1990 – 1999

Stamps of the Year 1990

10 January 1990: 350th Anniversary of the Introduction of Sugar Cane in Mauritius

On 10 January 1990 a set of 4 postage stamps was issued to mark the 350th anniversary of the introduction of sugar cane in Mauritius. It was introduced in 1639 by the Dutch Governor Adriaan Van der Stel, from Java. It was first grown in the region of Ferney. Two sugar processing plants were established by 1641 but was soon abandoned by 1652. The cultivation of sugar cane however continued for the production of arrak, an alcoholic beverage similar to rum. By then end of the 17th century Jan Bockelberg, a junior surgeon of the colony, produced both white and black sugar.

During the French period, sugar cane production was re-instated under Governor Mahé de Labourdonnais. In 1810, sugar cane covered 10% of the island under crops. Sir Robert Farqhuar, the first British Governor felt sugar was an important asset for Mauritius and the area under cane production was increased. The expansion of sugar cane slowed down in 1835 due to shortage of labour, following the abolition of slavery but with the arrival of Indian immigrants relaunched production. New varieties were introduced, roads and railways were constructed to facilitate transport. At the turn of the 20th century the sugar industry suffered from the fall in world prices. Reforms were undertaken and production was centralised and mechanised and the number of factories were reduced. Preferential access to the EU market gave Mauritius a guaranteed market for its sugar production under the Sugar Protocol.

1990 10 Jan - 350th anniversary of intro of sugar cane

The set comprising postage stamps of the:

  1. 30cs (cane cutting);
  2. 40cs, an ancient factory 1867;
  3. Rs 1, a mechanical loading of sugar cane;
  4. Rs 25, a modern sugar factory.

1990 – Centenaire (1890 – 1990) de la Municipalité de Curepipe

A special commemorative cover, with a Rs. 8 stamp, was issued to celebrate the Centenary of the Municipality of Curepipe. It is believed that the name of Curepipe was first mentioned in 1817. At that time, it was a wooden marshy land with Azalea plants all around. With only a few inhabitants, it was mainly a relay station utilised by stage coaches plying between Port-Louis and Grand Port. In the 1850s, some industries began to set up there. A sawmill, a soap factory and a brewery were established, as well as 2 hotels, the Furcy Hotel and the Victoria Hotel. The inauguration of a railway station in 1865 gave an impetus to the development of Curepipe.

In 1867, an epidemic of malaria caused an exodus of the inhabitants of Port-Louis towards the upper plateau, and this gave birth to the town of Curepipe. The foundation stone of St Thérèse Church was laid in 1869, and 2 primary schools were opened. The first slaughter house was built in 1876 and the market in 1878. The status of town was granted by Ordinance 12 in 1889. The foundation stone of the Town Hall of Curepipe was laid on 4th February 1902. The architectural design of this beautiful wooden building reflects the Colonial Style of the 19th Century.

1990 - centenaire de la municipalite de Curepipe

29 March 1990: 60th Birthday of the Prime Minister Sir Anerood Jugnauth, Official First Day Cover

On 29 March 1990, a set of 5 postage stamps were issued to commemorate the 60th birth anniversary of the Prime Minister, Sir Aneerood Jugnauth. He was born in the village of Palma in a family involved in sugarcane plantation.

1990 29 March - 60th anniversaire SAJ

The stamps depicts various sceneries of the life of SAJ and key achievements under his prime ministership.

  1. The 40cs stamp represents an industrial estate;
  2. Rs. 40c shows SAJ at his desk;
  3. Rs. 1.50 shows the stock exchange symbol;
  4. Rs. 4.00 shows the Prime Minister with late Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam;
  5. Rs 10 shows the Prime Minister welcoming the Pope in Rodrigues.

5 July 1990: Anniversaries of Local Events

On 5 July 1990, a set of 4 postage stamps were released commemorating the four following local events.

1990 5 July - Anniversaries of local events

The stamps show:

  1. A 30cs stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the death of Julien Desjardins, a Mauritian natularist born of 27 July 1799 on the family estate of Argy, Flacq. He showed an early interest in natural sciences and studied Botany, Meteorology and Zoology. Upon his return to Mauritius after his studies in France in 1824, he started to collect and draw rare fishes for Curvier. The latter expressed his warm thanks and gratitude to Desjardins in his book “Histoire Naturelle de Poissons”. He was one of the founders of the “Société Histoire Naturelle” in 1829 and served as the secretary for 10 years;
  2. A 35cs stamp to celebrate the silver jubilee of the Mauritius Broadcasting Corporation. In September 1963 an agreement was signed with Thomson Television International Ltd empowering them to act as Managing Agents for providing the island with a Television Service. The first television transmission in black and white was aired on 8th Feb. 1965. Subsequently, colour tv was introduced on 24 December 1975 and the service was extended to Rodrigues on 7 November 1988;
  3. A Rs. 6 stamp to mark the 250th anniversary of Line Barracks. The construction of Line Barracks started in 1740 under the Governorship of Mahé de Labourdonnais and is one of the oldest building in Port-Louis. During colonization, it was used for the lodging of troops and to accommodate regiments on their way to India. At some point, it was even used for the storage of grains. When the British took possession of the island in 1810, the Line Barracks already comprised several buildings. On 22 March 1922, the Police Headquarters were moved to the Line Barracks;
  4. A Rs. 8 stamp to celebrate the Centenary of the Municipality of Curepipe. It is believed that the name of Curepipe was first mentioned in 1817. At that time, it was a wooden marshy land with Azalea plants all around. With only a few inhabitants, it was mainly a relay station utilised by stage coaches plying between Port-Louis and Grand Port. In the 1850s, some industries began to set up there. A sawmill, a soap factory and a brewery were established, as well as 2 hotels, the Furcy Hotel and the Victoria Hotel. The inauguration of a railway station in 1865 gave an impetus to the development of Curepipe. In 1867, an epidemic of malaria caused an exodus of the inhabitants of Port-Louis towards the upper plateau, and this gave birth to the town of Curepipe. The foundation stone of St Thérèse Church was laid in 1869, and 2 primary schools were opened. The first slaughter house was built in 1876 and the market in 1878. The status of town was granted by Ordinance 12 in 1889. The foundation stone of the Town Hall of Curepipe was laid on 4th February 1902. The architectural design of this beautiful wooden building reflects the Colonial Style of the 19th Century.

28 September 1990: International Literacy Year, Official First Day Cover

1990 28 Sep - International literacy year

29 November 1990: Mauritius New Definitive Part 2, Official First Day Cover

1990 29 Nov - New Definitive Part II

Stamps of the Year 1991

30 April 1991: 300th Anniversary of the First Settlement in Rodrigues (1691) – The Mauritius Philatelic Society Cover

1991 30 April - 300th anniv of first settlement in Rodrigues - SC MPS

17 June 1991: 65th Birthday of H.M Queen Elizabeth II & 70th Birthday of HRH the Prince Philip Duke of Edinburgh, Official First Day Cover

On 17 June 1991, a set of 2 stamps were issued to mark the 65th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and 70th birthday of His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburg. The Rs. 8 stamp shows Prince Phillip, while the Rs 8 stamp depicts Queen Elizabeth II. 

