BAC DE LA QUAIÉME pontoon ferry

Pontoon ferries carry vehicles across rivers and lakes and are widely used in less-developed countries with large rivers where the cost of bridge construction is prohibitive. One or more vehicles are carried on a pontoon with ramps at either end for vehicles to drive on and off., The pontoon ferry on the stamp is motorised and able to be steered independently like a boat.
I have not any info or details on the pontoon ferry depict on the stamp.

New Caledonia 1989 180f sg 864, scott 618.


For the Space Exploration: 30th Anniversary of NASA. The Marshal Islands issued in 1988 four stamps, of which one depict a vessel, comparing stamp with photo’s it must be one of the Diver class rescue and salvage ships. I can only find one ship of this class used as a tracking and recovery ship, she is the USS PRESERVER (ARS-8). Most probably this ship is depict. I can’t find conformation that she was used by the recovery of the three PRIME SV-5 at the Marshall Islands.
Key to the program was getting a prototype vehicle into space and determining if its shape could survive the heat of reentry, maneuver to a landing point off the ballistic path it was launched upon, and keep its crew alive. Three PRIME SV-5Ds were launched, all successfully from Vandenberg APB atop a Convair Atlas, to near orbital speed, downward range to Kwajalein: #1 on Dec. 21, 1966; #2 on Mar. 5, 1967; and #3 on Apr. 18, 1967.
From the moment of launch, control of each mission passed to Kwajalein. Technicians at Kwajalein controlled and tracked operation o29/08/06the SV-5D in space using its own onboard rockets, and adjusted the flight path to achieve a pin-point landing off the beaches of Kwajalein. While all three launches were successful, only vehicle #3 was recovered. Tracking and recovery ships of the US space command and helicopters permanently based at Kwajalein effected recovery and returned the vehicle to laboratories on Kwajalein for initial inspection. After thorough study of the vehicle and analysis of data, the Air Force pronounced the program a complete success and placed the SV- 5D on public display at the Air Force Museum, Wright-Patterson APB, Ohio. A fourth vehicle that had been readied was never launched. A follow-up mission was declared redundant; manned testing was commenced. ... ile10.html

Built as a rescue and salvage ship by Basalt Rock Company at Napa, California for the USA Navy.
26 October 1942 laid down.
01 April 1943 launched as the USS PRESERVER (ARS-8). Christened by Mrs. Walter F. LaFranz as one of the Diver class.
Displacement 1,630 standard, 1,970 ton full load. Dim.65.07 x 12.5 x 4.37m. (draught).
Powered diesel electric by four Caterpillar Tractor Co diesel engines delivering power to two electro motors each 2,780 hp., twin screws, speed 15 knots.
Armament: Two 40mm Mark 68 AA guns, four 0.50 cal. machine guns.
Crew 87/120 men.
11 January 1944 commissioned.

