Front Cover
 Table of Contents
 Officers and representatives of...
 Life of the society by Gordon...
 Minutes of the 1984 annual Rossica...
 Boris Shishkin
 Postal history of the Mongolian...
 Mao-Ershan cancellation by George...
 Additional flaws on the 35 and...
 Vromennoe revisited by David...
 Activities of the field post &...
 Errata for the Shalimoff translation...
 History of the St. Petersburg post...
 Three cliche types on Russia scout...
 Fantail warning by George...
 A 1907 postal-telegraph circular...
 The seven day postal rate by Bill...
 Member-to-member adlets
 Notes from collectors


Journal of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00020235/00047
 Material Information
Title: Journal of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately
Physical Description: no. in v. : illus. ; 29 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Rossica Society of Russian Philately
Publisher: s.n.
Place of Publication: Philadelphia
Creation Date: 1984
Publication Date: [n.d.]
Frequency: unknown
Subjects / Keywords: Stamp collecting -- Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Postage-stamps -- Periodicals -- Russia   ( lcsh )
Stamp collections -- Russia   ( lcsh )
Genre: serial   ( sobekcm )
Funding: Made available to the University of Florida Digital Collections under special distribution agreement with the <a href="http://www.rossica.org">Rossica Society</a>.
 Record Information
Source Institution: <a href="http://www.rossica.org">Rossica Society</a> Library.
Holding Location: <a href="http://www.rossica.org">Rossica Society</a> Library.
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: notis - AAB2397
lccn - 59037768
issn - 0035-8363
System ID: UF00020235:00047

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
    Table of Contents
        Page 1
    Officers and representatives of the society
        Page 2
    Life of the society by Gordon Torrey
        Page 3
    Minutes of the 1984 annual Rossica business meeting by Kennedy Wilson
        Page 3
        Page 4
    Boris Shishkin
        Page 5
        Page 6
    Postal history of the Mongolian People's Republic by S. Blekhman, translated by David Skipton
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
    Mao-Ershan cancellation by George Woodley
        Page 12
        Page 13
    Additional flaws on the 35 and 70 kopek issues of 1902-22 by G. Shalimoff
        Page 14
        Page 15
    Vromennoe revisited by David Skipton
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
    Activities of the field post & telegraph during the 1898 grand maneuvers of the guards and Petersburg military district in the presence of the Emperor, translated by David Skipton
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
    Errata for the Shalimoff translation of the Lobachevski catalog of Imperial postage stamps of Russia by Kennedy Wilson
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
    History of the St. Petersburg post by M. Dobin, translated by George Shalimoff and David Skipton
        Page 83
        Page 84
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
    Three cliche types on Russia scout #603A by B. Arvan, translated by David Skipton
        Page 115
        Page 116
    Fantail warning by George Shalimoff
        Page 117
    A 1907 postal-telegraph circular about fake 7 kopek stamps used on correspondence by Yakov Lurye
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
    The seven day postal rate by Bill Shinn
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
    Member-to-member adlets
        Page 124
    Notes from collectors
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
Full Text


of the




No 104/105 1984


VOLUME 104/105 for 1983

EDITORIAL BOARD: George Shalimoff, David Skipton, M. E. Wilson


LIFE OF THE SOCIETY, Gordon Torrey ........................................ 3


BORIS SHISHKIN ............................................................. 5

translated by David Skipton ....................................... 7

MAO-ERSHAN CANCELLATION, George Woodley .................................... 12

ADDITIONAL FLAWS ON THE 35 AND 70 KOPEK ISSUES OF 1902-22, G. Shalimoff .... 14

VROMENNOE REVISITED, David Skipton ....................................... 16

IN THE PRESENCE OF THE EMPEROR, translated by David Skipton ................ 56

OF IMPERIAL POSTAGE STAMPS OF RUSSIA, Kennedy Wilson ....................... 62

translated by George Shalimoff & David Skipton ...................... 83

translated by David Skipton ...................................... 115

FANTAIL WARNING, George Shalirroff ..........................................117

FAKE 7 KOPEK STAMPS USED ON CORRESPONDENCE, Yakov Lurye ................ 118

THE SEVEN DAY POSTAL RATE, Bill Shinn ..................................... 121

MEMBER-TO-MEMBER ADLETS .......o...................... ..................... 124

NOTES FROM COLLECTORS ................ .................. .................125


Joseph Chudoba Constantine de Stackelberg


PRESIDENT: Gordon H. Torrey, 5118 Duvall Drive, Bethesda, MD 20016

VICE PRESIDENT: George V. Shalimoff, 20 Westgate Drive, San Francisco, CA 94127

SECRETARY: Kennedy L. Wilson, 7415 Venice Street, Falls Church, VA 22043

TREASURER: Norman Epstein, 33 Crooke Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11226

LIBRARIAN: Howard Weinert, 500 Stoneleigh Road, Baltimore, MD 21212

Lester Glass, 1553 So. La Cienaga Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90035
Samuel Robbins, 3565 Meier Street, Los Angeles, CA 90066
Howard Weinert, 500 Stoneleigh Road, Baltimore, MD 21212


G.B. SALISBURY CHAPTER: Norman Epstein, 33 Crooke Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11226

WASHINGTON-BALTIMORE CHAPTER: Gordon Torrey, 5118 Duvall Dr., Bethesda, MD 20016 0

ARTHUR B. SHIELDS CHAPTER: Samuel Robbins, 3563 Meier St., Los Angeles, CA 90066

SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA CHAPTER: George V. Shalimoff, 20 Westgate Drive,
San Francisco, CA 94127

GREAT BRITAIN: John Lloyd, "The Retreat," West Bergholdt,
Colchester, Essex C06 3HE

Anything in this Journal may be reproduced without permission. However,
acknowledgement of the source and a copy of the reprinted matter would be
appreciated. The views in this Journal expressed by the authors are their
own and the editors disclaim all responsibility.

The membership dues are $20.00, due on January 1st for all members.
Application forms are available upon request from the secretary or treasurer.
Membership lists will be sent annually. Kindly make all checks payable to:
c/o Norman Epstein, 33 Crooke Avenue,
Brooklyn, New York 11226 USA

We have a number of back issues of the Journal for sale, both in English
and Russian language editions (some). These may be obtained from Mr. Wilson.

Copyright 1985
The Rossica Society



by Gordon Torrey

The recent newsletter produced by our Vice-President George Shalimoff has
started off very well. It is hoped that this will keep the membership more
up-to-date on the Society's affairs and the activities of its members. The
newsletter pretty well covered these subjects and therefore this Life of the
Society will be in shorter form than is usual.

Your President was active this past spring and fall with judging stamp
exhibitions which offered an opportunity to meet a number of Rossica members.
These exhibitions were ROPEX in Rochester, New York; SEPAD at Philadelphia; and
NOJEX, the northern New Jersey annual philatelic exhibition. This coming spring I
will be on the jury of TEXPEX-AUSPEX 85 in Austin, Texas the first weekend in
March and at SPRINGPEX in Springfield, Virginia at the end of March. At the end
of April (27-28) I will have the pleasure of judging at SCOPEX in State College,
Pennsylvania, a local exhibition that brings together many collectors at the
headquarters of the American Philatelic Society. So I hope to meet more Rossica
members this spring.

It was with regret that I had to decline for health reasons an opportunity to
be the United States judge at the international philatelic exhibition in Seoul,
Korea last fall.

We are planning our annual Rossica meeting at BALPEX next Labor Day weekend
(August 31st to September 2nd).



BALPEX '84 2 September 1984

The annual meeting of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately was held at
2:00 p.m., 2 September 1984 in conjunction with BALPEX '84 at the Hunt Valley Inn,
Cockneysville, Maryland.

Roll Call of Officers: President: Gordon Torrey present
Vice President: George Shalimoff present
Secretary: Kennedy Wilson present
Treasurer: Norman Epstein present
Librarian: Howard Weinert present
Directors: Lester Glass excused; unable to attend
Sam Robbins excused; unable to attend
Howard Weinert present

Members and visitors present: Roslyn Winard, Mort D. Turner, W. Thomas Waters,
Denys Voaden, Valentine Zabajaka, Clyde North,
George B. Shaw, Jum Duffy, Joe Geraci, Karl Becker,
Yakov Lurye, Leon Finik



by Gordon Torrey

The recent newsletter produced by our Vice-President George Shalimoff has
started off very well. It is hoped that this will keep the membership more
up-to-date on the Society's affairs and the activities of its members. The
newsletter pretty well covered these subjects and therefore this Life of the
Society will be in shorter form than is usual.

Your President was active this past spring and fall with judging stamp
exhibitions which offered an opportunity to meet a number of Rossica members.
These exhibitions were ROPEX in Rochester, New York; SEPAD at Philadelphia; and
NOJEX, the northern New Jersey annual philatelic exhibition. This coming spring I
will be on the jury of TEXPEX-AUSPEX 85 in Austin, Texas the first weekend in
March and at SPRINGPEX in Springfield, Virginia at the end of March. At the end
of April (27-28) I will have the pleasure of judging at SCOPEX in State College,
Pennsylvania, a local exhibition that brings together many collectors at the
headquarters of the American Philatelic Society. So I hope to meet more Rossica
members this spring.

It was with regret that I had to decline for health reasons an opportunity to
be the United States judge at the international philatelic exhibition in Seoul,
Korea last fall.

We are planning our annual Rossica meeting at BALPEX next Labor Day weekend
(August 31st to September 2nd).



BALPEX '84 2 September 1984

The annual meeting of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately was held at
2:00 p.m., 2 September 1984 in conjunction with BALPEX '84 at the Hunt Valley Inn,
Cockneysville, Maryland.

Roll Call of Officers: President: Gordon Torrey present
Vice President: George Shalimoff present
Secretary: Kennedy Wilson present
Treasurer: Norman Epstein present
Librarian: Howard Weinert present
Directors: Lester Glass excused; unable to attend
Sam Robbins excused; unable to attend
Howard Weinert present

Members and visitors present: Roslyn Winard, Mort D. Turner, W. Thomas Waters,
Denys Voaden, Valentine Zabajaka, Clyde North,
George B. Shaw, Jum Duffy, Joe Geraci, Karl Becker,
Yakov Lurye, Leon Finik


The President, Dr. Torrey, opened the meeting by introducing the officers. He
camcented that he was pleased to see such a large turnout of the membership for
this meeting and hopes it would continue in future years. He particularly
welcomed George Shalimoff, who had made the trip from San Francisco to attend the
annual meeting.

Comments by Rossica Journal Editor:

Dr Torrey next called upon the Journal Editor, Mr. Wilson, for comments
regarding the status of the next Journal. Mr. Wilson camnented that the most
recent Journal, Rossica 102/103 had been published and mailed in May 1984. He
commented that, with luck, the next issue should be available shortly after the
first of the year, assuming that articles were avaialble to publish it. The Board
of Directors had discussed the feasibility for going back to two issues a year of
64 pages each, but it was decided that until we were caught up on the Journal
publications, it would be better to remain with the double issue format. Mailing
costs for each publication of the Journal run in excess of $500 each time a
Journal is mailed.
The issue of Rossica which will come out next will contain an article on the
errata for all the parts of the Shalimoff translation of the Lobachevski catalog
of Russian Imperial stamps which were printed in Rossica between Rossica 96/97
and 100/101. It will also include a sister article to the translation of Dobin's
History of the St. Petersburg Post which appeared in Rossica 102/103. Additional
articles are still needed, particularly articles which are the result of
individual research rather than translations. Mr. Wilson stated that the Journal
has been depending rather heavily lately on translations for the Soviet philatelic
publications. While this is useful, particularly when the articles selected for
translation and publication in Rossica were carefully screened for information
useful to a broad range of collectors, he felt the balance of the Journal could
suffer if it continued beyond definitive articles such as the Dobin History of the
St. Petersburg Post and the Lobachevski catalog.

Comments by the Treasurer:

Dr. Torrey next called upon the Treasurer for a report of the status of the
Society's finances. Mr. Epstein reported that the recent auction of the Rand
collection by Rossica had grossed just under $65,000. Of that, there had been
$1300 in refunds. The net was $54,487 to the Rand Estate and $9100 to Rossica.
Rossica's costs had been $6000 for the printing of the auction catalog and the
auctioneer's fees, for a net to Rossica of about $3100.
The Rossica checking account contained $12,941.69 as of 1 September 1984.
Mr. Epstein did not have the Rossica savings account books with him and could not
report the amount currently in those accounts.
Mr. Epstein also reported that the publication of the Prigara translation by
David Skipton had reached the stage where it was financially in the black. We
have a fair number of the books available and still for sale, but all costs of
printing, binding, and publicity had been covered. Likewise, the loans made to
Rossica by two members to enable the Society to have the book published had also
been repaid in full.

Old Business:

Status of Honored Member: Dr. Torrey reminded the membership present that at
the last annual meeting, they had reestablished the title of Honored Member and
elected Mr. Jopseh Chudoba and Dr. Constantine de Stackelberg to that honor.
(continued on page 116)


by Gordon Torrey

Rossica lost one of its stalwarts last June 12th when
Boris Shishkin died at the age of seventy-seven. In recent
years Boris had suffered from Alzheimer's Disease and, despite
being handicapped for a long time by a hip injury and confined
to a wheel chair, he hosted and presided over its monthly
meetings, with the steady support of his wife Hildegard. It
was Boris who started the Washington-Baltimore chapter in the
early 1960s.

Member number 536, Boris was born in Odessa and came to
the United States in 1922. He graduated from Columbia
University with a degree in economics. In 1932 he received a
fellowship at the Brookings Institution, and then in 1933 he
began a career with the American Federation of Labor. Fram
1939 to 1955 he was secretary of the AFL Housing Committee and
when the union merged with the Congress of Industrial
Organization (CIO) union he became Director of Civil Rights
and Secretary of the combined Housing Canmittee until he
retired in 1964.


In addition, he served on numerous governmental
committees and panels. During the years 1948-1952 he was
director of the European labor division of the Economic
Cooperation Administration (Marshall Plan) and, although he
was headquartered in Paris, he traveled widely throughout
Western Europe. He was a member of the Council on Foreign
Relations and at one time was chairman and president of the
National Bureau of Economic Research.

It was through his years as president of the Rossica
chapter that it became one of the nost active ones in the
Society. The Saturday meetings at Boris's home were looked
forward to eagerly by Rossica members in the Washington-
Baltimore area. Members drove as far as 50 miles to a meeting
and still do-a legacy Boris has left us. He was a director
of Rossica for several terms.

I S.

i A

Boris at a Rossica meeting

Boris was long a student of Russian philately and had a
large holding of Russian and non-Russian stamps and covers,
especially zemstvos. As was announced in Rossica numbers
102/103, much of this material was stolen. The remainder has
been sold.

Boris is sorely missed by the Washington-Baltimore
Chapter and, especially, by me.


by S. Blekhman
from Soviet Collector 2 1964, p. 56
[translated by David M. Skipton]

The Monglian People's Republic (MPR) shares borders with the Soviet Union and
the People's Republic of China and occupies an area of over 1.5 million square
kilometers. Its population numbers approximately one million.

At one time, what is now the MPR's capital was called Urga, but in 1924 it
was renamed Ulan-Bator-Khoto (City of the Red Hero). This name was later
shortened to Ulan-Bator. About 100,000 people now reside in the capital. The
territory of the MPR consists of 18 "aymags" (provinces).

Centuries ago a postal service existed in this land--the Mongol khans'

The riders who raced back and forth on government business were given
"paitszy"--gold, silver, or wood plates with a representation of a flying falcon
and instructions authorizing the rider to take a fresh horse from any herd
encountered on the way in exchange for his own tired mount. Riders with the
khans' paitszy rode for days, covering more than 300 km. Historical documents
that have survived to the present day enable us to see how extensive this
"urgyn-ula" service became in the tenth and eleventh centuries.

In "The Secret Legend" (Sokrovennoe Skazanie), a Mongolian epic of the middle
thirteenth century, the tale is told of how Khan Ugedei (1229-1242) did away with
the "urgyn-ula" service and organized the so-called "road-urton service" (urton -
a horse-exhcange point), which maintained communications between Asia and the
European countries and was a branch of the Mongolian Post. Horse-exchange points
were set up and special roads laid for postal station communications. By decree
of Khan Ugedei, 20 postriders were assigned to each station, in addition to horses
and draught oxen.

The famous Venetian merchant Marco Polo, who traveled in China and Mongolia
from 1275-1295, left many notes describing the urton-postal service. At that time
there were about 1,500 stations with 200,000 horses. Some of these stations were
even situated along routes through the Gobi Desert.

Because of internecine warfare between Mongol feudal lords during the
fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, the postal service essentially ceased to
exist. Mongol postal development took a step backward when the "urgyn-ula"
service was reinstituted.

According to an account by lakinof (Bichurin), the famous Russian traveler
and explorer of the East, there were six post roads in 18th-century Mongolia.
They crisscrossed the country in various directions and were supported by numerous
postal stations.

The urtons were divided into main route and minor route urtons, or
"suman-urtony" (inter-aymag and intra-aymag). Of all the compulsory obligations,
the most onerous for the "araty" (Mongol cammoners) and the most ruinous for the
economy was that of the urton. The araty were compelled to maintain the postal
transportation service and provide horses and lodging to the riders--officials and
feudal lords--as well as supplies.

The urtons were the sole means of movement and communication in Mongolia, but
they did not serve the needs of the people.

A large part in the development of the Mongolian communications system was
played by Russian merchants who traded for Chinese tea. They organized a post in
June 1863 that ran from Kyakhta through Urga, Kalgan and Peking to Tien-Tsin.

The post ran between Kyakhta and Kalgan twice each month, delivering
newspapers, magazines and letters in packages weighing up to one pood. Postal
patrons not of Russian merchantry but residing in Kyakhta, Urga, or Kalgan were
charged 30 kopecks for each "lot" (12.8 grams). The post between Kalgan and
Kyakhta took 12 days in summer or fall, 14-15 days in winter or spring.

In July 1865, a State Post between Kyakhta and Tien-Tsin was organized on a
3-year experimental basis, with the State Treasury allotting 19,300 rubles
annually for its maintenance. This service was divided into a so-called "light"
post (weights up to one pood), running 4 times monthly in both directions, and a
"heavy post" (weights up to 25 poods), which was dispatched only once each month.
The merchants sent such things as coins and goods samples with the latter. The
route from Urga through the Gobi Desert to Kalgan was a long and difficult one,
and the post often arrived far behind schedule or was lost altogether.

Beginning in 1866, a post funded by foreign firms (i.e., other that Russian
or Chinese) and run by an Englishman named Grant was in operation between Kyakhta
and Tien-Tsin. Service started each March 1st and ceased at the end of November.
Dispatches were delivered 4 to 6 times every month to both terminal points. By
1870 the number of trips made by the service's couriers reached 10 per month. On
1 May 1871 this post's activities were terminated in connection with the
reorganization on 23 March 1870 of the private merchants' post into a Russian
State Post. Mail was carried primarily by camel along the same route.

In 1870 the postal rate corresponded with internal rates in the Russian
Empire. At first it was 8 kopecks per lot, but in 1879 it was lowered to 7
kopecks. This rate was confirmed by the Post-and-Telegraph Ministry circular of
17 February 1892.

The Ministry's "Post-and-Telegraph Journal" of 1898 described the Russian
Post in Mongolia thusly: "The light posts are carried between Kyakhta, Urga, and
Kalgan by a Mongol postrider on two saddle-horses; from Kalgan to Peking and
Tien-Tsin they are sent with Chinese on mules or asses. Only ordinary and
registered correspondence, ordinary official packets and periodicals are sent with
the light posts; absolutely any kind of mail or packages may go with the heavy

The heavy posts in Mongolia are carried by pack camel and in China on mules
and ponies, either in packs or on carts. Because of the great dangers present,
two cossacks accompany the post riders over the entire distance. According to
current contracts, the light posts between Kyakhta and Kalgan are to be delivered
in 8 days during the summer and 9 1/2 in winter; the heavy post schedule is 21
days and 23 days, respectively."

In 1910 a Russian trade expedition was sent to Mongolia. In its published
accounts there is much information concerning the working of the Mongolian posts,


of which at that time there were three, all separate:

1) the horse-exchange (urton) post;
2) the Chinese post, which was operated by English officials and ran along the
Kyakhta Urga Kalgan and Urga Uliasutai Kobdo Ulankom lines;
3) the Russian post, which also uses the routes above.

If postal communications through Kosh-Agachi, a tiny settlement on the
Russo-Mongolian border, are discounted, then the rest of Mongolia had essentially
no Russian postal services. Russian mail arrived at Biisk three times a week and
then proceeded on horseback through Altai to Kosh-Agach, where regular service
came to an abrupt halt. From Kosh-Agach the mail was delivered to Mongolia,
primarily to Kobdo, whenever the opportunity arose. In several documents dating
from 1918 there is mention of the existence of a Russian postal branch in

The Russian post in Mongolia, and later the horse-exchange post, served as
the foundation upon which the State Post of the Mongolian's People's Republic was

The "Post-and-Telegraph Journal" of 7 July 1918 contains a list of
communications offices in Altai Province, among which are post-and-telegraph
branch offices in Kobdo and Ulegebe and a postal branch office in Ulankam.

