A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar


A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. Interested? So into the Blues...

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Portugal

1884 Scott 51 1000r black "King Luiz"
Quick History
On the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal, for classical era stamp collectors, is best known for the exotic and obscure colonies scattered across the globe. The problem, though, was the slow decline in Portuguese power that lasted from the invasion of Napoleon up to the 20th century. The largest blow was the independence of Brazil in 1822.

Portugal
But Portugal still had their Africa territories, and the borders were established by the 1884 Conference of Berlin during the "Scramble for Africa".

"Pink Map", showing the land claims of Portugal
In 1884, at the Berlin Conference, Portugal laid claim to the entire strip between Mozambique and Angola. But these claims were not recognized by Great Britain.

Africa 1913
Portuguese colonies- Purple: British colonies- Pink
By 1890, the  "British Ultimatum" forced the retreat of the Portuguese military from these lands, again exposing Portuguese weakness.

Government bankruptcy was declared in 1892, and again in 1902.

King Carlos was assassinated in 1908 in Lisbon, and the monarchy (Manuel II) was overthrown in the 1910 revolution, establishing a Republic. Familiar to collectors, the stamps of this era are overprinted "Republica".

The shaky Portuguese First Republic lasted until 1926, when a military coup replaced it with the Ditadura Nacional (National Dictatorship).

A right wing dictatorship under Antonio de Oliveira Salazar was established in 1932, and his "Estado Novo" government was in power until 1974.

Portugal remained neutral in WW II.

The capital is Lisbon, and the population was 7,760,000 in 1941.

1858 Scott 11 25r rose "King Pedro V"
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic 1840-1940 catalogue has, for Portugal 1853-1941, 1031 major descriptive numbers. Of those, 479 are CV <$1-$1+, or 46%. The first 96 catalogue numbers (1853-1893) are considerably more expensive. Obviously, Portugal is a European country, and therefore commands more expense for the WW classical collector. And, as one of the imperialistic colonial powers, Portugal has a high profile in the WW classical stamp collecting world.

Some of the highlights for Portuguese collectors include the famous (infamous?) 1912-31 "Ceres" issue (91 stamps), the 1926- 1928 bi-color engraved independence issues, and the interesting unusual category "Franchise" issues ( 106 stamps). Alas, I will say nothing about these, as I have elected to concentrate on the 19th century stamp issues for this blog post.

In general, Portuguese designs are familiar to WW classical collectors, because of their use in the many Portuguese colonies. Some would argue that their stamp issues do not measure up to the designs and production methods of the other colonial powers: - perhaps because Portugal was a poorer country.

Let's take a closer look at the "Mother" country 19th century stamps for ourselves.....

A closer look at the stamps and issues
1000 Reis = 1 Milreis
10 Reis = 1 Centimo
100 Centavos = 1 Escudo (1912)
1853 Scott 2 25r blue "Queen Maria II"
Imperforate; Typographed & Embossed
The first stamp issue for Portugal was released in 1853, and shows the monarch Queen Maria II, who had reigned from 1826-28, and then from 1834. The four stamp imperforate issue also had four different frame designs. The stamps were typographed and embossed. ( In fact, all of the earlier issues were typographed and embossed.)

And Queen Maria II also died in 1853 (November 15), giving birth to her eleventh child.

During her reign, Cholera was reduced through public health measures, and she was interested in raising education levels for the country. She is known affectionately as "The Good Mother".

The CV for the issue is quite expensive, save for the 25r blue ($20+).

Now the bad news for collectors.

All the early issues were reprinted several times using various papers.

The 1853 issue was reprinted in 1864,1885, 1905, and 1953!

Most other early issues were reprinted in 1885 and 1905.

For the WW classical collector, it is a mess to figure out, and I refer you to the notes in the Scott catalogue, or consult more specialized catalogues. The good news is, not rarely, reprints are worth more than the original!  ;-)

Note the brown gum stains on the 1853 25r blue illustrated above? That makes it more likely that this is an original.

1856 Scott 10 25r blue, Type II, with Curled Hair
"King Pedro V"
A four stamp issue for the heir of Queen Maria II was produced in 1855. This is known as the "Straight Hair" issue. King Pedro V, the eldest son of Queen Maria II, was 16 years old on his ascension.

Between 1856-58, a three stamp "Curled Hair" issue, using the same general design as the 1855 stamps, was released: - this is shown above. Note the tear in the stamp along the embossed edge? This clearly can be a hazard for embossed specimens. Also, note the quite white paper? ... And the stamp has no gum. This might be an 1885 reprint.

The CV for two original stamps in the issue is $6+-$10+. Of interest, the reprints are valued @ $40.

Alas, King Pedro V , a monarch who sought modernization of the infrastructure and was well liked, died of Typhoid Fever or Cholera in 1861.