USS PRESERVER (ARS-8) was a Diver-class rescue and salvage ship commissioned by the U.S. Navy for service in World War II. She was responsible for coming to the aid of stricken vessels.
PRESERVER (ARS–8), a salvage ship, was laid down by Basalt Rock Company in Napa, California, 26 October 1942; launched 1 April 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Walter F. LaFranz; and commissioned 11 January 1944, Lt. Comdr. A. T. Ostrander in command.
World War II service
After shakedown out of San Francisco, California, PRESERVER steamed for Pearl Harbor 26 February in company with PC–1139. The next day she was ordered to come about and to report to Port Director, San Pedro, California, for orders. She was once again underway for Pearl Harbor 5 March, with YOG–18 in tow. Arriving Pearl Harbor 16 March, she reported for duty with Service Squadron 2.
Saipan operations
Hawaiian operations and yard availability took PRESERVER through April. Steaming for Majuro Atoll 10 May, she arrived two weeks later and commenced salvage operations between Majuro, Eniwetok, and Kwajalein with Service Squadron 10. She was a unit of Capt. S. E. Peck's Service and Salvage Group during the capture of Saipan (15–21 June 1944), providing salvage services off the west coast of that island. When Japanese snipers set off an ammunition dump near the beach at 2100 June 20, PRESERVER sent a fire-fighting party ashore to render assistance.
PRESERVER worked at clearing Tanapag Harbor, Saipan 9–23 July. She then worked in the Tinian area. By 12 August she was at Eniwetok, and the next day she steamed for Pearl Harbor, arriving 22 August for upkeep and availability. Repairs kept her at Pearl Harbor until 11 September, when she steamed for Eniwetok, arriving the 28th.
Damaged by bomb
She was at Seeadler Harbor, Manus, 6 October, and departed five days later for Leyte Gulf. A bomb penetrated her hull 20 October, flooding her motor room and causing loss of power throughout the ship. Battle damage repairs necessitated calls at Hollandia, New Guinea; Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides; and finally at Pearl Harbor from 5 February 1945 through the following July.
After final repairs PRESERVER stood out of Pearl Harbor 8 August, bound for Kwajalein Atoll, the Marshalls. She made further calls at Guam and Okinawa, and the second week of October she operated at Wakayama, Honshū, Japan.
After the close of hostilities, PRESERVER participated in salvage operations during the weapons tests at Bikini Atoll, and then decommissioned at San Diego, California, 23 April 1947.
Reactivated during Korean War. She recommissioned at San Diego 1 December 1950, and in January 1951 transferred from the Pacific Fleet to Commander, Service Force, Atlantic. She arrived Norfolk, her new home port, 20 February.
Arctic operations
Since assuming duties out of Norfolk, PRESERVER has performed salvage, rescue, and towing assignments along the Atlantic coast. From 1952 through 1962, she deployed annually for Arctic operations which took her to Greenland, Labrador, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia as duty salvage ship. She also assisted in the MSTS resupply missions to Greenland.
Supporting search for the THRESHER
In 1962 PRESERVER conducted towing operations to Mayport, Florida, and to Bermuda. She was then assigned to serve in the recovery fleet during the second manned orbital flight. From April through August 1963, she conducted TRIESTE support operations as the bathyscaph searched the ocean floor for USS THRESHER (SSN-593), lost 10 April. The bathyscaph finally discovered debris that was definitely identified, and the search was concluded 5 September.
Final operation
Further Atlantic Ocean operations were followed by a Mediterranean deployment February–June 1964. In March 1968 PRESERVER pumped out of the bow of Liberian tanker SS OCEAN EAGLE a cargo of oil that threatened major pollution of San Juan, Puerto Rico, harbour. She also extinguished a fire aboard British merchant vessel SS PIZARRO 11 April 1968 in San Juan Harbor. She then deployed to the Mediterranean 20 May 1968, returning to Little Creek, Virginia, 2 September. Into 1970 she continued to serve the Fleet as a salvage ship of Service Squadron 8 out of Little Creek, Virginia.
In January 1986 she was tasked with leading the salvage and recovery efforts of the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. During the transit to Port Canaveral the ship recovered the nose piece of the external fuel tank. The PRESERVER was on station through April 1986. On 7 March 1986, divers from the USS PRESERVER using sonar located what they believed to be the crew compartment (confirming it during a dive the next day) and commenced recovery operations of the fallen astronauts. John Devlin made the confirmation dive to verify that the wreckage was in fact the crew compartment."Evidence hints that astronauts were alive during fall". NBC News. On 9 March, NASA announced the finding to the press. The ship received a Navy Unit Commendation for the operation. She was decommissioned on 30 September 1986, and recommisioned the following year.
After Hurricane Hugo, the PRESERVER was sent to Puerto Rico to aid in recovery of a sunken ship. The ship drove through Hugo en route to Guantanomo bay, Cuba where it picked up two barges loaded with telephone poles to take to Puerto Rico. It performed the first tandem tow in 40 years of US Naval...

JAPANESE SAMPANS on Hokusai paintings

The Maldives used a set of stamps and a miniature sheet in 1989 with paintings from the Japanese artist Hokusai:
Most stamps show a sampan watercraft. A “sampan” is a light boat of the coastal waters, rivers and harbours of the Far East. Harbour sampans have a covering amidships and are powered by sculling over the stern, others on coastal waters use a small matting sail on a single mast.
In Japan the term applied to a range of crafts, from 1 man boats to 3 masted vessels. Generally have a shallow deadrise from a broad, flat keel. Hard chines. Bottom rakes up to a shallow, square transom; on some the bottom planks along each extend the transom to join the side planking. Sharp bow with long straight, raking stern; some with recurved stemhead, others greatly elongated. One-man boats sculled from the port quarter or over the transom; larger boats employ multiple sculls, working from both sides. Those that sailed set square sails from 1 – 3 masts. The “sampans” now mostly motorized.

The paintings after the stamps were designed you can find on: ... Mount_Fuji

Source: Internet and Aak to Zumbra a dictionary of the World’s Watercraft.
Maldives 1989 50la/12r sg1319/25 and sgMS1328, scott 1325/1332.


This miniature sheet is design after a painting made by the Japanese painter Kunitora around 1800, and most probably after he has seen a painting from the Dutch painter Maarten van Heemskerk 1498 -1574 of the Colossus
Around 1800 the Dutch VOC had still a trading post at Dejima, Nagasaki and the only European country with a trading post in Japan. The trading post was the only contact Japan did have with the western world at that time.
The miniature sheet shows us the Colossus of Rhodes seen through Japanese eyes and most probably a Dutch VOC ship in the margin entering the port. The VOC ships were not sailing to the Mediterranean and the ship must be an imagination of the painter of a western ship he did known.
Grenadines of St Vincent 1989 $6 sgMS?, scott ?.