The October Revolution brought forth a stormy national liberation movement in
the countries of Asia.

At the beginning of 1921 Sukhe-Bator organized partisan detachments, and the
first congress of the Mongolian People's Party was convened. On 13 March 1921 a
Provisional People's Governemt was elected, and it turned to Soviet Russia for
help in the battle against bands of White Guards.

Immediately after the creation on 11 July 1921 of the People's Government,
reconstruction of the country's transportation and communications system began.
Now they were called upon to serve the interests of the people. On 14 July 1921 a
decree was issued which reduced the number of farms serving the horse-exchange
points. However, for the first few years after the revolution the urtons remained
the most important means of transportation and communication within the country.

On 13 June 1924 the Mongolian People's Republic was proclaimed. As the
organization of an independent Mongolian post proceeded, Soviet postal
establishments on MPR territory were gradually closed and their equipment
transferred to Mongolian communications entities.

Bulletin #3 of the Narkcmat (People's Comissariat) of Posts and Telegraphs
for 1922 mentions the closing of Soviet post-and-telegraph branch offices in
Tesyungol and Uliasutai, which had been maintained by Irkutsk Province
camnunications establishments.

In the official publication "Postal Handbook" for 1925, among communications
offices listed for the Eastern Siberian District is a post-and-telegraph branch
office in Khadkhyl that was served by TPO #241-242, running along the Irkutsk -
Verkhne-Udinsk Chita Karymskaya Manchuria line.


The 2 April 1926 bulletin of the Narkcmat of Posts and Telegraphs contains a
complete list of communications offices in Mongolia. Post-and-telegraph branch
offices operated in the towns of Ulan-Bator-Khoto (Urga), Altan-Bulak,
Tsehtsehrleng (Tsain-Shabi), Taryaty, and Uliasutai, and postal branch offices in
Bulgarkhan-Ul (Van-Kuren) and Zhargolan-Khot (Kobdo).

The development of postal ccnmunications paralleled the establishment of
transportation systems. Modern forms of travel began to replace cartage. In
1924, horse-exchange posts were abolished on the main road connecting Ulan-Bator
with Khentehi Province, and State automobile transportation was organized in their

On 15 July 1925 the first State Autotransport Union "Mongoltrans" was formed,
with 7 vehicles serving the Ulan-Bator Undeher-Khan route. They replaced the
12-horse urtons on the main road, and in 1927 vehicles ran on the Ulan-Bator -
Altan-Bulak route.

In 1924-25 the MPR government carried out a monetary reform. The national
unit of value the tugrikk" was issued on 9 December 1925. Prior to that, a
number of currencies circulated in the country; silver bullion, gold and silver
coins of Tsarist Russian mintage, Chinese dollars, silver and copper change, and
also various kinds of monetary surrogates were all accepted. Beginning in April
1928, the turgik (made up of 100 mung) became the only unit of exchange permitted
in the country.

Mongolia's own air force was established in 1925, and on 13 July 1926 the
first airmail correspondence from the USSR arrived. Mail from the Soviet Union to
Ulan-Bator came in by railroad and by plane A special charge for airmail was
levied in addition to the normal postage; 15 kopecks for a postcard, letter of
wrapper for each 200 grams.

Regular flights and airmail to Ulan-Bator began on 22 March 1927. Planes
flew on this route twice a week, and then three times weekly in 1929.

The towns of Boro and Khara had new postal branch offices open in February of

Due to the development of industry in the MPR and an increase in the demands
placed on communications offices by government organizations and the populace,
further expansion of the country's postal transportation organization
"Sovtorgflot" and the Mongolian "Mongoltrans," the Soviet-Mongol Joint-Stock
Company of Comurnications and Transportation was organized on 1 November 1929. In
1931, autotransport bases were set up at Bayan-Tyumen' and Kobdo. Autotransport
points sprang up in Tsaganur, Tortu amnd Tsagean-Ehrehg, through which shipments
and mail were sent to Ulan-Bator and a number of provincial centers.

Four trans-shipping points were established on the MPR-USSR border.

Loads at Khang (a pier on Lake Khubsugul) were transhipped in summer to a
steamer and sent over the lake to Khatkhyl, and carried over the ice on horseback
in winter.

Rapid development of autotransportation created the economic conditions
necessary for abolishment of the centuries-old horse-exchange post obligation in

1October 1949.

Mongolia's first narrow-gauge railroad was laid in 1938. It connected
Ulan-Bator with Kalaykh and stretched for 45 km. New narrow-gauge railways and
one wide-gauge connecting Choybalsan and Solov'evsk were built in 1939. In 1949
the main railroad linked Sukhe-Bator and Ulan-Bator, and in 1956 Ulan-Bator was
connected to Dzamyn-Udeh Station on the PRC border. Total trackage of Mongolian
railroads today is 1,800 km, of which 1,100 km, have been built in the last few

The role of civilian aviation in the MPR has grown considerably. Permanent
airline links with seven provincial centers were established in 1956, and today
airmail is delivered to all provinces. The Moscow Ulan-Bator line is constantly
in operation.

The rapid development of auto, railroad, air, and water transport in the MPR
has paralleled that of caomunications. Figures on the increase in numbers of
postal branch offices in the country are characteristic. In 1940 there were 25 of
them; in 1947 30; 1952 58; 1957 181; 1960 over 230. Today the Mongolian
Post is fitted out with up-to-date equipment.


1195 Jerome J. Norton, 220 Sunmit Way, Syosset, New York 11791

1196 Richard Thompson, 1836 No. Emerson Street, Portland, Oregon 97217

1197 David E. Hampton, 1501 California Avenue S.W., Seattle, Washington 98116

1198 Donald B. West, P.O. Box 7852, Stockton, California 95207

1199 Charles J. Merlo, 625 No. 22nd Street, Allentown, Pennsylvania 18104

1200 Clyde North, 2304 Banbury Street, Charlottesville, Virginia 22901

1201 Alex E. McDonell, 7011 Rembold Avenue, Cincinnatti Ohio 45227

1202 William Moskoff, 148 Washington Circle, Lake Forest, Illinois 60045

1203 Ellen M. Thompson, 175 Rugby Lane, Gahanna, Ohio 43230

1204 James Gorton, R.F.D. #4, Box 196, Manchester, New Hampshire 03102

1205 Nusya Medvedovsky, 170 Broadway #C6, Passaic, New Jersey 07055

1206 Edward Paule, 6611 S. Talman Avenue, Chicago, Illlinois 60629

1207 Ira Scott Ridless, 80-25 Parsons Boulevard, Jamaica, New York 11432

1208 Maria A. Hammell, 2323 Hecker Avenue, Rockford, Illinois 61103

(continued on page 55)



by George Woodley

A rare cancellation was recently discovered at the July 1983 San Francisco
Post Card Show. The cancellation was used by a Post Office of the Russian
Imperial Administration at the Mao-ershan Station on Line 263/264 of the
Chinese-Eastern Railroad on April 10, 1911. The station is near a town of the
same name, about 60 miles east of Harbin, the capital of Manchuria. The post
office handled all categories of mail.

I.. :- ... .. .................. .........

The definitive monograph "Stamps of the Russian Empire Used Abroad" by
Tchilinghirian and Stephen (published in 1960) states that the post office was
established by 1914, so the 1911 marking is an unexpectedly early one. The same
book rates the cancellation as RRR (extremely rare) and states that no known
cancellations exist. Shortly after publication of that book, a 1917 cancellation
on stamp was reported by the noted philatelist M. Liphschutz [British Journal of
Russian Philately No. 29, 1962] and another cancellation on stamp by R. S.
Blncfield [BJRP No. 33, 1963]. No other known cancellations have been reported.

The cancellation is on a postcard addressed to a Feodor Feodorovich Mikhailov
in care of the Post Office at the Harbin Railroad Station. The message is the
traditional answer to the Russian Easter Greeting "Christ is risen" "Truly
risen." The population of Harbin swelled with post-revolution emigres and many of
them subsequently came to San Francisco. Possibly one of them brought the card
with them. The postcard first surfaced in an antiuqe shop in Sutter Creek, an old
gold town in the California Mother Lode. From there is subsequently found its way
to the San Francisco Post Card Show.


The face of the card pictures a group of noted Russian writers and an opera
singer. All were associated with the St. Petersburg publishing house "Znanie" in
the first decade of this century. From left to right they are:

S. G. Skitalets (writer), L. N. Andreev (short story writer, novelist, and
playwright), Maxim Gorki (famous novelist), N. D. Teleshov (writer), Feodor
Chaliapin (the great basso singer), I. A. Bunin (writer and winner of the
Nobel Prize in literature in 1933), and E. N. Chirikov (writer).

All were greatly influenced by Gorki, who is considered to be the daninant
writer of the early Soviet period.

*** ** *** * ** ** ** ** ** ** * ** **

Editor's Note: Tchninghirian and Stephen used the Russian Railroad Guide of
1912/13 to establish their list of stations on the Chinese Eastern Railway with
Mao-Ershang (Mao-Ershan in transliterated Russian and Mao-Ehr-Shang in Chinese)
located 94 versts east of Kharbin. If one looks in the Russian world Atlas by
A. F. Marks, St. Petersburg, 1905, he would find a Mao-Erh-Shang on the
Manchurian-Korean border on the Yalu River around what is now called Linchiang.
We indicate this to show that duplication of names as well as changing of names
makes the job of postal historian that much more difficult.



by George V. Shalimoff

The appearance of the Lobachevski catalog has caused many of us to restudy
our stamps and especially to search for possible varieties. Mr. Wisewell's
article on the plate flaws in Rossica #98/99 reviewed and introduced scme constant
varieties which make our collections more interesting. I would like to add
several which he possibly overlooked on his sheets and which I observed on full
sheets of 100.

The 35 Kopek Stamp

Three perforated sheets were examined. Two with no plate numbers were
identical in all respects. The third had plate no. 5 which apparently corresponds
to Wisewell's type 2 sheet with plate no. 5 as indicated under his Flaw No. 1.

Wisewell's Flaw No. 2, the "Cronin Retouch," does not appear on this type 2
sheet with plate no. 5. His observation must have been made on the type 1 sheet.

Flaw No. 3 is really a multiple flaw. In addition to the broken 3 in the
lower right corner, the letters "0" and "P" in "KOP" are broken as seen in his
figure 3. This multiple flaw occurs at the positions Wisewell indicated on the
two different perforated sheets.

Flaw No. 6, the short top or flag of the "5" in the lower left corner, is
also found at position 11 on a perforated sheet without a plate number. Wisewell
only mentions the imperforate sheet without plate number.

Flaw No. 7, the deformed back of the "3" in the lower right circle, was also
observed at position 90 on the perforated sheet with plate number 5 (presumably
like Wisewell's type 2 sheet).

I would like to add the following:

Flaw No. 12 (Figure 1) Broken or disturbed letters "A", "7', "77", and
"Vg" in "TPI4 4 TL ]m >b"

a. Perforated sheet with plate no. 5
(presumably type 2), stamp #17

b. Perforated sheet with no plate no.
stamp #87

Figure 1

The 70 Kopek Stamp

I examined three perforated sheets of 100 with no plate numbers. All three
differed from one another in the shades of the center oval and main design.

Wisewell's "blob" on the letter "A" in "MAPKA" (Flaw No. 1) and the "thick
legs of A" (Flaw No. 2) were observed at his indicated positions.

I would like to add two other constant flaws observed on all three sheets:

Figure 2 Figure 3

Flaw No. 3 (Figure 2) The "7" and "0" are joined in the lower right corner.

Perforated sheets with no plate number, stamps 1, 6, 31,
36, 51, 56, 81, 86, and 98. (On one sheet this flaw was
weaker on the lower half of the sheet, at positions 51 and

Flaw No. 4 (Figure 3) The upper right pointed serif of the "7" in the lower
right circle is severely rounded or missing.

Perforated sheets with no plate number, stamps 4, 9, 54,
and 59.

Admittedly same of these flaws are quite small and require magnification to
comfortably observe them. But when examining full sheets, one is impressed with
the overall excellent execution, and even small differences take on meaning. Even
smaller constant marks appear which would allow one to plate the entire sheet.
But a cut-off must be made somewhere when observing and reporting such flaws.



by Dave Skipton

Quite a lot of information has surfaced since the "Vremennoe"
piece in Rossica Journal 100/101, more than enough for another
article and a considerable amount of embarrassment. It was
only to be expected that unrecorded cancels would turn up,
some in response to that article, but the mass of information
already in print that was missed the first time came as a
shock. So, with a "mea culpa" and the fervent hope that no
more 90-year-old mines are lurking underfoot, here goes again.

The Nizhnii Novgorod Fair

The nonagenarian explosive in question is an article by a Mr.
Khryashchev, the Murom post-and-telegraph office deputy chief,
in the February 1893 issue of the St.Petersburg "Post-and-Te-
legraph Journal" (pp. 202-227). Entitled "Activities of the
Post and Telegraph at the Nizhii Novgorod Fair", it details all
the operations conducted there. What follows is a summary
translation of the salient points along with appended remarks
in parentheses.

Khryashchev gives the official trading period at the Fair as
15 July to 25 August, with an unofficial extension allowed to
8 September. (It appears that the concluding date varied from
year to year. Both 8 and 10 September have been mentioned by
contemporary sources.)

Representatives and traders from all over Europe, China, Japan,
the United States and many small Asian khanates attended the
Fair, thus forcing the post-and-telegraph office there to deal
with a myriad of languages and destinations.

The fairgrounds were a "stone city" unto themselves, occupying
730 desyatinas (about 1,971 acres) closely packed with stone
buildings. (Figs. 1-2) This posed a big problem in accurate
and timely delivery of mail and telegrams.

Every year (up through 1857) the Fair Committee provided the
Post with a small building for its operations. It was located
next to the former Main Fairhouse, not far from the Arcade
built by General Betancourt in 1822.

Up to 1857 postal operations at the Fair were conducted under
the direct supervision of the Chief Postal Management (Vysshee


H -Hobropouli. kuKIralee pA1u as ApuMpw

Figs. 1-2

HxBu|iR-HorIopoo,,. Nijni-Novgorod.
But, Huzeropo.eolA y.uA or' Tearrlpa #unreps

(The reason why it was a "stone city". Every year
floods inundated the fairgrounds during the spring.)
(From the J.G. Moyes collection.)

pochtovoe nachal'stvo), as practically the entire staff of
the Nizhnii Novgorod provincial post office transferred to
the fairgrounds office. During the Fair, the latter office
became the main office for Nizhnii Novgorod. (The office


in Nizhnii itself was designated "Post-and-Telegraph Office
No. 1" at the time Khryashchev wrote his article.)

421 L *L*-y1A

.U \tt, -4--, -

1. Armianskaia tserk. (eglise). 2. larmorotchni sobor. S. Mdtchet. 4. Glavny dom. 5 Alexandrovski sobor. 6. larmorotennaia
birja. 7. Romodanovski vokzal. 8. Blagovidchtchenaki monastyr. 9. Birja. 10. Sofronovskaia pl. 11. Kosmodanovskaia
tserk. 12. Rojdestvenskaia tserk. 13. KrestnovosdoiJenski tserk. 14. Spa-o-PrLobrajenski sobor. 15. Arkhangelski sobor.
16. Blagoviechtchenski sobor. 17. Thbitre. 18. Lykova damba. 19. Goubispolkom. 20. Prom.-Ekonom..-Institut.
21 Tserk. Guergia. 22. .Muste. 23. University.

Fig. 3. Map of the Nizhnii Novgorod area.

(The fairgrounds are at the upper left, at the junction of
the Volga and Oka rivers, the village of Kanavino at the
lower left. From "Guidebook to the Soviet Union", compiled
by A. Rado, New York, 1928, p. 148.)

A small sub-office (otdyelenie) would be left behind in Nizh-
nii to serve the public there. It accepted all kinds of or-
dinary mail, money orders up to a certain amount, and insured
correspondence. All of this would then be forwarded to the
fairgrounds office for dispatch.

The completion of a highway and later the railroad between
Moscow and Nizhnii greatly facilitated both the growth of
the Fair and the amount of mail. (This would have held true
only until the network of railroads around Nizhnii and in
Siberia began its expansion. The railroads that helped the
Fair to grow were in later years to contribute to its decline.)


The inconvenience of transferring the provincial post office
to the fairgrounds every year, plus'the growth of its opera-
tions in the city itself, led to a change of procedure. A
special, independent postal sub-office was established at the
Fair in 1857 (presumably after the 1857 Fair was over), and
was subordinated to a specially-appointed manager. (This in-
formation goes a long way towards explaining why no fair can-
cels prior to 1858 have been recorded. Since the main office
hauled its equipment across the Oka river every year, its nor-
mal cancellers would have gone with it. The fairgrounds of-
fice became the main one, so no distinction in its cancellers
would have been necessary. Before 1858, a regular Nizhnii
Novgorod postmark from 15 July to 8-10 September should there-
fore be a Fair cancel. If the premise that the new sub-office
was set up after the 1857 Fair is correct, it may account for,
the April date of Mr. Liphshutz's 1858 straight-line cancel.
The process of getting the office ready for the 1858 Fair may
well have begun several months in advance.)

The new sub-office's staff was made up in part of officials
from the provincial post office in Nizhnii, but the majority
came from Penza and Kostroma provinces, formerly a part of
the Nizhnii Novgorod Postal District.

Mail from the Fair bound for Moscow, southern and western
Russia was dispatched directly to and through Moscow. (The
majority of Fair covers are seen with Moscow transit marks.)
North- and eastbound mail, however, was transferred from the
fairgrounds sub-office to the provincial office across the
river for dispatch.

According to one postal oldtimer, there were no drastic
changes in postal service. The Post contented itself with
gradual improvements in the conveniences provided the fair-
grounds inhabitants.

There was no telegraph on the fairgrounds before 1875. Tele-
grams from people at the Fair had to be taken to the central
telegraph station (in 1893 it was "Office No. 2") located in
the Nizhnii bazaar 2 versts (about 1.3 miles) away from the
Fair across a pontoon bridge, or to the State Telegraph Of-
fice at the railroad terminal. This terminal was on the same
side of the Oka river as the Fair, but the telegraph there
had only a single link to the main telegraph office in Nizh-
nii Novgorod. Thus, telegrams from the terminal went out on
a "first-come-first-serve" basis.

As a result, in 1875 the Fair Committee provided one wing of
the Main Fairhouse for telegraph operations, next to the post
office. The area provided was small, and it contained two
Morse devices connected to the main city office by a cable


laid under the Oka. This cramped arrangement could hardly
accommodate all the correspondence from the Fair, so the
management was forced to hire foot couriers for the duration
to help deliver telegrams. These couriers were replaced by
mounted messengers in 1879-1880.

In 1882 the fairgrounds telegraph office received two Hughes
printers with which it could in the course of 16-20 hours
transmit a constant stream of telegrams to the central office,
but long lines of waiting patrons outside the office continued.

The formation of the Nizhnii Novgorod Post-and-Telegraph Dis-
trict in 1886 made things run a bit more smoothly when the
Post and Telegraph were merged. In addition, it provided an
impetus to the search for better ways to solve some of the
problems mentioned above.

One of these was a plan to enable the fairgrounds telegraph
office to interact.directly with Moscow and Kazan, thus eli-
minating the need to go through the central office in Nizhnii.
This required the installation of new batteries, a third cable
and more space. The plan was approved by the Main Post-and-
Telegraph chief in June, 1889, with notification of its imple-
mentation sent to telegraph offices throughout the Empire on
15 July, the day the Fair opened. This new procedure resulted
in an additional 100,000 telegrams processed by the fairgrounds
office during the 55 days of the Fair.

The fairgrounds post and telegraph offices were finally brought
together in 1890 on the second floor of the newly-constructed
Main Fairhouse (fig. 4).

Khryashchev describes the office as having two major sections,
one for the various operations and the other for use by the
public. The public hall measured 32x12 arshins with a 9-ar-
shin ceiling (1 arshin = 28 inches), and asphalt floor, sec-
tioned off from the operations part by a polished oak barrier.
(See the floor diagram in fig. 5.) Those interested in grea-
ter detail and descriptions of the furniture, windows and
lighting are invited to consult the original article.

Postal operations began after the fairgrounds flag was raised
on the 15th of July and a prayer service was held. The ser-
vice was attended by the chief district officials and the en-
tire office staff.