1862 Scott 12 & 12a 5r brown "King Luiz"
Type I & Type II
A five stamp issue was released between 1862-64 for the new monarch, King Luiz, the second son of Queen Maria II. He reigned from 1861- 1889. CV ranges from $4+-$90.

The 5r brown has two types. In Type I, 5mm separates the "5" and "Reis", while only 3 mm for Type II.

1866 Scott 22 80r orange "King Luiz"
Imperforate
An eight stamp imperforate set was released 1866-67 with the "King Luiz" visage. CV ranges from $8-$140.

King Luiz was a cultured man (He wrote poetry), but he was not talented in the political sphere. Portugal began lagging behind the other western European nations.

1869 Scott 27 20r bister "King Luiz"
Perforated
A perforated nine stamp set was produced between 1867-70.

1879 Scott 43 50r blue "King Luiz"
Perf 12 1/2; plain paper
A new eighteen stamp set which is moderately different in design from the preceding perforated issue (compare!) was issued 1870-84. Scott's major numbers are Perf 12 1/2, but there are 52 minor numbers found with different perfs and/or paper.

This was the last Portuguese set with typography/embossed characteristics.

1880 Scott 53 25r bluish gray "King Luiz"
A five stamp "King Luiz" set was produced in 1880-81.

The new portrait shows he is rather corpulent.

Although he wasn't much for politics, his real passion was oceanography. One of the first Aquariums opened in Lisbon, under his patronage.

1884 Scott 59 10r green "King Luiz"
Perf 11 1/2
The 1882-87 issue had one numeral design and six more stamps with a new visage of King Luiz. The stamps can be found with three different perforations and plain or enamel surfaced paper.

1882-87 Issue
Various Perforations with minor catalogue numbers
I have a quadrilled page in the Deep Blue (Steiner) album for this issue with the various perforations and plain / enamel paper.

1887 Scott 66 25r lilac rose "King Luiz"
In 1887, three more stamps of King Luiz were issued with different frame designs.

1892 Scott 74 80r yellow green "King Carlos"
Perf 12 1/2
With the death of King Luiz, his son, King Carlos ,assumed the throne in 1889. A twelve stamp set was released for King Carlos in 1892-93. Like the preceding issue, there are many perforation and enamel/ chalky paper variations. A quadrilled page will probably be needed for these.

1892 Scott 79 5r gray black, Overprinted
1892 was not a good year for Portugal. The "Pink Map", with Portugal claiming sovereignty for the lands in Africa between Mozambique and Angola, was no more, and that was not a popular outcome in Portugal. And the government was forced to go into bankruptcy. Perhaps that explains the "Provisorio" overprinted stamps of 1892-93?

At any rate, two stamps with a horizontal black overprint were released in 1892. 

1892 Scott 81 5r gray black, Red Overprint
Five more stamps were overprinted in red between 1892-93.

1893 Scott 89 10r green, Red Overprint
And nine stamps are found with an additional "1893" red overprint released in 1893.

1894 Scott 102 50r blue 
"Prince Henry Directing Fleet Maneuvers"
As the U.S. had a 1893 commemorative Columbian Exposition issue, so Portugal released a thirteen stamp set with three scenes commemorating the 5th centenary of Prince Henry the Navigator in 1894. CV ranges from <$1-$100+.

I note my used copies have an apparent commemorative cancellation also, although Scott says nothing about this.

1896 Scott 131 500r black/blue "King Carlos"
If one collects Portuguese colonies, then this next series should be quite familiar, although the details differ a bit.

Between 1895-1905, a 22 stamp set with this "King Carlos" visage was produced for the mother country. CV ranges from <$1-$20+.

On February 1, 1908, the royal family was in an open carriage in Lisbon when King Carlos was assassinated by two republican activists in the crowd with a rifle. The heir apparent, Luis Filipe, was also killed.

The younger son, 18 year old Prince Manuel, then became Manuel II. However, the October 5, 1910 Republican Revolution dissolved the monarchy, and he spent the rest of his years in exile.

1895 Scott 135 15r chocolate 
"St. Anthony Preaching to Fishes"
For the 7th centenary of the birth of St. Anthony of Padua, a fifteen stamp lithographic issue (except for the 2 1/2r typographic black) with four scenes was issued in 1895. Ten of the stamps are bi-colored. But the lithographic printing is not as striking, in my opinion, as an engraved printing would have been. Six stamps have CV $1-$8+, but the others are CV $20+-$375.

St. Anthony stamps have a eulogy in Latin printed on the back
My high school Latin is a bit rusty, but perhaps a reader has the skills to translate. ;-)

1898 Scott 150 25r yellow green "Muse of History"
Vasco da Gama Issue
Portugal is famous (infamous?) for the "Common Design Types" issues for itself and their colonies. The 1898 "Vasco da Gama" eight stamp issue can be found for Portugal and eight colonies.

