Rhodesian Study Circle: 2020 Annual Conference

Our 32nd Annual Conference and Annual General Meeting is scheduled to be held at Nailcote Hall, Warwickshire once again. This will be the weekend before London 2020.



A number of limited rooms have been made available for Thursday (20 rooms) and Friday & Saturday (45 rooms).

Bed and breakfast rates are as follows:

  • £99 per night for single occupancy.
  • £109 per night for double occupancy.

The Rhodesian Study Circle can assist in setting up the reservation.

Members Displays & Exhibits

For those who are interested in providing a display, exhibit, talk etc. now is the time to get thinking!

Please register your interest to assist with us putting the programme together.


Generally, the programme for an Annual Conference will include an Auction, the RSC Annual General Meeting, the Conference Dinner and the Livermore Prize and Postcard Competitions.

More information will be available closer to the date.

Contact Us

Adrian de Bourbon is our Conference Organiser. If you have any questions or wish to register your interest, please Contact Us.

Postmarks: 1905 – Visit of the British Association for the Advancement of Science

Visit of the British Association for the Advancement of Science

Two special postmarks were used as part of the Visit of the British Association for the Advancement of Science in 1905.

Type I – Tour Cancellation

The Tour Cancellation was used in both South Africa and Rhodesia on the 9th, 11th and 14th of September. The cancels are found in violet up until the 13 Sept, and black for the 14 Sept.

Type II – Opening of the Victoria Falls Bridge

September 12th was the opening day for the Victoria Falls road/rail bridge as well as being public holiday. Therefore, the Victoria Falls Post Office was only open for two hours to commemorate the visit of the Association (for whose benefit the special cancel was used).

  • Adrian de Bourbon

1975 – Doctor Schweitzer Exhibition

Doctor Schweitzer Exhibition

14 January 1975

Albert Schweitzer(1875–1965) was an Alsatian polymath. He was a theologian, organist, writer, humanitarian, philosopher, and physician. A Lutheran, Schweitzer challenged both the secular view of Jesus as depicted by the historical-critical method current at this time, as well as the traditional Christian view. His contributions to the interpretation of Pauline Christianity concern the role of Paul’s mysticism of “being in Christ” as primary and the doctrine of Justification by Faith as secondary.

He received the 1952 Nobel Peace Prize for his philosophy of “Reverence for Life”, becoming the eighth Frenchman to be awarded that prize. His philosophy was expressed in many ways, but most famously in founding and sustaining the Albert Schweitzer Hospital in Lambaréné, in the part of French Equatorial Africa which is now Gabon. As a music scholar and organist, he studied the music of German composer Johann Sebastian Bach and influenced the Organ Reform Movement (Orgelbewegung).

In 1975, RHOBank hosted an exhibition celebrating his birth in both Salisbury and Bulawayo.

Post Cards

  • James Gavin


Members Workshop: B.S.A.C. 1898 Small Arms Specimen Perforations Census

Members Workshop

B.S.A.C. 1898 Small Arms Specimen Perforations Census

An examination of the Small Arms stamps with the ‘SPECIMEN’ perforation reveals an extraordinary variety of types: inverted perforations, reversed perforations, vertical perforations, and combinations such as vertical and reversed. In addition, the numbers of each type produced do not seem to be constant: they range from common to extremely rare.

A guide has been published in the Journal of the Rhodesian Study Circle No.274 for collectors to take census of their collections and abbreviations used in the download.

Julian Schamroth


Recent Updates

Since December, 2015, the Rhodesian Study Circle has transitioned itself from an established philatelic society to one catered for the 21st Century collector. With thousands of images and nearly 4,000 pages of philatelic items, we are combining philately with the colourful history of Central Africa to help support you in building your collections.

If you have any questions, comments, feedback or information, leave a comment below or Contact Us.

! The webmaster will be away from 13 Sept to 31 Oct. There will be no updates during this time but there will be lots upon his return! 




  • Members Workshop
    • Tom Lee – 14/09/1905 card added.

STAMPEX Autumn 2019

Autumn Stampex International is delighted to host The Postal Museum’s display of the associated philately, focusing on four major Airmail anniversaries.

They are delighted to announce that they have some new traders & some old favourites signed up for September Stampex including Art Stamped, Royal Mail, Mark Bloxham, The Royal Philatelic Society and The Postal Museum.


  • Date: 11th – 14th September, 2019
  • Location: Business Design Centre, 52 Upper Street, Islington, London N1 0QH.
  • Website: STAMPEX International


The Philatelic Traders’ Society is delighted to announce the launch of the Stampex Talks; a series of informal talks hosted by some of philately’s leading experts.

With two talks per day, at 11am and 2pm, the full schedule will be announced in due course with current speakers including Stamp Collector Magazine, The Royal Philatelic Society, Stanley Gibbons & The Philatelic Traders Society.