Telegraph operators who could speak English, French and Ger-
man were obtained from 15 of the post-and-telegraph districts
in the Empire. In 1883-1884 a Mr. Serebryakov, who in 1893


Ma3 4oT. M. A1HTpieea, H.-HoBropoab. fpaBo xyaoA. co6CTBeHHOCTM 3aBJeHo HMsnep. AKa1 XyAWY

Fig. 4. The Main Fairhouse. (From the J.G. Moyes coll.)

was the chief of the railroad terminal telegraph office in
Nizhnii Novgorod, provided translations of Turkish, Armenian
and Persian at the fairgrounds telegraph office.

During the first week of the Fair, not as many people atten-
ded and consequently only one telegraph "booth" was in ope-
ration. When the crowds flocked in later in the month, two
such "kassy" were in use. Khryashchev also describes the
telegram numbering system.

A table showing the numbers of telegrams and amount of rubles
taken in over a 12-year period states that the decline in
1892 was due to curtailment of trade at the Fair during an
outbreak of cholera.

Registered Correspondence

Postal operations commenced at 0800 daily, including festi-
vals and holidays. Four officials worked in the registered
mail section, two of whom accepted mail when it was presented
by patrons. The other two filled out the accompanying forms
and prepared the mail for dispatch. In spite of the fact
that the daily volume usually reached 850-925 items, any cor-
respondence submitted between 0800 and 1900 went out that day.
Mail received during the first period (0800-1300) was bagged
for dispatch on the 1530 mail train, and that received during
the second period (1300-1900) went out on the 2230 evening


IlomwAuniln flpjapomuaro HOMTrlo Teacl'rjnm tro< (ITA.iellin
H. HmnHiHMb IlonropoAt.



Fig. 5. Floorplan of the Fairgrounds Post-and-Telegraph

1. Public Hall. 11. Storeroom.
2. Telegrams accepted at 12. Sale of postage stamps
windows A and B. and stationery.
3. Acceptance of registered 13. Address-Inquiry Bureau
mail. and section where regis-
4. Acceptance of money- and tered and ordinary mail
declared-value parcels. are handed out.
5. Acceptance of packages. 14. Branch office chief.
6. Mail distribution. 15. Room for on-duty officials.
7. Money- and declared-value 16. Staircase and entrance to
packets and packages public hall.
handed out. 17. Telegram and telephone
8. Room for distribution, monitoring.
sorting and working up 18. Equipment room Hughes
ordinary correspondence. printers, Morse devices,
9. Guardroom. batteries, etc.
10. Storage for leather items. 19. Messenger room.
20. Telegraph repair room.

(Curiously, there appears to be no access to the water closet
at the right corner of the plan, except through a window. GS)

express. Sorting and bagging of registered mail was done on a
large table near the section.


The number of pieces of registered mail dispatched from the
Fair were as follows:

1888 21,708
1889 22,060
1890 24,057
1891 23,884
1892 24,841

(Curiously, there is no decline for registered mail in 1892
as there was for telegrams in that year.)

Money, Declared-Value Packets and Packages

Money and declared-value packets were accepted from 0800 to
1600, and those received prior to 1300 were sent out the same
day. The four postal officials in this section were usually
inundated with people trying to get their packages out that
day. All four took care of the necessary paperwork and hand-
ling simultaneously. After 1300, specially-assigned officials
continued to accept packets for dispatch the following day.

Packages were accepted and weighed by two officials, while
otherwise-unoccupied postillions and guards tied and sealed
them. Patrons were charged both the weight-rate and whatever
the cost of the materials used to wrap and seal the packages.

Money and Declared-value
Packets Sent: Packages Sent:

1888 7,795 1888 2,556
1889 7,895 1889 2,243
1890 8,604 1890 2,369
1891 8,682 1891 1,730
1892 7,487 1892 2,133

Although the number of packages sent increased in 1892,
there was a decrease in value of over 50,000 rubles.

The task of handing out packets and packages at the office
to addressees upon demand fell upon two officials, preferably
some who had previously been assigned to the Fair. This af-
forded a better chance for personal recognition of the various
merchants when they appeared at the window to present their
receipts. The officials also made the calculations on any
customs charges, opened postal money packets, and with the
help of postillions wrote out notices of receipt.


Packets and Packages Given Out

1888 4,006
1889 4,909
1890 5,320
1891 5,069
1892 4,771

Other Sections

Postage stamps and stationery could be purchased at the fair-
grounds office from 0700 to 2100 daily from specially-desig-
nated officials. During other hours, these things could be
obtained at the telegraph windows. From 1890 to 1892, sale
of such items was conducted by female officials from St. Pe-

Value of Stamps and Stationery Sold

1888 16,739 rubles
1889 15,228 "
1890 17,618 "
1891 18,497 "
1892 19,870 "

The Address-Inquiry Bureau and the section which handed over
registered and ordinary correspondence to patrons upon de-
mand at the office were required to do a number of things.
In addition to presenting this mail to patrons, the officials
also wrote out the addresses in an alphabetic register,
handled inquiries concerning proper delivery of mail, main-
tained a list of undelivered letters and telegrams, and pro-
vided notification of these to the editorial boards of Nizh-
nii Novgorod newspapers.

Three large blackboards hung on the wall to the right of the
entrance to the public area. Names of those who were sup-
posed to claim an undelivered item were typed out on the
Hughes printer and then placed in alphabetic order on one of
the three boards. The middle board was for telegrams, the
two side ones for mail.

Patrons could give their addresses to the bureau by filling
out the form shown in figure 6 and placing it in a mailbox
or presenting it at the office. These tear-out forms came in
pads of 100 that were set out at easily-seen places in offi-
ces or delivered to hotels and houses before the Fair began.


Forms received at the Address-Inquiry Bureau were separated
into four pieces cut horizontally: the top part remained in
the alphabetic address register, while the next three parts
down were sent to the city post-and-telegraph offices in Nizh-
nii Novgorod.

ocTrsaiT B nosITo-Trezerpa4wHoe Yipexenie ma

B. .o a....a ................ ... .
SH ka, OTTeCTBO . . . .

ST....... .............
CTa TBHb aO Cymiey ape: . ....

Sr H arecBO . . . . .

E Ap.ecs .. ...................
S .......... . .
xAjpeciB. ... . . . .. .
pec ...........

.H, o..eCTBO.........
A pec . . . . .

Fig. 6

Daily Operations

The mail came in to the fairgrounds office four times a day:
at 0800 and 1100 by railroad, 1100 and 1600 by postroads.
It was also dispatched four times a day: at 0900 on steam-
ships of the upper and lower Volga, on postroads at 1400 and
on trains at 1530 and 2230. Officials from each mail section
(otdyel), plus the office chief himself, were present during
sorting of the outbound mail.

Sorting and bagging of ordinary correspondence was the special
province of a 6-official section located next to the public
area. These 6 sorted registered and ordinary mail, maintained
register #'s 8, 9 and 10, kept track of official letters and
underfranked mail, and supervised the distribution of inbound

mail to various quarters of the Fair. Underfranked letters
were logged in a register and given to letter carriers after
all mailbags were sorted.

The fairgrounds were divided into 11 districts, 9 of them in
the Fair proper and 2 close by, in the Makar'evskaya sector
(the village of Kanavino).

H mKHii-HoBroponb". 06uii BHna spmapac (KaHasHHa)

Fig. 7. General view of the Fair, overlooking Kanavino.
(From the J.G. Moyes collection.)

Before leaving on their rounds, each of the letter carriers
was inspected by the office chief himself, who made sure
that everyone had the proper amount of postage stamps and
stationery in his box for sale throughout the fairgrounds,
and that their uniforms were in proper order. Mail delivery
commenced every day at noon.

Spare postillions and letter carriers were sent out three
times daily to empty and replace mailbags [in the mailboxes].
There were also 15 mailboxes on the fairgrounds one in each
of the districts (11), one at the bottom and one at the top


of the stairs to the post-and-telegraph office, and two in
the public area inside the office. When the bags were brought
back to the office by the postillions and letter carriers, an
official of the Address-Inquiry Bureau and officials of the
Ordinary Correspondence Section had to be present during open-
ing. Once the mail had been checked for proper franking and
backstamps applied, it was sorted and stashed in a large oak
case. Any address forms were handed over to the bureau offi-

Correspondence received between 15 July and 10 September:

Year: Registered: Ordinary and Special:

1888 ............. 18,784 ....... 196,518
1889 ............. 20,508 ....... 241,216
1890 ............. 21,978 ....... 276,218
1891 ............. 23,816 ....... 208,868
1892 ............. 26,924 ....... 174,658

Officials assigned to the fairgrounds office were quartered
on the third floor of the Main Fairhouse free of charge, but
this had not always been the case. An old postal official in-
terviewed by Khryashchev told him that they were sent to the
Fair by means of postal transportation [i.e. by postroad on
carts or carriages a rather uncomfortably and lengthy trip].

The postillions were put up in barracks near the Armenian
Church, verst away from the office. In spite of their
greatly-increased workload and the imposition involved, they
received nothing in the way of additional pay or compensation.
Telegraph workers, on the other hand, received travel pay and
a daily allowance.

Khryashchev goes on to describe the features and appointments
of the third-floor quarters.

A detailed breakdown of the job titles and numbers of each
assigned to the fairgrounds is given. Counting officials,
postal workers, telegraphers, office personnel and guards, 112
people worked at that office in 1892.


Since "Vremennoe", a wealth of fair cancels has come to light,
thanks largely to Mr. J.G. Moyes, who generously provided photo-
copies from his collection. The new material has forced some
modifications to be made in the NNF chronology printed earlier.
With the cantankerousness typical of NNF cancels, the infusion
of new data has contributed to the chaos, rather than alleviated


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(D L r r.. :!Q'
B IL un 1)2n~iria


M (D #a v! j1%
0- z
0 z A, A u u a vot
(D p rr If a-

____ b tr9B

00 c k'a j T
J~4K .-1 &i I iF Tj
O bfsyi 1w PC e u N At CY-tu i
r: f7
11 ., i -

0 0 tL a ; .- ;
Wi y'n P.4 z wloccc Pid



^j3p~au 19p033.~~ l~\^ %n)c r(' : bO3Ep h; *

* 0 0
a R b e- c a, 3
o. aa,. .4. 4 eke e, re
'd d!
0 0r

e ID nCt: 8
TP846.,of itJ
Spkayan tog. C.oap rPM2 24Ff 4 fM- 7

a a0

it! No changes have come to light for NNF #'s 1-6, but from
there on matters become confused.

The first addition to the family is NNF 6a, of the "Nizhego-
rodsk. Yarmarka" type. It differs in the shape of the letters
(NNF 6 is more ornate) and has the date rotated 90 degrees
counterclockwise (fig.9). Unfortunately, the fleuron device at
bottom is missing on this cancellation, but most probably it too
differs from the 1875-1881 NNF 6. This particular datestamp was
used as an arrival mark on an ordinary envelope addressed to N.I.
Kreving from St. Petersburg, 13 August 1893. Coming 12 years af-
ter the last recorded example of this type, NNF 6a is truly an
atavism, sharing the 1890's with three of its more modern cousins
(NNF 7-9). Was this canceller used as a stopgap until NNF 8 came
along, or did it see use from the 1880's continuously? Other
examples are needed before any intelligent guess can be made.

w4 11-- A --

;1 -

ABC 't

Fig. 9. NNF 6a

NNF 7 remains unchanged, but we can now extend the range on NNF 8
by 4 years. Fig. 10 shows a registered wrapper to Pennsylvania
from the Fair bearing 5 strikes of the "Nizhegorodskaya Yarmarka"
cross-date cancel, 3 September 1898, serial "1". This gives us a
period of 1894-1898 for two serial numbers, "1" and "2".


~4 .


Fig. 10. NNF 8 (J.G. Moyes coll.)

Mr. Marcel Lamoureux kindly provided the xerox copy of NNF 9
shown in fig. 11, another large monkey wrench in the chrono-
logy. The date of 17 August 1891 is a full eight years before
the NNF 9 recorded in "Vremennoe", and the cancel has the same
serial number "9". No other serials have been recorded for
this type, so thus far we have one canceller in use from 1891
to 1899. (Mr. Lamoureux's piece is one of 23,884 sent from
the Fair that year, a good indication of its rarity.) Khryash-
chev's account of both registered and ordinary mail being sort-
ed by one team (in room "8" of the floorplan) is now confirmed,
as we have this serial on a postcard and a registered letter.

A new NNF 10 has weighed in from the British Isles, giving us
a period of 1901-1903 for this marking (fig. 12), and our first
look at an NNF postage due marking. At the time of this wri-
ting, it is unknown whether there were other types of "Dopla-
tit'" markings or not. Until a different one appears, no "NNF-
PD" number will be assigned.

An error cancel reported by Mr. Freyman in 1954 can now be
given its own number, as it differs sufficiently from any of
its brethren, both in text and the misspelling. Reading


, H\ -:'. r -:* -. ':.- ,

:,. .^ ' ,./.,- ,,J -. .: .... i: ,,,
C) \

0 a

Si: "3 .:1-

Fig. 11. NNF 9 (Marcel Lamoureux cll.)-.

BCE'.%I1P1HrL~i rIlo'T 11 1 CO CCrI.

Illa 4Tori CT' 1o0it nili TeCTC lo.ibgo a.l9p C6t4 rser exclu ivemernt k I'adresse.

Fig. 12. NNF 10 (J.G. Moyes coll.) Note postage due
marking at lower left.

"Nizhegorod. Yarmor.", serial "b", it measures 25mm in diameter
(fig. 13) and is similar in format to the cancel that was as-
signed NNF 11 in "Vremennoe". This one must now get NNF 11 -
with a "one-up bump" in all NNF's afterwards. Presumably there
is an "a" serial "Yarmor" cancel still at large, but this is
the only definite example we have. Only
two dates have been recorded 11-8-05
and 13-8-05, which leads to the specula-
tion (and based on only two examples, an /O.
exceedingly shaky speculation) that this
canceller saw use for only one Fair, and (110
was replaced in 1906 by the "Nizhegorod-
skaya Yarmarka" double-circle style. If
the cancellers were ordered before the
1905 Fair began, it is possible that no
other cancellers were available and the Fig. 13. NNF 11
error had to be used. (Communicated by
J.G. Moyes)


.,, y^- /^ ^$- ^ ^ ... 2.1...... .....YA<< -^<'^

| $i ..... .......

Fig. 14. NNF 12 (formerly NNF 11). (J.G. Moyes coll.)


We now move to NNF 13, where several serial letters have been
recorded. The postcard in fig. 15 shows the "s" variety, actu-
ally a cyrillic "g" backwards.


..... ...................

nlax. no coi. +OTorp. B. II. Bpsena.

Fig. 15. NNF 13 (J.G. Moyes coll.)

Other serials are "i", "r" and "u" for the main fairgrounds
office, and there is some variation in the stars and devices
at bottom and lower left. The sub-office at Platochnaya
Square has yielded up a few of its own, and we can account for
at least five "2a" and "2b" (not yet recorded, but they must
exist), "2v", "2g" and "2d" (all courtesy of J.G. Moyes). These
are NNF 13a.

Figs. 16-18.
S iNNF 13ai;I

4 ... .. i I
-_ -- -- .-----3 .- -


The cancels presented in this section have forced a reapprai-
sal of the scarcity of NNF 13. In "Vremennoe", I stated that
"...NNF 12 (now 13) from 1909 to 1913 appears to be as 'plen-
tiful' as that from the late 1860's to 1880's." NNF 13 is not
"as plentiful"; rather, it is far more plentiful, and can rate
at best a "scarce". As for the other NNF cancels, the chrono-
logy is not yet complete. Gaping holes still exist, especial-
ly in the 1880's, and the "line of succession" is often blurred.
The Fair still holds a few secrets!


In "Vremennoe" a photocopy of Mr. Robin Joseph's loose stamp
bearing a cancel of the 1896 All-Russian Industrial and Art
Exhibit's temporary post office was presented, with only sketchy
background information to go with it. The June, 1896 issue of
the Post-and-Telegraph Journal (unofficial edition, p. 901)
fills this gap completely. This exhibit opened on May 28th of
that year in a complex constructed specifically to hold it,
southwest of the village of Kanavino (see fig. 19).

The first All-Russian Exhibition had been held in 1829 in St.
Petersburg, and a decision was then made to have one every four
years thereafter, the site to rotate among the cities of St.
Petersburg, Moscow and Warsaw. This schedule wasn't always
honored, so that from 1829 to 1896 a total of 15 All-Russian
exhibitions were held. The first 14 of them were called manu-
factory exhibitions, the last two industrial and art exhibitions.
It seems logical that at least some of these should also have had
special postal facilities, but no other cancels have been record-
ed, and few could have survived if they ever did exist.

The 1896 exhibition occupied 77 desyatinas and was divided into
19 "themes" or sections and 5 "sub-themes":

I. Agriculture.
II. Horse breeding.
III. Domestic animals, poultry farming, silkworm breeding
and beekeeping.
IV. Gardening, fruitgrowing and vegetable-raising.
V. Trapping, fur and fishing industries.
VI. Forestry and related technology.
VII. Mining and metallurgy.
VIII. Products from fibrous materials.
IX. Factory, manufactory and handicraft products.
X. Industrial arts.
XI. Domestic crafts.
XII. Machines and their accessories: Electrotechnology.
Sub-theme: Fire-fighting vehicles and extinguishers.


i .. . .....

Fig. 19

in 1896. The pavillions and other
buildings for the All-Russian Exhibi-
tion are situated at lower left, to the
west of Kanavino. The exhibition ho-
tels and other structures were built
specifically for this event, which Ni-
cholas II himself was to visit. Be-
ginning well before the opening of the
Fair and closing long after the 1896
Fair ended, the exhibition attracted
many people, but almost nothing re-
mains of it from a philatelic stand-
point. (Map is a section of a larger
one taken from the Brokgauz & Efron
Encyclopedic Dictionary, Vol. 21, p.
51a, 1897.)


XIII. Siberia and Russian trade with China and Japan.
XIV. Central Asia and Russian trade with Persia.
XV. Military section.
XVI. Naval section.
XVII. Construction and Engineering, fluvial and maritime
XIX. Public education with 4 sub-themes: Charity, public
health maintenance, Russian Red Cross Society and Rus-
sien 1;'ater Life-saving Society, and meteorology.

Tne exhibition was open for at least 19 weeks, from 28 May to
17 October (the date of the only recorded cancel).

Mr. Herman Hirsch advises that he has some of the labels issued
for the Riaa, Odessa and Ekaterinoslav exhibitions, and that
the one for Odessa reads "May-October Exposition of Arts and
Industry, Odessa, 1910." Fia. 20 is a viewcard of the Artists'
Pavillion and fountain at the Odessa exhibition, but alas, the
only marking on the card is a common Odessa machine cancel.

Oxeccaf a BCTaBKa. IIanano6 s xyoEBHKOB a OHTaHl.


Fig. 20

While no philatelic evidence has yet been found for its exis-
tence in 1910, there can be no doubt that the exhibition it-
self started in May of that year. In expressing some


reservations about the presence of a postal facility there in
1910, I mistakenly questioned the whole affair before 1911, and
apologies for the error are in order.
Once again, Mr. Moyes has come through with a beautiful cover,
this one from the Ekaterinoslav Exhibition of 1910. Not only
are there two strikes of this rare cancel, but a special label
graces it at lower left (fig. 21), reading "Ekaterinoslav 1910
1 July 25 September Regional Exhibition".


r Q.

Fig. 21
The Kostroma Exhibition of 1913 has entered the lists with the
first recorded card (in the West). Fig. 23 shows a picture post
card with two strikes, serial "a", addressed to Moscow on 30-6-
It is interesting to note that all of the temporary office can-
cels from exhibitions in the 1910's are of the same format, with
the placename followed by "VYSTAVKA", a serial "a" and double-
circle format. For events of such short duration and special
themes, this is unusual.


HaBtcab HH)meHepHo-cTpoHTeJnbHaro OTAlla.


"""" 2 5 '-
_n__. -7

Fig. 22. Artist's rendition of the covered walkway
in front of the Engineering and Construction section,
Ekaterinoslav Exhibition. (J.G. Moyes coll.)

SOTO BceMlpM nfo b.

, KOCTPO. A ,o O e i .............K.H I MO CT p

IX i ----------, -- --

0 -------------- ... ..:.,.....,-
r MOCTPMA.BoroapineHCKl f XKBHCK1f MOHaCTblpb ;
Sxvao,.*ToT.oKoM..WEPc,MPOC A. ioTorp. B. H. Knap"k.

Fig. 23. Kostroma Exhibition.


The Riga Exhibition of 1901 can now be pushed back to July 2,
1901, thanks to the postcard in fig. 24. It is the third re-
corded "Riga-Vystavka", and gives us a time frame of at least
2 July to 1 September for this event.

................... ...... ... ........ ... .... ........

........... ..,

Ha smtnc cmoporb nutrmccA moewoo apteca. 0ct riterv exl.-ainiwnet a Vadresse.

Fig. 24. (J.G. Moyes coll.)