Deep Blue
1924 Issue in Deep Blue
400th Anniversary of Birth of Luis de Camoens
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 58 pages for the stamps of Portugal. All categories, including Franchise stamps, are included.

The 1882-87 "King Luiz" and the 1892-93  "King Carlos" issues only have spaces for the major numbers. The many minor number stamps with different perforations and paper (Plain, Enamel Surfaced, Chalky) for these issues have no space. One will need some extra quadrilled pages.

OTOH, the 1912-31 "Ceres" issue with Chalky/ Unsurfaced/ Glazed paper and Perf 15 X 14/ 12 X 11.5 variables are parsed into five categories- each having their own spaces. This offers a level of detail for the collector that is not available from the 2011 Scott catalogue, where everything is lumped together.

The 91 major numbers in the 2011 Scott are given 127 spaces, using the additional variable criteria. Thanks Steiner!

Scott must have recognized the inadequacy of their listings, because mirabile dictu, the "Ceres" issues were significantly revised in my 2014 catalogue with 40 new numbers. They now follow the parsing, with a few exceptions, as laid out in the Steiner.

1862 Scott 14 25r rose "King Luiz"
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on 15 pages, has 465 spaces. Coverage is 45%.

Observations....
* Twenty-three stamps are over CV $10+, with three reaching the $35 "Most Expensive" grouping with CV $40-$52+. (See the "comments" section for details.)

* Of the 1912-31 "Ceres" issue, 55 are given spaces, while 36 are not. Of those not given spaces, 23 are CV <$1-$1+.

* BB presents the "Ceres" output in parts based on year(s) of issue: the 1912 stamps, the 1917-21 stamps,  the 1924 stamps, and the 1926 stamps. The 1930-31 year "Ceres" issues (12 stamps) are not provided any spaces at all. Although there is nothing wrong with presenting stamps by year of issue, the modern Scott catalogue has reduced the importance of that variable, and orders the entire 1912-31 issue by denomination. If BB is ever edited again, the stamp presentation spaces should be reshuffled to follow the modern Scott catalogue.

* New! The 2014 classic catalogue has revised numbers for the "Ceres" issue, and 40 new varieties are now given spaces based on different perf or paper. The checklist has the "old" numbers based on the 2011 catalogue. But after the checklist, I present a current Ceres checklist and a translation from old number (2011) to the current number(s) (2014).

* The 1928-29 surcharged issue and the 1929 overprinted "Revalidado" issue, both on Ceres stamps, is not in BB. There are 33 stamps in these issues with CV <$1-$1+. Pity.

Checklist

1853
2,

1855 (straight hair)
6,

1856-57 (curled hair)
10,11,

1862-64
12a or 12, 14,

1866-70*
17 or 25, 20 or 28,

1870-84
34,37,38,39,41,42,
44,45,48,(35),

1880-81
52,53,54 or 55, 56,

1887
64,65 or 66,

1882-84
57,58,59,60,61,

Next Page

1892-93
79,80,81,82,83,86,84,
67,68,69,70,71,72,75,

1894
97,98,99,100,101,

1895-96
110,111,112,113,115,116,118,
121,123,124,129,130,131,

1895
132,133,137,(134),

1898
150,147,148,149,151,

Next Page

1898-99
114,117,120,126,

1905
119,122,

1910
156,157,158,159,160,161,162,
170,171,172,173,174,175,176,

1910
177,178,

1911
185*,186,191,
187,188,

1911
193,194,195,

Update note: The Ceres issues immediately below are now the "old" numbers, as listed in the 2011 catalogue. The 2014 catalogue significantly parsed the Ceres issue into 1912-20 Perf 15 X 14 chalky paper, 1920 Perf 12 X 11 1/2 chalky paper, 1917-26 Perf 15 X 14 ordinary paper, 1920-26 Perf 12 X 11 1/2 ordinary paper, and 1923-26 Perf 12 X 11 1/2 glazed paper varieties- all with major numbers.
The 2014 catalogue has the current numbers. I've added the current numbers for the Ceres Issues after the "old" Ceres number checklist and comments. Please scroll down and use those numbers instead if one has a current catalogue.

1912 Ceres (Old numbers)
207,208,209,211,213,217,223,

Next Page

1912 Ceres (Old numbers)
230,232,235,242,245,(254),(264),

1917-21 Ceres (Old numbers)
210,212,214,218,219,220,221,
224,227,231,238,239,240,241,
247,250,256,259,265,268,272,

1922-23 Ceres (Old numbers)
225,233,243,248,251,270,279,

1923
299,300,301,302,303,
304,305,306,307,308,

Next Page

1923
309,310,311,312,313,
314,

1924 Ceres (Old numbers)
215,228,234,244,249,257,

1924 Ceres (Old numbers)
258,261,263,269,273,280,288,289,
(1924 - not Ceres)
315,316,317,
318,319,
320,321,322,323,324,

Next Page

1924
325,326,327,328,329,
330,331,332,333,334,
335,336,337,338,
339,340,341,(342),

