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Posted Sep 24, 16 21:56 by Phil Rhoade (rugface)

Lidice & Heydrich Deathmask

Dave S: Thanks for the kind comment on my Lidice exhibit; very much appreciated. It's been 'retired' since 2011. Next year (2017) is the 75th anniversary of the destruction of Lidice. I'm tentatively planning on remounting the exhibit (I've acquired some new material) next year and showing it at a couple of shows that it's never been to; it was at 20+ WSP shows.

Your Heydrich Deathmask stamp is indeed the 'Egg-on'Head' variety (occurs on five of the 100 stamps in a pane). It does pay the correct rate for a postcard (60h). While it did have a huge semi-postal surcharge (60+440h), it was actually used more often than one would expect. It's most common use was in combination with other stamps to pay higher rates; postcard use is somewhat scarce. When I first starting going to Prague/Lidice in 2003, finding postal use was rather common in shops and bourses; they became almost non-existant later in the 2000s. They come up on eBay somewhat regularly, usually at much-too-high prices. It's been a long time since I've seen a Heydrich cover at a show here. The normal stamps themselves are quite common and inexpensive; also usually grossly overpriced on eBay.

Posted Sep 24, 16 21:26 by Ken Stach (kenstach)

Alfons Stach

My ancestors also came from that part of the Old World in the 1890s. I would venture to guess that I was related to Alfons Stach (albeit a few generations back). I accidentally contacted a fellow Stach in the Czech Republic a few years ago when trying to email my oldest daughter. Apparently not all the Stachs left the Czech Republic!

Posted Sep 24, 16 19:47 by Dave Savadge (nomad55)

Czech exhibits

Alfons Stach -- Any relation to Ken Stach?

Phil Rhoade's exhibit on Lidice is one of the best Czech exhibits that I have ever seen.  Because of my Bohemian ancestry, I have a special interest in the philately of this region.

Here is the Heydrich death mask semi-postal used properly on a post card.  Very few of these are known, as the Czech people basically refused to use this stamp, both due to its subject matter and the surcharge.  I believe the stamp is the Fried Egg variety.


Posted Sep 24, 16 17:19 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016 Update

With the new addition of two exhibits from Phil Rhoade, the total is now 75 exhibits. Thank you.

I might add that one exhibit is about Alfons Stach (a Czech Stamp dealer). The letters of his name (sans the last "s" in first name) were used by Roger Koerber (and others) as a cost code in days of yore.

And thanks to all! I am very pleased with the quality and quantity of the turnout ... (so far)

Posted Sep 24, 16 13:54 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: documents related to the PO index


My thoughts are to give folks the needed knowledge and URLs in an article to go to the LOC indexes and from there the documents themselves. Some are on this web site, the postal bulletin web site, and others. But many are only on the LOC at this time,

Best regards, Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 24, 16 13:48 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: PO index

Hi Richard,

Working on what we both want but it will take a little effort and time. Only sent the file now in hopes Jim might find it useful.

Yes, by itself, this index is of limited value without a librarian's knowledge of the documents and how they are referenced. At a minimum I hope to write a short article to post walking folks through using the LOC dats on line. This is a bit of a challenge given the limits of how these documents are formatted and index.

More soon.

Best regards.

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 24, 16 10:12 by Leonard Hartmann (hartmann)

American State Papers

American State Papers, Class VII, Post Office Department, 1789-1833

A compilation containing postal laws, regulations, routes, etc.with special reference to 1825, 1828, 1829 and 1831.

1981 reprint of 1834 book, 375 pages, small atlas size (one used copy in stock at $45) $90.00

Also an original at $210.00

[email protected]

Posted Sep 24, 16 9:25 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

O.H. Perry

A page I did last week for a Perry related letter:


Posted Sep 24, 16 8:08 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016 Update

John Becker's exhibit "The Slogan Machine Cancels of Perry's Victory Centennial" just added. Thanks

Posted Sep 24, 16 7:46 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PO Docs

Russ - The file you emailed me is here. As a stand-alone document it is near worthless to worthless. Give me something, even a small subset, with links to the indexed documents, or the PDFfiles of the  documents!

