Bicentenary Celebrations


Bicentenary Celebrations Sheetlet
 
            24 March 1991          6 x 80c                                                   Mint and CTO        $4.80
                                                                                                             FDC                      $5.85

Technical Details

        Release Date:                    24 March 1991
        Tablet Values:                   6 x 80c
        Artist:                                Nick Shewring of Garden Studio
        Printer:                              Leigh-Mardon Pty Limited
        Process:                            Lithography
        Paper:                               CA Watermark
        Stamp Size:                       27.94 x 41.75 mm
        Perforation Gauge:            14.32 x 14.4
        Pane Format:                    Sheetlet of six stamps with central text in gutter
        Mint and CTO:                 $4.80
        First Day Cover:               $5.30


Many of Pitcairn's bicentennial celebrations took place early in 1990, and most were concentrated between 15 January, the day of the Bounty's arrival, and 23 January when the vessel was burned.

Joining in those January celebrations with the Pitcairn community were a number of visitors.  At times the island's population more than doubled as vessels came and went.  Over a two week period calls were made by two yachts, a French naval tanker, two cargo vessels, two square riggers and an 82 year old converted Danish lighthouse - the latter carrying 30 visitors including a party of ex-patriate Pitcairners from the USA and New Zealand together with a dedicated group from Norfolk Island.

The stamps and text,

    "Pitcairn Island celebrated the bicentenary of its settlement by re-enacting the landing by the "Bounty" mutineers, erecting commemorative plaques, holding a memorial church service, playing a cricket match, burning
a model "Bounty" and a fireworks display.

     Other events during the year included the presentation of official messages from HM the Queen and other dignitaries, a picnic, a concert, a special service at John Adam's grave, a public dinner, a visit by the submarine HMS "Opossum" and a visit by the Governor."

are self-explanatory, but it may interest you to know that:
 

  • the Bounty descendants re-enacted the landing from the brigantine Eye of the Wind;
  • $2000 worth of fireworks were used;
  • the weather played havoc with schedules but didn't spoil the festive air which prevailed at the time;
  • Pitcairn beat the rest of the world in a cricket match;
  • the text of one of the plaques unveiled read:

  •  
    BOUT YA 200 YEARS AGO, JANUARY 1790, DEM BOUNTY MUTINEER EN DEMS TAHITIAN GERL CUM ORF AR BOUNTY.  UWAS DESCENDENCY START YA!  PATH OF UWAS ANCESTORS  :

            SPITHEAD ENGLAND                            -                            1787
            TAHITI                                                       -                            1788
            MUTINY ORN AR BOUNTY                  -                            1789
            PITCAIRN ISLAND                                  -                            1790
            NORFOLK ISLAND                                  -                            1856

    WI UNVAEL DAE PLAQUE IN MEMORY OF AWAS PROUD SULLUN ORN THE 23RD JANUARY, 1990, DURING PITCAIRN ISLAND'S BICENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS, ORN BEHALF A DEM PITCAIRN ISLAND DESCENDANTS EN FAMILIES FROM ALL ABOUT:

    NORFOLK ISLAND GROUP, 1990
     
    Hopefully this will dispel the doubts of any who wonder whether the Pitcairnese is alive and well on Norfolk Island!

    Bicentennial events later in the year also held special significance for Pitcairn.

    Due to an extremely busy schedule the Governor was unable to join the January celebrations but his visit in March enabled people to discuss local problems and to examine possible future development projects.

    As guests of the British government Brian Young, the Island Magistrate, his wife Kari and children Timmy and Annette - on holiday in the USA at the time - were invited to London where Brian and Kari attended a garden party at Buckingham Palace and were introduced to Her Majesty the Queen.  Brian and Kari represented the Pitcairn community on this occasion and their visit was part of the official bicentennial celebrations.

    Another one of the year's highlights was the visit of Her Majesty's submarine Opossum which spent two days at the island in September.  This was a memorable experience for all concerned; crew members took turns staying ashore with local families and participating in a number of activities.  Opossum's engineers attempted to repair one of the local compressors and although they were unsuccessful their efforts were greatly appreciated.

    Philatelically Pitcairn has prospered with the issue of three souvenir sheetlets and a tripartite sheetlet produced in conjunction with Norfolk Island and the Isle of Man.  The Bicentenary Celebrations sheetlet completes the set which we hope you found attractive and interesting.