General issues: French colony 1890-1894
Country name on general issues: Diego-Suarez
Currency: 1 Franc = 100 Centimes
Population: 4 600 in 1904
Political history Diego-Suarez
Diego-Suarez is a city located in the utmost north of Madagascar in eastern Africa. Diego-Suarez derives its name from the 16th century Portuguese navigator and explorer Diego Soares. In the 1880’s, the French lay heir eyes on Diego-Suarez as a possible port of call on the shipping routes in the Indian Ocean. Diege-Suarez is ceded to the French in 1885 to become a French colony. The French subsequently build a commercial and naval port at Diego-Suarez. From Diego Suarez, the other French possessions on Madagascar – Nossi-Bé and Sainte-Marie de Madagascar – are administered as dependencies from 1885 until 1893. In 1898, Diego-Suarez becomes part of Madagascar – all of which has, by then, become a French colony. Currently Diego-Suarez is called Antsiranana which is the second port of Madagascar.
Postal history Diego-Suarez
In Diego-Suarez from 1885 the general issues for the French colonies are used. Stamps are issued for Diego-Suarez from 1890 until 1894. The first stamps issued for Diego-Suarez in 1890 are hand stamped overprints on the general issues of the French colonies, the overprint being a new face value. Still, in 1890, a locally designed and printed set is issued. More overprints on the general issues for the French colonies follow in 1891 and 1892. In 1892 and 1894 sets are issued of the general design for the French colonies. The 1892 set is inscribed ‘Diego-Suarez et Dependances’ as the stamps of Diego-Suarez have also been used in Nossi-Bé and Sainte-Marie de Madagascar. The 1894 set is inscribed ‘Diego-Suarez’ only. The stamps of Diego-Suarez will be used until 1898 when they are superseded by the stamps of Madagascar.The remaining stock is overprinted with new face values in 1902 and reissued for use in all of Madagascar.