British Bechuanaland

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Tribal conflicts in the area which became Bechuanaland in the early years of the 1880s led to the intervention of Boers from the Transvaal who established the independent republics of Goshen and Stellaland. In 1884 the British Government, following appeals from local chiefs for protection, decided to annex both Goshen and Stellaland and a force under Sir Charles Warren was sent from the Cape. On 20th September 1885, Stellaland and other territory to the south of the Molopo River was constituted the Crown Colony of British Bechuanaland. Click here to see a map.

On 2nd December 1885, Cape of Good Hope stamps overprinted “British Bechuanaland” were placed on sale at the Vryburg post office. Followed in later years by various overprints on the Jubilee series and the “Unappropriated Die” series.

On 16 November 1895, British Bechuanaland was annexed to the Cape of Good Hope and ceased to have its own stamps, but they remained in use in the Protectorate until superseded in 1897. In fact the Postmaster-General of the Cape Colony had assumed control of the Bechuanaland postal service on 1st April 1893.

Catalogue Listing >>
A specialised catalogue listing by each value, detailing essays, proofs, varieties, marginal settings and so on, with their market values.

Postmarks >>
A specialised catalogue listing each of the cancels known in use in British Bechunaland.

References >>
A list of reference works that are much use to the Bechuanaland collector.