Penquins, Potatoes, & Postage Stamps
A Tristan da Cunha Chronicle
by Allan B Crawford
What can be more isolated that a tiny volcanic island in the middle of the Southern Atlantic, three thousand miles from the nearest continent?
This book tells about the author's experiences on Tristan du Cuhna, about the history of the island people and their lives on the island.
Being a very small population that first started on the island as a result of shipwrecked mariners, the community has slowly flourished, despite major setbacks such as when half the male population of the island was lost in a single boating accident.
The reason for the Potatoes in the title of the book relates to Tristan da Cunha using potatoes as the islands currency.
Tristan du Cuhna has become world famous for producing attractive well known postage stamps that have become collectors items the world over. Philatilists collecting those stamps will enjoy this book, not only to learn about the island, but to learn about the history of those postage stamps.
This book profusely illustrated with many rare and important pictures, is the personal chronicle of Allan Crawford written as he reflects in his retirement on his many years involvement with Tristan da Cunha. It is a remarkable tale of devotion to this remote island, known as the loneliest island in the world, written by a foremost authority.
Of particular interest are his research notes and original designs for postage stamps for the island. He was involved with as many as 16 issues starting in 1946 with the famous potato stamps - because there was no money locally, each stamp bore a value in potatoes.
Using his research as a link he discovered artefacts and records of previously unpublished historical information. This is an important addition to the literature of the island of Tristan da Cunha.
© Allan B Crawford
First published 1999 - Out of print
An eBook version (2017) is available from Joan's eBooks