Manx National Heritage is delighted to have been presented with a stunning set of stamps celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Manx Museum.
Designed in celebration of the museum’s centenary year and issued by Isle of Man Post Office, the unique stamp issue highlights the variety of artefacts and fascinating objects accessible to visitors to the Manx Museum, all with direct links to the Isle of Man’s Island’s unique heritage.
First opening its doors to the public on 2 November 1922, Manx National Heritage continues to preserve and protect the diverse collections held by the Manx Museum, from archives to art, archaeology, social history and natural history and to tell the rich stories of our Island, past and present.
A presentation pack featuring the ten stamps has been presented to the Manx Museum, by Chris Thomas MHK, Chairman of Isle of Man Post.
Mr Thomas said:
“This collection is engaging and inspiring, just as the Manx Museum has been for so many for a century, and the stamps will be treasured, just as our national museum has cared for the riches of Manx history. Each of the ten stamps is wonderful, but my favourites are the one depicting Rebecca Noble laying the foundation stone of the original Noble’s Hospital in 1886, the building which was creatively reused for the Manx Museum from 1922, the 1964 Carmine-Red Definitive Stamp and the Pygmy Shrew one. I could not believe how small but beautiful this mammal is.”
Connie Lovel, Executive Director for Manx National Heritage said:
”Manx National Heritage is delighted to be working with Isle of Man Post Office in our centenary year to celebrate the legacy of the national treasures in our care. The Manx Museum is home to an extraordinary collection of artefacts and archives that help tell the story of the Isle of Man and its people. Our national collections – developed over 100 years – reflect 10,000 years of our island’s cultural heritage. They reveal stories about how we have grown as a nation and provide a constant source of inspiration for each new generation. To mark our centenary we will be staging a major exhibition at the Manx Museum in October 2022, where visitors will be able to get up close to the collections that reflect our Island’s identity”.
Kirsty Neate, Head of Collections, adds:
“Manx National Heritage will be exploring and sharing the extraordinary stories of the objects featured on each of the stamps, and celebrating a selection of the most precious objects held in the Manx Museum collections. The Island’s community is invited to join the celebrations and take a journey of discovery through 100 objects in the MUSEUM 100 exhibition, opening in October 2022. We look forward to welcoming visitors, new and old, to the Manx Museum throughout the year ahead”.
The ‘Manx Museum 100’ collection is available as Set and Sheet Set, Sheetlet, Presentation Pack and as First Day Cover. As an additional product this collection is available as a self-adhesive booklet of 10 stamps. The collection is available to purchase at Post Offices Islandwide, the Manx Museum, May Day at Cregneash on 2 May and www.manxnationalheritage.im/shop .
The Manx Museum is unique in that it only holds artefacts with direct links to the Isle of Man. The ten stamps feature:
The Isle of Man’s Oldest Surviving Manx Registered Motor Vehicle, 1911: An eight horsepower Renault car, which once belonged to Wilson James Ashburner, of Douglas, a gentleman of private means. He was also an artist and friend of Archibald Knox. It was Knox’s father, an engineer, who maintained the vehicle. The engine still starts and would have had a maximum speed of around 35mph.
Carmine-Red Definitive Stamp: Prior to postal independence in 1973 the General Post Office was in control of all post and telecoms for the Isle of Man. The image shows a Carmine-Red regional definitive stamp issued on the 8th June 1964. All regional definitives were invalidated for postal services on the 1st March 1972 when decimal values were introduced. This stamp depicting Queen Elizabeth II Lord of Mann was commonly used for posting mail off the Isle of Man.
Head and Shoulders of a Child by Frank Mowbray Taubman, 1893: This bronze sculpture of a child wearing a hood or cowl is the work of artist Frank Mowbray Taubman (1868-1946). Of Manx parentage, Taubman spent much of his working life in London
‘On the Beach at Douglas’ by William Hardie Hay, 1894: This painting depicts two important aspects of a Victorian seaside holiday on the Isle of Man. The simple pleasure of playing on the beach, with the Palace Ballroom and the Derby Castle in the background, highlighting the range of evening entertainments on offer. During this period the Isle of Man was the centre of summer entertainment in the British Isles
Pygmy Shrew (Sorex minutus) Taxidermy: The Isle of Man is home to the smallest mammal on Earth, the Pygmy Shrew. They weigh four grams and have one of the fastest metabolisms of any animal, meaning they have to eat every two hours, day and night
Elephant Hawk Moth (Deilephila elpenor): Elephant Hawk-moths are named so because their caterpillars look like an elephant’s trunk and they are one of our most colourful moths, often being thought of as an exotic escaped pet. They are nocturnal and feed on flowers that are open and produce nectar at night.
King Sihtric Coin, c.AD1030: One of the earliest coins to be minted in the Isle of Man, this is a silver penny with a representation of King Sihtric, ruler of Dublin. It was buried around AD1030 with 463 other silver coins, 25 silver ingots and one silver armring. We don’t know who buried such a large amount of wealth or why. They never returned for it and the hoard lay in the ground for almost a thousand years until metal detectorist Andrew Whewell discovered it in 2003.
Rushen Abbey Floor Tile, c.AD1400: This tile was found during archaeological excavations at Rushen Abbey. Made from clay, it is decorated with a four leaf pattern and would originally have had a dark green glaze over the surface. When Rushen Abbey was first built during AD 1100s, the monks wanted to live simply, without grand buildings. But times changed and hundreds of these decorative tiles were used to pave the central areas of a large church, with an alternating dark green and cream colour scheme giving a rather sophisticated chequerboard effect.
Building Beginnings, Noble’s Isle of Man Hospital, 1886: An assembled crowd witnesses Rebecca Noble lay the foundation stone of Noble’s Isle of Man Hospital, Douglas on 26 July 1886. Using £5,000 provided by her husband, the hospital was built in the garden of Rebecca’s family home, Clifton House. The distinctive red brick building was repurposed to become the Manx Museum from 1922.
Sulby Glen Corn Flour Sign: In the later 19th century the Sulby Glen Starch Company diversified, ceasing production of starch and instead manufacturing corn flour. A striking illustration of Manx business and product advertising, the company’s starch had previously been promoted ‘As used in the royal laundry Balmoral’. The Sulby Glen Flour Mill no longer trades.
Lead image: Kirsty Neate, Manx National Heritage Head of Collections, presented with Manx Museum 100th Anniversary stamp collection by Chris Thomas MHK, Chair of Isle of Man Post Office.
Image 2: The Manx Museum 100 Stamp Collection
Image 3: Members of the Manx Museum Team and Isle of Man Post Office showcase stunning set of stamps celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Manx Museum. Pictured (left to right): Front: Paul Welsh, Kirsty Neate and Katie King of Manx National Heritage (MNH). Middle: Maxine Cannon of Isle of Man Post Office and Clare Austin (MNH). Back: John Burden (MNH), Chris Thomas MHK and James Davis of Isle of Man Advertising.
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Manx National Heritage, Eiraght Ashoonagh Vannin
Manx Museum, Douglas, Isle of Man, IM1 3LY
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