For more information: STAMPEX Talks

Mayflower 400

From November 2019, an ambitious year-long commemoration will mark the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower’s pioneering voyage.

The Mayflower 400 events programme will share the values of migration, tolerance, freedom and democracy and tell the story of a ship and its passengers – a group of people that a remarkable 30 million+ US citizens have descended from.

Stamp Exhibition & Collectors Fair

A one-day event, combining displays of collectable items, with winning Wessex Philatelic Federation competition entries, and information related to the Mayflower story.

There will also be over 20 dealers selling collectables, and representatives from Cavendish (a philatelic auction House) available to provide valuations.


For more information, please Contact Us.

Members Workshop: Tom Lee

Tom Lee

Little is known of Tom Lee and the only potential photo of him is above. The photo shows a T. D. Lee standing in from of the Administrator’s Office in Kalomo, 1906.


Ow ya baas, miningi sterrig mangi, inrona umfaans.

Just changing it to see if it is the correct address. I could not distinctly remember it & thought in case your letter was delayed in transit after redirection it would be as well to my old you have some token of remembrance. So here is the old old sincere wish Nance honest xx given this Xmas to you, served with a brandy cola on a hot plate of ice from your ever loving brother Tom.


← Behind here where I hang out.

Dearest Sis. Did you remember I had another birthday. I’m all well etc. but miningi mange. Best love from Tom.


You bet! I remember Bank Holiday 1901. “Are we nearly there… What price the haystacks. Tom.



Dear Vi, Don’t think because I am sending you 5 p.p.c’s this mail that I’m getting reckless in my old age because I am but as our salary falls due tomorrow I can stand the strain the expenditure will ****. Don’t be astonished tho’ if you get no more for a week.


akee bona inkoosikaas. Another for your collection. Tom.


Dearest Sister, Just a note this week but its better than none. Got your card safe. I’m wee fit and lively as a cricket. You’ll get all the news from Tib (?) as I’ve sent her the usual. Best love from Tom.

PO Box 195 Salisbury belonged to the De Beers Consolidated Mines Ltd.


Dear Vida, Is this anything like Ashington. Its the Wankie Coalfields – the only coalfields in Rhodesia. Runs about £3 10/- per ton landed at Salisbury. Anything like Ashington!!!!!! Its very unhealthy in the wet season. Miningi fever. Yours Tom.

The railway from Bulawayo to Wankie Coalfields was completed September 21st, 1903. On April 25, 1904 it was extended to Victoria Falls.


Have sent off letter by same mail. This is taken out at a small mine. The boys are all Shangaanis, miningi intombis, picannins fools.


Just arrived here on way up. Having ripping ****. Leave tonight for Kalomo. Yrs Loales.


Arrived here safely. This is the sort of transport I came thro’ from the falls with. Had ripping time. Will write next mail. Took six days to trek about 100 miles. Lively eh!! Don’t be afraid to let me have along “sooner than soonest” soon. Tom.


Averages about the same as the alnwick-Cornhill branch.

Dear Vida, This is the way you will travel when you come across to spend that weeks holiday at the Falls etc. What do you think of the idea. Yrs Tom.


To let you see what the Falls are like in full water at the end of the rainy season.


Try and get that hepple address I asked you about early. “Keerimeke mange

kachema” Newtonards Derry or Mount Stewart!!!!!!!

Mount Stewart is a 19th-century house and gardens a few miles outside the town of Newtonards in Northern Ireland. The owner of the house was the Marquesses of Londonderry.

Dearest Sister, How are we. I’m keeping well and still keeping in touch with Tib and one or two others. Have you had this view for your collection before. The Cape-Cairo Railway is only three miles off now. Best of love and greetings. Yours afftnly, Tom.

The railway arrived in Northern Rhodesia in June 1905, when the 150 km long Livingstone–Kalomo line was built in advance of completion in September of that year of the Victoria Falls Bridge from the then Southern Rhodesia to Livingstone. The first wagons on the line were hauled by oxen, then a single locomotive was conveyed in pieces by cableway across the gorge where the bridge was being built to start up operations to Kalomo in advance of the main line connection.


Zambesi Regatta June 05.








K/O Yours ever, Tom




I am down at Livingstone. What do you think of this view! Yrs Tom.


Back to Kalomo once more. Fil. Got your card safely. Yours Tom.


Dear Johnnie, This will show you one of the crews who took part in a boat race on the Zambezi, one of the largest rivers in the world. Uncle Tom.

The first Zambezi Regatta was held on 13th June 1905 to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary year of Livingstone’s first arrival at the Falls and the construction of the Bridge. The regatta was the highlight to three days of sporting events and celebrations aimed at promoting the accessibility of the Falls to the wider world.


Dearest Nance,  Only got back to Kalomo so can’t get time to write you by this mail. All books etc. arrived safely and I’m nearly through already with them. The name I mean was “Howey” not “Oliver”. Regards to all. How is Johnnie. Best love. Tom.


Zambezi Express. 40 miles in 20 Hours. Tom.

By June 1905 three passenger trains a week were running to and from Bulawayo to Victoria Falls. Also on the Rhodesia Railways timetable was the “Zambezi Express” – a through train from Kimberley to Victoria Falls which completed the 450 km trip in under 18 hours, fully equipped with bedding services and dining car.


Wonder if the falls will be kind enough to let me be home with you all in 1907. What a (vital *****) time to look forward to though. I am going back.


My dear Nance, Just a line to let you know that I keep fit and well and hope you do likewise. I had a very quiet time at New Year. I sent you off a letter last week in which I thanked you for Xmas present. Best of love. You aff. Brother Tom.


This is about 4 miles above the falls.

DEAR DAN. Are you still alive?  Have never had an answer to my last letter. Tom.


Si si signora. Buena naghcte. T

25.11.1903SalisburyNance Lee
29.04.1904SalisburyNance Lee (?)
19.07.1904SalisburyVida Rosser
27.07.1904SalisburyVida Rosser
29.07.1904SalisburyVida Rosser
18.08.1904SalisburyNance Lee
26.08.1904Salisbury Nance Lee
20.10.1904SalisburyVida Rosser
22.11.1904SalisburyVida Rosser
03.04.1905Victoria FallsVida Rosser
11.04.1905KalomoVida Rosser
18.05.1905KalomoVida Rosser
23.05.1905KalomoVida Rosser
13.06.1905KalomoNance Lee
26.08.1905KalomoNance Lee
18.09.1905KalomoNance Lee
24.09.1905*UnknownJohnnie Lee
03.10.1905KalomoNance Lee
31.10.1905LivingstoneVida Rosser
05.12.1905KalomoNance Lee
02.01.1906KalomoNance Lee
20.06.1906KalomoAndrew Lee
22.06.1906KalomoVida Rosser
10.12.1906KalomoVida Rosser




MILCOPEX is Wisconsin’s largest stamp show. In conjunction with the Philatelic Group of Greater Southern Africa (PSGSA), the show will celebrate the Pan-African Stamp Exhibition. It will also celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the Christmas Philatelic Club.


On The Road – Introduction to the Seaposts

The American Philatelic Society will host its On the Road course on the day before the show. This course, taught by Gary Loew, will be Introduction to the Seaposts: Ship Letters, Packet Mail, Paquebots and More.

Gary is a specialist collector of Gambia and the 1935 Silver Jubilee issue. In addition to the APS course, he will be one of the speakers during the show.

The Six Triple Eight (documentary)

In February 1945, the U.S. Army sent 855 black women from the Women’s Army Air Corps (WACS) to England and France to clear the backlog of mail in the European Theater of Operations.

The 6888th Central Postal Directory Battallion , known as the Six Triple Eight, was the only all-black female battallion to serve in Europe in World War II.  Confronted with racism and sexism from their own leadership and troops, they served with honor and distinction completing their mission in six months.

By war’s end, the SixTripleEight had cleared over 17 million pieces of backlogged mail ensuring that troops stayed in touch with their loved ones back home.  The last of the women returned home in March 1946.  They were never fully recognized….until now.

Screening times to be announced – check the schedule of events at Milcopex.org for days and times.

Other Talks/Events

General Africa
  • Polish Refugees in Africa, World War I – Regis Hoffman
  • Imperial Airways, England-Africa First Flights 1931-1932 – Walter Herdzik
East Africa
  • Allied Occupation of German East Africa, 1914-1920
  • Sudan – The Postal Stationery
  • Southern African Pioneers in World War II – Peter Thy
West Africa
  • Presenting BIAFRA, Printing and Plate Flaws and ALL – Van Siegling
South Africa
  • South Africa Revenues – 1st Issue
  • Postal Stationery: South Africa Republic 1869-1900
  • Orange Free State Overseas Letter Rates – 1868-UPU
  • Polish Refugees in Africa – Regis Hoffman
  • Stamps and Postal History of the British Colony of Natal – Keith Klugman
  • South African Airletters and Aerogrammes – Gary Brown
Central Africa
  • The Philately of Rhodesia and Nyasaland 1954-1964
  • The Registration Envelopes of the Bechuanalands
  • Northern Rhodesia to North America 1925-1954, and
  • A Typology of Botswana Meter Mark
  • Bechuanaland – Peter Thy
  • Fun with French Congo’s 1900 Pictorial Issue” – Ken Nilsestuen
General Philately
  • Create Your Own Specialised Catalogue Numbering System – Van Siegling
  • Stamps…Who Needs Them? Lessons Learned on the Development of Typologies and Cataloguing the Non-Stamped Postal History of Botswana. – Gordon Smith
  • Solving the Mystery of Specimen Stamp Irregular Blocks – Gary Loew
  • Expertizing: Why Every Stamp and Cover Collector Should Care – Gary Loew
  • HipStamp LIVE event
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