1991 17 June - 65th Anniv QE II

18 August 1991: Anniversaries and Events in Mauritius, Official First Day Cover

On 16 August 1991, a set of 4 postage stamps were issued to mark the following anniversaries and events.

1991 16 Aug - Anniversaries and events

The set of stamps show:

  1. A 40cs stamp to mark the silver jubilee of the City of Port-Louis. Port-Louis owes much of its development to Governor Mahé de Labourdonnais, who developed Port-Louis as a good harbour to shelter ships and to carry out trade. To develop Port Louis into a town, docks, defences, batteries, forts, a hospital, a Government House and an aquaduct bringing water from Grand River North West to Port Louis were built. In 1916, a great fire broke out, destroying the principal shops and warehouses and public properties. The status of City was conferred on Port-Louis on 25 Aug. 1966;
  2. A Rs. 4 stamp for the 150th anniversary of the death of Colonel Draper. Edward Draper was born in Oxfordshire on 22 October 1776. In 1796 he became Lieutenant, then Captain in the British Army, and he served in West Indies and Egypt. In 1803, as a brevet major, he announced the capture of St Lucia. In defence of Sir Thomas Picton in 1804, he was jailed for 3 months for libel. He retired from the army as Colonel. In 1812, he came to Mauritius. In the same year, he founded the Mauritius Turf Club and initiated the first horse races. For a short period of time, he was appointed Chief Secretary in Bourbon. Back to Mauritius, he served as Chief of Police, Colonial Secretary, Collector of Customs, Civil Engineer, Registrar of Slaves, Magistrate and Colonial Treasurer. Draper supported the Mauritian planters against the British officials in respect of slave trade and the abolition of slavery issues. Dismissed by Governor Nicolay, he went back to England in 1832 but came back to Mauritius in 1836. He died on 22 April 1841 and was buried in Rivière Noire;
  3. Rs. 6 stamp for the 175th anniversary of Joseph Osmond Barnard, who described himself as an engraver and a miniature painter. In 1842, Barnard engraved on steel a drawing of the Grand Hotel d’Europe. In virtue of the General Regulations of the Post Office Department published on 13 Jan. 1847, he received an order to engrave a plate to print of one penny and two penny postage stamps. However, he engraved “Post Office” instead of “Post Paid” on his printing plate. Some of the stamps were used on the invitation of the Ball of Lady Gomm. Because the engraving was incorrect, only a few stamps were printed, others were destroyed before being sued. Later Barnard produced other plates with the correct engravings and proceeded with the printing of more postage stamps ;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp showing the Spitfire, to commemorate the efforts of Mauritius for the Fight of Freedom (World War II – 1939 – 45). The colony of Mauritius contributed to the Fight of Freedom in numerous ways. Funds were raised through public subscription and a horse race was held on 26 Oct 1942 for the purchase of a pool of aircrafts for the Royal Air Force. Tax on outgoing sugar was also increased by the Chamber of Agriculture for the same purpose. In recognition of the contribution of Mauritius, one of the aircrafts was called Mauritius II. The aircraft, a Spitfire Mark II, started operating on 18 April 1941 and was used by various Air Force squadrons and transferred finally to the operational unit on 5 June 1942. It crashed 2 months later in Glamorgan, South Wales.

4 October 1991: Mauritius Protection of the Environment, Official First Day Cover

1991 4 Oct - Protection of the environment

15 November 1991: Butterflies, Official First Day Cover

1991 15 Nov - Butterflies

13 December 1991: Islands of the State of Mauritius, Official First Day Cover

1991 13 Dec - Islands of the state of Mauritius

Stamps of the Year 1992

20 February 1992: M.S.P.C.A Animal world philatelic and numismatic exhibition: Mauritius Philatelic Society cover

1992 20 Feb - MSPCA Animal world - MPS SC

12 March 1992: Republic of Mauritius, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius attained full political independence on 12th March 1992, when we became a Republic (although we remained in the Commonwealth). The President replaced to Governor-General. Political power remains with the Prime Minister. On that occasion, an official first day cover was released. 

1992 12 Mrch - Proclamation of Republic

The set of four postage stamps illustrate on:

  1. 40cs Sir Veerasamy Ringadoo, who became the first President of the Republic, with Le Réduit as a background;
  2. Rs. 4 stamp, illustrating the Prime Minister Sir Aneerood Jugnauth, with the Government House in the background;
  3. Rs. 8 stamp featuring the Mauritian population, a mosaic of multiculturalism, illustrated by a rainbow; and
  4. Rs 10. stamp, featuring the Coats of Arms of Mauritius, with the initials RM, for Republic of Mauritius.

The envelope shows the National flower of Mauritius, the Trochetia. 

20 April 1992: P400 La Boudeuse, Mauritius Philatelic Society Cover

1992 20 April - P400 La boudeuse MPs SC

4 May 1992: Inauguration of Camp de Masque Pavé Post Office, Special Cover

1992 4 May - Inauguration of Camp de Masque PO_SC

3 July 1992: Earth Summit – Rio de Janeiro Brazil, Special Cover 1

1992 3 June - Earth Summit SC_2

3 July 1992: Earth Summit – Rio de Janeiro Brazil, Special Cover 2

1992 3 July - Earth Summit SC_1

19 July 1992: La Mer – Mauritius Philatelic Society Cover

1992 19 July - La Mer MPS SC

25 June 1992: 8th African Athletics Championships, Official First Day Cover

1992 25 June - 8th African Atheletics championships

13 August 1992: Local events, Official First Day Cover

1992 13 Aug - Local events

29 October 1992: Bank of Mauritius Silver Jubilee, First Day Cover

On 29 October 1992, a set of 4 stamps were issued on the occasion of the silver jubilee of the Bank of Mauritius (BoM). The BoM Ordinance 1966 provided for the establishment of the Bank of Mauritius as the country’s central bank. The Bank started operations in 1967 at a time when Mauritius was still a British colony.

1992 29 Oct - Bank of Mauritius Silver Jubilee

The stamps show:

  1. 40cs shows the BoM building, located at the corner of Sir William Newton Street and Royal Street. The building was inaugurated on 31 March 1972;
  2. Rs 4 shows the Dodo Gold Bullion Coin, issued on 12 November 1988, a landmark in the history of coinage in Mauritius. The Dodo Gold coins are available in separate units containing respectively one ounce, a quarter once, and one-tenth ounce of pure gold. They reflect the country’s drive at entering a market which has been the exclusive preserve of a few countries;
  3. Rs 8 shows Mauritian bank notes. Once of the principal function of the Central Bank is to ensure the adequate supply of notes and coins. In 1934, a Board of Commissioners of Currency was set up to issue for the first time, the Mauritian Rupee currency notes, under a fixed Sterling-Rupee standard. On 4th Sep. 1967, the Bank of Mauritius issued a first set of 4 banknotes in denominations of Rs. 50, Rs 25, Rs 10 and Rs 5 respectively. As from 18 Sep 1985, taking cognisance of the changing needs of the business community, new bank notes with a new series comprising of 8 denominations, namely Rs 1000, Rs 500, Rs 200, Rs 100, Rs 50, Rs 20, Rs 10, Rs 5.
  4. Rs. 15 stamp shows the foreign exchange reserves between 1967 and 1992. These reserves are generated from exports of goods and services. The BoM manages those reserves. 

