In earlier chapters we have shewn the great philatelic importance of the cancellations of British-Indian Post Offices when applied to Imperial stamps occurring in company with the Native issues; and we now turn to a consideration of such of the Imperial stamps themselves as were issued for use in the Native State and which thus formed an integral part of the Native Postal-System. These, unlike the Native stamps, were only issued as adhesives butand more frequently, particularly in the case of the ½-Anna denominationembossed in colour on the envelopes. The Imperial adhesives (with which we are primarily concerned) are, therefore, relatively scarce. They were issued to the British Post Offices at Srinagar and Leh for use on letters going out of the State to British India or overseas. The arrangement with the State was that they affixed their own labels to all mail to half the value of the Indian stamps used. The post office at Sialkot was on quite a different plane, as it is not in Kashmir at all, but in British India. It became so definitely a kind of clearing-station for the Jammu mails that, in the absence of any British Post Office in Jammu territory, we, for the purpose of this classification, regard it as on much the same footing as those at Srinagar and Leh.
The inter-connection between the Imperial and Native stamps was, as already noted, the factor which raised the status of the latter above that of mere “locals”; and just as the native stamp could not frank a letter beyond the Native frontiers unless accompanied by an Imperial one, so also could the Imperial stamp not frank a letter within the frontiers except by the addition of one of the Native stamps.
To this extent, therefore, even the Imperial stamps were, strictly speaking, “locals” also. Out of more than a thousand covers examined by us, we have found a single instance only of an Imperial stamp having passed in Jammu-Kashmir unaccompanied by a Native one. In connection with this statement a most curious fact to be recorded is that, during the last two years (1893-94) of the Native Posts, it is almost impossible to find a cover carrying any Imperial stamp whatever. This is so totally at variance with the established practice of the preceding twenty-six years that we can scarcely avoid the conclusion that some radical alteration of the postal regulations must have occurred at this period.
(i) The British Indian Embossed Envelopes.
These well-known circular embossed stamps shewing the youthful head of Queen Victoria were first issued in British India in 1856, and shew a 1-Anna denomination printed in brown on thin greyish-blue wove paper. They were followed in 1857 by a ½-Anna in blue printed on a thin semi-transparent white or yellowish paper. Neither of these has been found used in Kashmir, but we can record the use of the follow later issues:
(a) 1-Anna brown of 1871 on blue diagonally-laid paper.
(b) ½-Anna blue of 1874 on white diagonally-laid.
(c) ½-Anna green of 1883 and 1-Anna brown of 1877 on the same paper.
(d) 4-Annas 6-pies orange-yellow of 1881 on medium white wove.
(ii) The British-Indian Adhesives.
The following list includes all adhesives issued in British India for a period during which they might have been issued for use in the Native State also. Such stamps as are known to have been so used are marked “(×)”, the total number of these being 22. It must be noted that, although all of them are known to have been used in the Native State, it does not necessarily follow that all were issued for use there. That nearly all were, in fact, so issued, either to Srinagar or Leh, is...
...beyond doubt; but the possibility of an Imperial stamp issued elsewhere, having been cancelled at one of these British Offices because it had, accidentally, escaped cancellation before entering the Native State, must not be overlooked.
Adhesive Stamps Issued in British India from 1856 to 1892.
(Engraved and Printed by De la Rue.)
Note.Stamps marked “(×)” are known used from British Post Offices at Srinagar or Leh, often from both; and from Sialkot B.P.O. for Jammu letters brought there for dispatch to India.
(A) Under the Honorable East India Company.
|1856-64||unwmkd||perf. 14||(×) ½-Anna Die IBlue|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 2-AnnasYellow|
(B) Under the Crown.
|May, 1860||unwmkd||perf. 14||8-pies, bluish paperPurple|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 8-pies, white paperPurple|
|1865||Elephant’s head||' '||(×) ½-Anna Die IPurple|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 8-piesBrown|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 1-AnnaYellow|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 2-AnnasOrange|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 2-AnnasGreen|
|' '||' '||' '||4-AnnasCarmine|
|' '||' '||' '||8-Annas Die IBlue|
|Sept. 1866-67||' '||' '||(×) 4-Annas Die IGreen|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 4-Annas Die IIBlue-green|
|' '||' '||' '||6-Annas 8-piesSlate|
|1868||' '||' '||(×) 8-Annas Die IIRose|
|1873||' '||' '||(×) ½-Anna Die IIBlue|
|1874-76||' '||' '||1 RupeeSlate|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 6-AnnasBrown|
|' '||' '||' '||12-AnnasVenetian red|
(C) Empire of India.
|1882||Star||perf. 14||(×) ½-AnnaBlue-green|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 9-piesRose|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 1-AnnaPlum|
|' '||' '||' '||1-Anna 6-piesSepia|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 2-AnnasBlue|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 3-AnnasOrange|
|Jan. 1891||' '||' '||(×) 2½ on 4½-AnnasGreen|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 4-AnnasOlive-green|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 4-Annas 6-piesYellow-green|
|' '||' '||' '||(×) 8-AnnasMagenta|
|' '||' '||' '||12-AnnasPurple on red|
|' '||' '||' '||1 RupeeSlate|
|Jan. 1892||' '||' '||2½-AnnasYellow-green|
|' '||' '||' '||1 RupeeGreen and Rose|
To this list we add a few brief notes on individual stamps:
Issue of 1856.