Six of these postmarks have been added to the short list of
two contained in "Vremennoe". In spite of the large amount of
mail that must have resulted from soldier/relative and soldier/
soldier correspondence, cancels from these camps are quite rare.
The Sklarevski col-
lection contains a
'Fig "_ very clean cover bear-
Fig. ing two strikes of
25 Brest-Litovskii lager',
"" I. dated 19 March 1900 and
addressed to the Offi-
cers' Artillery School
\ -\o t in Tsarskoe Selo south
"of St. Petersburg. A
\ \\ \ Tsarskoe Selo arrival
0 mark and a circular
"2 POEZD" transit mark


are on the back of the envelope. The cancel is a serial "1"
cross-date style with "Il.T.O." at the foot, giving no indica-
tion of the office's temporary status. (Fig. 25)

Since this postmark precedes our earliest available source that
mentions Camp Brest-Litovsk by 12 years (it appears only in the
1913 and 1916 postal lists), it may be that the office there was
not temporary at the turn of the century, but this seems unlikely.
An office that was temporary in 1915 during World War I should
have been temporary in peacetime 1900. A double-circle bridge-
type cancel should also exist.

The second "lager'" cancel is from Camp Vladimir, St. Peters-
burg province. Only two examples have been recorded, the one
shown below in fig. 26, the other a partial strike on a loose
Ik Romanov stamp in the Sklarevski collection. Both are dated

Fig. 26. (J.G. Moyes coll.)


In keeping with the military tradition of never calling a tem-
porary post office a temporary post office, Grodno has offered
up a cancel IN BLUE on a combination Imperial-zemstvo cover
from Gryazovets, with the Grodno-lager' arrival mark reading
"Pocht.Tel.Otd." (fig. 27). The strike is incomplete at the
bottom, but it should resemble fig. 28.

,. *. .. o .' _. .+ ..-.-.

N "Z .2'6.. .A. /I "".: ] ,. "

.';- 7

,* .- .,- ,t* .. / .. -. .'.; .
"%-,. I- -^-' ^'-. -L ^ .. ... .... .
: ".r' ,.,' .

Fig. 27 (ExWortman coll.)


Grodno, according to Baedeker, was the place
where 2nd Army Corps had its HQ, and in May
..- of 1897 the 4th company of the 103rd Petro-
/ zavodsk Infantry Regiment was quartered at the
/ .20 camp.
(& 18-37 I
1\ V \ / This is the only recorded Camp Grodno mark thus
.^ far, and certainly the only blue tempo cancel.
'3 ^ Note also the spelling Grodno instead of
______ ~Grodna, the later version.
Fig. 28 _

Fig. 29 gives us our first look at a "poligon" WA
(artillery range) cancel, a cross-date serial
"1" that also gives no indication of its tem- r- \\
porary status. No others have been recorded. s
(The cancellation is hand-drawn from a cover A
supplied by J.G. Moyes.)

Two beautiful covers from Orany-lager' have
now been recorded, giving us a two-year span,
12-7-1911 to 7-7-1913. Our member Daniel Le- Fig. 29
wandowsky of Florida writes that his family's
estate "Povardovnia" was located about 15 versts from this camp,
and that he was baptized in the military church there. Many of
his relatives married officers assigned to or in training at
Orany-lager', but, woe to Russian philately, none of the covers
were saved.

Fig. 30. Orany-lager' serial "a" to Penza.

| 5 d/dC4KP^b^TOE r1

d ___a

^^^ ^^/,^f' ~

I 4 -,e- ........ .. ..... ... .......... .......... ....

4 -

_. I I I .

-7713"m C-

,/7 / v--,'
,,L, L- .... .-.-. ..... .......y

.L ?d.I-', If V^ ^ .

Fig. 31. Orany-lager' to St.Petersburg.
(J.G. Moyes coil.)
The Skobelevskii-lager' cancel reproduced in "Vremennoe", dated
9-7-1911, serial "a", has acquired a new relative an identical
datestamp used as an arrival mark on a card from Germany, 13-7-
1911 (fig. 32). This brings the total number recorded to 3.

ca .e,,- w ri'

Fig. 32


'^ f^ :p2?y^~t ..
v^u tiL/^/ ^^ / .^ 1
s~r~~~~~~cccccccu lf4-', ^^^1 ^ <
~i f^!*:^1'"^*L4 A<<^-eo-' *
^^~~L~C~ ( OZ Fig.t 32


Bringing up the rear is another new recruit
to the temporary-cancel army, Chuguev-lager', 4-0
Khar'kov province. (Reproduced from a tra-
cing provided by J.G. Moyes, from a loose 7k
Romanov stamp.) It is the only recorded ex- (= 15713
ample thus far.

Fig. 33


The Rigascher Strand has coughed up quite a wealth of tempos
since "Vremennoe", not surprising when one considers that this
particular area of Russia (the coast along the Baltic Sea and
Gulf of Finland) boasted the highest concentration of tempos in
the Empire. For instance, in a single eight-mile stretch of


Fig. 34

So .Upper map shows area
... west of Riga.

ru I oc h af o r

'- .... Middle and lower maps
S'.'. ..a, show detail of the
IIO.A.SCKER STRA.nD I Rigascher Strand, the
,:-sooo i
'1:,7-, 0.0 coastal resort area.

'"'"'Lower part II is a
continuation of the
left side of part I.

''The map of the area
'' '' is taken from the
S. 1914 English-edition
; "' ______ ___ Baedeker Guide Book.


f An v a r ll Laif4


beach west of Riga there were four bathing areas that at one
time or another hosted temporary postal facilities Assern,
Majorenhof, Dubbeln and Bilderlingshof. This area should prove
to be the most fertile for tempo cancels, after the Nizhnii
Novgorod Fair.

The westernmost bathing area on the Rigascher Strand was Assern,
where a temporary post-and-telegraph office was located and for
which we now have a postmark. Fig. 35 is a xerox of a postcard
mailed by "Harry" to a Miss Fell in England on 25 June/8 July
1912. "I've just had your card, thanks very much. Yesterday we
went for a lovely excursion on the Ar, a very broad river crowd-
ed with timber rafts. The air is splendid here. I bathe every
day..." Harry refers to the Kurische Aa, which flowed along the
coast behind the Rigascher Strand. As can be seen from the
hand-drawn cancel shown in fig. 36, there is no sign of tempo-
rary status. This appears to be the norm for tempos of this
period (ca. 1905-1917). Other postmarks of Assern, such as
serial "b" or a different style like the cross-date should exist.

Fig. 35

Mr. Walter Frauenlob kindly provided
a xerox of a postcard from the resort
Area of Bilderlinashof (fia. 37) at
Sthe other end of the Strand. Accord-
4 2562 Fig. ing to Baedeker, Bilderlingshof was 36 popular beach heavily frequented by
36 popular beach heavily frequented by
residents of Riga.

The postcard was sent from Syzran RR
terminal to Bilderlingshof on 6/19

August 1909, and then redirected to Riga, where the addressee
presumably lived. A serial "b" in the same style as that of
the Assern cancel, this postmark must have at least one other
relative, a serial "a". Several other types should exist.

S Ti pbhToe nHCb re-g,
S..- /.. .. 118 o

", c. / -.$ ,

*'., L/. ,.. /y 9 i .- .p
X / i.-

"Bilderlingshof 19-8-13" arrival mark was offered in Mail Sale
#1, which appeared in "Krajejs" No. 1, (#151) 1983.)

"Majorenhof problem". Our stock of postal guides and lists is
far from complete, leaving gaps of two decades or more in some
instances, so that the status of a given office is frequently
in doubt. Majorenhof is a prime example of this. Only the 1887
and 1915 sources cited in "Vremennoe" show Majorenhof as having
a temporary post office, while the 1911, 1913 and 1916 sources
carry it as a normal office. Worse yet, the period of operations
cited in "Vremennoe", 15 May 15 September, doesn't match that
given in the 1893 postal list 1 May to 1 September. So, the
"problem is, was Majorenhof a "permanent temporary office" or did
its status change at least twice? There is also confusion over
the office's grade. The 1893 list says it's a PTO, yet the cover
in fig. 38 contradicts this, showing it to be a postal station as

the ofiesgrd.Te183ls ay tsa Tytth oe
in fig./ 38cnrdcstiso ingit obeapotl ttinas

iL-~4 ~f"- 46

of 21 August 1892! Since
the list was PUBLISHED in
1893, its information
dates to 1892, the same --
year as the cover. One
explanation might be that
the office was upgraded ~L
AFTER the summer season 4i
was over, that is, after
Sept. 1st (or 15th), but
before the end of the

The last dollop of mud
in these waters is the
fact that no matter what
the lists and guides say,
be it temporary or perma-
nent, thus far no Major-
enhof cancel has been y a
found dated earlier than
May or later than Sep-
tember. This strongly
suggests that Majorenhof
was ALWAYS temporary,
but a single cancel from
the winter months would
the winter months would Fig. 38. (J.G. Moyes coll.)
alter this. Until such
a cancel is found, I will treat the Majorenhof office as a tem-
porary one. Figs. 39 and 40 show the other two varieties which
have surfaced, the latter being the most "common". Earlier
Majorenhof cancels up to about 1900 appear to be fairly scarce,
while from 1900 on they are uncommon to scarce. According to
Baedeker (1914 edition), the Rigascher Strand was visited by
80,000 people annually, and Majorenhof was the biggest and
noisiest of the resorts. Thus, this office should be the easi-
est to find, next to the later Fair cancels.

4 Fia. 39 Fia. 404

4725809 j


Mr. Moyes has provided another Baltic provinces temporary can-
cel which is the inevitable exception to the rule of "no indi-
cation of status". Where the lists and guides show Assern and
Bilderlingshof as temporary offices but the postmarks do not,
Korf, in Ehstlyand province, is not listed as a temporary office
in official sources but its cancel is quite specific, as shown
in fig. 41. The first two letters at the bottom are the abbre-
viation for "temporary" (BP).

Fig. 41

published, because the 1916 list shows it simply as a railroad

station. 'Whatever the explanation, "Korf, Ehstlyand province,

T-PO" must be added to the listing at the end of "Vremennoe",
with its period of activity given as "summertime".
SFig. 42 also of 1916. Our range for this

bc e th 1916 lt sow it s s ay r ro
station Whatever the explanation, "Korf, Ehstlyand province,
T-PO" must be added to the listing at the end of "Vremennoe",
with its period of activity given as "summertime".

"Eesti Philatelist" #'s 21-22 of
S1977 provided the only other re-
A Fig. 42 corded example of this cancel,
also of 1916. Our range for this
office now stands at a narrow
20-6-16 to 9-7-16. Does anyone
?iv have a "Korf" from 1915?
__ 48

The open-air resort of Pogulyanka, on the
Dvina River 5 miles west of Dvinsk in Vi-
tebsk province, boasted both an hydrogra-
phic institute and a temporary post office.
Mr. Moyes once again comes up with a can- c17 713
cel (fig. 43), this one conforming to the
"no status" rule. (Hand-drawn from a tra-
cing off of a loose 7k Romanov stamp.)

Fig. 44 is a postcard showing the lake at Fig. 43
Staraya Russa, at which the temporary of-
fice was located. (See "Vremennoe" for
the cancellation.)

Fig. 44

Only two temporary offices have been identified in Kherson
province on the Black Sea, and both now have an entry or two
in the cancel sweepstakes. Fig.'s 45-46 show the cross-date
style, serial "1", and fig. 47 the double-circle bridge style,
serial "a", of Kuyal'nitskii liman (lagoon), a sanitorium and
bathing area 8 versts north of Odessa. Baedeker gives its
season as 15 May to 1 September.

A short distance away from Kuyal'nitskii lagoon was Khadzhibei-
skii lagoon, with bath houses and dachas for its summer visi-
tors. Its temporary PTO used the canceller shown in figs. 48-
49. This cover is doubly rare, having been posted on 20-6-11


Union Postf Nir sile e sussie.:
OTKpblToe nHcbi rte Poh

C tI4.A.0 1- a-J 6 A (t) Otg -


_I y U.a. ,... .. .. ... ... .... ..........._ .
*OTOTNnim UJepepi Ha6ronb, a Ho., Mocaa. 03.Photetypie Scherer, Nabholl & Co., Moscou.
19 03, |

Fig. 45. (J.G. Moyes coll.)

S19-03 V Fig. 46 Fig. 47 ((205710

Fig. 48. (Michael Elliot coll.)

i .. ..,T.. ;;: .
!'e- Ic '"i'"


from one sanitorium to another, Khyuvinke in
I Finland. Note that the international registra-
tion label makes no mention of a lagoon OR a
temporary office! The T-PTO there apparently
had little in the way of registered mail to
handle the cover is only the 6th one to be sent
since the office's opening sometime in May.

Another strange feature is the "1" at bottom of
Fig. 49 the cancel. This denotes a branch office, but
it is most unlikely that there were two post
offices in the area. Perhaps the "1" denotes an Odessa tempo-
rary branch office, with the Khadzhibei staff being seconded
from the Odessa main pochtamt. But if that was the case, why
no number for Kuyal'nitskii liman?

A newcomer to the tempo list is Vorob'evy gory (Sparrow Hills),
a dacha and park area to the SW of Moscow overlooking the city.
Baedeker approved of the food but cautioned about the prices in
Krynkin's restaurant, shown in the picture postcard in fig. 50.

Moen1 aBopo6man ropu x peopu Klpu-m.r
OSCDOU. eI mnte de molemx .

Fig. 50

The postal branch office is not mentioned in the 1916 postal
list, so perhaps the tempo wasn't opened until 1916, the date
of both recorded cancels (29-6-16 and 30-7-16). This one does


show the office status, with the "BP" at middle left (fig.'s

n4 T Bcw1?Mfi] *nP0 5TAk

S/ r'f?/ 1/ '
'<1 q{/

"- "- / ,. ... .. ....... .... .


Fig. 51. (J.G. Moyes coll.)

The bathing area/dacha category
7 is rounded out by the potpourri
shown in figs. 53-55. Urle,
S. Warsaw province, dated 6-6-13;
6P 21 16 )I GFig. 52 Troitskoe, 29-7-12 (the bottom
portion was missing on a loose
8T'o 1R stamp), and Khazret-Ayubskiya
"mineral'nyya vody, 26-VIII-1908.
(All cancels re-drawn from tra-
cings supplied by J.G. Moyes.)
The latter two, from Syr-Darya and Fergana blasts, respective-
ly, must be very rare indeed.

8P 2 I 13 -. T o se19- 0 29-7- 12 ( h b t

Fig. 53
Fig. 54 Fig. 55



Still another tempo popped up in a most unexpected place within
the city limits of Petrograd itself. According to the 1917 edi-
tion of "Ves' Petrograd" (All Petrograd), a sort of municipal
guide and telephone book rolled into one, the 25th City Post-and-
Telegraph Office (T-CPTO) was opened during the summer months and
closed on September 1st. Located at the Kolomyazhskii Hippodrome,
it served the postal needs of racing and equestrian enthusiasts.
Figure 56 shows a cover sent from the 25th CPTO on 18/31 May 1915
to Copenhagen, bearing strikes of the serial "v" canceler (cyril-
lic letter "e"). There should be several varieties of postmarks
from this office, including some from the pre-1915 St.Petersburg
era. One such cancel was recorded by Mr. Imhof in his table on
pp. 20-22 of "Die Poststempelformen in St. Petersburg von 1766-
1914" (1976), a type C serial "a". It would appear that racing
fans didn't send too much correspondence, however, as only one
cancel type is recorded fro St. Petersburg, and only this one
Petrograd 25.

_- _. _ ,"to.- .'


Fig. 56


Add the following to the list of temporary offices at the end
of "Vremennoe":
1) Goryachevodsk Terek territory T-PO 1 May 1 Sep
(from the 1893 postal list.)
2) Peskova-Skala Kyel'tsy prov. T-PO ? ?
(from the 1911 postal guide)
3) Chokrak Taurida prov. T-PO ? ?
(from the 1916 postal list.)


A survey of the year-end statistical reports published by the
Post-and-Telegraph Administration indicates that the number of
temporary post offices fluctuated from year to year, with the
greatest changes (plus or minus) occurring in 1901 and 1906
(plus-6 in both years).

Number of Temporary Offices by Year

Year T-PO's T-PTO's Source:

1896 19 25 Brokgauz & Efron Encyc. Dict.,
vol. 24, pp. 803-804, 1898.
1897 No information available.
1898 26 23 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 343, Mar 1900
1899 No information available.
1900 19 26 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 413, May 1902
1901 28 23 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 581, May 1903
1902 27 27 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 270, Mar 1904
1903 24 26 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 645, Jun 1905
1904 No information available.
1905 21 28 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 177, Apr 1907
1906 24 31 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 274, Jun 1908
1907 28 31 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 551, Oct 1909
1908 26 32 P-&-T Jrnl, p. 646, Oct 1910
1909-1914 No information available.
1915 27 38 1916 Postal List

(Note: The figures for 1915 were obtained by a count of the
temporary offices listed in the 1916 publication. They are
not official and are probably inaccurate.)

KEY: T-PO = Temporary post office; T-PTO = Temporary post-and-
telegraph office; P-&-T Jrnl = Post-and-Telegraph Journal,
printed in St. Petersburg/Petrograd by the Main Post-and-Tele-
graph Administration.)

Unfortunately, there are many questions left unresolved by


by these data. For instance: 1) Are temporary city post of-
fices included? The Petrograd 25th had to exist at the time
the 1913 and 1916 lists were published, yet no mention of it
can be found in them; 2) Do the numbers reflect only post of-
fices (or PTO's), or are some railroad station and other, below-
post-office-status temporary operations included? 3) Are tem-
porary offices aboard steamships counted? 4) Do these numbers
include offices opened on a provisional basis at the request of
local residents, awaiting a final decision by the postal autho-
rities as to whether the offices could be run on a break-even
or profit basis? (Usually after a trial period of two years or
so.) If these could be answered, we would arrive at a much
better understanding of their comings and goings.

I would like to thank Gordon Torrey for his help in photograph-
ing some of the items in this article, Howard Weinert for some
timely information, Mary Sue Sklarevski for the gracious loan
of two of the military camp cancels, George Shalimoff for a
considerable amount of work in typing and layout, and especially
J.G. Moyes, without whose help this article would have been much
shorter and less informative. My thanks also to all those who
contributed to the effort with information and xeroxes from
their collections. As is obvious from this article, vast amounts
of information still await discovery. The field is neither as
narrow or as shallow as was once thought, and with continued aid
from the membership, we may someday be able to define the limits
of Imperial Russia's temporary offices.
****** **************** ******** **

NEW MEMBERS (continued)

1209 David J. Jenkins, 1049 Hickory Street, Onalaska, Wisconsin 54650

1210 Lawrence Mindell, 725 Latimer Road, Santa Monica, California 90402

1211 Margaret M. Hudspith, Route 1, Box 361, Williford, Arkansas 72482


(St. Petersburg Post-and-Telegraph Journal [Unoffical Edition]
November 1898, pp. 1468-1476)

Summary Translation by David Skipton

[This translation is provided to afford field post enthusiasts a detailed look at
how peacetime military exercises were supported by postal authorities. Covers
from such events are quite rare, and at the time this went to print, none have
been recorded from the 1898 maneuvers. Presumably the postmarks would have
contained the oval "na" manevrakn" (on maneuvers). Readers are encouraged to
communicate to the author any material they may have emanating from this two-corps

The maneuvers took place on the outskirts of St. Petersburg and were observed
by the Emperor and others of the imperial retinue. A field post and telegraph
were formed to speed delivery of correspondence to and from the participating
troops, the General Staff and the Emperor's party, as well as facilitating
communications between them. In addition, temporary postal stations were set up
where the troops were bivouacked and provided with sufficient numbers of horses.
Teams of mounted postillions were also stationed at each of the field post and
field post-and-telegraph units.

The headquarters for the guards and the Petersburg military district wanted to
make this year's maneuvers as close to real warfare as possible, which prompted
them (the commanding officers) to assign a chief military communications officer
to each maneuver corps. These officers were chosen from the general staff, and
among their duties were included such things as supervision of the field post and
telegraph units attached to the corps, moving these units from one place to
another in close support of the troops, and keeping the units informed of the
whereabouts of (other) formations.

The following things were taken into consideration during the preliminary
organization of field post-and-telegraph support: a) deployment of forces into
two opposing corps--a northern and southern, with the former as the attacking
force and the latter as defender; b) the presence of their Highnesses with all the
Imperial Court and the Imperial General Headquarters; c) the only existing method
of mail dispatch to all areas occupied by the troops-by railroads at fixed
schedules; d) the total lack in certain places within the designated 100-verst
radius for maneuvers of post and telegraph offices; and e) unfamiliarity with the
area occupied initially by the northern corps forces. No maneuvers had been
conducted there in previous years.

