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Bechuanaland & Botswana Stamps and Postal History

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The area was conquered and annexed by the Boers when in 1882 they established the republic of Stellaland and then proceeded to establish the republic of Goshen further north. The Boers proclaimed Stellaland to be under Transvaal protection. A postal service was organised and stamps were printed. These stamps however were only valid within Stellaland.

The British sent out a force which, without a shot being fired, led to Bechuanaland, including Stellaland, being formally taken under British protection on the 30th September 1885. Two areas were established - British Bechuanaland and the Bechuanaland Protectorate

Botswana stamps, Botswana, Botswana stamp images, Botswana resource page BRITISH BECHUANALAND
The area to the south of Molopo river was constituted as a crown colony and named as British Bechuanaland. Stamps were produced by overprinting Cape of Good Hope and British stamps. The first stamps were issued in December 1885. Postal Agencies were opened in Bank Drift, Keimoes, Kuruman, Macloustie, Palachwe, Poedomoe, Setlagloi and Vryburg Station.

Then on the 16th November 1895 it was annexed to the Cape Colony and it ceased to have its own stamps.

The large portion to the north of the Molopo river became the Bechuanaland Protectorate. From June 1890 to 1897 stamps of British Bechuanaland were used in the Bechuanaland Protectorate. Seperate issues were introduced for the Bechuanaland Protectorate by overprinting Cape of Good Hope and then British stamps. In 1932 when the first definitative stamps were printed for the protectorate.

In 1965 the Becuanaland Protectorate was granted self-government and was renamed as Becuanaland.

On the 30th September 1966 Bechuanaland became the independent republic of Botswana.

Philatelic Societies

The Philatelic Society for Greater Southern Africa
Bechuanaland SG 45 PSGSA focuses upon all philatelic areas related to the following past and present stamp-issuing entities and areas: Anglo-Boer War, the Bechuanalands, Botswana, British Central Africa, Cape of Good Hope, Griqualand East/West, the Homelands, the Interprovisional Period, Lesotho, Local Posts, Malawi, Namibia, Natal, New Republic, the Nyasalands, Orange Free State/Colony, the Pre-Adhesive Period, the Rhodesias, South West Africa (German & British Periods), Stellaland, Swaziland, Transvaal, Union/Republic of South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Zululand.

The Bechuanaland and Botswana Society (UK)
The Society was formed in 1985 by and for people with an interest in philatelic history of the region. This includes postage and revenue stamps, postal stationery, post offices and postmarks, postal rates and mail routes of the region known at various times as Stellaland, British Bechuanaland, Bechuanaland Protectorate and Botswana.

GB Overprint Society (UK)
The GB Overprints Society (GBOS) helps members and collectors to explore the many ways and reasons why British stamps and other postal material have been overprinted, whether it is for use outside the UK or for special functions within the UK. This opens up a wide variety of avenues, which will interest not only GB collectors who want to find out other uses of their favourite stamps, but also collectors of particular countries or themes.

Postmark and Postal History Society of Southern Africa
The Philatelic Federation of South Africa
PO Box 9248, Cinda Park 1463, South Africa

New Issues from Botswana

Botswana Philatelic Bureau
P O Box 100, Gaborone, Botswana

Selected Philatelic Pages for Botswana and Bechuanaland

Postage stamps and postal history of Bechuanaland Protectorate
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Postage stamps and postal history of British Bechuanaland
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Stamps of Stellaland
by Rick Turner
(archive copy via Way Back Machine)

Stellaland Forgeries
The Republic of Stellaland founded in January 1883 issued its one and only set of stamps in February 1884. Less than two years later, in September 1885, a British expeditionary force under Sir Charles Warren abolished the Republic and formally annexed it to British Bechuanaland.

