Saturday, March 14, 2009

Port Royal, Jamaica

Date of Issue: 1921 - 23
Scott#: 95

The stamp shows the view of busy Port Royal during 1853.

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Port Royal was the center of shipping commerce in Jamaica in the 17th century. During this time, it gained a reputation as both the "richest and wickedest city in the world". It was notorious for its gaudy displays of wealth and loose morals, and was a popular place for pirates and privateers to bring and spend their treasure. During the 17th century, the British actively encouraged and even paid buccaneers based at Port Royal to attack Spanish and French shipping.

Pirates from around the world congregated at Port Royal coming from waters as far away as Madagascar on the far side of Africa. Several 17th and early 18th century pirate ships are sunk within the harbor and being carefully harvested under controlled conditions by different teams of archaeologists. Other "digs" are staked out along various quarters and streets by different teams.

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