New stamps celebrate Cayman’s shipping history

| 21/06/2016 | 0 Comments

CNS Local Life(CNS): The Cayman Islands Postal Service’s latest stamp issue commemorates the role that ships played in shaping the history and economy of the Cayman Islands. The five-stamp “Historic Ships” issue illustrates the Cayman Islands’ rich shipbuilding and seafaring culture, featuring just a few of the many schooners and ships that have been integral to Caymanian heritage.

Since the early 1900s, ships and schooners built in the Cayman Islands provided a vital and dependable means of transporting people and cargo throughout the three Islands and to and from other Caribbean Islands (especially Cuba and Jamaica), as well as to North America and Central America.

The series includes a first-day cover and souvenir sheet. The 25¢ stamp depicts the Kirk B, which was built in 1929 by RB Kirkconnell and Brothers. Over the years it was used as a freighter and for fishing and turtling.

The Nunoca, built by Heber Arch Sr., is on the 80¢ stamp. Built in 1932, it connected Cayman with Tampa and Jamaica. The vessel was lost at sea in 1936, with 22 persons aboard.

The Rembro was built in 1930 for the McTaggart family, and graces the $1 stamp. It mainly transported freight between Cayman, Panama and Jamaica.

The S.S. Clara Scott, built in Cayman Brac by Capt. James E. Scott in 1905, was the largest schooner built in the Cayman Islands, and is featured on the $2 stamp.

A British Royal Navy ship is featured on the $4 stamp. The HMS Dragon supported survivors of the devastating 1932 hurricane in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman.

Also of note are the cruise liner RMS Atlantis, shown on the souvenir sheet, and the Cayman-built classic vessel Western Union, which is on the first-day cover. The Atlantis was the first cruise ship to visit these Islands, stopping here in 1937 with 340 tourists.

The Western Union was framed and prepared on Grand Cayman by the Arch brothers, and then dissembled and transported to Key West, Florida, for assembly and service.  Built to maintain the undersea communication cables between Florida cities, Caribbean islands and South America, this schooner is now listed in the American National Register of Historic Places.

For more information,  email the Cayman Islands Philatelic Bureau, visit the Cayman Islands Postal Service website or call 946-4757

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