Destinations

Postal Treaty with Mexico

A postal treaty between the U.S. and Mexico was established in 1887.  Similar to the postal agreement with Canada, mail was sent at the U.S. domestic rates instead of the international Univeral Postal Union (UPU) rates. The treaty remained in effect throughout the 2nd Bureau era of postage stamps. Shown below are a variety of uses to Mexico.

1st Class Mail

A postal treaty between the U.S. and Mexico provided mail services at a discounted rate. Four cents of postage paid twice the letter rate for up to two ounces for this cover sent from Michigan to Durango, Mexico.

 

First-class U.S. domestic letter forwarded to Mexico at no additional charge due to the postal treaty.

  

Registered 1st Class Mail

A cover sent at the first-class 2¢ treaty rate with registry service (8¢) from Boulder, Colorado to Mexico by way of the El Paso, Texas exchange office. A census maintained by the United States Stamp Society (USSS) lists 53 El Paso exchange label recorded.

Twice the letter rate (4¢) for up to two ounces, plus 8¢ fee for registry service on an advertising cover sent from Chicago to Mexico City. Handled in St Louis, Missouri the cover received an exchange label before entering Mexico. There are 17 St Louis exchange labels recorded in the USSS census.

Postcard Rate

Instead of the UPU two-cents postcard rate, this card was sent for a penny due to the postal treaty.

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Earliest Documented Use (EDU) 10-cents Webster

I recently discovered a cover with the earliest documented use (EDU) of the 10-cents Webster stamp (Scott #307) on eBay. This is the second cover I found sent on March 7, 1903.  

I previously found a remarkable registered cover to Hungary and had it certified by the American Philatelic Society (APS) as the new EDU, soundly besting the previous date by five days. Unfortunately, I had wrongly assumed the APS expertising department sent discoveries to the Scott Catalog editors. The wrong EDU date has remained in the catalog for the past eight years. The editors have now been contacted about both covers, and the earlier date should be reflected in the 2020 catalog.

Registered large envelope from Pittsburg, Pa. to Hungary by way of New York. Franked with a total of 48¢ paying the 8¢ registry fee plus eight times the UPU letter rate for less than four-ounces. The franking shows a mixed use of both 1st and 2nd Bureau stamps. Most 2nd Bureau stamp EDUs occur in early 1903.

 

The 10¢ Webster stamp paid the 8¢ registry fee plus 2¢ U.S./Canada treaty rate. The cover traveled from Springfield to Boston to Buffalo to Niagra Falls and finally St Catharines, Ontario in two days.

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Postal Treaty with Canada

In 1885 the United States and Canada entered into a postal treaty which provided domestic rates for most types of mail. The treaty remained in effect throughout the 2nd Bureau era of postage stamps. Shown below are a variety of uses to Canada.

1st Class Mail

New York City Evening Post corner card advertising envelope sent at the first-class 2-cents treaty rate to Canada instead of the 5-cents international rate for saving 3-cents.  The Washington stamp has the 1566 plate number selvage still attached.

Registered 1st Class Mail

The ten-cents Webster stamp paid the eight-cents registry fee plus 2-cents letter rate. Registered mail between the U.S. and Canada did not require registry exchange labels.

Postcard Rate

1-cent postcard treaty rate. The Franklin stamp is punched with the Hamburg-American Line (HAL) perfin.

Nonstandard material postcards such as bark, tin, or wood had to be sent at the letter rate. Wood postcard correctly franked at the domestic letter rate from California to Ontario, Canada.

 

3rd Class Mail Rate

The U.S./Canada 3rd class mail treaty rate was equivalent to the domestic rate of 1-cent per two ounces.

4th Class Mail (Samples or Murchandise)

Six-cents of postage tied by a dateless postmark (typical of 3rd and 4th class mail). The envelope was sent via the domestic 4th class rate of 1-cent per ounce for up to six ounces.

