October 26, 2020

2013 Christmas stamps a reminder of the past


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80cThe Christmas 2013 stamp issue, to be released on 5 November, will feature buildings of historical significance in the Cayman Islands.

The buildings are the old Government House in George Town, the Old Homestead in West Bay, the Bodden Town Mission House and the old District Administration building in Cayman Brac. The four denominations for the stamps will be 25₵, 75₵, 80₵ and $1.

Each building will be decorated with Christmas lights and will be graced with a visit from Santa Claus.

$4“This is meant to be a fun and entertaining issue, blending the old structures with modern holiday decorations,” said Postmaster General Sheena Glasgow.

Christmas is a fun time of the year and Stamp Advisory Committee members decided to highlight our architectural heritage, while embracing the decorative spirit of the season,” she added.

The 25₵ stamp is of the Old Government Building, which was constructed in 1908 while Dr. George S.S. Hirst was Commissioner of the Cayman Islands. Not only was the building home to Government offices, but it was also the house for the Administrators/Commissioners and their families. Unfortunately on Sunday, 23 July 1972, the building and most of the records were destroyed by a fire.75cwebtop

The image on the 75₵ stamp is of the Old Homestead (also known as the Pink House). This house was built in 1909 by Sam Ebanks for Calvin and Ida Ebanks. The house was constructed of wattle and daub in the old Caymanian style, which is typical of that era. The house has a cook room out back, a wide porch trimmed with “gingerbread” in front, a sand yard all around, and a tin roof surrounded by gutters piped into a cistern to supply water to the house.

The 80₵ stamp shows the Mission House, which is estimated to be over 150 years old and is referred to by Bodden Towners as the district’s oldest building. It is a two-storied structure that was last owned by the Late Emile Watler, but has become an historic site run by the National Trust. This site rose to prominence in the 1800s and became known as the “Mission House” to early missionaries, teachers and families who lived in the district and contributed to establishing the Presbyterian ministry and school in Bodden Town.

$4The $1 stamp depicts the Old Government Administration Building on Cayman Brac. This building was constructed in 1933 and housed various government agencies including the Post Office, Customs, Immigration and the Court House. Some 50 years later on 3 December 1983 it took up a new role — housing the island’s oldest and most precious artifacts and thus becoming the Cayman Brac Museum.

Minister of Planning, Lands, Agriculture, Housing and Infrastructure Hon. D. Kurt Tibbetts praised CIPS for being innovative with the new stamp issue.  “This issue should have a broad appeal. It is in keeping with the Christmas spirit and at the same time illustrates the Islands’ past. No doubt kids will look at these stamps and see how much we have grown in terms of architecture and the leaflet provides a bit of history and purpose of the buildings, making this issue educational, functional and aesthetically appealing.”

The 2013 Christmas stamps go on sale on 5 November at all post offices. For more information, please contact Philatelic Manager Karen McField 946-4757 or stop by the Philatelic Bureau at the Seven Mile Post Office.


Christmas stamps share the spirit of Christmas and a bit of the Islands’ past.



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