Monday, November 21, 2011

Bahamas Paquebot Mail

The cover below was mailed aboard C.S. (Cable Ship) Alert "while placing cable between Florida and the Bahama Islands, fall, 1972". Although the Alert was not a Canadian ship, the Nassau Bahamas post office affixed its Paquebot cancellation (September 23, 1972) on this letter franked with an 8 cent Canadian Centennial definitive stamp.

Florida-Bahamas Cable cachet

In 1972, the Cable Ship Alert, owned by the British Post Office, was chartered by Standard Telephones & Cables Ltd for a cable laying expedition. The cable ran 73 nautical miles (nm) from West Palm Beach, Florida to Brandie Point on Grand Bahama Island, and a further 149nm to Goodman Bay, New Providence, Bahamas.

C.S. Alert

C.S. Alert (Originally H.M.T.S. (Her Majesty's Telegraph Ship) Alert) was launched on 7 November 1960 and formally accepted by the Post Office on 21 April 1961.

Alert as built

Cable work carried out by the Alert from 1961 to 1989 is listed at this website. In 1969 the Cable Ship Alert was repainted from having a white hull to International Orange for the hull.

The Alert was the subject of a 1988 stamp issued by Ascension Island:

Not in author's collection