Friday, 24 September 2010

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARDS FROM USA

The U.S. state of South Carolina has a relatively short and straight coastline facing southeast on the Atlantic Ocean, with Charleston as the principal harbor. Lighthouses survive at eight historic light stations in the state. For the past decade preservation efforts have been focused on the critically endangered Morris Island Light. Several other lighthouses need attention, including Georgetown, Hunting Island, and especially Cape Romain. The U.S. Coast Guard continues to operate lights at only two of them, Georgetown and Sullivan's Island.
Morris Island Lighthouse is located on Morris Island, on the southern side of the entrance to Charleston Harbor, north of the town of Folly Beach. South Carolina. This is the second oldest light station in the South of the U.S.: the first tower (42 ft) was built in 1767. A second taller tower (102 ft) was built in 1838, but was destroyed during the Civil War 24 years later. The actual 161 ft (49 m) round brick tower was illuminated on October 1, 1876 and “survived” with some damages to a cyclone (1885), an earthquake (1886) and a hurricane (1989).
Erosion of land endangered its stability and in 1962, the lighthouse was decommissioned and replaced by the new Sullivan's Island Lighthouse at the north end of the harbor. A non-profit foundation Save The Light, Inc raises funds and coordinates the stabilization, erosion control and restoration of the lighthouse.

LIGHTHOUSE STAMPS AND POSTCARD FROM UKRAINE

The Ukrainian cover brings a 2007 WWF set of four stamps presenting the White Pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus). Issued on September 20th, 2007 the stamp show the large bird listed in Red List of Threatened Species of Ukraine. The White Pelican is protected in Danube Biosphere Reserve and it is possible to see it on reservoirs near Danube, Dnieper and Dniester rivers, near the coast of Crimea and sometimes on Azov coast.
On 30.10.2009 Ukraine issued a beautiful miniature sheet of six stamps named "Lighthouses of Ukraine".  Each stamp has a face value of 1, 50 UAH and the following lighthouses are presented here: Kyz-Aulskyi, Luparivskyi Front, Yaltynskyi, Vorontsovskyi, Sarych, Berdianskyi Lower.
The Vorontsov Lighthouse is a famous 26m (85ft) round cylindrical tower with red gallery, landmark in the Black Sea in the port of Odessa, Ukraine. The first wood tower was established here in 1862 and named after Prince Mikhail Semyonovich Vorontsov, one of the governor-generals of the Odessa region. In 1888, a new concrete tower was built and blown up later during World War II by the Soviets (1941). The actual light was rebuilt in 1954 and is located at the end of a curving breakwater that protects the southeastern corner of Odessa's harbor.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM FRANCE

The Lighthouse of Ploumanac'h is located on a rocky promontory at the northeastern entrance to the harbour of Ploumanac'h, town of Perros-Guirec, in northern Brittany, France. The first lighthouse was established in 1860 but it was destroyed during the World War II in 1944. The current lighthouse was built in 1948: a 15m (49 ft) medieval-style square pink granite tower with castellated gallery and a small lantern. The official name Lighthouse Mean Ruz was born into a cacography expression Breton Men Ruz, meaning pink granite. La Côte de Granite Rose (Pink Granite Coast) is a stretch of coastline with unusually pink sands and water-sculpted rocks.
On May 31, 1999 French Post issued at the 8th International Conference of Roses in Lyon a block of three stamps featuring three species of roses. The FF4.50 stamp depicts "Mme. Caroline Testout" rose, one of the true survivors of the early Hybrid Tea era. The pink hybrid rose is known for its ability to grow and bloom under the most trying of conditions.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARD FROM SOUTH AFRICA

