Stamps of PANAMA
PANAMA
1818: Colonial Mail, Panama was part of New Granada, Red Straigh Line h.s. on folded letter to Jose Antonio Errea, Lima (Peru) m.s. "4" rate, FINE strike, January (Enero) 12, 1818.
1813, May 22: Red Straight Line h.s. PANAMÁ. It is two sheets of paper folded together. You can see the address and also the docketing by the sender which includes the date. The PANAMA strike is rather faint - it was done in red. There is a slight hole and tear in the back of the outer sheet, which does not affect the contents. Otherwise it is in quite good condition for its age. It is the only colonial Panama cover sent to Havana. Ex-DeVoss.
Back
1819, August 17: Colonial Mail, Panama was part of New Granada, FINE strike, E.L. from Panama to Lima endorsed "Bergn. Pelican" with fine straight line PANAMA in red. Endorsed as sent on 17 August and received on 6 October.
1813 PANAMA to HAVANA
1818 PANAMA to LIMA
1819 PANAMA to LIMA
1805 PANAMA to Fuenterrabia, Colombia
1805, March 12: Colonial Mail, Panama was part of New Granada, Red Straigh Line h.s. PANAMÁ FRANCA on folded letter to Licdo D. Gabriel Antonio Zuzuárregui, Spain m.s. "4 1/2" rate, FINE strike, Mar 12/805. From its content, originating in Panama where is uncle ask his nephew how is Europe.
1811, June 19: Colonial Mail, Panama was part of New Granada, Red Straigh Line h.s. on folded letter to Señor Don Miguel Pizano, Lima (Peru) m.s. "4 1/2" rate, FINE strike, June 19, 1811, delivered by "Paquebot Carmen."
1811 PANAMA to LIMA
1808 PANAMA to Santa Fe, Colombia
1808, November 28: Red Straight Line handstamp Type II PANAMÁ FRANCA on folded letter from PANAMA CITY to SANTA FE de BOGOTA addressed to Camilo Torres, Santa Fe. This letter is the second of two letters sent to Camilo Torres from the same sender, Camilo Torres, who was the leader of the Revolutionary Forces and was elected President of United Provinces of Nueva Granada in 1815. Rated 5 reales for a double letter for up to 2 ounces. Rates published in the "Itinerario Real de Correo del Nuevo Reino de Granada," rate dated December 4, 1770.

ONE OF SIX LETTERS WITH BOTH "
PANAMÁ" AND "FRANCA" POSTMARKS KNOWN
1809 PANAMA to Santa Fe, Colombia
1809, June 30: PANAMA a SANTA FE. Carta completa con texto. Marcas PANAMÁ y VYVA FERNANDO 7 Marca patriotica. Carta excepcional y extraordinariamente rara. Rata doble por ¾ de onza "5" reales a mano. NOTA: En 1809 as Tropas Francesas invadieron Espaòa, el Rey D. Fernando VII fue capturado y encerrado en prision. Muchas de las entonces colonias de America estamparon en las cartas fracesas patrioticas de apoyo al Rey de Espana. 1809 June 30.
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PANAMA to SANTA FE. Entire letter.
PANAMÁ (Tizon 2 = RR) and VYVA FERNANDO 7 (Tizon 3 = EXT) patriotic. Very rare. Rated "5" reales in manuscript for a double letter under ¾ ounce in weight. NOTE: In 1809 Spain was invaded by French Army and King Fernando VII imprisoned. In several former Spanish colonies of America, patriotic marks were handstamped on thefront of the letters to support the King.
1816 PORTOVELO to PANAMA
1816, Februry 16: PORTOVELO (Later COLON) to PANAMA. Entire letter with red PORTVLO handstamp. Originated from Portovelo and addressed to Panama, no indication of rate but should be 1½ reales for under ½ oz; contents referring to large shipment of silver.
1818 PANAMA to LIMA
1816, November 19: Dated folded letter with straight line PANAMÁ (Tizon 2 = RR) handstamp in red, postmark used from 1807 to the late 1820’s. From Panama to Lima, Peru, manuscript "Par la Bot Abarcal," with manuscript “4” reales rating for a double letter up to 1½ ounces. Content stating that 6,029 pesos have been shipped on the "Abarcal."
1818 PANAMA to LIMA
1819, May 6: Dated folded letter with perfect straight line PANAMÁ handstamp in red, postmark used from 1807 to the late 1820’s. datelined May 6, 1819 from Panama to Lima, Peru, manuscript "Paquebot Correo Y."
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1815 PANAMA to SPAIN
1815 September 30: FINE strike in red straight-line h.s. PANAMÁ/FRANCA on folded letter to Licenciado D. Gabriel Antonio Zuzuárregui to Fuenterravia, Spain. m.s. "X" with no rate and m.s. "España." From its content, dated Sep 30 de 1815 and originating in Panama where his uncle answers his nephews 13 de Abril letter.
In 1717, the Viceroyalty of New Granada (northern South America) was created in response to other Europeans trying to take Spanish territory in the Caribbean region. In the reinstatement of the Viceroyalty of New Granada in 1739, the territories of the Royal Audience of Panama are added. The Isthmus of Panama was placed under its jurisdiction. But the remoteness of New Granada's capital Santa Fe de Bogotá proved a greater obstacle than the Spanish crown anticipated as the authority of the new Viceroyalty was contested by the seniority, closer proximity, previous ties to the Viceroyalty of Peru in Lima and even Panama's own initiative. The Royal Decree of 6 August 1764 by King Carlos III established the new rules for mail in all Spanish colonies, and corresponding postmarks were introduce to denote the provenance of the mail. This uneasy relationship between Panama and Bogotá would persist for a century and lasted until November 28, 1821 when Panama got independence from Spain and joined to the Republic of Colombia.

If we consider only the material available for private collectors, and not the letters preserved by national archives in Spain and America, not many folded letters/covers for this period have survived. Four classes of mail service were offered, paid letters, unpaid letters and official mail. The earliest colonial markings were hand stamps for the town name usually a port name
PANAMÁ or PORTVLO, FRANCO or FRANCA (paid). There is one known private mail from Chagres, Panama, one from Portovelo with SANTA FE, one from Panama to Cadiz 5R.

Via Panamá: Four known covers, three through Panama and one through Portovelo two of them to Lima seem to have come from the same sender and on the same date 19 Nov, 1811; one from Venezuela to Guatemala, and Lima to Cadiz.
From Panama to Buenaventura 1, Cartagena 1, Santa Fe 5, Lima 6,  Fuenterravia 2, Cadiz 1, Madrid 2, Guayaquil 2, Guatemala 1 and Havana 1.
By country Colombia 7, Peru 6, Spain 5, Ecuador 2, Guatemala 1 and Cuba 1.
From Portovelo (Colon) to Panama 1
From Chagres to Nicaragua 1 privately
Other Markings: From Portovelo with SANTA FE and the other from Panama to Cadiz with 5R
COLONIAL MAIL PERIOD
1808 Dec 2 PANAMA to Santa Fe, Colombia
1808, December 2: Red Straight Line handstamp Type II PANAMÁ FRANCA on folded letter from PANAMA CITY to SANTA FE de BOGOTA addressed to Camilo Torres, Santa Fe. This letter is the second of two letters sent to Camilo Torres from the same sender, Camilo Torres, who was the leader of the Revolutionary Forces and was elected President of United Provinces of Nueva Granada in 1815. Rated 5 reales for a double letter for up to 2 ounces. Rates published in the "Itinerario Real de Correo del Nuevo Reino de Granada," rate dated December 4, 1770.

ONE OF SIX LETTERS WITH BOTH "
PANAMÁ" AND "FRANCA" POSTMARKS KNOWN.