Of this unwatermarked issue we have only seen the ½-Anna blue used in Kashmir, but blocks of both this and the 2-Annas, so used, have been recorded from an old collection (now unfortunately dispersed) formed many years ago by Sir Charles Stuart-Wilson, the writer of our “Foreword.”
Issue of 1860.
The 8-pies on white unwatermarked paper was issued to the British P.O. at Srinagar and appears, curiously enough, to have been much more commonly used than the 8-pies of 1865 on watermarked paper although it had been superseded by the latter a year before the first stamps of Jammu-Kashmir appeared. Our illustration (Plate 58, fig. 1) shews the stamp used in 1869 in company with a block of the ½-Anna blue (Die I.) on watermarked paper.
Issue of 1865.
On the watermarked paper, the ½-Anna (Die I.), 1-Anna and 2-Annas orange were issued freely at the British P.O. at Srinagar. The 2-Annas yellow is scarce and the 8-pies rare. The ½, 1 and 2-Annas were also issued to Leh. The ½-Anna was frequently used in Sialkot in 1888evidently through a re-issue of old stock. (Plate 58, fig. 2).
Issue of June 1866.
These overprinted 6-Anna stampsthe first of those issued to British India after the introduction of the Native stampsare not known to have been issued in the Native State.
Issue of 1866-67.
Stamps from both Dies of the 4-Annas were issued at Srinagar, Die II. being the more commonly found. Both are, however, far less scarce than the native 4-Annas actually used at this period. The obliterations are the “L-5-6” and the “Large barred-L.”
Issue of 1868.
The same two obliterations are found on the 8-Annas rose, which is now from the second state of the Die.
Issue of 1873.
The ½-Anna blue (Die II.) is by far the commonest of all British Indian stamps used in the Native State. It was issued to both Srinagar and Leh.
Issue of 1876.
We have seen a single example only of the 6-Annas used in Kashmir. This was on a cover registered from Srinagar on 8th September, 1877. We know of no such use of the 12-Annas of this issue.
Issue of 1882.
At least eight of the eleven denominations were issued to Kashmir. The ½-Anna is common and the 1-Anna and 2-Annas are often found. The 4-Annas and 8-Annas are scarce, and the 9-pies, 3-Annas and 4-Annas 6-pies rare. The last three are only known as a Srinagar issue, but the first five were also issued to Leh.
Issue of January, 1891.
This stamp is known used in 1893 from Srinagar.
Issue of 1892.
Neither denomination is known to have been issued to the Native State nor, since their period coincides with that during which practically no Imperial stamps appear to have been used, do we consider such issue at all probable.
A Note on Poonch Stamps Used in Kashmir.
As Poonch is a vassal State of Kashmir the stamps of both were inter-circulating in each other’s dominions. Nevertheless, stamps with Poonch obliterations are very rarely seen. The stamps known to us are:
(i.) The 1-pice red on laid bâtonné paper.
(ii.) The 1-pice red on yellow laid.
(iii.) The 1-pice black (Official) on the same paper and
(iv.) The 4-Annas red on yellow wove bâtonné paper.
We also have the following on covers from which, in view of the watercolour printing of both stamps and obliterations, we have not removed them in order to test the nature...
...of the paper:1-pice red on blue : ½-Anna, 1-Anna, and 2-Annas red on white : 1-Anna black on white and 1-Anna red on blue-green paper.
The majority of these shew the small square Poonch obliteration in addition to cancellations of Kashmir. Occasionally the Poonch mark has been omitted, and the Kashmir cancellation has been applied merely to correct the omission.
Our illustrations (Plate 59) shew:(Fig. 1). A New Rectangular stamp obliterated with the “barred-minim” cancellation of Jammu City and also with the large circular seal of Poonch: (Fig. 2). Stamps of Poonch similarly cancelled with the small square Poonch obliterations and the later “nine-bar” obliteration of Jammu.
I. The Treaty of 1878.
Agreement entered into between the British Government and the Cashmere State in regard to the Construction of Telegraph Lines from Jummoo to Srinuggur and from Srinuggur to Gilgit1878.