Stamps of the Year 1993

12 March 1993: 25th Anniversary of National Day, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius became independent on 12th March 1968 and acceded to the status of Republic on 12 March 1992. The FDC marks few main activities over the past 25 years.

1993 12 March - 25th anniversary National Day

Four stamps were issued:

  1. 30cs stamp depicts housing development, in particular the housing estates built in different parts of the country;
  2. 40cs stamp shows the considerable changes in economic conditions of the country, through GDP increase as a result of fast industrialisation;
  3. Rs. 3 symbolises the colours of the Mauritian flag. Red represents the flowering flamboyant, blue the sea that surrounds the island; yellow the stretches of sandy beaches and green the luxuriant vegetation and sugar cane fields;
  4. Rs. 4 depicts democracy with a representation of the ballot box;
  5. Rs. 15 shows the highest national award in the form of an Order, Medal, Badge or Certificate. The highest order depicted on the stamp is the Grand Commander of the Star and Key of the Indian Ocean and is conferred on the President.

The FDC shows the National Assembly, seat of Government, situated at the Government House in Port-Louis.

4 April 1993: Centenaire de l’Ordre Maçonnique Mixte International 1803 – 1993, Special Cover

1993 4 April - centenaire de l'ordre maconnique mixte international

14 June 1993: The Silver Jubilee of Air Mauritius, Official First Day Cover

Air Mauritius, the national air carrier was incorporated on the 14th June 1967, a year before independence. This issue marks the silver jubilee of the company.

1993 14 June - Silver jubilee Air Mauritius

It is composed of 4 stamps:

  1. 40cs, representing a Bell 206B Jet Ranger helicopter, put in operations by Air Mauritius in 1985;
  2. Rs. 3, showing the taking off of a Boeing 747 SP, in operation since 1984. The aircraft was used for the first non-stop flights between Mauritius, Paris, Rome and Zurich;
  3. Rs. 4, showing an ATR 42, used for inter-island services, linking Mauritius to Reunion Isl. and Rodrigues. The plane was put in service in 1986;
  4. Rs. 10, showing a Boeing 767-200 ER, baptised the City of Port-Louis. This aircraft held the world record in 1988 for the longest non-stop distant.

The FDC shows Air Mauritius route map.

The Silver Jubilee of Air Mauritius: Souvenir Sheet

MS Silver Jubilee Air Mtius

15 April 1993: Ah-Lan Lam Yan Foon Stamp Exhibition – Mauritius Philatelic Society Cover

This special cover was issued by the Mauritius Philatelic Society on the occasion of a private collector’s stamp exhibition at the Municipality of Port-Louis.

1993 - Ah-Lan Lam Yan Foon exhib SC

26 January 1993: 400th Anniversary of the Customs Co-operation Council 1953 – 1993, International Customs Day, Special Cover

A special cover issued to mark the 40th anniversary of the Customs Cooperation Council. The two stamps are from definitive issues of the series on the protection of the environment.

1993 26 Jan - 40th Anniv of customs council SC

18 August 1993: Inauguration of Monneron Hill Post Office, Special Cover

A special cover issued to mark the opening of the Monneron Hill Post Office on 18 August 1993.

1993 18 Aug - Inauguration of Monneron Hill PO - SC

16 October 1993: 5e Sommet de la Francophonie, Official First Day Cover

A set of 4 postal stamps was issued to commemorate the holding in Mauritius of the 5e Sommet de la Francophonie from 16 to 18 October 1993. The background colour of these stamps represent the Mauritian national colours.

1993 16 Oct - 5e Sommet de la Francophonie

The four denominations are :

  1. Re. 1 depicts the main stages of the francophone presence in Mauritius, including during the British colonisation from 1810 to 1968. Article VIII of the “Acte de Capitulation” is featured on the stamp;
  2. Rs. 5 illustrates a picturesque aspect of Mauritius, with place names and signboards reminding of the links with France;
  3. Rs. 6 depicts a law bulletin of 1807 where the french civil code – known as Code Napoleon – was extended to all overseas territories of France, including Mauritius. The seal of the Minister of Justice is also shown;
  4. Rs. 7 shows elements of the francophone press. In 1773 the first newspaper was printed in Mauritius. Until 1982, le Cernéen, established in 1832 was the oldest french language newspaper.

The FDC lists out the names of some of our francophone authors.

29 October 1993: Centenary of de la Salle (R.C.A) School, Special Cover

De la Salle (RCA) School was founded in Port-Louis on 1 November 1893 by ‘les Frères des Ecoles Chrétiennes’. It bears the name of the founding father of this brotherhood – St. Jean Baptiste de la Salle. The founder and director of de la Salle School was Brother Felix de Valois, the first Mauritian to join the ‘Frères des Ecoles Chrétiennes’. In 1948, the management of the school, until then led by the Catholic church, was passed to laics, who perpetuated the pedagogical and administrative methods instituted by the brotherhood.  

1993 29 Oct - Centenary De la Salle School - SC

25 November 1993: Telecommunications, Official First Day Cover

This issue of 4 commemorative postage stamps on Telecommunications marks the celebration of the 100 years of  external telecommunications by Mauritius Telecoms.

1993 25 Nov - Telecommunications

The set of stamps depicts the evolution of telecoms in Mauritius:

  1. 40cs stamp depicts the laying submarine cables between Mauritius and Seychelles by S.S Scotia, marking the first external communications with the rest of the world in 1893. The submarine cable can still be seen at Cassis Station;
  2. Rs. 3 shows the morse key and code, invented by Samuel Morse in 1844. The first message from Mauritius was keyed on the Mauritius submarine telegraph to the Majesty Queen Victoria on 25 November 1893 at 14.45 hours and a reply was received at 17.15 hours;
  3. Rs. 4, shows Signal Mountain station, which serves as a relay station for microwave links between Mauritius and Seychelles;
  4. Rs. 8, showing a communication satellite, in operation in Mauritius since 1975.

The FDC depicts Cassis Station.

9 March 1994: Mammals, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius has a limited species of natural wildlife most of which were introduced by early settlers and visitors. With the introduction of sugar cane, forested lands diminished considerably. Animal species found on the island are mainly herbivores.

