Sunday, March 28, 2010

Carrier Pigeon Helps Launch London 2010: Festival of Stamps

The British Postal Museum & Archive reports the Bath Postal Museum used a carrier pigeon to send greetings to the organizers of the Festival of Stamps and promote the museum's latest exhibition covering some of the major events in the reign of King George V.

Colin Baker is quoted as saying, “The way this pigeon message has been sent will show people how communication always played an important role in our society. Although there was no internet in King George V’s reign, the techniques used in his day were often faster than some of the methods we currently employ.”

The message, shown above was written on an original pigeongramme form as used in World War II, which is very lightweight paper that weighed only one gram.

According to the article, "All RAF (Royal Air Force) bombers carried homing pigeons in the Second World War. For example a bird called ‘White Vision’ delivered a message bearing latitude and longitude details so that the RAF crew could be rescued. They were flying a Catalina Flying Boat which ditched over the Hebrides. This bird flew 60 miles in atrocious weather over heavy seas. It was awarded one of the 14 ‘Dickin Medals for Gallantry’ awarded to homing pigeons. In all 32 bravery medals were awarded to pigeons in the 2nd World War."

To read the entire article, click here.
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM