Philatelic Aspects of Ascension

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3. The Bottle Post

During the 17th Century the island remained uninhabited, but even so it had a postal service of a kind as a visiting Friar, Domingo Navarette, recorded in 1673:-

"We found letters ashore of French and English, which had passed by there a year before; those that sail this way are so curious as to write letters, put them into bottles, and leave in a safe place, but invisible, by which the next comers have intelligence who has gone by and what voyage they had."

It is not known where Navarette's "safe place" actually was, but it is unlikely that it was in the area now known as Bottle Point. As the photograph shows, that area has jagged rocks and rough seas being exposed to the South East trade winds. More likely landing sites would be North East Bay, English Bay or Clarence Bay.

Copyright © 2000, Neil MacFall
Created by Stephen C Fowler
Last revised on the 2nd of July 2000