1994 9 March - Mammals

This issue features 4 stamps with four species of mammals:

  1. 40 cs stamp shows the mongoose (herpestes edwards) which was introduced from India in the late 19th Century to control rats because of the fear of a plague epidemic. These voracious carnivores reproduced rapidly and spread all over the island. The mongoose is partly responsible for the severe decline of the indigenous birds population;
  2. Rs. 2 shows a hare (lepus nigricollis), a herbivore from India in the 18th Century. It is very prolific and is found all over the island;
  3. Rs. 8 shows the monkey (macaca fascicularis). It was  introduced from South East Asia and is responsible for the damage to the indigenous bird population and flora;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp represents a tenrec (tenrec ecaudatus), also known as Madagascar hedgehog, from where it was introduced during the 19th C. It is also very prolific and can be found all over the island.

The FDC features the deer, introduced by the Dutch from Java.

16 June 1994: Anniversaries and Events, Official First Day Cover

This special issue of “Anniversaires and Events” postage stamps commemoratives 4 different subjects. 

1994 16 June - Anniversaries and events

These are namely :

  1. the 40cs, which commemorates the centenary of the death of Dr. Charles Brown-Sequard, a researcher on the physiology of the nervous system and doctor, born in Mauritius in 1817;
  2. Rs. 4 stamps, featuring the international year of the family proclaimed in 1994 by the UN. The logo symbolises life and love in a home;
  3. Rs. 8 stamps for the FIFA World Cup 1994 in the US; and
  4. Rs. 10 which celebrates the 50th anniversary of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), whose main objective is to ensure the safe and orderly growth of civil aviation worldwide.

The FDC is illustrated with the year 1994 incorporating designs of the themes depicted on the stamps.

18 August 1994: 250th Anniversary of the Wreck of the St Geran, Official First Day Cover

The Saint Géran, built by the East India Company, was launched on 11 July 1736. From 1736 to 1743, it made 3 voyages to India, calling at Isle de France on each trip. On 24 March 1744, the St Geran, under the command of Capitain Lamarre, left Lorient to Isle de France and Isle Bourbon. In the afternoon of 17 August 1744, the St Géran arrived off the north east coast near Ile d’Ambre. The captain decided to wait for the next morning to enter harbour, rather risk sailing at night. However, because strong currents at night, the shift drifted towards the shore and wrecked on the reef. All attempts to rescue the ship were unsuccessful. Only 9 survivors reached Ile d’Ambre on 18th August. A famous legend was born from the story of the St Géran. French writer Bernardin de St Pierre, in his famous novel written in 1786 Paul & Virginie immortalised the St Géran.

1994 18 Aug - 250th anniversary wreck of St Geran

The stamps depict:

  1. The 40cs stamps and the Rs. 15 miniature sheet show the St Géran at Lorient on 24 March 1744, before departure for Isle de France.
  2. The Rs. 5 stamp depicts the St Géran in rough seas in the north of Isle de France.
  3. The Rs. 6 stamp shows the bell of the ship: pieces of the bell were discovered by divers and was completely reconstructed (in the Naval museum of Mahebourg).
  4. The Rs. 10 links the St Géran to the legend of Paul & Virginie. The gold buckle embedded in coral symbolises Paul and the gold thimble Virginie.

The FDC portrays the monument erected at Poudre d’Or in 1944 on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the shipwreck.

250th Anniversary of the Wreck of the St Geran: Souvenir Sheet

Wreck of St Geran

250th Anniversary of the Wreck of the St Geran: Souvenir Sheet on cover

1994 St Geran SS cover

25 October 1994: Children’s Paintings Leisure, Official First Day Cover

This issue pays tribute to young artists of Mauritius. A painting competition among student was organised by the Mauritius Postal Services and prizes for the five best entries were awarded on 9th October 1993 on World Post Day.

1994 25 OCt - Children's paintings leisure

Of those 5, four were chosen for the stamps:

  1. 30cs stamp depicts a wax painting by Stephen Martin, aged 12, from Rodrigues. It shows children forming a circle holding hands while singing and playing. This form of leisure is common in Mauritius and Rodrigues;
  2. the 40cs stamp is a watercolour painting by Désiré Wan Hok Chee, aged 16 from St Esprit college. It features football, skipping and handball.
  3. Rs. 8 is a watercolour painting by Stephanie Wan Hok Chee, aged 17, from Dr. M. Curé S.S.S and shows water sports practiced in Mauritius;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp is a collage by Marie Cynthia Nathalie Diolle, aged 18, of Couvent de Lorette de Curepipe. It shows children playing blindman’s bluff (colin maillard), a common game in schoolyards.

The FDC is adapted from a painting by Vishal Somanah, aged 16, of Imperial College.

Stamps of the Year 1995

10 March 1995: Spices, Official First Day Cover

This set of four postage stamps on spices forms part of the Nature series of Mauritius. The country has a wide variety of spices, all used to flavour culinary preparations. Though none of the spices portrayed in this set is endemic, they have been adopted and adapted by all.

1995 10 march - Spices

The four denominations are:

  1. 40 cs, representing the nutmeg, a spice widely used in the Mauritian cuisine. It was introduced by Pierre Poivre to break the Dutch monopoly. The fruit has a golden colour when ripe. The brown seed (the part used as a spice) is covered by a crimson aril, called mace;
  2. Rs. 4 stamp shows the coriander plant and seed – commonly known as cotomili in Mauritius. Both leaves and fruits are used in culinary preparations;
  3. Rs. 5 stamp shows cloves, a spice indigenous to the Moluccas, where the Dutch has a monopoly over spice trade. Introduced in the 18th century by Pierre Poivre, the spice is widely used in sweet and savoury preparations;
  4. Rs. 10 shows the cardamom, a plant used in antique times by the Greek as an antidote for poisoning. The seed presents a pleasant aroma and is used both in culinary preparation and in medicine.

The FDC illustrates local chillies.

10 March 1995: Inauguration of the Mauritius Postal Museum, Special Commemorative Cover

1995 10 March - inauguration Mauritius Postal Museum

20 March 1995: 25e anniversaire Agence de Cooperation Culturelle et Technique (ACCT) – 25 ans de Francophonie, Enveloppe Commemorative

1995 20 March - 25e anniversaire ACCT SC

8 May 1995: Local Events, Official First Day Cover

This set of 3 postage stamps forms part of the Anniversaries and Events issue of 1995.

1995 8 May - local events

The set commemorates the anniversaries of three different local events, namely:

  1. 40cs stamp, showing the 50th anniversary of the construction of the Mare Longue reservoir, which started on 28 Aug. 1945, and mainly used for irrigation;
  2. Rs. 4 showing the bicentenary of the construction of the road linking Mahebourg to Curepipe, started on 15th Feb. 1795 under the French Administration. The stamp shows workers constructing the road through the forest. It was a major component of international communications and
  3. Rs. 10 stamp depicting the great fire of Port-Louis, which broke on 3 April 1895 in a wooden building at La Chausée. The cause of the fire was attributed to burglars who set fire to the building.