Whereas His Highness the Maharaja of Cashmere is desirous of obtaining the assistance of the British Government towards the construction of lines of telegraph from Jummoo to Srinuggur and from Srinuggur to Gilgit, the following terms are agreed upon by Major Philip Durham Henderson, C.S.I., Officer on special duty in Cashmere, on the part of the British Government, duly empowered by the Viceroy and Governor-General in Council on that behalf, and by Baboo Nilumber Mookerjee, M.A., B.L., Judge of the Sadr Adalut of Cashmere, duly empowered by His Highness the Maharaja on that behalf:
1. The British Government agrees to construct for the Cashmere State two lines of telegraph, each consisting of...
...one wire, to be carried on such suitable supports as are procurable in the vicinity, the one to be erected between Jummoo and Srinuggur at a cost of Rs. 21,600 more or less, and the other between Srinuggur and Gilgit at a cost of Rs. 31,900 more or less, provided in each case the following conditions are observed:
(a) That the transport of all telegraph materials from Sealkote to the Cashmere frontier and within the limits of the Cashmere State shall be directly arranged and paid for by some duly authorised officer of the Cashmere State.
(b) That all labourers, whom the officer in charge of the construction of the line shall require to employ, shall be engage and paid by a duly authorised officer of the Cashmere State.
(c) That on due notice being given by the officer in charge of the construction of the line, the Cashmere Government shall, to the utmost of its power, comply with requisitions for transport or labour.
(d) That sound seasoned deodar posts, where these are procurable, suitable for telegraph supports, shall be provided by the Cashmere State and distributed along the route to be taken by the telegraph lines, in such manner as the officer in charge of the work may direct.
(e) That no bracket or insultators be used in the construction of the lines, as their cost has not been provided in the estimated amounts stated above.
2. The British Government guarantees that all telegraph materials, including the wire supplied by it, shall be of the best quality used for its own lines, and that the lines shall be handed over the Cashmere Government in full working order.
3. His Highness the Maharaja agrees to pay to the British Government, as the money may be required, the actual cost incurred by it in the construction and establishment of the lines, such cost being inclusive of:
(a) The salaries and allowances of all members of the Indian Telegraph establishment for the whole period they may be detained on duty in Cashmere; and
(b) The cost of insultaing the line, or of any other charges in the original scheme that may be made hereafter with the concurrence, or at the request of the Cashmere State.
4. The salaries and allowances of all members of the Indian Telegraph establishmnet will be paid to them by the Government of India through the Officer on special duty, and the amounts of such payments will be recovered subsequently from the Cashmere State.
5. On the application in writing of the Cashmere State, the Telegraph Department will supply at cost price all telegraph instruments and material required from time to time for the maintenance and working of the telegraph lines and offices about to be established.
6. On the application in writing of the Cashmere State, the Telegraph Department will afford such advice and instruction as may be required and desired by the Cashmere State for the maintenance and working of such telegraph lines and offices.
7. On the application in writing of the Cashmere State, the Telegraph Department will lend the services of any Native signallers, who may volunteer for the duty, and whose services can be spared, for such specified periods as may be sufficient to enable the Cashmere State to train its own signallers.
8. The foregoing provisions are accepted by the British Government as a mark of friendship and good-will towards His Highness the Maharaja; but it is to be understood that after the lines are delivered over [to] the Cashmere Government, no responsibility whatever attaches to the British Govern-...
...ment in respect of their subsequent maintenance and working. (Sd.) P.D. Henderson, Major. Officer on special duty in Cashmere. (Sd.) Nilumber Mookerjee. Judge of the Sadr Adalut of Cashmere. The 9th March, 1878.
II. The Treaty of 1890.
In 1890 a further agreement was entered into by the two Governments for the maintenance and working of a third line of telegraph along the State Railway from Suchet Carh to Jammu. It was signed at Gulmarg on 3rd July, 1890, by R. Parry NisbetBritish Resident in Kashmir, and by Raja Amar SinghPrime Minister and President of the Jammu-Kashmir State Council, being further approved and confirmed at Simla some three weeks later.
It was a very usual custom for native writers to inscribe the date on the envelopes. The years are, almost invariably, found in one of two formsthe Sambat (or Samvat) year founded in 57 B.C., and the Muhammadan year as used all over the Muhammadan world. The Sambat year is the one more commonly found.
Translation of the Sambat year into “A.D.” is effected by deducting 57. The Sambat year, however, commences on April 12th instead of January 1st, so that there will be an error of one year with letters dated before 13th April.
The most practical formula for changing the Muhammadan year into terms of “A.D.” is to subtract one year for every 33 1/3in other words three years for each centuryand then add 622. Thus:
(a) Muhammadan year 1283(the year of the first Kashmir stamps).
(b) Subtract 36 (for 12 centuries) + 3 (for 83 years) = 39: 1283 − 39 = 1244 : 1244 + 622 = 1866 A.D.