Isle of Man Post Office has issued a new set of stamps, featuring artwork from Victorian postcards depicting Manx cats.Stamps and coins manager Dot Tilbury said: ‘Stamps featuring cats are very popular with collectors worldwide. We haven’t done a cat collection for quite some time, and obviously the Manx cat is something of a national icon.’Manx history enthusiast Robert Kelly was able to contribute original Victorian illustrations, upon which the six new stamp designs are based. Isle of Man Post have made these available as a presentation set, which includes a series of Tales of the Tailless by Mr Kelly, an entertaining romp through the history of some famous feline Manxies.One such was Peta, a black Manx cat presented as a gift from the island in 1964 to serve as a ‘mouser’ at the British Home Office.
The story goes that Peta invaded 10 Downing Street and roughed-up the resident Siamese owned by Prime Minister Harold Wilson. Only diplomatic immunity saved Peta from adverse consequences and she went on to star on the official Home Office Christmas cards.
Equally distinguished was Manxie, a cat shipped from the Isle of Man as a present to Walt Disney in 1933. The hidden agenda of the Isle of Man Government was the hope that Manxie would inspire the creation of a cartoon character to ride the wave of Mickey Mouse’s huge popularity at the time. Sadly, while Manxie was made welcome as he roamed the Hollywood studio, his dreams of stardom where left unrealised.For information on stamps, email email@example.com