After a detailed exposition of all these factors to the Guards and Petersburg
Military District Headquarters and with the consent of other administrative
institutions and officials, the Chief of the St. Petersburg Post-and Telegraph
District formed a post-and-telegraph unit in the following manner:

During the mobile assembly of troops from 23 July to 1 August, all postal
correspondence received in Arasnoe Selo and addressed to military officers was
delivered through the St. Petersburg general post office: to St. Petersburg on 24


July for delivery by GPO assets to military headquarters, to the Bol'shepargolovo
post-and-telegraph office from 25 to 30 July, and to the Vartemyagskoe
post-and-telegraph branch office on 31 July and 1 August. The mail was then
forwarded from these places (to its destination) by mounted messengers assigned
(to this duty) from military units and provided with order-documents.

At noon on 31 July these field offices were opened:

Stationary (Fixed):

1) In St. Petersburg the main field office in the postal station house on
Ligovskaya Street.
2) A telegraph branch office in Elagin Palace (Dvorets).
3) A post-and-telegraph branch office in Novaya Derevnya (near Elagin Palace).

Mobile Field Offices:

4) No. 1 with the Northern Corps in the village of Nizhnie Stanki.
5) No. 2 with the Northern Corps in the village of Tarrymyaki.
6) No. 1 with the Southern Corps in Vtoroe (2nd) Pargolovo.
7) No. 2 with the Southern Corps in the village of Murino.

When the troops moved out of Krasnoe Selo, the main field post office
forwarded the mail it received from the St. Petersburg general post office to the
corps and to general headquarters. The mail was taken along pre-arranged routes
and at specific times and then delivered to the troops on maneuvers.

Exchange of mail between the St. Petersburg general post office and the main
field post office (MFPO) was conducted in the following manner: Two officials and
one postillion from the main field post office went to the St. Petersburg general
post office before 5:00 a.m. and before 3:00 p.m. to pick up mail. Also, at 8:00
a.m. and 5:00 p.m. a general post office postillion traveled to the MFPO with bags
of mail destined for Krasnoe Selo. The mail was dumped out of the bags, sorted
through for items addressed to those connected with the maneuvers, backstamped,
re-bagged and handed back to the postillion, who then took it to the Baltic
railroad terminal for dispatch. Mail brought in from the other field units to the
MFPOs were sent on to the St. Petersburg general post office.

This method created no particular problems or complications for the general
post office officials and did not disrupt the exchange of mail between St.
Petersburg and Krasnoe Selo. In addition, it allowed the mail to be sent from
St. Petersburg at 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. and arrive at the destinations around
12:00 noon and 9:00 p.m., which was quite convenient for the troops.

Then to improve the speed of communications between the MFPO and its
subordinate post-and-telegraph units in the maneuvers area, and in expectation of
a significant increase in mail on 6 August (the Predbrazhenskii life-guards
regimental celebration, when many congratulatory telegrapms would be sent), an
office with a morse telegraph connecting it to the main telegraph office was set
up at the MFPO on 2 August. An agreement was reached between the St. Petersburg
post-and-telegraph district chief and the St. Petersburg city telegraph
administration chief to have these telegrams delivered to the regiment by mounted
postillions of the MFPO.


Thus, with all the necessary means for timely delivery at its disposal, the
MFPO delivered more than 300 telegrams to the Predbrazhenskii regiment on 6

Space for the temporary telegraph branch office at Elagin Palace was made
available by the Palace Commandant at the request of the St. Petersburg post-and
telegraph district chief. The office was to provide timely receipt and delivery
of imperial telegrams whenever their Highnesses, other VIPs, or high-ranking
members of the Imperial General Headquarters were present. To avoid delay in
delivering or taking imperial telegrams, an agreement between the St. Petersburg
post-and-telegraph district chief and the St. Petersburg city telegraph
administration chief provided for delivery of these dispatches by couriers of the
(telegraph) agency directly to Elagin Palace.

Receipt and delivery of mail and telegrams to troops situated on Elagin
Island and the Novaya Derevnya was handled by a temporary post-and-telegraph
branch office near Elagin Palace (in Novaya Derevnya). This office operated out
of a rented house, with its telegraph devices hooked into the city lines.

The field post offices followed closely behind the troops, and set up shop in
pre-arranged houses rented specifically for that purpose. Office ^1 of the
Northern Corps moved from Nizhnie Stanki to Bol'shoe Paragolovo, St. Petersburg,
and Murzinka. Northern Corps office ^2 shifted from Tarrymyaki to Khelezity,
Murino, Stataya Village (near Koltushy) and Rybatskoe. Southern Corps Office ^1
switched from Vtoroe Pargolovo to Murzinka and Kuz'mino (near Tsarskoe Selo).
Southern Corps office ^2 moved from Murino to Ust'-slavyanka and Podgornoe (near

The field post offices and the temporary post-and-telegraph branch office in
Novaya Derevnya (near Elagin Palace) handled recipt of registered and ordinary
correspondence, exchange of mail and emptying temporary mailboxes, sent mail to
the main office, sent out extra-posts with important dispatches, maintained
comunuications with the nearest post-and-telegraph offices using mounted
postillions, delivered mail to the troops on bivouack by mounted postillions,
supervised mail delivery by the postillions, sold postage stamps and stationery,
supplied the postillions with (writing) paper, envelopes, and pencils for
distribution among the military ranks, and kept a close watch over dispatch of
post horses for VIPs, couriers, and other travelers.

Permanent establishments located in the maneuvers area also took part in
accepting and delivering mail and telgrams. These included the Bol'she-pargolovo
and Krasnoe Selo post-and-telegraph offices and the Lembolovo and Vartemyagskoe
post-and-telegraph branch offices.

All of the field post and post-and-telegraph offices were supplied with
sufficient stocks of postal items, booklets, and forms for postal and telegraph
operations by the St. Petersburg post-and-telegraph district administration.
Office supplies, signs, handstamps, maps, schedules and the necessary manuals were
provided by the manager of the field post on maneuvers, purchased by him with
money allotted for that purpose. In addition to the above-mentioned items, the
offices were also given lists of the VIPs in attendance, persons in the Emperor's
retinue, umpires and general agents and emissaries, plus an order of battle
including units and fortifications.

Signs reading "Polevaya Pochta" (field post) were hung outside the offices,
and flags with the post-and-telegraph device flew from poles at each stop. In


* those places where the offices were set back from the road, special transportable
poles with similar flags and devices were put up at the turn-off points. At night
the approaches to these offices were lit by lamps.

Twice-daily mail exchange between the MFPO and those field post offices and
field post-and-telegraph offices nearest the maneuvers served as the means of
communication between the opposing corps. From 31 July to 2 August the mail route
was St. Petersburg Nizhnie Stanki, St. Petersburg Tarrymaki and Nizhnie Stanki
Tarrymyaki; on 3 August it was St. Petersburg Bol'shoe Pargolovo, St.
Petersburg Khelezity; 4 August from St. Petersburg to Bol'shoe Pargolovo,
Murino and Ust'-slavyanka; 5 August from St. Petersburg to Elagin Palace,
Rybatskoe Village and Kuz'mino Village; 6-7 August between St. Petersburg,
Rybatskoe and Kuz'mino. Extra-posts with imperial correspondence and important
reports also flew back and forth.

Over the course of the eight-day maneuvers, 301 posts and 80 extra-posts were

Mailboxes were set out at all of the field post offices, field
post-and-telegraphs and horse (relay) stations, adding up to eleven in all. They,
of course, were movable and were taken with the offices during redeployments. The
boxes were emptied three to six times daily by foot and mounted postillions.

Throughout the maneuvers area, both permanent and temporary offices were open
from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. to accept any kind of correspondence and sell postage
stamps and stationery. Telegrams were accepted at any time of the day or night.

The total number of items accepted by all the offices within the maneuvers area or
pulled from mailboxes and subsequently dispatched with the posts came to:

Registered items.................................... 100
Ordinary postcards, lettercards,
and wrappers ....................................19,875
Telegrams received ..................................254
Total: 20,229

Monies collected from the sale of postage
stamps and stationery came to ...................408.65 rubles
From the telegraph ...............................47.93 "
Total: 456.58 rubles

A special team of mounted or foot postillions was formed to acccapany the
mail and deliver it directly to the troops, either in bivouack or in the positions,
empty the mailboxes and help move them whenever necessary, and support
communications between the temporary field offices and the permanent

These postillions came from post-and-telegraph offices in those towns of St.
Petersburg Province from which the troops had left for maneuvers, thus for a time
reducing the amount of correspondence that had to be delivered to residences.
Another eight postillions were seconded from the St. Petersburg General Post
* Office to make up the field postillion team.

There were mounted postillions at all of the permanent and temporary
post-and-telegraph establishments in the maneuvers area. They were tasked with


delivering mail to the troop positions and bivouacks, carrying telegrams and
urgent official packets from the temporary offices to the permanent ones, and
serving as orderlies at the MFPTO.

Foot postillions accompanied the mails on dirt roads, emptied mailboxes and
delivered registered and ordinary correspondence plus newspapers to military
offices if they were near the field post offices. These postillions, like the
mounted ones, sold postage stamps, stamped envelopes, and postcards while making
their delivery rounds, and also made available ordinary paper, envelopes, and
pencils to those wishing to write a letter. Postage was sold at face value, while
the rest of the material was given out gratis.

All of the postillions were armed with sabers snd revolvers and carried two
bags--one bag carried over the shoulder for the mail, the other worn at the belt
to hold dispatches and a tin box containing stamps and the money collected from
their sale.

In all, the field post boasted 30 postillions--l1 foot and 19 mounted.

In accordance with the instructions routed to all maneuver elements, the
postal officials and postillions attached to the Northern Corps were distinguished
by their caps with white devices. When delivering mail to the positions and
bivouacks, the postmen were forbidden to cross the demarcation line. An exception
was made, however, for postillions accompanying the mail or the extra-post; they
were permitted to pass through the line.

During the maneuvers, postillions delivered the following items:

1) VIP, official and other telegrams ..................450
2) Registered letters and wrappers.....................184
3) Ordinary official and private letter cards ......13,885
4) Ordinary postcards, wrappers, newspapers,
military orders and notices....................9,817
Total: 24,336

Telegrams and postal correspondence were all delivered satisfactorily with no

To ensure that the posts moved on time and that military chiefs and couriers
could link the Guards and St. Petersburg Military District Headquarters with the
main post-and-telegraph administration, the following numbers of horses were
posted: At the temporary stations: Elagin Island 20; Murino 30; Toksovo -
25. At the permanent stations: Petersburg 6; Bol'she Pargolovo 14; Nizhnie
Stanki 4; Lembolovo 3; and Tsarskoe Selo 11; for a total of 113 horses.

Horses were continually harnessed up for the posts, VIPs, members of the
Emperor's retinue, couriers, umpires, military chiefs, adjutants, and servants.
But to avoid misunderstandings in the event of simultaneous arrival and request
for horses, a pecking order was observed. Members of the Imperial family went
first, followed by couriers with imperial comnands, military chiefs, chiefs of
staff, umpires, and finally ordinary soldiers on errands related to maneuvers.
All travel was accomplished without incident, and there were no misunderstandings.
Horses were sent out both on main roads and zemstvo routes. Travel, especially on
the chausees for members of the Imperial family and couriers, proceeded at a rate
of 13 versts per hour.


During the course of the maneuvers, the field post-and-telegraph offices and
the permanent postal establishments were under the direct control of the St.
Petersburg post-and-telegraph district chief, State Advisor Glagolev.
Glagolev's assistant, Collegial Advisor Derevyankin, was responsible for
organizing and setting up the field telegraph. Mr. Ivanov, a specially assigned
official, managed the field post. He was required to exercise strict and close
supervision over (workers') behavior in the offices and make sure that horses were
properly given out at the horse post stations. In addition, Mr. Ivanov was
assigned to District Headquarters to receive all instructions concerning the field
post during the maneuvers, plus being at the disposal of the Guards and St.
Petersburg Military District Chief of Staff.

The following officials and workers were tasked with running the field
offices and ensuring proper operation of the telegraph:

1) Junior Technician (mekhanik) ................ 1
2) Officials...................................32 (7 from the GPO)
3) Supervisors................................ 1
4) Postillions...............................30 (8 froa the GPO)
5) Guards ..................................... 1

All officials at the field post-and-telegraph offices had similar uniforms with
insignia and were armed with officer sabers.


191 Samuel Ray, 3635 7th Street, San Diego, California 92103

603 Victor Kent, 5738 Harris Cutoff Road, Mariposa, California 95338

665 J. J. Lambert, 6 Ancien Chemin de Salses, 66530 Claira, France

770 Dr. Leonid Kvetan, 1450 N. E. 170th Street, Apt. #111,
North Miami Beach, Florida 33162

854 Janis Ronis, 7 Lowes Avenue, Brampton, Ontario, Canada L6X 1Q8

923 Robert W. Stuchell, c/o CDF Chimie North America, Inc.,
950 Third Avenue, New York, New York 10022

970 Paul B. Spiwak, 58 Burrstone Road, New York Hills, New York 13417

1013 Melvin Feiner, P.O. Box 5637, Huntington Beach, California 92615-0637

1077 George Bronson, 6188 Continental Circle, Morrow, Georgia 30260

1079 William Uznanski, RR #1, 130th & Archer, Lenont, Illinois 60439

1103 Francis A. Timoney, R.D. #2, Box 416, Valatie, New York 12184

1114 David M. Montayne, RFD 3, Box 439 Lake Road, St. Albans, Vermont 05478

1168 David E. Capra, 3990 So. Holly Way, Englewood, Colorado 80110



by Kennedy L. Wilson

The V. V. Lobachevski Catalog of Imperial Stamps of Russia, as translated
by George Shalimoff, has appeared as a four-part serial in the last few Rossica
Journals. The complete work has appeared as follows:

Rossica 94/95: Imperial Postage Stamps of Russia Issued 1857-1888
Rossica 96/97: Imperial Postage Stamps of Russia Issued 1889-1906
Rossica 98/99: Imperial Postage Stamps of Russia Issued 1905-1923
Rossica 100/101 Imperial Postage Stamps of Russia Placed into
Postal Circulation after the Revolution

Although Lobachevski published his original catalog in four sections in Soviet
Collector (Sovestskii Kollektsioner, 14 through 18, 1976 to 1980), the breaks
in the Rossica printing did not follow exactly those of Lobachevski himself
due to length of the sections and the need to publish other articles in the
limited pages of each Rossica edition.

In the course of such an undertaking, it was impossible not to make
errors. Most of the errors are mine, as editor and publisher of the Journal.
A very few, however, were errors in the original Soviet articles in Soviet
Collector, a few were caused by translation and transliteration of the
Lobachevski numbering system, and some were caused by Rossica's inability to
cae up with good, clear reproductions of essays and proofs illustrated in
the original Soviet printing. It was decided early on that Rossica illustra-
tions would be done by Norman Epstein from material we could obtain on loan
from various members of Rossica. The illustrations which accompanied the
original publication in Soviet Collector lost much detail due to the newspaper
typesetting and printing of half-screens used by that publication. In those
cases where there were illustrations in Soviet Collector but Rossica could
not locate a copy of the item for rephotographing, we simply left them out.
Thus there appear gaps in the numbering and lettering system for some of the
rarer material, particularly essays and proofs.

Likewise the original articles in Soviet Collector contained several
numbered references in the list of references at the end of each article which
did not appear in the text itself. In fact, almost all of the non-Russian
references given in the literature list were not found within the textual
material, making it almost appear as if an overly zealous editor had purposely
excluded them. Since Lobachevski himself has now died, it will be virtually
impossible to make these corrections.

However, the time has now come to correct these errors and attempt to
make the English edition of the Catalog of Imperial Postage Stamps of Russia
as accurate as possible. This has led to some soul searching on how best this
could be accomplished. A number of writers and members of Rossica have come
forward with challenges to individual items in the original Lobachevski
catalog; they feel that varieties listed by Lobachevski are color changelings
caused by fading, etc., or they possess an item which they feel is a legitimate
variety not listed by Lobachevski. The simple solution to this type of


problem is to remember that the Shalimoff translation of the Lobachevski
catalog is just that, a translation. Thus, if a variety was listed by
Lobachevski, it will be listed in our translation. We will not delete
listings in our translation from his original, nor add new varieties based
on the holdings of other readers, no matter how worthy. We are not attempting
here to rewrite a composite catalog of all Russian stamps and varieties; we
are simply translating and publishing another man's work for the benefit of
non-Russian speaking or reading collectors.

I leave it to those far more versed than I in Russian Imperial philately
to undertake such a task. However, from listening to what seemed like
interminable arguments about why such and such an item should be added to the
listing, or why Lobachevski erred in listing all the color varieties he did
without reference to which printing the color varieties came from, I wish the
undertaker of such a task luck. He will never get unanimity of opinion among
all the experts.

For the record, Lobachevsky states that cliche varieties were included
in the catalog when the existence of two or more identical stamps was verified.
An exception to this was made for issues which, by the character of the design,
it was possible to determine without a doubt that the variety was not acci-
dentally made during the printing process (such as inclusion of same dirt or
a glob of ink) but rather the variety was a result only of a change in the
design on the cliche itself. It should be noted that in his own corrections
to the Rossica edition of his catalog, Lobachevski added a significant number
of new varieties, based on correspondence with others. These have been
included in the corrections listed below.

There has also been same discussion of reprinting the entire Lobachevski
catalog ina single, bound monograph with all the numbering corrected, a final
effort made to find the items to photograph which we couldn't find before, and
in general to provide a single reference work which would be available in one
place. A final decision has not yet been reached on this question, and
readers are invited to express their comments on such an idea to either the
Editorial Board or members of the Board of Directors of Rossica.

Having established the basic ground rules for the errata, it now becomes
a problem of how best to list all the extensive corrections required to make
the previously published information as accurate as possible. A vast majority
of the corrections could be accomplished by simple pen and ink changes in the
original printings of Rossica 94/95 through 100/101. Likewise, a number of
photographs which were missing or which were mislabeled have since appeared,
and these are also contained in the text which immediately follows. Lobachevski
himself grouped his listings basically by issue date. Although some would
quarrel with his division of the issues, it was retained in the basic trans-
lation, and will be retained here. In order to minimize the actual space
consumed by corrections, they will be listed by issue, as listed in the
original printing, and then by page and line number on the page. In most
cases this will suffice for an unambiguous correction of an error in the
original translation printing. In cases where there is some ambiguity, a
note will be appended to clarify it. Whenever possible the actual change has
. been underlined in the corrected text.

Following this extensive listing of corrections, I have appended
three letters from individuals who chose to write me at length. These are


really comments, rather than corrections as such, and tend to express opinions
about uncertainties in the organization of the listings themselves. In a
normal issue of the Rossica Journal I would tend to run each of them under
the Notes from Collectors section. However, since they are very pertinent to
this article, they are appended here in order to centralize most of the
discussion of the Lobachevski catalog in one place. The comments are by
Dr. A. H. Wortman, Mr. V. V. Lobachevski, and the Rev. L. L. Tann. The
Wortman comments were published previously (Rossica 96/97, p. 118) but have been
reprinted here for completeness.



Introductory Material

page 12, para 1 As written, this paragraph states that a design number
follows the catalog number of the individual stamp. In
each of the stamp issues the reader will find the design
number following the stamp catalog number for each basic
issue (not varieties). Each of the basic issues is
shown with a double size photograph, but the design
number is not shown under the corresponding photograph.
The reader should not be confused by the extra set of
numbers in the basic issue descriptions. If the
catalog is reprinted as a monograph, the design number
will be placed under each photograph the first time
the design appears.

page 13 Add after line 7: "Finally, in the mint and used columns
of valuations, the reader will occasionally find dashes
or blanks. A dash indicates the stamp is unknown to the
author (Lobachevski). A blank indicates the item is not
known to exist."