Cape Agulhas Lighthouse is South Africa's third oldest light station and second oldest surviving lighthouse (after Green Point). First lit on March 1st, 1849, its design is modeled on the original Egyptian Pharos of Alexandria. It is a 27 m (89 ft) sandstone tower painted white with two red horizontal bands, rising through the center of a 1-story keeper's house.
The lighthouse marks the geographic southernmost point of Africa and the junction of the Atlantic Ocean (cold Benguela Current) and Indian Ocean (warm Agullhas Current). When seafaring Portuguese vessels rounded this cape tip in the 15th century their compass needles would swing unable to determine True North from Magnetic North. As a result, in 1488 the Portuguese navigator, Bartolomeu Dias, name this ocean site “Cabo das Agulhas” (Cape of Needles).
This historic lighthouse was deactivated in 1968 when deterioration of the sandstone walls made the tower appear unsafe. Twenty years of public effort led by the Bredasdorp Shipwreck Museum secured a complete restoration and reactivation in 1988. Today the keeper's house includes the only lighthouse museum in South Africa and a restaurant.
The South African Post Office released a series of colourful commemorative stamps to mark the 2010 Fifa World Cup. The stamps were issued on 11 June, the opening day of the football event. The stamps are round in shape and depict the gold Fifa World Cup trophy, the official logo, and the Jabulani, the official match ball.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARDS FROM NEW ZEALAND

The Cape Reinga lighthouse stands on a spectacular site overlooking the meeting of the Pacific Ocean and the Tasman Sea, at the northern extremity of New Zealand. First lit in 1941, this lighthouse replaced the Maria Van Diemen Lighthouse built in 1879 on nearby Motuopao Island. The 10 m (33 ft) octagonal concrete tower with black lantern roof was originally powered by diesel-generated electricity. The station was automated and the last keeper was withdrawn in 1987. In April 2000, the light was powered from battery banks charged by solar panels. Approximately 10,000 people visit the Cape Reinga lighthouse each year.
On July 7th, 2010 New Zealand Post released its annual Children's Health issue with three beautifully illustrated butterfly stamps - each with a 10-cent surcharge that goes to support the New Zealand Foundation for Child and Family Health and Development. The 50c + 10c surcharge stamp presents the monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus) widely found in New Zealand.
Two definitive stamps of the well-known Scenic Definitive series: the $1.00 Rangitoto Island (issued on May 9th, 2007) and the 30 c Tolaga Bay (issued on July 1st, 2009).
Thank you, Charlotte for these cards of the remote but splendid Cape Reinga lighthouse!

Monday, 6 September 2010

LIGHTHOUSE POSTCARDS FROM USA

Ms. Tarbox sent me an envelope with nice postcards from New Hampshire. On the cover, the 98–cent definitive stamp issued on June 28, 2009,  in the Scenic American Landscapes series, featuring a view of the Snake River at dawn in the Grand Teton National Park.
The Isles of Shoals are a small group of islands and rocks 9 miles (15 km) southeast of Portsmouth, lying partly in Maine and partly in New Hampshire’s Atlantic coast. The Isles of Shoals Lighthouse sits atop White Island, the most southerly of the islets. The first lighthouse on the island was built of rubble stone in 1822, but exposed to the full fury of the Atlantic, the original tower began deteriorating quickly. The actual 58 ft (17.5 m) cylindrical white brick tower, attached to a 1-1/2 story keeper's house was built in 1859. In 2005, the tower and the keeper's house were restored, but a northeast storm in mid-April 2007 did much damage on the lighthouse: the walkway was demolished, the foghorn and solar panels for the navigational system were swept away.
Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse is located on the grounds of the Portsmouth Harbor Coast Guard Station, adjacent to Fort Constitution State Historic Site in New Castle, New Hampshire. The 48 ft (14.5 m) cast iron tower, painted white with lantern and gallery black was built in 1878. Early in 2000 the American Lighthouse Foundation leased the tower for preservation. A support group, Friends of Portsmouth Harbor Light, works for preservation and restoration of the light station. Since then, the tower was restored and repainted and the walkway to the light station was rebuilt to improve access.

Lake Sunapee is a long, narrow lake located in western New Hampshire, United States. In the late 19th century, the beautiful lake became a popular destination for travelers who boarded steamships seeking for resort hotels and family estates sprinkled along the shoreline. In 1891, the steamer “Edmund Burke” struck an underwater ledge at Loon Island. The accident led to the construction, in 1893, of a wooden lighthouse on this small island near the middle of the lake. The original Loon Island lighthouse was destroyed by fire after by a lightning strike in 1960, but it was rebuilt in the same year. In the 1980s, the 25 ft (7.5 m) hexagonal wooden tower, painted white, received solar panels.