with 2d rose tied by bold '10'-in-diamond of the London Foreign Branch, 'BIRMINGHAM/ N45 /MR20/83' arrival b/s, opened-out & part of the flap removed. Carried per P&O "Thames", departed Calcutta 2/3/1883, arrived Brindisi 17/3/1883; the mail arrived at London 20/3/1883. Michael Sullivan Fig 13. [Sullivan served on HMS "Euryalus" 12/1/1882 to 25/4/1882 and 1/9/1882 to 18/3/1884]
INDIA: a similar but undated cover endorsed "...Bombay", opened-out & part of the reverse removed. Ex Geoffrey Osborn (private transaction). Michael Sullivan Fig 14. [HMS "Euryalus" was at Bombay 3/4/1883 to 3/5/1883 only]
INDIA: a similar 1883 cover endorsed "...Bombay E Indies", with 2d rose tied by 'CHARING-CROSS/ A11 /MY8/83' squared-circle, Birmingham arrival b/s, part of the flap missing. Carried per P&O "Bokhara", departed Bombay 20/4/1883; "Tanjore", departed Alexandria 5/5/1883 for Brindisi; Italian packet, arrived Venice 6/5/1883; mail arrived London 8/5/1883. Not in Gerald Ellott's census.
INDIA: 1884 cover with crest of HMS "Euphrates" on the flap, endorsed "From GR Smith Seaman HMS Euphrates/ Bombay India" & countersigned "HH Bruce", to Lincolnshire with 1d lilac x2 tied by 'LONDON/ GN /FE7/84' cds, very fine 'ULCEBY' arrival b/s, repaired opening tears. Carried per P&O "Nepaul", departed Bombay 4/1/1884; "Rome", departed Suez 21/1/1884; "Lombardy", departed Alexandria 25/1/1884, arrived Brindisi 28/1/1884 where the mails were delayed by quarantine regulations; arrived London 7/2/1884. [The rate was 2d via Brindisi]
INDIA: 1889 cover endorsed "From M Sullivan Sk SW/HMS Griffon Bombay" & countersigned "AHS" (Paymaster Alfred H Sherris), with 1d lilac pair (one defective) tied by light 'FB'-in-bars cancels of the London Foreign Branch, superb 'BIRMINGHAM/ 16E /DE23/89' arrival b/s, repaired faults. Michael Sullivan Fig 50: the last item in Gerald Ellott's census. [On 1/7/1889, Sullivan had been demoted to shipwright, which was not reflected in his endorsement. On 11/11/1889, he was sentenced to 21 days in Bombay's Byculla Gaol for breaking the conditions of a leave pass. On 31/3/1891, Sullivan was pensioned-off, at the age of 46]
INDIA: 1891 mourning cover endorsed "From D Strang Seaman/HMS Redbreast Bombay" & countersigned "G" [attributed to Assistant Paymaster William L Gill], to Devon with 1d lilac tied by unusual 'SS/ F '-in-bars cancel, 'DEVONPORT/JU24/91' arrival b/s, tonespotting & renovated flap. Carried per P&O "Siam", departed Bombay 29/5/1891; "Britannia", departed Aden 6/6/1891, arrived London 24/6/1891. [The unusual cancellation was for use by WH Smith & Sons for cancelling bulk mail at the Foreign Branch London!]