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The Mafeking 'Blues'.

During the 1900 Siege of Mafeking , special photographically produced 'local' stamp issues were printed in blue, comprising of 1d Cadet Sgt-Major Goodyear 'Bicycle' and 3d Baden-Powell stamps. Plus at the same time, the same process was used to make siege banknotes.

Mafeking was an important railway town, and was well prepared when Cronje and his Boer troops first attacked in October 1899. The Boers soon isolated the town however, and local native runners were the only means of getting news and letters out of the town. They crossed the enemy lines at great risk, and were paid quite hefty sums to carry just a few letters; hence the need for the stamps to be overprinted with a surcharge, in order to cover these costs. The stocks of postage stamps soon ran out, and many were purchased as souvenirs by the defending troops.

The 1d Goodyear stamp depicts a local Cadet cyclist who was just twelve years old during the Siege. He was one of many local lads who risked their lives delivering mail and helping on the lookouts, and was perhaps the original "model" of a Boy Scout. The movement was later started by Baden Powell, whose father became the first Mayor of Mafeking. The stamp portrait was captured by a local photographer, Dr Taylor, and in Dr. Hayes' final design, his intials can be found in the lower border beneath the portrait.

The 3d Baden-Powell stamp was from a photograph by Mr Ross. Both values were printed in sheets of twelve on laid paper.

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Lot Number: 3502
Closing: 01 May 2018

  • Guide price (GBP): 50 - 60
  • Currency guide (USD): 71 - 85
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