Posted Sep 24, 16 7:12 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re; Post Office Papers


I just sent Richard to post the index file a friend who is the documents librarian and the Indiana University Law School sent me. I hope you and others can find it useful. I want to do an article this fall on how best to take this index and go to the cited document via the free LOC portal. Help form others sharing their experiences appreciated.

The quest continues ...... :)

Information shared is history saved.

Please practice positive philately.

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 24, 16 6:57 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: PO papers

Morning Jim and all,

As we move further into the digital library age things should improve I hope.

The links via the LOC are FREE public access to government documents. The trick is to learn how to navigate to find what you want. Yep, they are not google grade indexed. However, it is possible to find what you are looking for with a little detective work.

I find the statutes at large to be the easiest to navigate.

I have a cumulative index for PO documents in the serial set and will try to get it posted soon. That should help your quest. Remember, its citation to volume and page are for that series of documents.

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 24, 16 6:14 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

PO Papers

Russ, thanks for the information supplied.

The Serial set brings together congressional documents commencing in 1817.  There are two services, one offered by READEX and the other ProQuest.  Both sevices are offered to users who can cough up +/- $90 k (as I recall) and an annual service fee - which means that university libraries are the researcher's portal.  The problem is that w/o a student or professor's ID # and card, good luck.  The services limit the libraries to allowing "outsiders" access for no more than an hour a day - so it takes some real sweet talking to get -maybe - two hours.

Problem is that it's worse than that.  While the serial set offers most of what it promises in terms of documents in the database, the search facilities offered by the two companies are laughable.  One can start with a document title and spend 30 mins searching for it; and something like "Postmaster General proposals for bids" or some such may take even longer.

I harbor  belief that were GOOGLE to spend some of it's money buying one of the services and then harness its awesome search capabilities, the serial set would be really useful (and perhaps made available to poor PH researchers.)

The American State Papers are another kettle of fish.  What I learned at the Duke library is that the ASP as published is really a shallow assemblage of documents which relate to early congressional business.  There are 95 PO related documents in the ASP; and only 10 of them are not also available in the SS.

They are indexed and made available at:

I could go on. . . .


Posted Sep 23, 16 16:18 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

Gerald Ellott

I am happy to add two exhibits from a friend in New Zealand, Gerald Ellott:

#71 - "The Royal Navy in the Crimean War"
#72 - "BONZO, The Dog That Made the World Laugh"

Gerald has a fine website worth visiting here.

Posted Sep 23, 16 13:26 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016 Update

Exhibit #70 just uploaded:

Phil Rhoade exhibit "Use of the 1955 U.S. Certified Mail Stamp"


Posted Sep 23, 16 11:16 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

Index to PO Papers

Hi Jim,

The Vol # and page # are for the Statutes at Large, 1789-1875 Volumes 1 to 18.

I have not looked beyond 1855, yet, but the later volumes list some material you might be looking for up to 1875.

May your quest be easier and more productive.

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 23, 16 11:03 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

re: Index clarification

Morning Jim,

" This index documents come from volume 8 of the 18 volume set Statutes at Large, 1789-1875 which is digitally available in its entirety on the Library of Congress web site. "

The index Richard posted is for the "Statutes At Large" which covers earlier documents before the U.S. Serial Set starts in 1833. The Statutes go back to 1789. Its URL is: .

The documents listed under post roads authorize the PMG to establish contracts for carrying the mails on these roads but does not actually give the details of any contracts subsequently established.

The U.S. Serial Set starts with the 1st session of the 23rd Congress from 1833. URL is: . There is an index within each Congressional Session which gives the page (image number for each Act listed. This set list the actual contract bid details.

Some earlier contract details is also in the American States Papers. Its URL is : .

Friends, it takes a little pecking around to learn how these three resources work together to provide info on the PO and its routes. Hope this helps. It is all available on line.

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 23, 16 9:13 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR Various

Phil R - Yes, you can send along 11" wide JPGs or include them in PDF files, no problem.


Added a new exhibit from David Handelman (Parcel cards from and to Canada) and put up revised versions of the first two Handelman exhibits.

