Today in Postal History


Mayotte to France
March 26, 1875

Mayotte is an island in the Comoros group in the northern
Mozambique Channel between mainland Africa and Madagascar.
Mayotte is unique in that it has remained steadfastly French despite Comoros independence.

The cover was routed via Brindisi and overland at Suez.
Although the Canal had opened in 1869, the railroad
still carried the mail for a decade after the opening.
The decision to keep the railroad for the mail was to protect railroad investors.
(Another bailout?)

The cover is franked with imperforate stamps of the French Colonies.
There are two Eagle and Crown 80c carmine rose on pinkish
and one Eagle and Crown 10c bister on yellow - Scott 6 and 3 of 1859-65, respectively.
There is also a 25c blue on bluish Ceres pair - Scott 12 of 1871-72.
2Fr. 20c was sufficient for the boxed PD (Paid to Destination).

The stamps were cancelled with five strikes of the common diamond of dots.
A Mayotte CDS is on the lower left to provide the mandatory date confirmation.
I believe the CDS on the lower right may be a receiving stamp
applied in Paris May 1 for non-domestic mail but I'm not sure.
Help, anyone?
The Paris arrival stamp on the back appears to be May 4.


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