Collect Botswana Definitives
Definitive Stamps of the Republic of Botswana
by Otto Peetoom

Postal History of British Bechuanaland

Postal History of British Bechuanaland

The Revenue Stamps of Bechuanaland
by Peter Thy
(archive copy via Way Back Machine)

Check List of Bechuanaland and Botswana Postal Stationery
by Peter Thy

The Newspaper Wrappers of British Bechuanaland
by Peter Thy
Story of the newspaper wrappers used in British Bechaunaland from January 1887 and in the Bechaunaland Protectorate from 1892 until stocks were exhausted of the 1890 issue sometime about 1910.

The Overprinted ½d British Newspaper Wrappers
by Peter Thy and John Inglefield-Watson
A detailed examination of the three printings of these newspaper wrappers by De la Rue in September 1887, May 1890 and November 1891. The authors have identified two different cancelling bars on the five-line wrapper.
(archive copy via Way Back Machine)

Forged British Bechuanaland Newspaper Wrappers
by Peter Thy and John Inglefield-Watson
"...we describe and discuss two wrappers overprinted ‘British Bechuanaland’ and believed to be forgeries. The main point of the discussion is to present the forgeries and to illustrate the ambiguity involved in distinguishing between essays and forgeries"
(archive copy via Way Back Machine)

1895 Tati Concessions revenue stamp

Tati Concessions Limited

In 1864 gold was discovered in the Tati area, then part of the Matebele Kingdom, some 18 miles from Francistown, in the Bechuanaland Protectorate. In 1887 the Matebele chief, Lobengula, granted a concession to S H Edwards. Mining rights were vested in Tati Concessions Limited.

Tati Concessions Limited were given permission by the British Government to produce stamps for fiscal purposes. In 1895 six stamps were produced, a 1s deep carmine, a 2s 6d deep blue, a 5s violet, a 10s grey green, a £1 pale blue and a £5 orange. Some of the lower values were used for postal purposes.

Books on Bechuanaland Philately

Bechuanalands & Botswana, postal marking classification (typology)
By Brian Trotter, published by the Bechuanalands & Botswana Society, 1995

The Bechuanalands: a brief history of the countries and their postal services to 1895
By Adrian Albert Jurgens, published by the Royal Philatelic Society, London, 1946

The Early Postal History of the Griqualands and the Bechuanalands
by Ken Baker, Occasional Paper No 6, published by Postmark and Postal History Society of Southern Africa, 1983

Introduction & usage of postal orders in Bechuanaland Protectorate
By Peter Davis Thy, published by Krone Publications, 1994

The Macloustsie post office and its postmaster, Bechuanaland Protectorate 1892
By J E Symons & Peter Davis Thy, published by Krone Publications, 2002

The Postage Stamps, Postal Stationery and Postmarks of the Bechuanalands
by H R Holmes, published in 1971 by the Royal Philatelic Society

The Postal History of Basutoland & Bechuanaland Protectorate
by Edward Wilfrid Baxby Proud, published by Proud-Bailey, 1996, 382pp, ISBN 1872465110
General history, postal history, postal rates, post offices, postmarks, bibliography etc.

The postage stamps, envelopes, wrappers, post cards, and telegraph stamps of the British colonies, possession and protectorates in Africa, Part 1: comprising British Bechuanaland, British East Africa, British South Africa (including British Central Africa
By Edward Denny Bacon, published by The Philatelic Society, London, 1895, 1900

The Postal Stationery of the Bechuanalands and Botswana
by Peter Thy and John Inglefield-Watson, published by British Philatelic Trust, 2004, 192pp, ISBN 1871777135
This book is the result of many years of research in existing collections, archives and other sources. They lists in excess of 200 different items of issued stationery, including major varieties, about 45 different ‘Specimens’ and 50 essays and proofs.

Revenues of Southern Africa, Part 1: The Bechuanalands
By Brian Trotter & Neville Midwood, 2003

The Shelley Catalogue of the Decimal Surcharges on the stamps of Basutoland, Bechuanaland and Swaziland
by P N Bullivant, published by Stamp Collecting Ltd, 1962, 24pp