The FDC is a composite design showing a modern road construction plan, a present day fire engine and an irrigation canal.

8 May 1995: 50th Anniversary – World War II, Official First Day Cover

This set of 3 postage stamps commemorates the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II. In 1941, hundreds of Mauritians left Port-Louis on board the “Talamba” for Egypt, where they served in the war. This set of stamps with a unique denomination of Rs. 5 pays tribute to those soldiers dead or alive, who contributed with their blood, sweat and toil in bringing peace in the world.

1995 8 May - 50th anniv world war II

The stamps show the following:

  1. Rs. 5 portrays Mauritian soldiers of the Eighth army in the desert;
  2. Rs. 5 portrays HMS Mauritius, a cruiser equipped with 12 six inch guns and 8 four inch guns. It participated in the invasion of Sicily in July 1943 and in D-Day landing in Normandy on 6 June 1944;
  3. Rs. 5 depicts a Catalina of 259 squadron of the Royal Air Force at Tombeau Bay, a landing base during World War II.

The FDC illustration shows the war memorial at Curepipe.

7 June 1995: Mauritius Philatelic Society Annual Stamp Exhibition on the theme “United Nations” – UNDP Cover

1995 UNDP

9 September 1995: Centennial (1895 – 1995) International Cooperative Alliance, Commemorative Cover

This special cover commemorates the 100th anniversary of the International Cooperative Alliance, an independent non-governmental association of business associations, present in over 100 countries. Its role is to promote the growth and strengthening of the cooperative approach in all its forms and coordinate and support the common interests of its members.

1995 9 Sep - ICA centenial SC

28 August 1995: Lighthouses – Official First Day Cover

This set of postage stamps features the existing 4 lighthouses of Mauritius. Lighthouses were built as from 1851, and out of the four, only two are operational. The other two are kept as monuments.

1995 28 Aug - lighthouses

The stamps show the following:

  1. 30 cs stamp shows the lighthouse at Ile Plate, a small island off the Northern coast of Mauritius. It because operational in 1856, to guide vessels coming to Mauritius from the north. Today the lighthouse is powered by solar energy and the system is automated;
  2. 40 cs stamp, showing the lighthouse at Pointe aux Caves on the western coast of Mauritius at Albion. Inaugurated in 1910, the lighthouse is still operational. It is still manned by a lighthouse keeper;
  3. Rs. 8 stamp features the Ile aux Fouquets lighthouse, put into use in 1864, till world war I. It was used to guide navigators approaching from the south eastern coast;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp, showing the Pointe aux Cannoniers lighthouse in the North of the island. It is no longer operational.

The FDC illustrates an astrolabe, an instrument used by navigators to find their position at sea.

28 August 1995: Lighthouses: Souvenir Sheet

MS Lighthouse

24 October 1995: 50th Anniversary of the United Nations, Official First Day Cover

This set of 4 postage stamps commemorates the 50th anniversary of the United Nations, established immediately after World War II to maintain international peace and security.

1995 24 Oct - 50 Anniv UN

The stamps feature 4 organizations of the UN, namely :

  1. 40 cs stamp, showing UNICEF (UN Children’s Fund), created in 1946 to meet the emergency needs of children in post war Europe and China for food, drugs and clothing;
  2. Rs. 4, shows ILO (International Labour Organization), created in 1919 but established as a UN specialised agency in 1946 to enhance the quality of the labour force and improve the living standards of workers. The stamp portrays a helmet, a cran and scaffolding, representing safety and modernisation of operations at the world place;
  3. Rs. 8 shows the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) created in 1939 to help the establishment of networks of stations and centres to provide meteorological and hydrological observations and services. The stamp depicts a cyclone;
  4. Rs. 10 shows the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), founded in 1945 to raise the standard of living, to improve productivity of farms, and ultimately eliminate hunger. The stamps portrays local bread and stalks of wheat.

The FDC illustrates the logo design to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the UN.

8 December 1995: Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Official First Day Cover

This set of 4 postage stamps commemorates the birth of COMESA, a regional organisation in Africa of which Mauritius is a founding member. It aims at creating a good business environment to attract investment, facilitate trade, and maintain peace and security in the region.

1995 8 Dec - COMESA

The issue consists of 4 stamps, namely 60cs; Rs. 4; Rs. 8 and Rs. 10, all depicting the COMESA logo, with the names of all members forming the background.

The FDC illustration represents products of COMESA countries.

Stamps of the Year 1996

11 March 1996: Snails, Official First Day Cover

This set of 4 postage stamps features snails of Mauritius and Rodrigues. Mauritius has a diverse, interesting and unique land snail fauna (116 native species recorded in Mauritius and 26 in Rodrigues, although many are now extinct). An interesting feature the Mauritian land snail fauna is the high proportion of carnivorous snails that feed exclusively on other snail species.

1996 11 march - Snails

The stamps feature the following:

  1. The 60cs stamp shows a Pachystyla bicolor, the largest surviving snail in Mauritius;
  2. Rs. 4 is a gonidomus pagoda, the largest endemic carnivorous snail. It is readily distinguished by its bright red animal and unusual shell;
  3. Rs. 5 is a Harmogenanina implicata, a rare endemic snail, found mostly in forest slopes. It lives on shrubs or trees;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp is a Tropidophora eugenine, a snail extinct in Mauritius but still present in Rodrigues, where it is widespread.

The FDC illustrates the extinct specie Gibbus lyonetianus.

21 April 1996: 100 ans de la municipalité de Beau-Bassin – Rose-Hill, Special Cover

1996 - 100ans municipalite BB RH

22 May 1996: 30th Anniversary of London College, Special Commemorative Cover

London College was founded in 1966 by Harold V. S Chan Lam. The school is situated in the heart of the City of Port-Louis, at 30 R. Seeneevassen Street.

1996 - 30 and london college

 

26 June 1996: Olympic Summer Games Special Cover

1996 26 June - 1996 olympics summer games SC

26 June 1996: Centenary of Modern Olympic Games, Official First Day Cover

To commemorate the Centenary of Modern Olympic Games a set of 4 postage stamps was issued.

1996 26 June - centenary of modern olympics OFC

The set comprises:

  1. 60 cs stamp, representing boxing;
  2. Rs. 4 stamps showing badminton;
  3. Rs. 5 stamps shows basketball and 
  4. Rs. 10 showing table tennis. The year 1996 market also the Atlanta Olympic Games.

The FDC illustration portrays an Olympic flag as a background.

30 September 1996: Ships, Official First Day Cover

The four ships depicted on the stamps have been associated with trade, transport and administration.