Registered 4th Class Mail

Parcel wrapper franked with 20-cents of postage. Eight-cents registry fee plus 12 times the 4th class rate of one-cent per ounce. A duty-free handstamp was applied when processed in Canada.

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Destination Liechtenstein

Unusual and distant international destinations were what initially piqued my interest in postal history.  Below is a fantastic registered cover to one of Europe’s smallest countries landlocked between Austria and Switzerland, Liechtenstein declared its sovereignty in 1806.  This envelope was sent in 1903 from Kilbourn, Wisconsin to Vaduz, Switzerland.  Why the sender wrote Switzerland rather than Liechtenstein is unknown to me. Vaduz is the capital of Liechtenstein and has a population of only 5450 in 2017.

1903 registered cover to Liechtenstein.

1903 registered letter to Vaduz, Liechtenstein. Five cents letter rate + eight cents registry fee.

 

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Destinations Belize, Fiji, and Borneo

I’ve been organizing my international destination binders/albums and have rediscovered a few items that I had long since filed away. Below are a postcard and a cover to the British colonies of Belize and Fiji.  I also have a pair of covers to separate colonial cities on the island of Borneo. Click on an image to open the destinations map webpage.

1905 postcard sent from Chicago to Belize (Britsh Honduras) via New Orleans; it only took 12 days for this card to make its way to the tiny British colony.
1908 2-cents postal stationery with additional 3-cents stamp sent from Soldiers Home, California to Suva, Fiji.
Advertising cover from 1903 sent to Bandjermasin, Borneo, Dutch East India (modern-day Indonesia). Sent from Quincy, Ill and placed aboard the Chicago-Kanas City Rail (R.P.O.) by mistake and marked ‘MISSENT.’ The cover eventually made its way to New York where it traveled by sea to Borneo arriving about a month later.
Cover posted from the territory of Hawaii to Sandakan, British North Borneo (modern-day Malaysia). The cover traveled through Hong Kong (backstamp) on its six-week journey.
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New international destinations

I picked up a few new international destinations and have added them to the world map.  If the map does not load for you, please send me a message including details on which platform and browser you are using.

Two 5c Lincoln stamps pay twice the UPU letter rate to the Gold Coast of West Africa (modern-day Ghana).

 

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1906 Pago Pago, American Samoa to England

Pago Pago, American Samoa to London, England.

A lovely small envelope franked with a 1st Bureau 1-cent stamp and a pair of 2nd Bureau 2-cents Washington Flag stamps to make up the UPU letter rate for a 1/2 ounce.  Sent from the U.S. Possession, American Samoa in 1906 to London, England.  By 1906 newer versions of the 1¢ and 2¢ stamps had been issued, the 2nd Bureau and 2¢ shield stamps were available in 1903 in the States’ as well as American Samoa.

 

Posted by Geoff in Covers, Destinations, U.S. Possessions, 0 comments

Postcard to Jaluit, Marshall Islands

What a destination!  A postcard sent from Pago Pago, American Samoa, a United States Possession, to the small Marshall Islands atoll named Jaluit.  Posted December 1906, the card was quickly carried to Apia, Western Samoa where it probably sat waiting for a vessel bound for the Marshall Islands.  It was not delivered to Jaluit until 20 March 1907.

The German Empire purchased the Marshall Islands from Spain in 1885 and established a trading outpost on Jaluit Atoll.  This card is franked with a pair of 1¢ definitive Franklin stamps (Scott #300) to pay the UPU postcard rate of 2¢.

1907 UPU rate postcard from American Samoa to Jaluit, Marshall Island, Southseas.

 

The postcard was sent to Carl Teschke, Captain of the SS Triton.  However, I have not been able to find further information on either the captain or the vessel.  Most likely one of the numerous small trade ships sailing the Pacific.

Inner Harbour, Pago Pago (face of the card)

Posted by Geoff in Destinations, Postcards, U.S. Possessions, 0 comments