Rhode Island Around the World - International Mail
May 10, 1955 Jamaica - First Day of Issue
Jamaica Tercentenary 1655 to 1955 
Registry Service to Providence, Rhode island
(Scroll Down for Background Information)

The Registered "First Day of Issue" Cover above was postmarked Kingston, Jamaica on May 10, 1955 and sent to Mr. Everett Studley in Providence, RI. The reverse of the cover, (SEE: Full Size Reverse of Cover with receiving postmarks) contains a Providence Registry Division postmark dated May 12 and an Elmwood Station postmark dated May 13.

The stamps are the 2-pence, 21/2-pence, 3-pence, and 6-pence tercentenary issues of 1955 (Stanley Gibbons #s 155, 156, 157, and 158) and depict respectively; "Man of War at Port Royal," "Old Montego Bay," "Old Kingston," and "Abolition of Slavery Proclaimed 1838." Each of the stamps bear a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II and the dates 1655 - 1955. They are tied to the cover with a Kingston Oval Date Stamp.

BWI stands for "British West Indies."


Jamaica was originally settled by the Arawak Indians from South America about 2,500 years ago. They named the island Xaymaca, (Land of Wood and Water). Christopher Columbus landed in Jamaica on May 5, 1494 and claimed the island for Spain. The Spanish controlled the island until May 10, 1655 when an English Armada under Admiral William Penn and General Robert Venables attacked and successfully captured the island

The original English settlement was at Port Royal, which became famous because of its Buccaneers. One of the most famous of these was Sir Henry Morgan, who began his career as a pirate and later became Lieutenant governor of Jamaica in 1673. On June 7, 1693 an earthquake destroyed Port Royal and the survivors resettled in Kingston

In 1958 the "Federation of the West Indies" was formed by ten Caribbean countries including Jamaica, however the Jamaicans voted against joining the Federation in 1961 and on August 6, 1963 Jamaica became an independent nation and a member of the Commonwealth

Jamaica is located south of Cuba and is approximately the size of the state of Connecticut. The majority of the population, (90%) is of African heritage with (7%) of mixed heritage. The economy is service based with most of it's foreign exchange deriving from tourism.

RI Historical Society
The Post Offices
Home Page
RI Tercentenary Issue History
RI Philatelic Society
Recently Added Pages
Philatelic Primer
Rhode Island Around the World
Rhode Island Town Postmarks
Other Websites of Interest

Return to RI International
Mail Thumbnail Page Part 4