1925
346,347,348,349,
350,351,352,354,

Next Page

1925
355,353,356,359,357,
358,361,362,360,
363,364,365,366,367,
369,368,370,371,372,

1926
377,378,379,380,381,

Next Page

1926
382,383,384,385,386,
387,388,389,390,391,392,
398,399,400,402,403,404,405,
406,407,408,409,410,411,412,413,
414,415,416,417,418,419,420,421,

1927
422,423,426,427,424,

Next Page

1927
425,428,430,429,431,
432,434,433,435,436,
437,439,440,443,438,
441,442,444,445,448,449,
46,451,447,452,450,

Next Page

1931-33
497,498,499,500,501,502,503,
505,506,507,508,509,510,511,
512,513,514,515,516,517,518,519,

1931
528,529,530,531,532,533,
534,535,536,537,538,539,

1933
544,
543,545,546,547,548,

Next Page

1933
549,550,551,552,553,554,

1934
556,

1934
558,559,560,

1935-36
561,562,563,
564,565,566,567,568,568A,

1935
570,572,573,571,

1938
575,576,577,578,

1940
579,580,

Next Page

1940
581,582,583,584,585,586,
587,588,589,592,
590,591,593,594,
595,596,597,598,599,
600,601,602,

Next Page

Postal Tax Stamps
1911-12
RA1,RA2,

1915-26
RA3,RA4,RA5,

1928
RA14,

1925
RA7,RA8,RA9,RA10,

1913
RA3*,

1925
RA11,RA12,RA13,

Postage Due
1898
J1,J2,

1904
J7,J8,(J10),

1911-23
J14,J15,J16,(J17),J21,J22,J23,
J24,J25,(J26),(J27),(J30*),(J31),(J32),

Next Page

Postage Due
1932
J45,J46,J47,J48,J49,J50,
J51,J52,J53,

1940
J54,J55,J56,J57,J58,J59,
J60,J61,J62,J63,J64,

Air Post
C1,C2,(C3),(C6),

Parcel Post
1920
Q1,Q2,Q3,Q4,

Next Page

Parcel Post
1936-37
Q23,(Q18),(Q19),(Q20),

Franchise Stamps
1926
1S4,(1S5),

1903-34
3S15,(3S17),(3S18),(3S19),

Postal Tax Due Stamps
1925
RAJ1,RAJ2,RAJ3,RAJ4,

1928
RAJ5,

End

Comments
A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
1853 Scott 2 25r blue ($10+)
1855 Scott 6 25r blue ($20+)
1856 Scott 10 25r blue ($10+)
1862 Scott 12 5r brown, Type I ($10+)
1866 Scott 17 5r black ($10)
1871 (Scott 35) 10r yellow ($20+)
1880 Scott 37 10r yellow green ($20+)
1875 Scott 38 15r lilac brown ($20+)
1870 Scott 39 20r bister ($20+)
1870 Scott 42 50r pale green ($40)
1870 Scott 44 80r orange ($30)
1871 Scott 45 100r pale lilac ($20+)
1880 Scott 48 150r yellow ($10+)
1880 Scott 53 25r bluish gray ($20+)
1881 Scott 56 50r blue ($10+)
1892 Scott 83 20r rose ($20+)
1893 Scott 86 15r bister btrown ($10+)
1925 Scott 368 1.50e dark blue/blue ($10+)
1925 Scott 371 2.40e red/orange (($30+)
1925 Scott 372 3e lake/blue ($40)
1931 Scott 537 75c carmine rose ($20+)
1931 Scott 538 1.25e dark blue & pale blue ($20)
1931 Scott 539 4.50e chocolate & light green ($52.50)
B) *12a or 12- image cut is 12a, but major numbers are permitted in a space where minor numbers are specified according to our "rules".
C) *1866-70- perf or imperf allowed
D) (    ) around a number indicates a blank space choice
E) *185- BB shows a diagonal "Republica", but the OP is horizontal on the stamp.
F) *RA3- is dark green. The brown is a telegraph stamp.
G) *J30- the choices (J30),(J31),(J32), are the 1921-23 gray green issue.

Following is the Ceres Issues checklist using the 2014 catalogue and the current numbers.

I have made the pragmatic decision to include all the possible stamp choices, regardless of BB's date specifications. The reader, of course, can be more strict, and only include the stamp(s) in the space that are within the date range as listed by BB.

1912 Ceres (current numbers)
207 or 227 or 255, 208 or 228 or 256, 209 or 229 or 257, 210 or 231, 211 or 233, 212 or 235, 213 or 240A,
Note: The choices include stamps issued up to 1920.