Added a new exhibit from Mike Gutman on Harrisburg(h), Pennsylvania Precancels

Thank you!

The deadline from accepting exhibits is fast approaching ....

Posted Sep 23, 16 6:49 by Jim Baird (bairdo)

Index to PO Papers

Yesterday, I spent 8 frustrating hours at the Duke library searching w/o much success on the Readex and Proquest digital ASP and Congressional Serial Set services for mail contract documents between 1800 and 1825.  (can anyone supply any of these?)

I had the exact citations for what I was searching lifted from internet supplied governmental document index volumes.  Didn't help much.

The index in the subject line to which Richard pointed lists Volume and Page numbers of . . . what? 

Posted Sep 22, 16 20:15 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

Another Penny Pink - 1849

October 22, 1849. Penny Pink PSE plus One Shilling in cash used from York to Detroit, Michigan. A personal favorite of mine.


Posted Sep 22, 16 20:11 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

1849 Turned Transatlantic

Turned... (stamp visible at upper left)


Posted Sep 22, 16 20:10 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

1849 Turned Transatlantic

August 12, 1849 cover from Dudley (263) to Sheffield paid with 1841 1d Red canceled with Blue 1844-type numeral...

Turned and mailed on August 13 to New York via Cunard Packet prepaid One Shilling in cash.


Posted Sep 22, 16 19:47 by Steve Walske (steve w)

Mulready to Malta

Here's a November 14, 1840 Mulready paying 2d towards the 1 shilling packet charge to Malta via Falmouth.

Not mine, but very lovely.


Posted Sep 22, 16 18:54 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Mulready to India


Unfortunately not in my collection. Those images and the one of of the underpaid 1d Mulready Letter Sheet are from online images from the Shreves Philatelic Galleries June 11, 2007 Sale of the William H. Gross Collection of Great Britain Line Engraved Postage Stamps 1840-1841. Courtesy of Charles Shreves. Here is link. Scrolling through the sale, you will see some great items.

The Lady Louis cover that Chip showed was also in that same Shreves Sale, lot 53, ex-Grunin.

Posted Sep 22, 16 18:48 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Underpaid Mulready Letter Sheet

Finally, here is a 1 pence underpaid Mulready Letter Sheet, Dublin to Edinburgh, dated 14 Feb. 1841. It is believed to be the only use of the 1840 Penny Black to pay postage due. Not in my collection. Courtesy of Shreves Philatelic Galleries.


Posted Sep 22, 16 18:45 by John Barwis (jbarwis)

Mulready to India


Are you the owner of that cover?

Posted Sep 22, 16 18:44 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Bristol to India

Here is the reverse of that upgraded 2 pence blue Mulready envelope to India, dated 30 Sept. 1840.


Posted Sep 22, 16 18:42 by Phil Rhoade (rugface)



For PDR, are you able to accept/process 11" x 11" (three per row) pages?

Posted Sep 22, 16 18:41 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Upgraded Mulready Stationery

Chip G.,

Thanks for posting the image of the famous Lady Louis upgraded Mulready 1 pence envelope from Bristol to Malta, 9 Jan. 1841. What an iconic cover. The simple address, "Lady Louis, Malta", is most enchanting.

I did a little research and learned that only 50 or so Mulready envelopes and letter sheets are recorded sent abroad, and only a dozen of these are uprated with a 1d Black or 2d  Blue.

Here is an upgraded Mulready 2 pence blue envelope dated 30 Sept. 1840, from Bristol to Anjmeer, India, redirected to Agra via Bombay and Cawnpore. My next post will show the reverse.

Not in my collection. Courtesy of Shreves Philatelic Galleries.


Posted Sep 22, 16 18:28 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Venetian postal lettersheet and the Lion of Venice

David D'Alessandris,

Thanks for posting your most interesting Venetian letter sheet from 1608/1609. I noticed that at the top is pictured an image of the famous Lion of Venice. 

The Lion of Venice is an ancient bronze winged lion sculpture in the Piazza San Marco of Venice, Italy, which came to symbolize the city — as well as one of its patron saints, St. Mark. Note the book beneath its front paws. This image is from the 1870s. 