First Issue

page 15, line 1 "Lipshutz" should read "Liphschutz"
of footnote

page 17, line 8 "date of..." should read "data of..."

page 20, line 4 "expedtsiya" should read "exspeditsiya"

page 21, line 1 "miliatry" should read "military"

page 22 Add to the table "Premiums to be Added to the Value of
Stamp No. 1 for Certain Cancellations"
SC 14 +1500

page 23, line 8 "was carried out..." should read "were carried out..."

page 26, line 13 "are not kept..." should read "are now kept..."


page 26, line 19 "design and stamp" should read "design as stamp"

Second Issue

page 27 Add to the "Addenda":
"Stamps with full gum (without traces of hinges) + 50%
Covers are known franked with a pair of No. 3 20 kopek
stamps and a pair of No. 4 30 kopek stamps. These
are Unique."

page 29, line 11 Under the 10 kop. heading, "Nos. 2, 5" should read
"Nos. 1, 2, 5)"

page 29, line 15 "Ref. 5" should read "Ref. 7"

page 29 and The illustrations for stamped cancels SC18a, SC18b, SC18c,
page 34 SC22a, and SC22b were erroneously included in the
discussions of the Second and Third Issues. All of these
stamped cancels were introduced later during the period
of circulation of the Sixth Issue. This does not exclude
the possibility of them being used to cancel stamps of
an earlier issue which a sender could have used to frank
a piece of mail. It is simply the positions of the
illustrations within the text that might mislead a reader.
All references to these cancels in the text are correct,

page 30 Add to the table "Premiums to be Added to the Values of
Stamps for Certain Cancellations:"
"SC14 +500 +2000 +4000"

page 30, line 27 "inperf" should read "imperf"

page 31, Remove: g. olive and green on watermarked paper RRR
line 3, 4, 5 h. olive and green on unwatermarked paper RRR

B 30 kop. green and carmine rose RRR

Third Issue

page 32 Add a new variety:
5Bb 30 kop. outer and inner frame lines 1200 150
filled in and joined in the
upper left corner

page 32, line 13 "0.0095 mr" should read "0.095 nm"

page 34 See correction under page 29

page 34, line 14 "(two types)" should read "(three types)"

S page 35 Add to the table "Premiums to be Added to the Value of
"Stamps with Certain Cancellations"
"SC14 +200 +300 +750


page 36, line 10 "Novorod" should read "Novgorod"

Fourth Issue

page 38, line 5-8 Delete the last sentence of the first paragraph of
HISTORICAL INFORMATION. Add the following in its place:

"An exception was the mail forwarded along the Postal
Department routes by the Russian Steamship and Trade
Company (ROPIT). Ordinary mail franked with postage
stamps forwarded by ROPIT to and from foreign ports
in the East was introduced starting January 1, 1863,
as announced in Circular No. 5 of the Postal Department,
dated November 12, 1862."

page 38, line 18 "1867" should read "1864"

page 39, line 17 "SC23 and SC25" should read "SC24 and SC25"

page 39, line 20 "ESSAYS" should read "ESSAYS AND PROOFS"

page 39 Add a third paragraph to the "ESSAYS AND PROOFS" section.

"Proofs of the 1, 3, and 5 kop. stamps are known with the
design of the stamps placed into circulation. The paper
is thin cardboard. Imperforate. They were crossed
diagonally with ink lines RRR. These are found in the
collection of essays and proofs in the A.S. Popov Central
Museum of Carmunication in Leningrad."

Fifth Issue

page 42, line 4 "..."L" in "10"..." should read "..."1" in "10"..."

page 42 Add a new variety:
15Ac 20 kop. blue and orange with 3250 300
metallic sheen

Sixth Issue

page 45, line 6 "Prame" should read "Frame"

page 45, line 7 "a 15" should read "x 15"

page 46, line 5 Letter "h" in word "ODNA" should read Letter "H" in word

page 46 -page 49 Add the following new varieties:

17Bh 1 kop. a break at the right 150
in the line enclosing
the oval with the coat
of arms


17Bi 1 kop. incomplete arc of the 250
circle with numeral "l"
in the lower right corner

17Bj 1 kop. break in the encircling 150
frame line and deformed
frame at top of stamp near
the "1" in the upper right

17Bk 1 kop. damaged letter "O" in the 150
word "OHIA4"

17B1 1 kop. deformed curl at base of 800
numeral "1" in upper left

18Bb 3 kop. crooked outer line and 300
inner frame at left side
(above the numeral "3" in
lower left corner)

19Bf 5 kop. The vertical stroke of 500
numeral "5" in upper right
corner touches the curl
with the dot

19Ee 5 kop. background design is RR 500
printed on top of the
black frame of the stamp

19VBa 5 kop. oblong white spot in back- 1000
ground of stamp along part
of left frame

20VAc 10 kop. reddish brown and light 2250 150
blue with metallic sheen

20VCc 10 kop. on very thin paper 175
(0.045 nrm)

page 52, line 4 "4 ysed" should read "4 used"

page 52, line 26 Title "RATES from JANUARY 1, 1872" should be foognoted
with reference 14: "RATES FROM JANUARY 1, 1872"

page 52, line 26 Add as a subheading "Intercity Mail"

page 53, line 3 "1876" should read "1873"

page 54, line 13 Insert "numbered" after the first word to make it read
lines s numbered 11 1/2 light lines and ..."

page 55, line 4 The last sentence, beginning "Also known..." should be the
first sentence of the next paragraph


page 58, line 11 Insert between".. .Known" and "Block..." the sentence
"Stamps with cancellation 9 R

page 59, last line "Greek" should read "Green"

Seventh Issue

page 61-62 Add the following new varieties:

23Bf 2 kop. large white spot on 200
the stamp's background
under the letters "B"
and "b" in the word "zIB"

24Bd 8 kop. white dot after numeral 50
"8" in upper right circle

24Cc 8 kop. on thin paper +100 +25
(0.05 mn and thinner)

25Ec 10 kop. mirror impression of R
center on back of
stamp (penetration)

page 66 Add at the end of the section titled "PROOFS"
"These proofs RRR. They are found in the collection
of proofs and essays in the A. S. Popov Central Museum
of Communication in Leningrad."

Eighth Issue

page 67, line 19 "black and carmine" should read "gray and carmine"

page 68, line 6 "1881" should read "1880"

page 68-69 Add the following new varieties:

27Bf 7 kop. "Dragon's head" instead RRR
of the eagle's head on
the right side of the
design of the coat of arms
(two examples known)

27Bg 7 kop. printed "VIL" instead 500 200
of "VII" in the oval
frame enclosing the coat
of arms (22nd and 47th
stamps in sheet)

27Bh 7 kop. Variety 27Ba with the 150
reengraved coat of arms
of Variety 27Bd



27Ba 7 kop. design as on 600
Variety 27Ba

page 68, line 21 Add "mn" after "0.08"

page 71 Add at the end of the section titled "PROOFS":
"There us also a proof with the design and color of the
stamp placed into circulation. It is printed on thin
cardboard, imperforate, crossed diagonally with ink
lines ERR. This is found in the collection of proofs
and essays in the A. S. Popov Central Museum of Ccmanzi-
cations in Leningrad."

Ninth Issue

page 71, line 26 "rblem" should read "emblem"

page 71, line 31 "...are line perfed" should read "...are line perfed 13 1/2"

page 75, 76 Add the following new varieties:

32Bc 7 kop. two joined dots 100 25
within the circle
enclosing the numeral
"7" in the upper
right corner

33Bb 14 kop. break in the circle 250 50
and deformed digit
"1" in the numeral
"14" in the upper
left corner

S33Ed 14 kop. on paper with horizon- unique
tal and vertical relief
(laid) lines, forming

page 76., The wrong photograph was used for this illustration. The
photograph 33Ec correct variety is the 14 kop. stamp without thunderbolts,
and with a shifted center.

page 78, line 10 "...with fram perfs..." should read "...with frame perfs..."

page 78 Add to the section titled "Coaments"

"4. Stamp 33Ed on paper with a relief of a screen resulted
from an error in preparing the paper. At first the water-
mark was reproduced on the paper with a corner of the sheet
bent over. Later the corner of the sheet was straightened
out and the watermark reproduced a second time.

The vertical relief (laid) lines of stamp 32Eg, in all
probability, were obtained similarly, by the bending over
of a corner of the paper sheet upon reproduction of the

5. Stamps with values 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 14, 35, and 70 kop.
are known on paper with more frequent laid lines (25 and
more horizontal lines instead of 13 on a single stamp.)
"This resulted from a technological problem in the pre-
paration of the paper. Valuations for stamps on such
paper for the 1 7 kop. values are +150 +50; for the
14 kop. value +200 +60; for the 35 kop. value +1000
+250; and for the 70 kop. value +800 +150. Sometimes
these dense lines are not readily seen by eye. However,
the lines are clearly visible on the backside when the
stamps are immersed in watermark detection fluid in a
black container.

6. Stamps with values 2, 3, 5, 7, and 14 kop. are known on
porous paper with watermark WM4. The porosity is readily
visible upon wetting the stamp with watermark detection
fluid. "

page 82 Add the following under the first line:

"On November 17, 1883 the Postal Department ordered the
EZGB to prepare, along with the kopek value stamps "with-
out thunderbolts," 2500 copies of a 3 rub. 50 kop. stamp
and a 7 rub. stamp with the same coat of arms for 1884.
In 1885 a second order was made for these stamps (for
1886) amounting to 1000 copies.18-5 From the work "On
the 1884 Stamps" it cannot be determined whether there
were additional orders to prepare 3 rub. 50 kop., and
7 rub. stamps.

On November 5, 1885 the Minister of Internal Affairs ordered
the postal coat of arms to be changed to the postal-
telegraph coat of arms with posthorns "and thunderbolts."

page 82, Add the following footnote:
under -"8.5 L[FT CCCP (Central State Historical Archives of the
footnote 18 USSR) fund 1289, list 2, ed. khr. 665 (storage unit 665)
1.7, 19, 58, 122."


page 84, line 18 Delete the word "not," the next to last word in the line
page 85, line 8 "courve" should read "curve"

page 89, line 13 "width." should read "widths."

page 90, line 10 Add after the word "Inperforate;"
"The design of the 10 kop. essay corresponds basically to
stamp No. 32, whereas the design of the 20 kop. essay
corresponds to stamp No. 33. The value indications were
changed. A photo of the 10 kop. essay appears as lot 367
in the Siegel auction catalog of the Baughman collection,
March 1971. Both essays are illustrated as lot 325 in
the Hanner Auction of the A. Faberge collection of Russia,
November 1939."

page 90, line 13 "Types N O" should read "Types N U"

page 90, bottom Add: pictures of essay types R, S, T, and U

7 PY6.
0 .*4


page 91, line 14 "NE GOLDEN K UIDTREBLEN." should read "NE GODEN K URYREBL."

Tenth Issue

page 92, line 14 Add, immediately following line 14:
"The 2 and 5 kop. stamps are known on porous paper with
watermark WM4. The porosity of the paper is readily seen
upon wetting the stamp with watermark detection fluid."

R6SSICA 96/97
Introductory Material

page 27, line 23 "ctalogued" should read "catalogued"


Eleventh Issue

page 31, line 27 "...payment if internal..." should read "...payment of
internal... "

page 33, line 24 Remove period after first word in line

page 35, bottom Photographs of essays Z, BB, CC, and DD are not available

Twelfth Issue

page 40-41 Add the following new varieties:

47Ee 5 kop. with mirror impression 500
of frame on back

48Bh 7 kop. broken numeral "7" in the 50 25
upper left corner

49Bb 14 kop. break in the circle and 150 35
deformed digit 1 in numeral
"14" in upper left corner

page 42, line 24 The value "7 rub." is missing for stamp 52Ab

page 43, line 5 Remove comma after 50

page 44, line 8 "March 1, 1897" should read "March 1, 189721'5"

page 44, bottom Add footnote as follows:

",21.5 Trubacheev, V., "The Origin and Development of the
Russian Postage Stamp," Postal Telegraph Journal,
Unoffical Section, February 1900, page 206"

Thirteenth Issue

page 52, 57 Add the following new varieties:

54Ef 2 kop. double impression of the 1200
frame (background has

62Eg 7 kop. missing perforations at 3500
top (fantail top) with
upper margin of sheet

page 52, line 8,9 The date "(1905)" should follow the color

page 52 Photograph labeled 55Ee should be labeled 55Eb

page 53, line 31 Insert unused valuation of 6000
(last) Add following "inverted background," the words "position
75 on a full sheet"


page 55, line 12 Insert used valuation of 25

page 57, line 2 Insert used valuation of 6000

page 57 The photograph for variety 62Ea is wrong. The stamp is
correct but the picture was developed with the negative

page 57, line 20 Add the following at the end of the text:

"Valuation for the 70 kop. stamp 500 150"

page 63, line 20 "cities" should read "city"

page 68 Photographs of essays FF, GG, and HH are not available

page 72, line 28 "17" should read "Y"

page 74, line 10 "differes" should read "differs"

Fourteenth Issue

page 77, line 31 "dull" should read "blunt"

page 77, line 34 "also a one ruble..." should read "...also a 20 kop. and a
one ruble..."

page 78, line 18 "...soluble..." should read "...insoluble..."

Sixteenth Issue

page 82, line 17 "E. Franka" should read "E. Frank"

page 82, line 18 "R. Zarrinsha" should read R. Zarrinsh"

page 83, line 1 Delete the words "or Comb"

page 84, line 3 "sixth" should read "twenty-fifth"

page 84 Add the following new variety:

70D2Ea 3 + 3 kop. with missing perforations RR
at left (fantail left) and
with margin of sheet

page 84, line 23 "Lipshitz" should read "Liphschutz"

page 85, line 10 "December 31, 1913," should read "December 31, 1913,25"

Seventeenth Issue

page 86, line 14 "perforation 11 1/2" should read "line perforation 11 1/2"


page 86, line 18 "stam" should read "sta"

page 88 Following the first paragraph, add the following:

"There exist two types of sheets with control marks in
different locations. The first type has four margins
on the sheet which are intersected lengthwise with an
additional row of perforation holes (see 0C5). As a
result, there are no control marks in the corner margins
at the top and bottom of the left side of the sheet.
The second type of sheet does not have the additional
perforation lengthwise in the margin. Consequently, an
additional control mark (M45a) is printed in the corners
of the margins at the left side of the sheet."


Eighteenth Issue

page 48 An actualphotograph is provided for Figure 11, showing the
curls on the left portion of the ribbon, which were not
correctly drawn in the original figure as published. Like-
wise, the three encircling lines of the oval appear as two
lines completely encircling the national emblem, but
shaded between them in the upper left quadrant.

Figure 11

RISSICA 100/101

Twenty-Fourth Issue

page 49, line 11 additional should read "additional"

page 49, line 12 "7 rub. with new designs" should read "7 rub., with new

page 58, line 3 "with control marks" should read "with six control marks"

page 59, line 7 authorization should read "authorization"

Twenty-Fifth Issue

page 61 Variety 138Ab should be listed as having a 3 rub. 50 kop.

Surrogates for Postage Stamps

page 64, line 13 "139-140" should read "139-141"

page 64, line 17 "test" should read "text"

page 64, line 18 "this" should read "thin"

page 67, line 7 "1 kop. 1 rub." should read 1 kop. = 1 rub."

page 67, line 13 "Orderes" should read "Ordered"

page 67, line 20 "1 kop. 1 rub." should read "1 kop. = 1 rub."

page 68, line 7 "1 kop. 1 rub." should read "1 kop. = 1 rub."

page 69, line 7 "1 kop. 1000" should read "1 kop. = 10000"

page 69, line 9 "1 kop. 1000" should read "1 kop. = 10000"

page 69, line 14 "50 kop." should read "50 kop.,"

page 69, line 18 "1 kop. 1 rub." should read "1 kop. = 1 rub."

page 69, line 28 "1 kop. 1 rub." should read "1 kop. = 1 rub."

page 70, line 6 "for the Post" should read "for the Post and Telegraph"

page 72, line 11 "February 20, 1922" should read "February 20, 1922 "

page 73, last line Delete "WM7"

page 76, line 7 "data was" should read "data were"

page 78, line 37 "26.8 c 31.2" should read "26.8 x 31.2"

page 78, line 41 "horizontal" should read "horizontally"

Stamps of the City Posts

page 82, line 13 "City-Post" should read "City_Post"

page 82, "No. 10, page 11" should read "Nos. 10 and 11"
lines 35 & 36

page 83, line 9 "dashed" should read "dashes"

page 85, line 15 "ciculation" should read "circulation"

page 85, line 37 "were" should read "was"

0 page 85, line 39 "Efremov, E." should read "Efremov, K."

page 89, line 23 "later in the black" should read "later the black"



At the very beginning of the catalog Lobachevski says that No. 1 is
"typographed." Does he mean stereotyped or electrotyped? Let me refer you to the
series of articles which Sir John Wilson wrote for the London Philatelist in 1941
and which was reprinted in Rossica No. 88. On page 11 of No. 88 he quoted
Breitfuss "from an official source" saying that both the frame and the centre
plates were electrotypes. There is no doubt that they are. I discussed this with
Sir John back in the 1940s and we concluded that from the nature of the design and
its execution it was inconceivable that at least the main design could have been
produced in any other way. Kaminski in Filateliya SSSR Nos. 6 and 7 tells us that
the instructions of the Commission for the Preparation of Duty Stamps in 1857 were
that "the printing should be made from two plates comprising 100 copper
electrotypes" (see B. Pritt's translation in the British Journal of Russian
Philately No. 47, p. 29). We do not know for certain whether, when the printing
was done a year later, it was from 100 separate electrotypes in a printing form or
from a complete electrotype plate. The latter method was certainly used for the
7k of 1879.

In any case, I do not believe in the "re-engraved cliche" description of
varieties iBa and IBb. They do show a small figure "1" in the NE corner of the
stamp, but my opinion about this is still the same as in my article in the British
Journal of Russian Philately No. 23 of March 1958. You cannot make a colorless
figure smaller by re-touching an electrotype. The only way to do it would be by
adding metal, which would be absurd in the case of an electrotype. The deeper
color of the dots at the top of 1Bb could be produced by slight disruption of the
copper printing plate. What are we to make of varieties IBd, iBe, and 1Bf? How
many examples of each have been seen? I see no virtue at all in giving catalog
numbers to "varieties" like these unless they have been proved to be constant.
Everyone may, of course, collect what he wishes, and to my old friend Michel I
would say, a propos his variety 1Bf, "chacun a son gout." I cannot believe in
variety lAb either. Surely this "shade" is due to aging?

May I now make a personal claim? The reproductions of cancellations SC10 to
SC15 are taken, I think, from Prigara's book, and he took them without
acknowledgement from an article I wrote for Gibbons Stamp Monthly Vol. XI, No. 9
of June 1938 (yes 1938!). I would not refer to them except that I want to say
that while I sketched SC10 to SC13 as accurately as possible from originals (and I
admit I am no artist), I did not have examples of SC14 and SC15. I had a No. 83
in the village type SC14 and when drawing it found it easier to draw an "0" than a
"3." The same applied to SC15. The "7" was from a number in the 700s, but I had
no number 700. In fact I was rather intrigued by its attribution to the Riga
Railway Station. Prigara gives tha date of opening of the Riga-Dinaburg Railway
as September 12, 1861 which was during the period of use of the dot cancellations
so it might have been used, but back in 1938 no one had seen an example, even on a
loose stamp, which was strange for so busy a place as Riga. To this day, so far
as I know, no one has a No. 700.

There is one other stamp I would like to discuss and that is the 7k of 1879.
I can claim to know something about it because I have examined 12,000 examples. I
bought them by the thousand from a London dealer before the last war, and they
helped to pass the time during the quiet moments when on duty during air raids at
the local HQ. Lobachevski repeats the error in the old catalog of the date 1881
for the black shade. I believe the origin of this was that it was a sign of
mourning for Tsar Nicholas I who was assassinated that year. However, I found


same copies with 1880 cancellations, the earliest being April 8. Sir John Wilson
saw my studies of this stamp and quoted my dates for the shades in the articles
already mentioned (see Rossica No. 88). Stanley Gibbons then amended their
catalog and have quoted my dates ever since. Lobachevski is evidently unaware of
this and also of my study of this stamp in the British Journal of Russian
Philately No. 11 of 1953. He lists only one of the very small flaws which serve
to distinguish the 25 stamps in each pane. I plated them and illustrated the
cracked plate variety (No. 3 in one of the panes) of which I discovered four
examples and have heard of only two others. Such a rare item cannot be his No.
27Bb. The crack is, of course, colorless and extends from the top half-way down
the stamp.

Lobachevski does not give many points to the used vertically laid variety.
This is quite scarce, and I did not find more than two examples in any of the lots
of 1,000 and sometimes none. Moreover, even when found, some were damaged or
heavily cancelled. It was in use only from May to August 1879, and the
horizontally laid stamp was more commonly in use at the same time. The earliest
date is May 1 and I have one with a September date.


I wanted to say a little about the other articles in Rossica 96/97.

The new cliche variety of No. 1 with the dot between the "10" and the word
"kop" and the unusual "10" with the small O" in the upper right corner of the
stamp, which were discussed in Dr. Cruikshank's article "The Dot Variety of Russia
Number One," greatly interested me. Several stamps of the dot variety which I
have managed to see at first hand always had the "10" in the upper right corner
with a normal zero and 1, approximately equal in height, i.e., with numbers like
the "10" on the proof stamp shown in Fig. 2 in Dr. Cruikshank's article. The
discovered variety (Fig. 1 in the article) apparently has a zero of normal size,
but with a 1 taller in comparison with it. Thus on the stamp in question the zero
seems small. Evidently this stamp is the only one known. The task before us is
to find another such, in order to be sure that the "tall 1" in the "10" did not
occur accidently as a result of some speck falling onto the cliche during the
printing of the sheet.