Next Page

1912 Ceres (current numbers)
214 or 243 ,215 or 244, 216 or 245 or 275, ,217 or 247, 218*,(220),(222),
Note *218 -The Scott 218 20c is listed as "violet green/green" in the 2014 catalogue. I believe that is a Scott listing color error, and should be 20c "violet brown/green" (Old Scott 245), which would agree with the older catalogues and  the color tint I have in my collection. I have notified Scott of the error.
Note: The choices include stamps issued up to 1920.

1917-21 Ceres (current numbers)
230 or 257 ,232 or 258, 234 or 259,236 or 263,237 or 264,238,239 or 265,
240 or 267,241 or 269,242 or 271,276,277,224,278,
281,284,287,290,2295,296,298A,

1922-23 Ceres (current numbers)
268,273,279,282,285,298,298I

1924 Ceres (current numbers)
260,270,274,280,283,288,

1924 Ceres (current numbers)
289,292,294,297,278B,298J,298M,298N,
(1924-not Ceres)
315,316,317,
318,319,
320,321,322,323,324,

Appendix: Translation from "old" numbers to "current" numbers

Following is a translation from "old" (2011) number to "current" (2014) number(s) for the "Ceres" issue. The old number is presented first, then after the "=" sign, the current number(s) is/are presented.

1912
207, = 207 or 227 or 255
208, = 208 or 228 or 256
209, = 209 or 229 or 257
211, = 210 or 231
213, = 211 or 233
217, = 212 or 235
223, = 213 or 240A

Next Page

1912
230, = 214 or 243
232, = 215 or 244
235, = 216 or 245 or 275
242, = 217 or 247
245*, = (218* )
(254), = 220
(264), = 222
Comment
* 245 is 20c violet brown on green in the 2011 catalogue, as well as BB. But the 2014 catalogue lists no such color. They do list Scott 218 20c violet green/green. Whoever heard of "violet green"? I believe this is a Scott listing color error. I have notified Scott. Furthermore, I have the apparent 20c violet brown/green stamp in my collection.

1917-21
210, = 230 or 257
212 = 232 or 258
214, = 234 or 259
218, = 236 or 263
219 = 237 or 264
220, = 238
221, = 239 or 265
224, = 240 or 267
227, = 241 or 269
231, = 242 or 271
238, = 276
239, = 277
240, = 224
241, = 278
247, = 281
250, = 284
256, = 287
259, = 290
265, = 295
268, = 296
272, = 298A

1922-23
225, = 268
233, = 273
243, = 279
248, = 282
251, = 285
270, = 298
279, = 298I

1924
215, = 260
228, = 270
234, = 274
244, = 280
249, = 283
257, = 288

1924
258, = 289
261, = 292
263, = 294
269, = 297
273, = 298B
280, = 298J
288, = 298M
289, = 298N

1893 Scott 77 200r dark blue/blue "King Carlos"
Out of the Blue
I don't know how I managed to publish a blog post about Portuguese issues without showing one "Ceres" stamp.

;-)

Note: Maps appear to be in the public domain.

Comments are appreciated!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Ponta Delgada

1892-93 Scott 2 10r reddish violet "King Carlos"
Perf 12 1/2
Quick History
Ponta Delgada  was a Portuguese administrative district of the Azores, and consisted of the islands of Sao Miguel and Santa Maria.

The Azores- Ponta Delgada Administrative District consisted of
Sao Miguel & Santa Maria islands
Ponta Delgada- the village- was the center of the district, and became a municipality in 1546.

The Island of Sao Miguel with the City of Ponta Delgada
Ponta Delgada became an economic center with the export of citrus products to Great Britain.

Population was 52,000 in 1900.

Ponta Delgada had their own Portuguese colony stamps from 1892-1905. Stamps of the Azores were then used from 1905, and then the stamps of Portugal beginning in 1931.

1897 Scott 14 5r orange "King Carlos"
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic 1840-1940 catalogue has, for Ponta Delgada 1892-1905, 34 major stamps descriptions. Of those, 24 are CV <$1-$1+, or 71%.

The Scott Classic 1840-1940 also lists 1853-1867 stamps of Portugal used in Ponta Delgada (Barred Numeral "50"). These 25 varieties are all expensive to quite expensive, and since they are really specialist's territory, I will say no more about them.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
1000 Reis = 1 Milreis
1892-93 Scott 5 25r green "King Carlos"
Perf 11 1/2
The stamps of Ponta Delgada are quite typical for a Portuguese colony, except the administrative district did not issue stamps for very long- only 13 years.

The first issue was released between 1892-93, and had the image of King Carlos as shown here. The Scott catalogue breaks the issue down to 12 major numbers and 16 bolded minor numbers. They differ by perforation, and paper (enamel surfaced, chalky). Most, but not all, of the Perf 12 1/2 stamps are given major numbers. The CV for both the major and minor varieties range from <$1-$5+ for 22 stamps.

