Bahamas Stamps

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Here you will find a selection of Commonwealth stamps from the Bahamas

The Bahamas is located in Caribbean sea

The postal history of the Bahamas begins in the 18th century, with the earliest known letters dating from the 1760s. In 1804 a straight-line "BAHAMAS" handstamp came into use. The Royal Mail Line initiated a regular mail service in 1841, and from 1846 used a "Crown Paid" handstamp.

The use of postage stamps began in April 1858 with a consignment of British stamps. These were cancelled "A05" at Nassau. The use of British stamps was brief however; in the following year the Bahamian post office became independent of London, and issued its own stamps beginning 10 June 1859. These stamps featured the "Chalon" portrait of Queen Victoria, along with symbols of the islands (pineapple and conch shell) and the inscription "INTERINSULAR POSTAGE", because at first the stamps were used only locally, with London continuing in charge of external mail until May 1860.

Printed by Perkins Bacon, initially not watermarked and imperforate, perforation was introduced in 1860, and the "Crown & CC" watermark in 1863. The transition to local control left Bahamians with only their 1d stamp to pay all rates of postage, and covers to foreign destinations show blocks of the stamp used to cover the 4d rate to North America and the 6d rate to Great Britain. The government remedied this in 1861 by contracting for 4d and 6d stamps, still using the Chalon head, but with a simpler design. De la Rue later took over printing duties in 1862, their product being differentiated by an 11.5-12 perforation, as opposed to the previous 14-16. A one-shilling value appeared in 1865.