Ultimately, the image of the Lion appeared on the flag of the Venetian Republic. And on your example of Venetian postal stationery.


Posted Sep 22, 16 17:36 by Chip Gliedman (cgliedman)

Uprated Mulready

This would look good on the page with the "Black and Blue" cover.

The "Lady Louis" cover:


Posted Sep 22, 16 17:34 by Chip Gliedman (cgliedman)

Turned Penny Pink Envelope

Title says it. (ex Frajola collection)


Posted Sep 22, 16 17:34 by Chip Gliedman (cgliedman)

British forwarded with stamp

To pick up on some of Andrew's postings, here's a paid stampless cover from the Isle of Man with forwarding paid by stamp.


Posted Sep 22, 16 17:28 by David D'Alessandris (davidd)

earlier postal stationery

and Venice issued postal stationery 231 years before England.  Of course there is dispute whether the lettersheets were truly postal or if it was a fiscal (tax) document.  This is an example of the first variety used in 1609 and 1610.


Posted Sep 22, 16 16:18 by David Snow (dwsnow)

early postal stationery

Andrew Reid,

Thank you for posting your British covers. It was especially nice to see your examples of the 1841 issue One Penny Pink postal entires. And the two One Penny Pink letter sheets joined together is quite remarkable. The simple indicia showing Queen Victoria is very attractive.

Here is a link from Stanley Gibbons' short article entitled the Humble Penny Pink giving its background, replacing the elaborate and ridiculed Mulready postal stationery. It is interesting that the British were 12 years earlier than the U.S. (First Issue Nesbitts in 1853) in issuing postal stationery. And British postal letter sheets were introduced twenty years earlier than the U.S. did in 1861. 

I actively collect Austria postal stationery - that country was late on the scene in introducing postal entires - they only started in 1861. Here is link to cover ID 21759. Note that the indicia was imprinted in upper left corner.

But the Austrians were the first in the world with government postal cards, first issued in 1869. Four years before the U.S. Here is an example from 1870 postmarked from Linz, cover ID 22263. There is a curious printed message at bottom on the back: "The Post Office accepts no responsibility for the content of the Message."

Finally, here is link to a 1876 Austrian registered postal card - very unusual - cover ID 2257


Posted Sep 22, 16 11:43 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

Index to PO Papers

I just uploaded the PDF file Russ sent to me (Index to PO Docs 1790 to 1845) here. I will add the link to my resources page later.

Posted Sep 22, 16 11:30 by Russ Ryle (hoosierboy)

RE: Information shared is history saved - index to PO documents

Morning all,

The attached "TABLE NO. V. THE ACTS OF CONGRESS FROM 17811 TO 1845 INCLUSIVE, RELATING TO THE POST OFFICE OF THE U.S. comes from the Library of Congress. It is broken down into three parts: POST-OFFICE DEPARTMENT [Acts Related To], POST ROADS, and FRANKING PRIVILEGE. It is an authoritative complete listing of all available items from this period.

Richard has most of the Post Office Acts available on this web site under articles. I will be sending him a few missing items as .pdf files shortly.

This index documents come from volume 8 of the 18 volume set Statutes at Large, 1789-1875 which is digitally available in its entirety on the Library of Congress web site. They also have the complete U.S. Serial Set and the American States Papers on line. There is a learning curve to figuring out their index. Window's machines can use the F3 keyword function to expedite you inquiries.

Each page is an image file unto itself. They can be individually downloaded then converted and combined into a .pdf file with a little effort.

I am no expert on these but will try to answer any questions off or on board as desired. The big archive this opens up to us all is the history of the establishment of postal roads and postal contracts. Back in the early 1970's I spent hours hand transcribing contracts serving southern Indiana. Today, it can all be done in an afternoon. Ain't technology wonderful ..... :)

Best regards,

Russ Ryle

Posted Sep 22, 16 11:06 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Anthrax postal history 3

This is my example of a USPS apology bag, the original one for irradiation.


Posted Sep 22, 16 11:05 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Anthrax postal history 2

Stamp Fulfillment Services' desiccant caused concern among customers, so this card was added to stamp orders.


