Falkland Island Stamps

Falkland Island Stamps
Over time the Falkland Islands, which is an archipelago of some 778 islands in the South Atlantic. Have been claimed by many nations, beginning with France in 1764, followed soon after by the United Kingdom and Spain. Argentina and Chile have also made efforts to claim the Falklands as their own.

Whaling was the first initial attraction for nations and settlers, with cattle and sheep farms established later on. A British naval force arrived in 1833 to formally assert the islands’ status as a British colony.

The Falklands, including South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, presently have the status of a self-governing British Overseas Territory. Other former Falkland Islands—South Shetland Islands, South Orkney Islands, and Graham Land—became part of the British Antarctic Territory in 1962.

With settlers came the need for mail service, post offices, and postage stamps. The first Falkland Islands stamps were issued in 1878-79, bearing an image of Queen Victoria. Four different denominations of stamps were issued in this first set: 1 penny, 4d, 6d, and 1 shilling.

Generally speaking, higher denomination stamps are more likely to be of greater value than those of lower denominations. This is not the case for the early Falklands issues. Of the first four Falklands stamps, the high-denomination 1 sh has the lowest value.

The high-value unused stamp of the group is the 4d at $1,400; the high-value stamp in used condition is the 1d at $500. Over the years, new
Falklands stamps became more artistic. As an example, Queen Victoria’s profile received a beautiful frame in 1898.

Victoria died in 1901, and her eldest son, Edward Albert ascended the throne to become King Edward VII. He too is portrayed on elegantly designed stamps with his profile beautifully framed. These stamps were issued 1904-07. Many of these Falklands stamps are worth investigating. The 3sh King Edward VII stamp can be found with an inverted watermark or a reversed watermark as well as in a deep green color, instead of its usual gay color.

Generally, the early Falklands stamps are pricey and can be hard to locate. In 1933, to celebrate the centenary of the permanent occupation of the islands as a British colony, the Falkland Islands issued a stunning set of 12 bicolor pictorial stamps with engraved designs which conveyed a good idea of the diversity of the islands.

The 3d stamp illustrates a map of the region and the sheep and whaling industries are represented by a fine image of a Romney Marsh ram on the 1/2d stamps, a whaling ship on the 1 1/2d, and a breaching blue whale on the 6d.

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