1897 Scott 15 10r light green "King Carlos"
A 22 stamp set of the 1897-1905 design "King Carlos" was the second (and last) issue to be released for Ponta Delgada. Three of the values (5r orange, 10r light green, 65r slate blue) can also be found as bolded minor numbers with yellowish paper.

1898 Scott 31 180r slate/pinkish
The issue does have a number of stamps printed on tinted paper. Note the "pinkish" tint to the paper here.

CV for the issue is <$1-$2+ for seventeen stamps.

Deep Blue
1897-1905 Issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has two pages for the stamps of Ponta Delgada, and all major numbers are given a space.  There are 17 stamps, however, in Scott with bolded minor numbers (Perf variations, chalky or yellow paper varieties) with no designated spaces. One will need to put those on quadrilled pages.

1898 Scott 23 65r slate blue
Note "PontaDel" script on postmark
Big Blue
The '69 Big Blue has Ponta Delgada wildly out of place alphabet wise, as the 1/2 page (shared with the "Roman States" and "Rouad") is between Romania and Ruanda-Urundi. There are 16 spaces- 47% coverage.

Considering that BB is a "representative" album, the coverage is O.K.

There are no stamps with CV of $10+.

Checklist

1892-94
1,2,5,(3),

1897
13,14,15,16,18,19,21,

1898-99
17,20,23,28,29,31,

End

Comments
A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold): None
B) (   ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.

1897 Scott 27 100r dark blue/blue
Out of the Blue
Another small region of the world where I had no idea that stamps, at one time, were printed for use.  ;-)

Note: Maps and Ponta Delgada pic appear to be in the public domain.

Have a comment?

Port of Ponta Delgada- Circa 1900

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Poland

1919 Scott 71 1k olive gray & carmine "Polish Eagle"
Quick History
No country has been ripped apart, and put back together as many times as Poland.

The development of the Polish state, and the conversion to Christianity occurred in 966.

The Kingdom of Poland was founded in 1025.

The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth was formed in 1569.


The Commonwealth was partitioned by Prussia, Russia, and Austria-Hungary in 1792-95
Then the Commonwealth was dismembered by Prussia, Russia, and Austria-Hungary between 1792-95, each taking a piece.

Poland, except for a brief Napoleonic renaissance, ceased to exist for 123 years.

Poland 1922-1938
After WW I, Poland was reconstituted as the Second Polish Republic.

Independence was achieved on November 9, 1918.

The stamps reflected this euphoria, with themes such as "Sower and Rainbow of Hope", and "Sun breaking out of Darkness". 

The Capital was Warsaw, and the population was 34,700,000 in 1939.

Germany and the Soviet Union divided and annexed all of Poland 1939-41
But with a secret agreement in hand, Nazi Germany invaded and occupied the western portion of Poland on September 1, 1939, while the Soviet Union occupied the rest.

Poland lost 20% of it's population, with 3 million Jews and 3 million Poles killed or murdered.

Poland 1945
Red- annexed from Germany; Gray-Blue-annexed by Soviet Union
Poland was reconstituted after WW II with the western section (red) added from Germany, but the eastern section (gray-blue) was removed by the Soviet Union.

Poland then fell under the sphere of the Soviet bloc, as the Yalta Conference permitted the formation of a pro-communist Polish government.

Yet the Solidarity party won the elections in 1989, which initiated the democracy movement in eastern Europe.

Incredible history. Let's look at the stamps.

1919 Scott 132 5k slate blue "Polish Cavalryman"
For Southern Poland
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic 1840-1940 catalogue has, for Poland (besides one stamp for 1860) 1915-1941, 683 major descriptive numbers. Of those, 476 are CV <$1-$1+, or 70%- a remarkably high number. Clearly, for the WW classical collector, Poland is a bargain.

Because there will be only one blog post for Poland, I have elected to concentrate on the earlier issues.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
100 Kopecks = 1 Ruble
100 Fenigi = 1 Marka (1918)
100 Halerzy = 1 Korona (1918)
100 Groszy = 1 Zloty (1924)
1918 Scott 13 25f on 10gr rose & buff "Polish Eagle"
Just eight days after Independence, on November 17, 1918, these surcharged Warsaw Local Post stamps were released. There are four stamps in the issue, and CV is <$1-$4+.

"Counterfeits exist"

In fact, other surcharged/overprinted stamps from Lublin (1918 Austrian Military Semi-Postal stamps), and Cracow (1916-18 Austrian stamps) have been "extensively counterfeited". Caveat Emptor.

1918-19 Scott 25 40pf lake & black
On 1916-17 German Occupation Stamp N15
An eleven stamp set was produced on December 5, 1918 (first printing) and January 15,1919 (second printing) by overprinting/ surcharging German occupation stamps. The two printings can be distinguished by the middle two bars being 3 1/2 mm and 4 mm apart respectively.

