1989 150 Years of Photography

Celebrating 150 years of photography

Date: 11th May 1989
Stamps: 18c Morgan’s Island; 30c Front Street Hamilton; 50c Front Street Hamilton; 60c Crow Lane – Hamiliton Harbour; 70c Hamilton Harbour – Shipbuilding; $1 Dockyard

1989 150 Years of Photography FDC

Type: First Day Cover
Cachet: 150 Years of Photography BERMUDA Official First Day Cover 11 May 1989 Stamped – Postmaster General Bermuda

1989 150 Years of Photography reverse FDC



150 Years of Photography

1839 is the year that has been generally accepted as the date photography was announced to the world. Although there are known images prior to that date, the invention itself was kept a secret. The race to perfect the image was between two men, Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre (French) and William Henry Fox Talbot (English).

Although Daguerre announced his invention first, the Daguerrotype. a positive process, Fox Talbot’s negative-positive process announced a few weeks later is considered to be progenitor to all modern processes.

The Philatelic Bureau wishes to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of photography by releasing this issue.

While the photographs themselves are not 150 years old but date from the 1860’s, they represent some of the earliest known photographs that are both technically sound and of strong visual interest.

Climate has been harsh on many of the early photographs and therefore these which have been stored overseas are a handsome find.

We take this opportunity to thank the International Museum of Photography in Rochester for their kind permission to reproduce some of the orginals.

Photo: Hamilton, Bermuda

Photo: The panorama of St. George’s looking west gives a clear view of an uncluttered harbour and unadulterated picture of Bermuda architecture. The two prints form a panoramic diptych.

18c: This sailboat is moored at Morgan’s Island. Many don’t know, nor indeed have heard of Morgan’s Island today. for good reason. It became part of the ‘land for ship’ swap between the United States and Britain during the Second World War and is now known as the Naval Operating Base (N.O.B.) in Southampton. This is-one of the most tranquil and possibly nostalgic photographs of the collection. The boat is a Bermuda Sloop.

30c: This delightful picture taken on Front Street next to the ferry wharf today, looks east and shows the arched windows of Hyle’s Corner just as they are presently. Note the string of wooden porches from what is Gosling Brothers today, centre left, to the end of the frame, right.

50c: Front Street, Hamilton has been taken by the photographer at wharfside (between No. 1 and 6 Shed today) and looks northwest. A man sitting on an old wooden barrel, two men standing on the wall, the prune trees, the calm water (due to long exposure) makes this a most majestic Hamilton scene, particularly compared to Hamilton today.

60c: Looking across the Foot of the Lane from south to north, this charming little Bermuda Cottage has been the inspiration for many photographers and painters. It is not exactly clear when the building was taken down but certainly it existed into the 1910’s. Of five Royal Palms in the centre of the picture, one still stands today! Note the people posing in the distance.

70c: This boat building scene is taken at the Foot of the Lane, Hamilton Harbour, looking west, almost where Ranee’s boat slip is today. The one man sitting in the stern is quite obviously struggling to keep his balance on dry land! Note the density of cedar trees.

$1: The Dockyard is a view looking south outside the rampart of the keep. Note here that due to slow exposures, the photographer has again had everyone freeze (pose), though very distant, for the photograph.

First Day Cover:- The cluster of palms with Bermuda houses in the background suggest a location in the St. George’s region. It is most unusual to see palms in Bermuda of this configuration and this has now been lost to posterity.

With Acknowledgement to:- Mr Tom Butterfield for liner information and also to The International Museum of Photography, New York, for providing photographic material.


Designer: Mr A D Theobald
Printer: The House of Questa
Printing process: Lithography
Stamp size: 30.56 x 38.00mm
Format: 50 (2 x 25)
Perforation gauge: 14 per 20 mm
Paper: CA Watermarked
Release date: 11 May 1989

1989 150 Years of Photography insert FDC 1989 150 Years of Photography insert reverse FDC

1989 150 Years of Photography Paget FDC

Type: First Day Cover
Cachet: 150 Years of Photography BERMUDA Official First Day Cover 11 May 1989 Stamped – Postmaster Paget Post Office

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