Posted Sep 22, 16 11:02 by Ken Lawrence (kenlawrence)

Anthrax postal history 1

That subject intrigued me also. I have a thick clipping file about it. 

This marking is on the back of a metered cover to the Chief of Naval Operations, irradiated before opening and examination by a Vistronix machine. I have three covers with examples of this marking, dated FEB 05 2002 (metered postage dated DEC 01 2001); MAR 02 2002 (metered postage dated MAR 01 2002); and this one dated FEB 05 2003 (metered postage dated (JAN 27 2003). Evidently there was initially a two-month backlog of mail piled up during the initial irradiation flurry, maybe set aside until safety procedures had been established and verified.


Posted Sep 22, 16 10:06 by Richard Frajola (frajola)

PDR 2016 Update

I have just added two more exhibits:

#66 - Anthrax Attacks Postal History (Cliff Alexander)
#67 - Banknote Postage Due Varieties (Ray Porter)

Thank you!

Posted Sep 21, 16 20:29 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

1843 USA to UK redirected with Stamp

May 30 1843 cover from New Haven, CT to London via Boston, MA. Pays 12 1/2 Cents (New Haven to Boston), Due One Shilling for Boston to London per Cunard Packet, the fee for redirection within London paid with 1841 1d Red.


Posted Sep 21, 16 20:23 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

GB Redirected 1843

April 16, 1843 One Penny Pink PSE from Taunton, England to London canceled with Maltese Cross, redirected to Cheam, near Epsom with the redirection paid with an 1841 1d Red 'RK' canceled with the rare London #4 in Maltese Cross cancel of the Chief Office.


Posted Sep 21, 16 20:16 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

GB One Penny PSE "Newspaper Wrapper" May 1842

Homemade fabrication of two One Penny Pink letter sheets (these replaced the much lampooned Mulready) used as a wrapper for newspaper or printed matter and sent on May 18, 1842 from Glasgow via Liverpool to New York aboard the first sailing of the non-contract steamer "Great Western" from its new Liverpool terminus (previously sailed from Bristol). Pays Two Pence (2d) rate.


Posted Sep 21, 16 20:09 by Andrew Reid (andrewukusa1847)

GB 1841 One Penny PSE Uprated to Madeira

I thought I would share a few classic covers from Great Britain that demonstrate some interesting usages. Unfortunately, I do not own the "Black and Blue" cover either.

This November 28, 1842 cover from Blandford to Funchal, Madeira pays 2 x the 1s 10d rate with a One Penny Pink PSE that was uprated with 3s 7d in cash. The equivalent rate in USD is 88 Cents.


Posted Sep 21, 16 19:11 by John Barwis (jbarwis)


Was just reminded by a fellow board member that the letter sheet was itself 1d.

Posted Sep 21, 16 18:19 by Steve Walske (steve w)

Prepaid Ship


Not my cover (or area of knowledge), but I believe that the outgoing ship fee was 8 pence. Happy to be corrected...

Posted Sep 21, 16 16:31 by John Barwis (jbarwis)

prepaid ship

Steve, was one penny paid in cash?

Posted Sep 21, 16 14:56 by David Snow (dwsnow)

Mulready with stamps to Boston


Thanks for posting that fantastic prepaid ship letter. Unbelievable, especially the excellent condition.

I opened up my "North American Mail Sailings 1840-75" book by Hubbard and Winter to check out the sailing dates, and happily saw that iconic cover, shown in black and white. Your color image brings it to life. 

Outward ship letter fee of 8d. Carried by the Cunard line steamer Unicorn (her maiden voyage) on the first Cunard transatlantic voyage on 16 May 1840. There is a faint Boston "SHIP/ 6" fancy arc in ribbon marking on the cover. The marking is at upper right and is struck upside down. Here is a clearer example of that marking - cover ID 18958. Letter arrived at Boston on 3 June.

Posted Sep 21, 16 14:38 by Steve Walske (steve w)

Mulready with Stamps


One of the greatest covers in transatlantic postal history is the May 15, 1840 Mulready "Black and Blue" cover to Boston. Wish I owned it...


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