Although the CV for eight stamps is <$1, "counterfeits exist".

1919 Scott 65 10h lake "Polish Eagle"
On February 25, 1919, an imperforate eleven stamp set featuring the Polish Eagle was lithographed in Cracow.

CV is very inexpensive (<$1), except for the 6h orange (>$20).

Crudely printed forgeries exist, but some of the genuines were also badly printed. But the issue has some vertical and horizontal rows of dots outside the margins, probably serving as a cutting guide for these imperforate stamps. Fortunately, according to Varro Tyler (Focus on Forgeries-2000), the dots are about 0.2 mm in diameter in the genuines, while 0.5 mm in diameter in the forgeries.

1919 Scott 78 10pf on 7 1/2pf, Green Surcharge
On September 15, 1919, two German stamps were surcharged in red or green, and used as a provisional issue for use in Gniezno. "Counterfeit Surcharges Abound". If real, this stamp has a CV way north of $100.

The stamp is signed on the back (in pencil) as authentic by a known expert of these stamps. This is fairly commonly seen for stamps from Europe that have passed through an "expert's hands" in past times. Unfortunately, "expert" marks or signatures are forged too. Therefore, I would need to send this specimen for a certificate these days.

1919 Scott 81 3f bister brown "Polish Eagle"
For Northern Poland
An imperforate and perforate issue ( each given a major number) for Northern Poland and Southern Poland was released January 27, 1919. The Northern Poland issue is characterized by "F" and "M" denominations (Fenigi, Marka). The imperforate issue for Northern Poland (shown here) had 12 stamps.

1919-20 Scott 105 1.50m deep green "Peace"
For Northern Poland
The perforate issue for Northern Poland (example shown here) had 15 stamps.

I believe this is the "peace" stamp, rather than the "agriculture" stamp, as labeled in my Scott catalogue.

1919 Scott 114 24h light blue "Eagle and Fasces"
For Southern Poland
The Southern Poland issue (Denominations-  Halerzy, Korona) was likewise issued imperforate and perforate. The Imperforate issue has 12 stamps.

1919 Scott 131 2.50k dark violet ""Agriculture"
For Southern Poland
The perforate issue for Southern Poland also had 12 stamps.

I think this is the "agriculture" rather than the "peace" design, as Scott has in the catalogue.

1919 Scott 134 15f brown red "Paderewski"
For the First National Assembly of Poland, a seven stamp issue was released between 1919-20.

Ignacy Jan Paderewski was a Polish concert pianist, patriot, and advocate for Polish independence.

I can't help but think how times have changed. Can you imagine a classical music concert pianist having a large voice in the independence movement today, to say nothing about being a sex symbol?

1960 United States "Champions of Liberty" stamp
Paderewski also appeared on a U.S. stamp in 1960 at the height of the cold war.

1919 Scott 147 10m brown red "Polish Cavalryman"
General Issue
Finally, a general issue for all of Poland was released - nine stamps- in 1919.

Torun is a city in northern Poland on the Visula River.

1920 Scott 149 1m red "Polish Eagle"
Type of 1919 Redrawn
A redrawn design from the 1919 issue- six stamps- was released between 1920-22. The "Poczta" script is smaller, while the denomination letters are larger.

1921 Scott 155 15m light brown 
"Sower and Rainbow of Hope"
A three stamp set with the above allegorical design was issued in 1921. This was for the occasion of signing a peace treaty with Russia. Poignant, knowing what would lay ahead in 18 years.

1921 Scott 157 3m blue 
"Sun (Peace) Breaking into Darkness (Despair)
A seven stamp issue was released in 1921 to commemorate the Constitution. A lovely three design allegorical set, reflecting the hopes of the Polish people. It is hard to view this stamp set without thinking of the dark future for millions of Poles and Polish Jews that would occur during WW II.

Deep Blue
1919-20 National Assembly Issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 57 pages for Poland, and covers the German occupation through 1941, as does the 1840-1940 Scott classic catalogue.  At least my pages do. It is possible- (I don't remember)- that I may have used some pages from Steiner's "world" pages, rather than just the "classic" page bundle.


1921 Scott 153 3m on 40f bright violet
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on 13 pages, has 355 spaces.  Coverage is 52%.

I should mention that the 1919 Posen issue, (Scott 72-76-five spaces), and are overprinted German stamps, are given spaces in the Germany section of Big Blue, but are found in the Scott catalogue under "Poland".

There are eight stamps on the "Most Expensive" list:
Offices in the Turkish Empire 1919 Scott 2K1....(2K7) - seven stamps, each ( $70) !
1921 Scott B14 20m + 30m gray green ($37+)

There are three additional stamps @ $10+. See the "comments" section after the checklist for details.

Germany bookends Poland in Big Blue, with 1916-17 occupation stamps, and then 1939 occupation stamps. So was the fate of Poland mirrored in these issues.

