Lot #: 80538

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Description

Second Boer War (1899-1902) mail: 25 JULY 1901 plain envelope from RAGAMA prisoner of war camp in Ceylon to addressee in HUMANSDORP in Cape Colony "South Africa", franked 6c, opened and sealed by censor using vertical black on pink E. Arms R. /Opened Under Martial Law label tied by oval camp censor cachet, then frank tied by RAGAMA CAMP skeleton postmark, same day COLOMBO transit (postmark on front) & backstamped AU 28 1901 arrival. Slit open at top, with 4 filing holes. Over 5,000 Boers were interned in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) during the Boer War, with the Ceylon camps being the second set of overseas POW camps established after those in St. Helena had filled. The camp at Ragama was the third one established in Ceylon, on 8 January 1901, and housed dissidents and irreconcilables who would not sign the oath of allegence to the British Crown. It's unclear if the addressee Mr. A. Katz was Jewish: there was a Jewish presence in Humansdorp by 1899, drawn to the locale by the ostrich feather industry; the local Hebrew Congregation was established in 1901, and there were 47 Jewish residents by 1904.