1996 30 Sep - Ships

The set consists of :

  1. 60 cs stamp, portraying SS Zambezia at the jettyo f Diego Garcia, Chagos Archipelagos, a ship built in 1903, used to carry commercial goods and animals such as cattle;
  2. Rs. 4 stamps, showing MV Sir Jules, especially built to sail between the Chagos Archipelagos and Agalega for copra trade
  3. Rs. 5 stamp, showing MV Mauritius at Quay C at Port Louis harbour. MV Mauritius was built in 1955 and used to carry passenger, cargo and livestock across Indian Ocean islands;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp shows MS Mauritius Pride at Port-Mathurin, Rodrigues, a multi-purpose vessel, which replaced MV Mauritius in 1990. It carries passengers, cargo, containers, edible oil and fuel oil in cargo tanks.

The FDC illustrates the harbour of Port-Louis.

30 September 1996: Ships: Souvenir Sheet

MS Ships

2 December 1996: 150th Anniversary of the Post Office Ordinance, Official First Day Cover

The history of postal services in Mauritius dates back to the French administration, when an inland postal service was in operation. however, the legal framework for the operations of a Post Office was given under the British rule in 1846. Under the Post Office Ordinance of 1846, which became effective on 1 Jan. 1847, the postal system was completely reorganised in Mauritius. To mark the 150th Anniversary of this Ordinance, a set of 4 postage stamps was issued.

1996 19 Dec - 150th anniversary of Post Office ordinance

The set comprises of :

  1. 60cs stamp, showing a pillar box, introduced by the British in the 19th century;
  2. Rs. 4 stamps, featuring an impression of the B53 handstamp, which was used in 1866 for the cancellation of postage stamps;
  3. Rs. 5 stamp, showing a mobile post office, introduced in 1973 to serve 9 villages along the south east coast of Mauritius; and
  4. Rs. 10 stamp, showing a carriole, a common mode of transport pulled by horses in the early days.

The stamp shows a carriole waiting at a rural post office.

Stamps of the Year 1997

10 March 1997: Rare Fruits, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius has a wide variety of exotic fruits. some are cultivated for exports.

1997 10 March - Rare fruits

This set of postal stamps features four different rate edible fruits:

  1. The 60cs stamp shows both a ripe and a green vavang (vangueria madagascariensis), which comes from a plant originating in Madagascar. The fruit gradually turns brown when ripening;
  2. The Rs. 4 stamp features a green and ripe Pom Zako (mimusops coriacea), from a tree that was introduced in the early years of colonisation from Madagascar. It has a sweetish flesh and a pleasant smell;
  3. The Rs. 5 stamp shows a zambos (syzygium jambos), from a plant originating from the Indo-Malaysian region, introduced in the late 17th century;
  4. The Rs. 10 represents some unripe sapot negro, from a plant originating in the West Indies and Central America, brought to Mauritius in 1772.

The FDC illustrates the rusay fruit (eugenia uniflora).

9 June 1997: Anniversaries and Events, Official First Day Cover

A set of 4 commemorative stamps were issued to honour 5 eminent personalities who left their mark in the political, social, scientific and economic fields in Mauritius.

1997 9 June - Anniversaries and events

The set comprises of:

  1. The 60cs portrays Mahé de Labourdonnais and the routes used between Mauritius and India. Labourdonnais was appointed Governor of Isle de France and Bourbon in 1735, during which time he developed the island as a colony, instead as a mere port of call. Among his main projects, were the construction of Port-Louis, the development of marine activities, and the establishment of the first sugar factory at Villebague;
  2. Rs. 1 stamp represents Jean Francois de Galaup, Comte de La Pérouse. He lived for some years in Mauritius (and married a Mauritian) but was later commissioned by the King to carry out scientific and exploration trip around the world;
  3. Rs. 4 portrays Sir William M. Gomm, appointed Governor of Mauritius in 1842. He reformed the postal system and enacted to Post Office Ordinance. In 1847, his wife gave a ball and the famous one penny orange and two pence blue were used to frank letters of invitation. The stamp features the ballroom as a background;
  4. Rs. 6 stamp features George Clark, a missionary teacher appointed school master in 1851. During his time in Mauritius, inspired by the book the Dodo, he started to search for the remains of the bird in marshes ana alluvial lands. In Sep 1863, he discovered the remains necessary to form a complete skeleton in the marshes of Mare aux Songes, which proved to be that of the dodo (the stamp features his digging there).
  5. Rs. 10 stamp pictures Professor Brian Abel-Smith, a British scholar, who worked as a consultant for the World Health Organization. In the 1960s, he advised the government of Mauritius on provisions for social security. He presented a well know report in 1960 called “Social Policies and Population Growth in Mauritius”.

22 September 1997: 150th Anniversary of the ‘Post Office’ Stamps, Official First Day Cover

On 21 September 1847, Mauritius made history by becoming the first British colony and the fourth country in the world, together with the US, to issue postage stamps. To commemorate the 150th anniversary of the stamps, a set of four stamps and a miniature sheet (see below) were issued.

1997 22 Sep - 150th anniv of post office stamps

The set of four stamps illustrate the famous 1d Orange and 2d Blue. On the same day as the stamps were issued, they were used to frank invitation covers to a ball given by Lady Gomm, the wife of the then Governor of Mauritius. Seven such covers are known to be still in existence. These stamps are the only ones in the world bearing the inscription “POST OFFICE”. They were replaced in the next issue by POST PAID.

The FDC illustrates the hand stamp used to cancel the Post Office stamps.

22 September 1997: 150th Anniversary of the ‘Post Office’ Stamps, Sheet Cover

The souvenir sheet portrays the ‘Bordeaux Cover’. The Rs. 20 stamps shows 2 POST OFFICE stamps cancelled with the PENNY POST handstamp. The Bordeaux cover is a unique piece of philatelic interest, discovered in 1902 by a school boy in France. It is the only cover that bears both the 1d and 2d Post Office stamps. The letter in the cover was written in Port Louis by Edward Francis and was addressed to Messrs. Duncan and Lurgnie, wine merchants in Bordeaux. The cover was posted on 4 October 1847 in Port Louis, and arrived in bordeaux on 28 December 1847.

This rare piece of philatelic item is known as the “Crown of the Jewel of all Philately’. In 1903, it was purchased for 1600 pounds by Th. Lemaire, who sold it to Brunet de l’Argentière for 1800 pounds. The cover changed hands seven times between 1917 and 1988, when it was sold for US$ 3.8 million. In 1993, it was put again to auction by David Feldman and fetched a record price for a philatelic item.

1997 22 Sep - 150 anniv post office stamps sheet cover

150th Anniversary of the Post Office Ordinance: Souvenir Sheet

MS 150 anniv of PO

150th Anniversary of the Post Office Ordinance: Souvenir Sheet 2

MS PO

150th Anniversary of the ‘Post Office’ Stamps, Fascination Mauritius

1997 - Fascination Mauritius SC

1 December 1997: Petits Métiers, Official First Day Cover

A set of four postage stamps were issued on the theme “petits métiers” to highlight the contribution of local craftsmen to the development of the country.

1997 1 Dec - Petits metiers

The set comprises of 4 stamps:

  1. A 60cs stamp, showing a wheelwright (saron) at work, who contributed a lot to the development of transport, in particular for carts to carry their loads of sugar to the mills;
  2. Rs. 4 stamp represents a washerman (dobi), washing clothers at the river. Stains and other oily patched were removed using maize cobs (koto maille). This craft has almost disappeared with the arrival of technology and washing machines;
  3. Rs. 5 stamp shows a shipwright (charpentier pirogue), giving a finishing touch to a small fishing boat. The scene was typical of fishing villages, where boat construction was done under banyan trees on the beach;
  4. Rs. 15 stamp shows quarrymen (coupeur corail), woking on blocks of corals to make bricks for the construction of houses and walls. The scene is typical in Rodrigues.

The FDC pictures a composite design of the stamps.

Stamps of the Year 1998

11 March 1998: Mauritius Geckos, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius and its dependencies have 12 endemic geckos, in 2 categories – day and night geckos.

1998 11 March - Geckos

A set of 4 postage stamps were issued in the nature series to illustrate four of these geckos.

  1.  Re. 1 stamps shows the phelsuma guentheri gecko, the largest of all varieties, and highly endangered. This day gecko has a very attractive olive colour and beautiful eyes. Today it is known to exist only in Round island;
  2. Rs. 6 stamp shows a night gecko, the nactus serpensinsula durrelli, also found on Round island. It has brown, beige and white banding and stippling;
  3. Rs. 7 is a night gecko, called nactus coindemirensis, similar to the one on the Rs. 6 stamp but smaller in size. It is found on Gunner’s Quoin and Ilot Vacoas only;
  4. Rs. 8 stamp shows a wonderful day gecko, phelsuma edwardnewtonii, from Rodrigues, but now extinct.

The FDC portrays a common day gecko found in Mauritius, called phelsuma cepediana.

12 March 1998: 30th Anniversary Independence Celebrations, Special Commemorative Cover

To mark the 30th anniversary of independence, a special commemorative cover was issued, with a Rs. 10 stamp denomination from the “150th Anniversary of the ‘Post Office’ stamps issue’.

1998 12 March - 30th anniv independence SCC

The cover portrays a gold embossed bust of Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam, the first Prime Minister of Mauritius, with the colours of the flag of Mauritius as a background. The official logo designed especially for the celebration of the 30th Anniversary of Independence is also shown on the cover. 

15 June 1998: Inland Transport, Official First Day Cover

A set of 4 postage stamps was issued on the theme ‘Inland Transport’ to illustrate post-war means of transport.

1998 15 June - Inland transport

The set comprises of:

  1.  40cs stamp, portraying a train crossing one of the numerous bridges built along the railway track. The introduction of railways in 1864 brought about a major revolution in the transport sector in Mauritius but the latter was discontinued on 1964;
  2. Rs. 5 stamp shows a lorry of the early fifties on the wharf at Port-Louis. Lorries were used mainly for the transport of goods from the capital city to other parts of the island, and their importance increased with the closure of the railway;
  3. Rs. 6 stamp pictures a bus in the town centre of Rose-Hill in the early fifties. The first buses were introduced in 1920, and because the main means of passenger transport with the closing of the railway;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp shows a coastal barge unloading sugar at the Coaster’s Wharf in Port-Louis in the 1940s. They were used until 1950 for the carriage of sugar from factories to Port-Louis but disappeared because with the advent of diesel lorries, they became too expensive.

The FDC shows a ‘calèche’ used to carry passengers.

10 September 1998: State Visit of President Nelson Mandela, Official First Day Cover

To commemorate the State Visit of the President of South Africa, Nelson R. Mandela from 10 – 12 September 1998, the Postal Services issued a postage stamp of Rs. 25. The stamp portrays the President, who is the architect of democratic South Africa and of the fall of the apartheid regime, thanks to his relentless protests and fights against the regime. Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1964.

1998 10 Sep - Official visit of N. Mandela

During his imprisonment he became a world symbol of the racial discrimination against the black population and enlisted international sympathy. He was considered as the leader of the South African freedom movement. In 1990 he was released from prison, obtained the Nobel price for Peace in 1993 (jointly with F. W de Klerk) and was elected President of South Africa in 1994 following a landslide victory of his political party, ANC in the first democratic elections in South Africa.

18 September 1998: 400th Anniversary of Dutch Landing 1598 – 1998, Official First Day Cover

A set of four postage stamps and a miniature sheet were issued to mark the 400th Anniversary of the Dutch landing in Mauritius on 20th September 1598. They took possession of the uninhabited island but it was only 40 years later, in 1638 that they established the first settlement. At that time, deer and sugar cane were introduced.

1998 18 Sep - 400th anniversary Dutch Landing

The set comprises of :

  1. The  50cs stamp depicts a landing scene as well as Prince van Nassau, after whom the island was named;
  2. The Re. 1 stamp illustrates the design of the Frederik Hendrik fort and a bunch of sugarcane, introduced in 1639;
  3. The Rs. 7 stamp shows a map of Mauritius drawn by the Dutch around 1670. This is the most accurate Dutch map of Mauritius;
  4. The Rs. 8 stamp is an artistic representation of the fleet nearing the south eastern coast of the island.

The FDC illustrates activities of the Dutch sailors during their stay on the island. 

400th Anniversary of Dutch Landing 1598 – 1998: Souvenir Sheet

MS 400 anniv dutch landing

400th Anniversary of Dutch Landing 1598 – 1998: Souvenir Sheet on cover

1998 Dutch landing MS cover

16 November 1998: Mauritius Waterfalls, Official First Day Cover

Mauritius has some 15 waterfalls, most of which are found in the southern part of the island. A set of 4 postal stamps were issued depicting 4 waterfalls.

1998 16 Nov - Waterfalls

The stamps depict the following:

  1. Re. 1 stamp shows the Balfour waterfall, situated in Beau-Bassin along Rivière des Plaines Wilhems. The stamps also shows in the background the Residence de la Tour Blanche, commonly known as Mont Thabor;
  2. Rs. 5 stamp shows Rochester Falls, situated near Surinam in the South of the island, along the course of Rivière Patates:
  3. Rs. 6 stamps shows cascade Grande Rivière Sud-Est in the eastern part of the island, along the river bearing the same name. The picture shows a barge full of tourists;
  4. Rs. 10 stamp shows cascade 500 pieds, located at Chemin Grenier along rivière des galets. It is one of the highest waterfalls and is a preferred site for hikers.

The FDC shows cascade Sorèze found along Moka river. 

14 December 1998: 250th Anniversary of the Creation of Le Reduit, Official First Day Cover

To mark the 250th anniversary of the creation of le Réduit, a set of 4 postage stamps was issued. Le Réduit is the official residence of the President of the Republic and has a very long history, going back to the beginning of colonial days. In March 1748, Pierre Felix Barthelemy David, successor of Mahé de Labourdonnais, obtained the permission for the construction of a fortress. The works were completed in 1749. It was the successors of David who modelled the grounds of Le Réduit into a beautiful garden. The layout of the Chateau has been modified several times, and the later was rebuilt in 1778 by Governor Labrillane.

1998 14 Dec - 250th anniversary of Le Reduit

The set of stamps comprises:

  1. Re. 1, which depicts the plan of Le Réduit drawn in 1823;
  2. Rs. 4 is a reproduction of a watercolour of the Chateau by Mr. Thuillier; 
  3. Rs. 5 is a reproduction of an oil painting by a local artist, Hassen Edun made in 1998;
  4. Rs. 15 portrays an architect’s plan of a monument found in the gardens of Le Réduit to commemorate its 250th anniversary.

The FDC illustrates the front elevation of the Chateau in 1823.

Stamps of the Year 1999

11 February 1999: Tricentenaire de la naissance de Mahé de Labourdonnais, Official First Day Cover

On 11 February 1999, a stamp of Rs. 7 was issued to commemorate the tricentenary birth anniversary of Labourdonnais, one of the most influential governors of Mauritius, during the French administration. He was appointed Governor of Isle de France et Bourbon on 4th June 1735. He contributed greatly to the construction of the island, namely to the building of Port Louis as the capital city, to the establishment of the harbour, the construction of several roads and to the booming of the sugar industry. He also created a police force to improve law and order. Numerous building erected under his rule can still be seen today: they include the Government House and the Police Headquarters at Line Barracks.

1999 11 Feb - 300e naissance de Labourdonnais

The stamp features another commemorative stamp issued in Mauritius on 13th December 1899 for the bicentenary anniversary of his birth.

10 March 1999: Endemic Plants Mauritius, Official First Day Cover

As part of the natural history series, a set of four stamps was issued on 10 March 1999 on the theme ‘endemic plants’.

1999 10 March - Endemic plants

The set comprises of:

  1. Re. 1 stamp showing a plant commonly known as bois cabri (of the verbenacae family – clerodendron laciniatum). It is a plant found in Rodrigues bearing leaves which are different and with pink flowers;
  2. Rs. 2 stamp shows a plant commonly known as bois chèvre, of the compositae family (senecio lamarckianus). It is a rare endemic shrub of Mauritius and grows on exposed cliffs. The tiny florets are yellow in colour;
  3. Rs. 5 is another rare endemic shrub of Mauritius also of the compositae family. It has thick leaves with woolly hairs;
  4. Rs. 9 stamp shows a psiadia pollicina, an endemic shrub of Mauritius, equally of the compositae family, mainly found on mountains.

The FDC illustrates an endangered endemic shrub from Rodrigues, known as café marron (ramosmania rodriguesii).

18 June 1999: Mauritius Local Artists, Official First Day Cover

A stamp of 4 postage stamps was issued on 18 June 1999 to mark the contribution of local artists to the artistic landscape.

1999 18 June - Local artists

The set depicts :

  1. Re. 1 les lavandières by Hervé Masson, showing a scene of ladies washing clothes in a river. Hervé Masson was born in Mauritius in 1919 but spent most of his professional life as an artist in France, where is works can be found in a number of museums in Paris, the US, Canada and Mexico;
  2. Rs. 3 features ‘Le casino’ painted by Gaetan de Rosnay, a Mauritian artist, who obtained a number of prestigious prizes in France for his works;
  3. Rs. 4 showing ‘les quatre éléments’ by Andree Poilly, known for her abstract paintings. The four elements are air, fire, water and earth;
  4. Rs. 6 representing ‘la sortie de la messe’ by Xavier Le Juge de Segrais, a scene which evokes calm and peace.

The FDC illustrates Le Dodo bleu, a painting from Malcolm de Chazal.

17 September 1999: Old Chimneys Official First Day Cover

A set of four postage stamps was issued on 17 September 1999 depicting the chimneys of ancient sugar mills.

1999 17 Sep - Old Chimneys OFC

The set comprises 4 stamps and one miniature sheet.

  1. Re. 1the chimney of Alma mill, also known as Champ D’or situated in the district of Moka. It was the first sugar factory to introduce the chemical control of sugar in the industry but ceased operations in 1947, when its activities were centralised at Mon Désert;
  2. Rs. 2 shows a chimney at Antoinette, a sugar mill situated in the district of Rivière du Rempart. The mill started operations in 1828 and the chimney was constructed around 1832. It was formally known as L’Alliance. The first Indian immigrants settled there. The factory closed down in 1938 and centralised its activities at the Mount;
  3. Rs. 5 stamp shows the chimney at Belle Mare sugar estate in the district of Flacq, which started activities in 1820. In 1822, it became the first mill to be operated by steam engines. The mill closed down in 1875 and its activities were centralised at Constance;
  4. Rs. 7 shows Grande Rosalie mill – The Villebague sugar estate owned by Mahé de Labourdonnais in the district of Pamplemousses started production in 1745. Ferney (in the south east) and Villebague were the first sugar mills on the island. Villebague was parcelled in two to become respectively Grande Rosalie and Petite Rosalie. Grande Rosalie ceased operations in 1899 and activities were centralised at the Mount.

The FDC illustration illustrates the chimney of the old Beau Séjour sugar mill, in the district of Rivière du Rempart, which started production during the French period

 Old Chimneys, Souvenir Sheet

MS Chimneys

Old Chimneys, Sheet cover on cover

This cover shows a souvenir sheet with the same chimneys as above. 

1999 17 Sep - Old chimneys sheet cover

9 October 1999: 125th Anniversary of the Universal Postal Union, Special Commemorative Cover

On 9 October 1999, a set of four postage stamps from previous series, were used on a special commemorative to mark the 125th Anniversary of the Universal Postal Union, an international organization whose mission is to promote and develop communication between the people of the world. The cover illustrates a 20c stamp issued in 1949 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the UPU.

1999 9 Oct - 125th anniv UPU

7 December 1999: Achievements in the 20th Century, Official First Day Cover

The Postal Services issued a set of 4 postal stamps on the theme “Achievements of the 20th Century”. It is dedicated to four spheres of activities where major developments have been realised.

1999 7 Dec - Achievements in the 20th Century

The set consists of:

  1. Re. 1 a mosquito and a man spraying a marshy land, as part of a programme to eradicate the malaria vector Anopheles funestus;
  2. Rs. 2 stamp is a composition featuring women as judges of the supreme court and pilots of jet planes, showing major progress made in Mauritius for the emancipation of women, due to the right to education since the 19th century and relentless efforts to bring education to rural areas and to award scholarships;
  3. Rs. 5 showing the international conference centre in Grand Baie built in 1993 to host the 5th Summit of Francophonie and flags from various countries. Since then Mauritius established itself as an important international meeting place;
  4. Rs. 9 shows various types of special sugars produced by Mauritian factories to tap high end markets in the US and in Europe.