I checked 5 other auction catalogs: J. Robson, 1958 (H.G. Goss); Stolow, 1971
(Baron W. von Stackelberg); Harmer, 1974 (Frederick Small); Cherrystone, Sept.
1979 and Oct. 1980-but in none of them were there any No. l's of the "dot
variety." Unfortunately, I do not have the Harmer catalog of 1939 (Agathon
Faberge), which is most deserving of attention.

The No. 1 "dot variety" was first shown by A. G. Feldmanis at the 1957 Moscow
exhibition. He exhibited two stamps of this variety, one of which was on cover.
I remember that A. G. Feldmanis looked for the second stamp for a long time, in
order to show two examples of this variety.

The first description of this stamp was published by K. Alekseev and me in
"Filateliya SSSR," 1972, No. 7, p. 8. Then another description was given by Mr.
Liphschutz in the article "No. 1 Russe," Document Philatelique, No. 65, Academie
de Philatelie, 1975. Mr. Liphschutz at the end of his article referred to our
1972 article. However, when reading Dr. Cruikshank's article it is possible to


believe that the author of the catalog for some reason made no reference to Mr.
Liphschutz's article.

In the same journal, in the article "Comments of Rossica Translation of
Lobachevski Catalog," Dr, Wortman comes out against the inclusion in the catalog
of several varieties of No. 1. I cannot agree on this opinion.

Varieties 1Ba and 1Bb with small "1" in the "10," upper right corner -
The existence of a number of these stamps is well knwon-evidently they were
caused by damage to the matrix from which the cliche was made. The damaged
portions were then retouched by the engraver, and from this matrix the cliche was
produced by means of electrotype.
It is also possible that the engraver had to remove and then smooth the surface
of the matrix in these areas. In that case, the cliche in the damaged area of the
matrix could have turned out with a smooth, raised surface and on it, possibly,
was engraved the missing, deepened fragments of the background with the small "1."
The latter explanation relates more to variety 1Bb, the upper background line
of which, consisting of vertical strokes, is in the right portion of the
reengraving. In this instance, the strokes closely adjoin the frame line of the
stamp's design. On normal #1's the strokes do not reach this line. Under
magnification, the design of the variety 1Bb shows up well in the Stolow auction
catalog of April 29-May 1, 1971, lot 876.

Variety 1Bd with Dot after "10" in the inscription "10 kop: za lot" -
The picture of this stamp corresponds exactly with the die proof with a dot after
the "10," printed by F. Kepler from the original plate of his work. The
illustration is taken from the Robson Lowe auction catalog of Febr. 1958, lot 135
(ex-Faberge and Breitfuss), and published in Dr. Cruikshank's article on this

Variety iBe, the "open zero" of the "10" in the lower left corner -
TWo hundred eighty-seven copies of No. 1 were examined to determine whether or not
the "open zero" occurred accidentally. Two examples of this variety were found
among them. The majority of the 287 were obligingly perused at my request by Mr.
Liphschutz in his collection. (My article "More on the Varieties of the First
Russian Stamps," Filateliya SSSR No. 3, 1973, p. 5.)

Variety 1Bf, the "keyhole shape instead of the oval zero in the lower left "10"
This variety was discovered by Mr. Liphschutz on two stamps. The unusual shape of
the zero looks like a shell appearing on the galvano cliche. The existence of two
identical examples precludes the possibility that such a shape of the zero could
have arisen from a speck falling on the cliche during the printing of the stamps.

In his article in Rossica 96/97 Dr. Wortman expressed doubt as to the
existence of cancellation SC15 with the number "700." Meanwhile, in my collection
alone there are two 10-kopek stamps of 1858, perf 12 1/4 x 12 1/2, and also two 5
kopek stamps of 1864 with the same perforation on cover, cancelled with this
handstamp. They are shown in Figures 1 and 2.

Handstamp SC15 was introduced by an order of the Postal Department dated
14 June 1862. In it appears "700 Riga vokzal." We have the original order.

In conclusion something must be said about the 7-kopek stamp of 1879. I am
very grateful to Dr. Wortman for the correction of the issue date for the black


variety of this stamp to 1880, instead of the 1881 date given in the catalog.
This incorrect data was indeed taken from old literature sources.


Figure 1 Figure 2

The comparatively cmmaon variety 27Ba was included in the catalog
deliberately. The fact of the matter is, that this variety is repeated on 27VBa
(vertically-laid paper) and also on 27Bh (reengraved center emblem). I felt that
27Ba was sufficiently interesting for it to be included in the catalog.

Concerning varieties 27VBa and 27Bh, I knew of them from letters I received,
but I had not yet seen then when "Sovetskii Kollektsioner" #14 went to press.
Therefore I considered it premature to include them in the catalog. Later, when I
finally became convinced of their existence, I published this information in
"Sovetskii Kollectsioner" #18, in the article on additions to the catalog. A
photograph of a vertically laid block of variety 27Ba is shown in Fig. 3.

Figure 3 Figure 4

The 7-kopek stamp of 1879 was in circulation fran 19 March 1879 until 1 July
1885, when its use was officially forbidden. This was in connection with the
issue of 1884 of a 7-kopek stamp with a new design. Up to that time these stamps


were used for 5 years (1879-1883), with 319 million of them sold, i.e., 3,190,000
sheets of 100 stamps each. If we accept as an average lifetime for each cliche
used to print stamps of 10,000 sheets (1 million stamps), then for the given total
printing we would need 319 new plates of 100 cliches. The matrices from which the
cliches were produced by electrotyping also wore out.

We don't know the number of prepared cliche sets the matrices went through
before wearing out, or how many times a regrouping of the cliches took place and
with what changes in their position. We only know that the matrices were also
changed. Proof of this can be seen in the reengraving of the cliche in the
stamp's center with another design of the eagle (variety 27Bd), the "dragon head"
(variety 27Bf, shown in Fig. 4). There is also a sheet of stamps preserved in the
A. S. Popov Central Museum of Communications, from which it can be seen that the
panes of 25 stamps were composed with different cliches in different ways and do
not correspond to one another. For instance, variety 27Bg ("VIL" instead of "VII"
in the oval frame) is situated in the upper left quarter of the sheet in position
12, and in the upper right quarter of the sheet in position 22. In the lower
right and left quarters the variety is completely lacking.

It follows from all this that it is impossible to ascertain which cliches
were really permanent. I think that the 1879 7-kopek cliche must be studied still
much further, based upon the foundation laid down by Dr. Wortman.


I have enjoyed the Lobachevski article immensely, and the exhaustive work and
study bears witness to the eminence of the author in our philatelic field. Even
advanced specialists will have learned more than a thing or two from it, and I
must also compliment the illustrations which are first class. They add even more
to the breadth and vista of the work.

It is the easiest thing to sit snugly in an armchair, scribbling penciled
criticism of such a work. It is easy too to shoot at the work of another. Yet
perhaps two points might minimize my seeming temerity in offering some corrections
and notes; first of all, I seek only to elucidate some points and clarify others;
and secondly, that having written handbooks on both the Arms issues of 1902-20 and
the Romanov Jubliee issue, I can't be accused of rousing myself to criticise
others when my own contribution is nil.

1909-17 Arms Issues

It has long been recognized that there are three separate issues here,
distinguishable by color-shades and quality of printing; namely 1909, 1910-11, and
1912-17. The catalogue of the Cercle Philatelique of 1964 so divides them; my own
handbook on these issues does so too, and many other authorities likewise. Mr.
Lobachevski would not have had to list separate colorings and shades if he had
followed suit. For example, to name but one, though a critical value; the 50k
commences in 1909 as lilac and green. It later changes to purple, purple-brown,
dull brown (1917) and then bronze (1917-18). These are characteristic of the
separate printings. As for varieties, the same applies. While the 1 rub. with
doubled centre (Lobachevski No. 90Eb) is frequent in the 1916-17 period, and
canyon thereafter, there is but a single known example of the 1910 printing.


The plate proof of the rejected 7k die (Lobachevski No. 81Ba, shown in the
illustrations as top right in the block of four) is distinguished by six points:
1. The curley buckle in the "pochtovaya marka" ribbon.
2. Taller lettering than normal in the "pochtovaya marka" ribbon.
3. The vertical narrow boards on either side extending from the top ribbon to
the value tablets have fewer lines of shading.
4. Three pearls instead of four in the foliage either side.
5. There is a colon after the word "KOP."
6. At left and right in the "blank sickle," there is an extra line running to
the flower ornament.

Regarding the 1 rub. with margin showing one brown line (No. CM6 on p. 36,
Rossica 98/99), this was from a printing primarily produced for the Levant "10
PIASTRES." A residue of about 1000 sheets remained after overprinting the number
required. These were retained for internal use, and thus are far less common than
the 1 rub. with three brown lines.

The Romanov Issue

I was confused by the note on p. 56, centre: "They were removed from
circulation by a decree of the Council of Peoples' Commissars of the RSFSR "On the
revaluation of postage stamps in connection with an increase in the postal rates."
When? There was an increase in the postal rates in October 1918, when the 35k and
70k Chain-Cutter stamps were issued. By that time the Romanov stocks in the State
Printing Office were frozen as being politically unacceptable. Those stocks were
low anyway. The very few Rcmanovs overprinted or surcharged during the Civil Was
bear witness to how few were around. If this refers to 1920, when the 1 kop.-
20 kop. values were authorized at 100 times face value, I can confirm that
Romanovs are known so used, though are scarce in that period.

Regarding past issues, Lobachevski mentioned additional "credits" for use in
Finland. No such note is made concerning the Rcmanovs, yet their usage in Finland
was relatively infrequent and should have merited some attention.

1916 Surcharge

There should be a No. 118Ec, 20/14k Romanov, pair, one without surcharge. I
have seen this in a block, where the surcharge tilts downwards across the sheet,
the corner copy on the top right of the sheet lacking a surcharge. The price for
the block put it beyond my means, but I have seen it.


Note 2 on page 85, foot (Rossica 98/99), cannot be allowed to pass without
challenge. In fact, imperfs are known used in 1916 and 1917, so to claim they
were circulated and used after the Revolution is not the whole story. There are
also varieties to which Lobachevski makes no reference.


The listings of the 1916-17 tokens is unclear. The overprinted ones came
later. Stanley Gibbons followed my recommendations by listing them thus:

1916 (late) 1k

1917 (Jan.) 1 on 1k (Note: This overprint was applied to clarify the
2 on 2k value because forgers tried to make these
resemble the 15k and 20k of 1915.)

Provisional Government March-October 1917
1917 (March-April) 1 on 1k
2 on 2k

These last ones have the "republican" inscription, that is without the Czarist
eagle. While Mr. Lobachevski is initially right by quoting the decree permitting
them for postal use, a second decree was issued shortly afterwards prohibiting
them from postal use. I have, thanks to a pen friend, copies of the decrees
issued to Finland in Russian/Swedish/Finnish. The first one permits them for
postal use as well as currency, the second clarifies it by prohibiting them from
postal use. Of course, since they bore the word "pochta," were concurrent with
the Jubilee stamps, and could not be told apart once gummed on an envelope, they
passed through the post. Overfranked covers--with sets of three--and the usual
Petrograd or Moscow postmarks stigmatise the philatelic covers. There are other
genuine uses.


The section on cancellations of the war period (Rossica 98/99, p. 59-61)
deals with the mute postmarks of the war. No mention is made of German and
Austrian Fieldpostmarks. When we took part in the joint BSRP-VOF exhibition in
Moscow in 1976, we were requested not to exhibit such material of the occupying
powers. Civil war material wasn't all that welcome either!

When mentioning the special exhibition cancellations (Rossica 98/99, p. 43)
it is surprising no mention was made of NIJNI YARMARKA (Nijni Novgorod Fair). And
postmarks of the Odessa Exhibition have indeed been found and recorded (ODESSA

I'm sure others could mention much more. For all this, it was a tremendous
achievement and though we in the West can still rest assured that our studies into
Russian philately are expanding, and are based upon the broad and solid work of
past experts, we must acknowledge the expertise of our colleagues inside the USSR.
Though perhaps if they had access to our studies, writings and collections,
comments such as "only one known" (stamp booklets), "unique" (1902-5 35k inverted
centre, when two are known) would not have been written. On the other hand, their
access to the state archives gives up information hitherto only deduced or
suspected--such as the reason for the Romanov 7k in brown, a departure from the
accepted blue for that value.

I'm sure I echo the thoughts of many others: a most worth achievement--a
credit to the writers, translators, and to Rossica.


by M. Dobin

Published in
"Sovetskii Kolleksioner" (Soviet Collector), No. 15, 1977
Moscow, USSR

Translated by
George V. Shalimoff and David Skipton

The history of the St. Petersburg Post may be divided conditionally into two
periods. The first (pre-stamp) period began in 1714 when Peter I ordered the
building of a Post House in the new capital and the opening of a Postmaster's
Office, which was changed to the Main Post Office (Pochtamt) in the 1840s. The
first City Postal Sub-Offices (Otdelenies) for the acceptance of intercity mail
from the inhabitants were opened in 1821. In 1833 the City Post began to function
for delivery of intracity mail, and later even for newspapers.

[Ed. Note: The first period was discussed in a translation in Rossica 102/3, p.30]

The beginning of the second period in the history of the St. Petersburg Post
corresponds to the end of the 1850s. In 1858 postage stamps were introduced in
Russia and changes began in the capital's post.

This period has been discussed only slightly in Russian and foreign
literature. Some of the history of the St. Petersburg Post is given in S.
Prigara's monograph, "The Russian Post in the Empire, Turkey, China and the
Kingdom of Poland." Articles devoted to the postal history of the city on the
Neva by A. Wortman and others were published in the British Journal of Russian
Philately and the Rossica Journal. One can read about the cancels of the St.
Petersburg postal establishments in K. A. Berngard's article "The Numeral Postal
Cancelers of St. Petersburg and Moscow," published in Filateliya SSSR (Philately
of the USSR, No. 3, 1974. Some material is found in the work of K. Bazilevitch,
"The Post in Russia in the XIX Century," published in 1927.

In the present investigation, based upon material kept in the Leningrad
archives and on published material in periodicals of that time, the author will
attempt to clarify some of the questions of the history of the St. Petersburg Post
and its establishments and to describe the postal handstamps that were used to
mark the mail and to cancel the postage stamps. The material published here
concerns the second half of the XIX century and the beginning of the XXth century.

The St. Petersburg Post in the Late 1850s and Early 1860s

At the end of the 1850s, St. Petersburg was a large industrial and trade
center with a population of over 500,000. There were nearly 300 large businesses.
The St. Petersburg industry was in the process of changing from manufactories
(i,e., craftsman shops) to industrial plants.

The city played a vital role in the foreign trade of Russia. It was
connected with foreign markets by its sea port, and to domestic markets by river
routes. The Nikolaevskii Railroad, opened in 1851, was of great significance for
the economic life of the capital.

The rapid expansion of industry and trade, the growth of the population and
the increase in the city's territory required continual improvements in the city's

The postal service for the inhabitants of St. Petersburg at this time
consisted of two independent systems: intercity mail passed through the Dispatch
Office (Ekspeditsiya) of the Main Post Office and its citywide Postal Sub-Offices
(Otdelenies), whereas correspondence between residents of the city intracityy
mail) was handled by the City Post.

At that time, the rate for an intercity letter was 10 kopeks for each lot (a
lot was a weight unit equal to 12.8 grams), but for sending a letter within the
city it was 5 kopeks, regardless of weight. However, for sending visiting cards,
invitations, congratulatory cards and other similar items within the city, the
rate was 1.5 kopeks for each.

In 1858 St. Petersburg received from other Russian cities and foreign places
up to 8,000 letters daily, 25% of which were official mail (Ref. 1).

The intercity mail was delivered twice a day in 32 districts by postmen of
the Main Post Office. Each postal district was served by two postmen. They
delivered the ordinary private letters and notices (summons) of the Main Post
Office. Money letters, insured, and parcel mail were not delivered to the house
but were given out directly at the Main Post Office upon presentation of the
summons. Foreign mail was delivered by special postmen as was official mail.

There were six postal sub-offices (otdelenies) located in different regions
which only accepted intercity mail from the residents and did not participate in
the delivery of mail.

Letters in stamped envelopes and letters franked with postage stamps as well
as unfranked letters addressed abroad could be placed in green-colored postboxes.
In 1858 there were 32 such boxes located throughout the city. They were emptied
once a day. In addition, there were 8 orange-colored boxes installed in the city
for letters which were to be sent to Moscow and beyond by trains of the
Nikolaevskii Railroad. Letters were removed from them shortly before dispatch of
the post, and they were delivered directly to the postal sub-station at the
railroad terminal (vokzal).

The City Post for the delivery of intracity mail existed and developed its
own revenues as an independent subdivision of the Main Post Office. It was
composed of 28 districts which did not coincide territorially with the districts
used for delivery of the intercity mail.

The local mail received from the inhabitants and delivered to addressees
separately from the intercity mail was handled by two sub-offices (otdelenies) of
the City Post, one of which was located within the premises of the Main Post

In 1858, 1,432,047 letters, visiting cards, invitation cards, and other mail
were handled by the City Post.

Besides the two sub-offices for the acceptance of local letters and cards,
there were collection points for the City Post at small goods stores in various
parts of the city. Part of the payment for the accepted letters was deducted to
help the owners of the stores. In addition, in same large stores in the center of


S the city special postboxes were set up for letters in stamped envelopes of the
City Post.

The local mail was delivered by letter carriers throughout the 28 districts
of the City Post six times per day. There were three letter carriers for each
district. They also picked up the mail six times a day at the collection points
and emptied the mailboxes of the City Post.

The separate deliveries of the intercity and local mail resulted in a
duplication of work. Sometimes the postman of the Main Post Office and a letter
carrier of the City Post would arrive at the same house at the same time. This
indicated the impracticality of the City Post as an independent institution (Ref.
2). Figures 1-4 show letters sent from and delivered to St. Petersburg in 1858.


S' Figure 1

It J SdT t ST

// I

Figure 2


Figure 3 .

/ft /y

-/ "..-/Figure 4

Proposal to Reorganize the St. Petersburg Post

In the beginning of 1857 the City Police Chief and Executor of the Postal
Department and the St. Petersburg Main Post Office, Lt. Colonel G. Lents, was
ordered abroad to study foreign postal methods. In early 1858 he gave the reports
"On the Methods of Mail Collection and Delivery in Paris, London and Berlin" and
"Outline of New Proposals on a System of Delivering Mail in St. Petersburg." The
first report stated that in Paris, London, and Berlin, the delivery of city post
letters was integrated with the general post. All three capitals were divided
into a larger number of sections for mail delivery than was St. Petersburg. From
the comparative data describing the work of the post and the service to the
inhabitants, it was seen that the number of private letters delivered daily in
London was around 90,000, in Paris--50,000, in Berlin--12,000, and in St.
Petersburg--6,000 (this was one letter per 26, 23, 35, and 88 inhabitants

One postman in London served 1,389 inhabitants, in Paris--1,677, in
Berlin--1,609, whereas in St. Petersburg it was 8,188. By volume of mail, each
postman in St. Petersburg delivered 1.5-2 times more letters. The data for St.
Petersburg in G. Lents' report did not include the City Post (Ref. 3).

In the "Outline for New Proposals on a System of Mail Delivery in St.
Petersburg" G. Lents indicated the necessity to adopt the methods of the postal
administrations of the western European capitals and to combine the delivery of
City Post letters with the delivery of the intercity and foreign mail. In order
to simplify the work of the City Post, he proposed to issue a special postage
stamp for city letters and with this to eliminate the necessity to settle accounts
with the small goods store owners and to maintain separate postboxes.


Introduction of a New System of Mail Delivery

On June 2, 1858 the State Council approved, after examination, the
presentation of the Chief Administrator of the Postal Department, F. Pryanishikov,
entitled "On the Reorganization of the Existing Manner of Mail Delivery in St.
Petersburg," presented by the St. Petersburg Main Post Office.

Under these "regulations" the city was divided into eight sections, each of
which was itself divided into several districts (okrugs). In each section, the
presence of a Postal Sub-Office (Otdelenie) for the acceptance and delivery of
mail was stipulated. The Postal Sub-Offices were allowed to have on their
premises a Branch Office (Otdel) for the delivery of mail. The First Sub-Office
(Otdelenie) of the City Post, located at the Main Post Office, was proposed to be
called "The Central Office for Mail Delivery in St. Petersburg."

The "regulations" defined the manner of collecting, sorting, transfer, and
delivery of mail as well as the responsibilities of the postal workers. The
"regulations" stated that ordinary private mail should be removed from the
postboxes and delivered six times a day. Local letters should reach the
addressees not later than four hours after their removal from the postboxes. For
controlling the delivery time, it was required to mark each letter with a special
handstamp indicating the time of transfer to the letter carrier for delivery.