Guernsey Coast

The island of Guernsey with its sandy beaches, cliff walks, seascapes and offshore islands has been a popular tourist destination since the Victorian days.
Our latest issue of self stick stamps are a nod to the heady hey days of island tourism. The images on each set features a panoramic scene, which have been treated in such a way, that they perhaps remind us of the fashionable posters of the era.
We have five GY rate stamps for letters and postcards posted in the Bailiwick and also five UK stamps for letters and postcards sent to the UK, Jersey or Isle of Man and each shows an artist's impression of Guernsey's spectacular coastline.
GY (44p) x 5
On the GY stamps we see the west coast of the island viewed from Fort Grey slipway around to Rocquaine Bay, panning right all the way back to Fort Grey itself.
UK (59p) x 5
The UK stamps show a panoramic view of the East Coast of Guernsey from the Albert Marina to the careening hard and the beginning of Glategny Esplanade located in the island's capital, St Peter Port.

Guernsey Philatelic


250 years ago on July 2nd 1767, a young boy high in the crow’s nest of the HMS SWALLOW, shouted "Land Ahoy" and Pitcairn's Island was first sighted by a European. Midshipman Robert Pitcairn, aged just 15, was praised by his captain, Philip Carteret, and had the Island named after him. History poses the question that in 1606 the Portuguese explorer Pedro Fernandez de Quirós first sighted Henderson Island and possibly Pitcairn but the consensus is that this may have been a sighting of another of the Pitcairn Group. Robert Pitcairn's sighting has stood and the Island remains a British Overseas Territory.
Robert Pitcairn was born in Fife in 1752 and became a midshipman in the Royal Navy at the age of 14. His father John was a major in the Royal Marines and commanded forces in the battles of Lexington and Bunker Hill during the American Revolutionary War.

The young sailor first served on the HMS EMERALD and then joined the SWALLOW viewtopic.php?f=2&t=6118&p=16390&hilit=swallow#p16390 in July 1766. The ship's pay-book listed him as aged 19, but baptismal records show he was only 14. The ship, a 14-gun sloop, sailed under Carteret on a voyage of exploration in the South Pacific, accompanying HMS DOLPHIN. The two ships were parted shortly after sailing through the Strait of Magellan with Carteret taking a more southerly route through the Pacific Ocean, failing to find much new land, while DOLPHIN took a more northerly route and became the first clearly documented European vessel to land at Tahiti in June 1767.

On Thursday, 2 July 1767, Pitcairn was the first person on the SWALLOW to spot an island in the Pacific. The island was described by Carteret as "small high uninhabited island not above 4 or 5 miles round ... scarce better than a large rock in the Ocean". High volcanic cliffs prevented the voyagers landing on the island. Carteret erroneously recorded Pitcairn's location at 25°02'S 133°21'W 25.033°S 133.350°W. These incorrect co-ordinates meant that the island could not be found again by later voyages as it lies 327.4 kms (203.4 miles) further east. The 3° longitude error may be explained by Carteret sailing without the benefit of the new marine chronometer.

This error was used to good effect by Fletcher Christian and the Bounty mutineers who, realising the mistake, established residence on Pitcairn with the plan to avoid detection.

Robert Pitcairn arrived back in England on the SWALLOW in March 1769. He left the SWALLOW in May 1769, and joined the HMS AURORA, a 32-gun frigate, commanded by Captain Thomas Lee. They sailed from England in September and called at the Cape of Good Hope in December 1769. The ship made for the Comoros Islands but disappeared without trace. It may have been sunk in a tropical storm, or wrecked on the Star Bank off the south coast of Madagascar in early 1770.
Please Note:

Collectors may be interested to note that the illustration of Robert Pitcairn in formal attire is a stylised depiction by Lucas Kukler. Our research failed to find any image of the young midshipman. The designer took the age of the sailor and an image of his father and created what we consider a remarkable “possible” likeness.

Pitcairn Island 2017 £3.00 sgMS?, scott?


The fifth issue from the Maritime Malta series consists of three stamps which feature vessels dating back to the Order of St John. Towards the beginning of the 18th century, the Order adopted a squadron of square-rigged warships known as 'third rate ships-of- the-line' and armed with 56 iron cannon spread on two decks. The heavier ones were placed on the quarterdeck while the lighter ones were mounted on the forecastle and on the poop deck. These vessels defended the Order from the Barbary corsairs in the Mediterranean and also supported the Order when venturing into the Atlantic Ocean.

The 0.63 stamp depicts a model of the third rate ships-of-the-line, commissioned for use by the Order's Nautical School. This large mid-18th century model is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum. Unfortunately, the builder is unknown

The 1.85 depicts the SANT ANNA carrack, which was the largest warship that was commissioned by the Navy of the Order. The SANT ANNA was built and fitted out in Nice in 1552. This enormous war machine was six decks high and its spacious hold carried enough provision to last for up to six months. The SANT ANNA was heavily armed with enough cannon to attack and destroy a fleet of fifty galleys. The built-up model, constructed by Joseph Abela, is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum. More info on the SANT ANNA is given on: viewtopic.php?f=2&t=7692

The 3.59 stamp depicts another third rate model. It is referred to as 'an exploded model' since its decks are removable to illustrate the internal arrangement and fitted with the standing rigging. This period model was also commissioned for the Order's Nautical School and is on display at the Malta Maritime Museum. The model builder is unknown.

Source: Wopa.
Malta 2017 0.63,0185,3.59 Euro sg ?, scott?

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