Checklist

1918
11,12,13,14,
18,19,20,21,24,25,26,
16,23,

1919*
61,62,63,64,65,66,
67,68,69,70,71,
81 or 93*,82 or 94,83 or 95,84 or 97,85 or 99,86 or 100,87 or 102,

Next Page

1919*
88 or 103,89 or 105,90 or 106,91 or 107,92 or 108,
109 or 121,110 or 122,111 or 123,112 or 124,113 or 125,114 or 126,115 or 127,
116 or 128,117 or 129,118 or 130,119 or 131,120 or 132,

1919
134,133,135,137,

1919
138,139,

1920
96,98,101,

1920
142,144,146,147,148,

1920-22
149,150,151,152,152A,152C,

Next Page

1921
153,

1920-22
154,155,155A,
156,157,158,159,160,161,162,

1921-28
163,164,165,166,167,
168,169,169A,169B,

1922-23
176,177,178,179,180,
181,182,183,184,185,
187,188,189,190,

Next Page

1923
192,193,194,195,198,

1923
196,197,199,200,

1924
205,206,

1924
207,208,209,210,211,
215,216,217,218,219,220,
221,222,223,224,225,

1925-26
227,230,231,232,235,237,

Next Page

1927
242,243,245,246,247,248,

1927
249,

1928
253,255,256,257,

1928-29
258,259,260,261,262,

1930
263,264,265,266,

1932
267,

1932
268,271,272,273,274,

1933
275,

Next Page

1933-34
277,282,283,279,

1935
287,288,289,290,291,

1935-36
294,295,296,297,298,
299,300,301,302,303,

1937-38
312,313,317,318,319,
308,309,310,311,

Next Page

1938
320,321,322*,
323,324,325,326,327,
328,329,330,331,

1938
334,

1939
335,336,337,338,

1939
340,

Next Page

Official Stamps
1920
O1,O2,O3,O4,O5,
O6,O7,O8,O9,O10,

1933
O17,O18,

1935
O19,O20,

Offices in the Turkish Empire*
1919
2K1,2K2,2K3,2K4,(2K5),(2K6),(2K7),

Offices in Danzig
1K33,1K34,1K35,1K36,

Next Page

Semi-Postal
1919*
B1 or B6,B2 or B7,B3 or B8,B4 or B9,B5 or B10,

1921
B11,B12,B13,B14,

1924
B15,B16,B17,B18,B19,

1927
B26,B27,

1939
B32,B33,B34,

Next Page

Postage Due
1919-21
J13,J14,J15,J16,J17,J18,J19,
J20,J21,J22,J23,J24,J25,J26 or J31,
J27,J28,J35,J36,(J37),J29 or J32,J30 or J34,

1921-22
J40,J41,J42,J43,J44,J45,J46,J47,

1923
J48,J49,J50,

1923
J51,J52,J53,

1923
J54,J55,J56,J57,J58,J59,

Next Page

(Postage Due)
1923
J60,J61,

1924
J68,J69,J70,J71,

1924
J72,J73,J74,J75,J76,

1930
J83,

1939
J95,J96,J97,J98,J99,J100,J101,

Air Post
1925
C1,C2,C3,C4,
C5,C6,C7,C8,C9,

1933
C10,

1934
C11,C12,

Next Page

Occupation Stamps (German)
1915
N1,N2,N3,N4,N5,

1916-17
N7,N8,N10,N13,N14,N15,N16,
N6,N9,N11,N12,

1939
N17,N18,N19,N20,N21,N21,N22,
N23,N24,N25,N26,N27,N28,N29,

Next Page

Official Stamps
Issued during German occupation
1940
NO1,NO2,NO3,NO4,
NO5,NO6,NO7,NO8,
NO9,NO10,NO11,NO12,

1940
NO16,NO17,NO18,NO19,NO20,
NO21,NO22,NO23,NO24,

End

Comments
A) Expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
Offices in the Turkish Empire
1919 Scott 2K1....(2K7) - seven stamps, each ( $70) !
1921 Scott B13 ($10+)
1921 Scott B14 20m + 30m gray green ($37+)
1927 Scott B26 ($10)
1927 Scott B27 ($10)
B) *1919- these 1919 choices are Imperf or Perf
C) *332 is put here, not 339, which is re-drawn
D) *1919-Offices Turkish Emp -2K1 etc (7 stamps)- each CV $70!
E) (    ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.
F) *1919 Semi-Postal- Perf or Imperf


1921 Scott 159 6m carmine rose 
"Peace" and Agriculture
Out of the Blue
I am drawn to Polish stamps of this era, as they exist, while the murderous intent of Poland's powerful neighbors was gathering. Brave and hopeful in theme, these stamps are tangible pieces of light amid the coming darkness.

Note: Maps appear to be in the public domain, and the U.S. Paderewski stamp image is from Wikipedia.

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