The new rules for mail delivery in St. Petersburg were announced by the
Postal Department in the newspaper "Severnaya Pchela" (Northern Bee), dated
January 19, 1859, as well as in other publications. In the announcements in
particular, it was stated that the number of green-colored postboxes for letters
in stamped envelopes as well as letters franked with postage stamps or unfranked
for foreign mail would be increased. It was now allowed to drop local mail in
stamped envelopes into postboxes, which "up till now only could be presented at
the collection points of the City Post and dropped into boxes set out exclusively
at these places" (Ref. 4). See figure 5.

Fig. 5 Stamped envelope of the City Post, mailed in 1863


Establishment of the Three-Kopek Charge

At the same tine as the new system for mail delivery in St. Petersburg was
introduced, there was created an added charge to recipients of intercity and
foreign mail for each letter and postal notice delivered. The charge of three
kopeks in silver was to cover the costs associated with the reorganized delivery.
This charge was not extended to letters and cards of the City Post. There was no
three-kopek charge for delivery of private intercity, foreign letters and Main
Post Office notices addressed to government establishments, officials, pupils of
government institutions, lower ranks of the armed forces, and prisoners. These
letters were marked with a special handstamp "BEZ PLAT" (meaning free or without
charge to the addressee) in red ink, as shown in figure 6.

ZA Z \' ( i te ,Pe .4%"

-i "/ -" r

The obligatory levy of the three-kopek charge on recipients for letters and
notices was announced in periodicals as well as to home owners and house managers
when they signed for letters. In the announcement it was stated that "for
delivery of mail by postmen, three kopeks will be collected from the addressees
here in St. Petersburg for each intercity letter and postal notice of money
transfer, insured or parcel mail this charge does not apply to letters forwarded
by the City Post" (Ref. 5).

On the intercity and foreign letters and notices of the Dispatch Office
(Ekspeditsiya) of the Main Post Office, an arrival marking was placed in black
ink. To contrast with them, letters of the City Post were marked in red ink.

If they desired, the addressees could receive the letters directly at the
Main Post Office upon payment of the three-kopek charge. In 1872, the charge was
reduced to two kopeks for ordinary letters accepted on the premises of a postal

The three- and two-kopek charges for delivery and distribution of intercity
and foreign letters and postal notices in St. Petersburg were abolished on June
19, 1875 in connection with the introduction of new rates for sending intercity
and international mail in Russia (Ref. 6).


Results of the St. Petersburg Postal Reorganization

On July 29, 1861, F. Pryanishnikov presented a memorandum to the State
Council "On the new order of mail delivery in St. Petersburg." As a result of the
reorganization of the capital's post as stated in this memorandum, letters were
delivered more accurately and quickly. The inhabitants received greater benefits
in sending mail as well: the number of postboxes was increased and letters were
sent with the outgoing post the same day as they were received.

In 1859 the number of intercity, foreign and local letters delivered was
2,743,041. In 1860, it was 2,962,209. The number of letters removed from
postboxes was 369,271 in 1859 and 536,861 in 1860.

The method of mail delivery set forth in F. Pryanishnikov's memorandum
differed somewhat from that approved in November 1858. All the operations
connected with the delivery were entrusted to the City Post and concentrated in
its Central Office (Otdelenie), located at the Main Post Office. For the delivery
of letters, eight City Post Branch Offices (Otdels) were established, one of which
was located at the Central Office (a 9th Postal Otdel was formed in 1871). For
the delivery of mail, 48 districts were established.

The mail from the Central Office was sent by horse to the branch offices,
from which the letters were delivered to the addressees on foot. In each postal
district three permanent letter carriers were designated. The delivery of
newspapers and other periodicals was made directly from the Central Office.

The number of green mailboxes in the districts for intercity, foreign, and
local mail and orange boxes for letters to be sent on the Nikolaevskii Railroad
was increased. In addition, brown postboxes for letters to be sent on the Warsaw
railroad line, built in 1861, were also set up.

A scheme of organization showing the movement of mail is given in the
following figure on the next page. After examining the presentation of the Postal
Department, the State Council decided that "the method introduced for mail
delivery in St. Petersburg be made permanent, letting the general director, in
cases of unavoidable necessity, make changes in some particulars without
departing, however, from the basic directions in the designated method." The
proposal was confirmed on December 4, 1861 (Ref. 7). Thus, as a result of the
reorganization carried out by the Postal Department and the Main Post Office, the
capital's post obtained a new structure. The City Post, however, ended its
existence as a separate establishment after a quarter of a century of
self-supporting independence from the other sections of the Main Post Office (Ref.

The meaning of the term "City Post" changed (expanded). Now it began to mean
the delivery of all mail in the capital and the collection of mail from the boxes
located in the city. New establishments were formed: the Central Office
(Otdelenie) of the City Post and the City Post Branch Offices (Otdels).

The City Postal Sub-Offices of St. Petersburg continued to fulfill their
function of accepting from the residents the ordinary, money, and insured city
mail and later the foreign mail.




Domestic Domestic
International International
Money Money
Parcels Parcels

for Receipt and (OTDELENIE) for Receipt and
Dispatch of Mail of the Distribution of Mail
-t 1

(OTDELENIES) (OTDELS) and Parcel Mail

Intercity Mail,
Money, Insured
and Parcel Mail

COLLECTION POSTAL ---I Delivery of Mail
for the City Post

Local Letters POSTBOXES Franked Intercity
and City Letters,
Unfranked Letters
to Foreign Places

Key : Outgoing Mail --- Incoming Mail


i The Abolition of the City Post Collection Points

The release in 1863 of a special postage stamp for the City Post as well as
the introduction in 1864 of the 1, 3, and 5 kopek postage stamps created the
necessary conditions for franking local letters with stamps.

In the report of the Chief Director of the Postal Department, I. Tolstoi,
dated 15 May, 1864, it was noted that with the introduction of postage stamps for
the City Post, the acceptance of local letters paid for in cash at stores became
superfluous. It was suggested that the postboxes (nearly 150) found in the stores
be replaced with others outdoors, in addition to hanging 60 green-colored boxes on
the streets in various parts of the city.

At the end of October 1865, the decree on the abolition of collection points
in small stores was adopted. Details of the end of the local letter collection in
stores and shops were printed in "Birzhevie Vedomosti" (Business Bulletins),
No.16, dated January 21, 1866.

The ten percent profit formerly paid to the store owners since the
establishment of the City Post in 1833 was now used to expand the facilities for
mail delivery (Ref. 9).

The Central Establishments of the City Post

The Central Office of the City Post

All the operations for the delivery of mail in the capital were concentrated
in the Central Office (Otdelenie) of the City Post. The management of this office
and the postal branch offices (otdels) and districts belonging to it was entrusted
to the director of the City Post.

The Central Office received from the Dispatch Office (Ekspeditsiya) of the
Main Post Ofice the ordinary intercity and foreign correspondence and money
receipt notices, insured, and parcel mail. Letters taken from mailboxes or handed
in at the City Post Branch Offices were brought here and sorted, after which those
to be sent out were transferred to the corresponding Dispatch Offices of the Main
Post Office. Letters destined for addressees in the city were sorted according to
branch office and district and then forwarded to the City Post Branch Offices.
All matters of the City Post and accounting (with the owners of the small goods
stores for receipt of city mail and other things) were made here at the Central
Office as well.

The Central Office of the City Post operated independently until 1871. Then,
in order to speed up the delivery of mail to the addressees, it was combined with
the Dispatch Office for sorting and delivery of ordinary intercity mail. The
management of the City Post was entrusted to the head of the Dispatch Office (the
forwarding agent), but the duties of directing the City Post fell upon the
assistant forwarding agent, who was to control the City Post Branch Offices (Ref.
S 10).


Handstamps of the Central Office of the City Post

Up to 1876, the Central Office of the City Post canceled postage stamps on
all mail removed from the postboxes and on mail brought from the City Post Branch
Offices and also postmarked local letters and wrappers. Two markings in red ink
were placed on the local letters. One canceled the postage stamps, the second
indicated the date and hour of forwarding from the Central Office for delivery
(fig. 7). This second marking was called the postmark in postal administration
documents just as this mark indicated the date and place of sending or recipt of
mail in the prestanp period (Ref. 11). On sealed letters the second marking, as a
rule, was placed on the side with the return address.

Si f '2 fL 1"A .. -

Figure 7

Intercity and foreign mail was canceled in black ink with handstanps of the
Central Office. The second marking with the date of forwarding was applied at the
Dispatch Office (Ekspeditsiya) of the Main Post Office, as shown in figure 8.

Figure 8


From 1876 cancellation of stamps on letters removed from the postboxes and on
letters presented at the branch offices was carried out right in the branch
offices with their own particular handstanps. In the Central Office handstamp
markings were applied to local letters indicating the date and hour they were sent
to the branch offices for delivery (Fig. 9).

iGOTrPbMTOk4il C1b6i


/1 / -''

Figure 9

The handstamps of the Central Office of the City Post consisted of two
concentric circles with text between them: at the top was "S. PETERSBURG," and at
the bottom "GRCOD" and "POCHTA," meaning "City Post." The time was given between
the two bottom words. A changeable date was given in the center in three lines.
The diameter of the marking was 26 m. There are several types of this marking,
differing in the size of the inscription and the design of the vignettes preceding
and following the word "S. PETERSBURG" (Figs. 10-13). They were used until 1881.
In 1882, local letters were handstamped with the marking shown in figure 13.


Fig. 10 Fig. 11 Fig. 12 Fig. 13 Fig. 14

Fran 1868 to 1870 mail passing through the Central Office of the City Post
was struck with a special handstamp with the letters "S.P.B" within the two ovals.
The outer oval was continuous, while the inner oval consisted of 24 dots (Fig.
14). As a rule, cancellations with this handstamp were made with black ink.
Local letters were sometimes canceled with red ink.


Several types of this marking are known, differing in the outline of the
letters as well as the size of the dots of the inner oval. The size of the outer
oval is 29 x 21 mm with variations of the other types to plus or minus 0.5 nm.
The inner oval is 24 x 16 mm (measured from the center of the dots). In some of
the foreign literature the existence of the "S.P.B" cancel without the outer oval
is mentioned, with the size of the dotted oval given as 26 x 17.5 mm (Ref. 12).

The "S.P.B" handstamp was also used to obliterate uncanceled stamps on
arriving letters. The author's collection includes a letter sent from Revel to
St. Petersburg in 1870 with the stamps canceled with "S.P.B". This marking is
occasionally found on roulette-perforated Finnish stamps which were not canceled
at their place of dispatch.

In 1883-1885, postmarking of local mail and canceling postage stamps on
letters submitted directly to the Central Office were done in red ink with
handstamps of the Dispatch Office (Ekspeditsiya) issued for ordinary domestic mail
(the 6th Ekspeditsiya) with the serial numbers 9, 10, and 16 (Fig. 15).

rO OKT. r

Figure 15

The Formation of the Dispatch Office of the City Post

The growth of postal circulation in the capital required further improvements
in the operation of the City Post. In 1884 the Postal Department, pointing out
the shortcomings in the capital's postal activities, required the St. Petersburg
Main Post Office to present ways to improve its work.

In the May 18, 1885 presentation ^18434 of the Main Post Office to the
administrator of the Main Administration of the Post and Telegraph, several
summaries were given on the operations of the City's postal establishments for the
previous ten years. The amounts of different types of mail which passed through
the City Post increased from 17,851,847 in 1875 to 31,122,423 in 1884. The
existing branch offices could not cope with the growth of in the volume of the
work. The unification of the Central Office of the City Post with the Dispatch
Office (Ekspeditsiya) of Ordinary Domestic Mail in 1871 resulted in a weakening of
control over the operations of the City Post Branch Offices. Suggestions were
made by the Main Post Office to carry out a series of measures to improve services
to the capital's residents.

On December 17, 1885, in a report to N. Bezak, the administrator of the Main
Administration of the Post and Telegraph, V. Korzhenovski, the assistant to the
St. Petersburg post director, proposed to form a Dispatch Office (Ekspeditsiya) of
the City Post at the Main Post office to improve the management of the city

Starting January 1, 1886, pursuant to instructions from N. Bezak, the
operation of the City Post was separated from the Dispatch Office for the
Distribution of Ordinary Domestic Mail. It was then reformed into the City Post


S Dispatch Office of the St. Petersburg Main Post Office. All the City Postal
Sub-Offices and Postal Branch Offices were subordinated to it starting June 1,
1886. The branch offices (otdels) were subordinated to the postal sub-offices
(otdelenies), but they retained their own separate numeration and continued to
perform their previous functions (Ref. 13).

The Dispatch Office consisted of two divisions, the Auxiliary Office and the
Central Office.

The Auxiliary Office received the bags of mail from the City Post Branch
Offices. The ordinary intercity letters were transferred to the appropriate
Dispatch Office of the Main Post Office for dispatch, but the ordinary local
letters and all the registered mail went to the Central Office. Included in the
service of the Auxiliary Office were: handling inquiries in the address bureau,
the translation of addresses on local mail written in foreign languages, and the
placing of postage due marks on unpaid or underpaid letters.

In the Central Office were concentrated the reception, sorting and
dispatching of all registered mail, the sorting of ordinary letters and wrappers,
and handling address inquiries by looking them up in the registration books. All
mail subject to delivery to residents of the capital was also accepted here from
other subidvisions of the Main Post office and the Auxiliary Office (Ref. 14).

Handstamps of the City Post Dispatch Office

All mail addressed to residents of St. Petersburg was postmarked in different
colors depending on its type. Ordinary intercity letters and wrappers had black
postmarks, sometimes violet. On ordinary foreign letters the mark was green.
Ordinary local letters (city mail) were marked in red ink. On registered and
recommande letters, the mark was crimson. The marking indicated the time the mail
was sent out for delivery (Ref. 15).

From 1886 to 1891 the City Post Dispatch Office used a circular marking
26.5 mm in diameter, consisting of two concentric circles with the date given in
three lines in the center. Preceding and following the word "S. PETERSBURG,"
which was positioned between the circles, were numerals. Beneath the left numeral
and cutting into the inner circle was another numeral at right angles, indicating
the time (Figure 16). These markings are known with serial numbers "1" though
"11." Handstamps with the serial number "10" were not used to postmark letters.
Leningrad collector Ya. M. Vovin has a Russian 1 kopek stamp issued in 1883
canceled with the serial number "10" handstamp; however, the upper two lines of
the date were blacked out, leaving only the year 1886 (Fig. 17).

From 1891 to 1894 the Dispatch Office used handstamps with the month
designated in Roman numerals, introduced according to Circular No. 13 of the Main
Administration of the Post and Telegraph, dated April 5, 1890. This was entitled
"On the change of the form of handstamps for postmarking mail." These handstamps
do not have the inner circle (Fig. 18). The time is indicated on them at the
bottom between the words "GOROD" and "POCHTA," meaning "CITY POST." They are
known with the serial numbers "13" to "19."


2n I, 1831S3 C61

Fig. 16 W Fig. 18

Fig. 17

At the beginning of the 1890s the City Dispatch Office (Ekspeditsiya) used
three handstanps of different designs simultaneously. For the first time the name
"Ekspeditsiya" appeared on the marking (actually a four letter abbreviation
"EKSP"). The date, with the month given in Roman numerals and the year given by
the last two numerals (all in one line), was located in the center of the
handstanp. After the numerals of the year, there was a dash followed by a number
and the letter "ch" indicating the time ("ch" is for "CHAS" meaning "hour").

There were several types of markings (Fig. 19), differing in diameter (26 and
28 mm) and size of the interior segments. They were used from 1890 to 1896. 'The
markings, as shown in Figure 20, are known used from 1894 to 1899, and are also
known in several types, differing in the size of the segments and diameter (27 and
28 mm). The marking in Figure 21 with the diameter of 26 mm was used in 1892 and
1893 and was the first to have the vertical lines in the center portion similar to
types of Swiss markings.

o22111.96-34. -8. 1.95-8. o18X 2-2.l o25 1.190274) 24.XI.107 86

1 ropK4 NIrN 1rolp nt7powc)

Fig. 19 Fig. 20 Fig. 21 Fig. 22 Fig. 23

From 1900 to 1906 the Dispatch Office used handstanps (Fig. 22) with serial
numbers "1" to "9." It is known that there were several handstanps with each
numeral, differing in the size of the details of the design and serial numbers.
These handstanps were used at times to cancel the postage stamps on the letter as

From 1904 to 1909, new types of markings appeared (Fig. 23) with the diameter
of 30 mm and large serial numbers "1" to "10." These, too, were used at times to
cancel stamps. The time was indicated in front of the large serial number at the


The City Post Branch Offices
(The City Post Otdels)

As was indicated above, as a result of the reorganization of the capital's
City Post in 1859-1861, eight City Post Branch Offices (Otdels) were created. As
independent establishments of the City Post, they are not well known to many
philatelists. The purpose and role of the branch offices in the city's postal
service system are not reflected in the literature on the history of the country's
post, where they are only mentioned without explanation of the function (Ref. 16).

What then is the meaning of the City Post Branch Offices?

They were intended for the delivery of mail to addressees and for removal of
mail from postboxes. Within the branch offices, stamps and stamped envelopes were
sold. They received letters, visiting cards, invitation cards, price lists and
other things sent by post which were addressed to residents of the city. Within
the branch offices, the mail which was removed from the postboxes was sorted and
then forwarded to the Central Office of the City Post.

The City Post Branch Offices were not part of the staff of the capital's Main
Post Office. They were formed from the postillion's brigade (komanda). The chief
of the branch office was a "headman" picked from among the postillions. He had an
assistant. The branch offices were located, as a rule, near the centers of the
postal districts into which the city had been divided. One of them was located on
the premises of the Main Post office with the Central Office of the City Post.

In 1871 the Ninth Postal Otdel was formed. In addition, during the summer a
temporary Tenth Postal Otdel was opened which functioned from May 15 to September
15 to serve the summer resorts of the suburban areas surrounding the city (Ref.

Changes in the Manner of Local Mail Delivery

With the goals of accelerating mail delivery to addressees and improving the
operation of the City Post, the method of forwarding letters from the branch
offices to the Central Office was changed at the end of the 1860s. Up until then,
all letters which were removed from the postboxes or received at the branch office
were sent to the Central Office of the City Post. The letters were sorted at the
Central Office and sent to the branch offices for delivery. In August 1868,
letters that were addressed to residents of districts located within the sphere of
operation of a postal branch office where the letter was placed in a postbox were
not forwarded to the Central Office but remained at the branch office for quick

On August 18, 1868 an announcement was published in the newspapers "Birzhevie
Vedomosti," "Servernaya Pchela" and "Russkii Invalid" and others which stated "the
St. Petersburg Main Post Office announces for general information that local mail
addressed to a place within the same district in which the letter is submitted or
deposited in a postbox and which previously was sent to the Central Office of the
City Post for sorting will now be sorted and delivered to the designated places
S directly from the branch office. Although there will be some added expenses for
the postal administration, there should be significantly quicker delivery of these
types of letters" (Ref. 18).


Special handstanps were made by engraver N. Skorobogatov for the eight postal
branch offices (otdels) as shown in Figure 24. Later a similar handstamp was made
for the Ninth Postal Otdel. Up to 1876, they were used for postmarking the
letters described above and for canceling the postage stamps on them. Later when
special obliterators were introduced in the postal otdels, the older handstanps
were used only to postmark letters (Fig. 25). The postmarking of letters and the
cancellation of postage stamps on them were made in red ink only.

< T:MiI'l ii not'lTOlbiit (cow0b. J(-ri.S
I'MON 1 osil, I: \ IV -SE LL4,. IW'SSIE, ,

Fig. 24

Fig. 25

Changes in the Numbering of the Postal Otdels

In July 1872, the St. Petersburg post director N. Laube, upon the suggestion
of the Disptach Office for Ordinary Damestic Mail, decided to change the numbering
of the City Post Branch Offices according to their distance from the Main Post
Office. The changes were as follows:

the 1st Postal Otdel became the 1st Admiralteiskii Postal Otdel,
the 2nd Postal Otdel became the 2nd Kolomenskii Postal Otdel,
the 5th Postal Otdel became the 3rd Narvskii Postal Otdel,
the 8th Postal Otdel became the 4th Moskovskii Postal Otdel,
the 6th Postal Otdel became the 5th Aleksandro-Nevskii Postal Otdel,
the 7th Postal Otdel became the 6th Liteinyi Postal Otdel,
the 3rd Postal Otdel became the 8th Peterburgskii Postal Otdel, and
the 4th Postal Otdel became the 9th Vasilevskii Postal Otdel.

The new numbering of the postal branch offices of the St. Petersburg City
Post was published in an announcement in the newspaper "Pravitelstvenii Vestnik,"
No. 171, dated July 12, 1875 (Ref. 19).

Beginning July 1, 1872 registered letters and parcels which were previously
handed out at the Main Post Office were now delivered to the address through the
postal branch office. On August 3, 1872 the postal branch offices began delivery
of newspapers and other periodicals (Ref. 20).