This Sarawak stamp cost me US$45. You are probably wondering giving my animosity towards most thing Brooke, why on earth then would I want to pay so much for an old 5c Sarawak stamp.
This one has Brunei history. If you remember my article on Muara, you would know why. Muara was in the late 1890s and early 1900s was administered by Rajah Brooke in his personal capacity. Of course, it was hard to distinguish between his private and official capacity. He brought in Sarawak police and other administrative requirements such as the postal service. The first stamps to be used in Brunei was not the Brunei stamps which came in 1895. The Sarawak stamps were used much earlier in 1893 and up to 1907. Sarawak had its first stamps as far back as 1869.
This particular Sarawak stamp was used in Brunei territory, Brooketon. If you looked closely you can see that the stamp is postmarked Brooketon and posted on 9 November, unfortunately the year is not visible.
Brunei had to use Sarawak stamps again. This time during the Second World War or rather immediately after the Second World War. The Japanese had been driven out and the British Military Administration was taking over.
The BMA was not going to go for fancy stamps but used whatever was in stock. So they used whatever stamps Sabah and Sarawak had left and overprinted them with the letters BMA and used them in Sabah, Sarawak and Brunei. Why wasn't Brunei stamps overprinted? The answer most probably is not stock. The Japanese had been overprinting Brunei stamps when they were in power and used them all up.