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Royal Visits in Nepal from 1876

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gemtree View Drop Down

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gemtree Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 January 2016 at 6:27am
I have just acquired a rather interesting cover. It doesn't look like much. However, note that it was cancelled with a Viceroy's Camp postmark dated April 1, 1901. This mobile post office accompanied the Viceroy on his tours around India. Lord Curzon, the Indian Viceroy, was hunting in Nepal for three weeks from March 27 until mid April in 1901. This cover was thus mailed from his hunting camp in Nepal in the same manner as camp mail was sent from the British royals' camps in 1876, 1911, and 1921. Has anyone seen another example from this camp in Nepal? It is addressed to the Nepalese Commander-in-Chief Chandra Shumsher Rana in Kathmandu and has a British Residency receiving postmark dated April 4 on the reverse side. Histories which mention the 1901 Viceroy's trip to Nepal list Chandra as the Nepalese host. However, he is not pictured in the official British photographs of the hunt although other high ranking Nepalese are. This cover seems to imply that he was not present at the beginning of the hunt.

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gandarva View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gandarva Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 January 2016 at 7:24am
Dear Ed, a fine and rare cover. Thank you for sharing.

The official host was Prime Minister Deva Shumsher, but Chandra Shamsher joined the Indian Viceroy. It seems you are right, Chandra was in Kathmandu during the first days of the hunt.

Lord Curzon became Viceroy of India in 1899. Soon Maharaja Bir Shumsher invited Lord Curzon for a tiger hunt  to Nepal, and Lord Curzon confirmed his coming on January 2, 1901. Unfortunately after all the preparations were completed, Bir Shumsher became ill and died on March 4, 1901. His successor Prime Minister Deva Shumsher, a shy and frail person, sent his younger brother Chandra Shamsher to join the Indian Viceroy hunting tigers in the Terai. The hunt took place from March 29 to April 17, 1901.

For a photographic documentation of this tiger hunt with Lord Curzon the renowned photo studio “Herzog & Higgins” was asked. P. A. Herzog and P. Higgins had opened a photo studio in Mhow (Central India) in 1894, which existed until 1921. As official photographers they were asked for many important occasions at the time, so at receptions, state visits, etc. The photographic results of the tiger hunt in 1901 in the Terai is the album “HE the Viceroy's Shooting tour. Nepal, Terai, April 1901”, which includes 120 photos. When the hunt was finished, P. A. Herzog wrote two postcards from Kathmandu to Basel in Switzerland and to Mhow (Central India) respectively on the same day, Apr. 26, 1901.

Studio “Herzog & Higgins”

photo studio in Mhow

Some more “Herzog & Higgins” photos from Nepal

Postcard sent to Switzerland
“Squared-circle”-Postmark (Hellrigl B14) dated “25 APR 01” (Apr. 25, 1901 - !)
SEA POST OFFICE: May 4, 1901, Arrival: Basel May 17, 1901

Postcard sent to India
“Squared-circle”-Postmark (Hellrigl B 14) dated “25 AP. 01” (April 25, 1901 - !)
Reverse side arrival: Mhow April 30, 1901

So these postcards were sent from
postcards from Kathmandu. I never saw other mail sent from this hunt. Best wishes,
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