Today in Postal History


Martinique to United States
March 14, 1906

This picture postcard was sent from Fort de France.
Fort de France is in the middle of the Caribbean side of the island of Martinique.
Martinique is in the northern part of the Windward Islands at
the south end of the Lesser Antilles at the east end of the Caribbean.

The postcard is franked with an 1892 10c black on lavender paper
Sage - Navigation and Commerce (Scott 38).
There are two Fort de France CDS.

The cover arrived at its destination of Brooklyn, a New York Borough, on March 27.
The postcard has a machine receiver showing only the dial for Brooklyn on March 27.

The card was supplied by the Hamburg-America Linie
which operated the cruise being taken by the sender.
The line serviced the West Indies as early as 1872.

The postcard provides a convenient space for the sender to note the ship and the date.
Hamburg-America Linie
Am Bord des Dampfers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
den . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Am Bord des Dampfers translates as 'on board the steampship . . . '
suggesting you enter the name of the ship.*

The view is of the shore at St. Pierre.
St. Pierre is on the Caribbean coast about 60 km northwest of Fort de France.
The view reminds us of the volcanic nature of the whole Lesser Antilles chain.
Martinique was the scene of one of the most devastating eruptions in the 20th century.*

The traveler sent a most typical traveler's note:
March 14, 1906
This is a wonderful sight.  I wish you were with us.

*Thanks to Maarten Willems for his translation of the German
which corrected a rather stupid error of assumption.
Thanks, too, to Jim Whitford-Stark for his comments regarding the volcanic history
of Martinique and providing the wonderful link from his Volcanoes on Stamps site.


Today in Postal History
January February March April May June
July August September October November December

Pastnotes Index - The First 300 and the Next 208
provides more tidbits about stamps and collectors.

Comments? Send me an e-mail
Please include a reference to this item.