Officers and representatives of...
 Table of Contents
 The making of a catalog by G. D....
 Soviet air mail to and from Afghanistan...
 The 1-38 numbered volosts of the...
 The American relief administration...
 The allied intervention in Russia,...
 St. Petersburg's jails by David...
 New information about the first...
 City of Poltava charitable vignettes,...
 Russia: The "Obezzarazheno" cachets,...
 The Vyatka--Kotlas railway by Leonard...
 The Cherleniovsky zemstvo correspondence...
 The general purpose revenues--essays,...
 Aviaarktika and the beginning of...
 Mezhdunarodnoe revisited by P....
 Verifying overprints of the third...
 The Russian field post in the Caucasian...
 Placenames Moscow and Kremlin in...
 ROSSICA in the US fifty years ago...
 Early soviet air mail in the Central...
 The stamps of Lithuania during...
 Russian ship mail by Leonard...
 Life of the society
 Minutes of the 1997 annual Rossica...
 Member-to-member adlets, membership...
 Incoming President's message
 Reviews of the philatelic...
 Society publications for sale
 Results of Rossica 1998-2000 officers...


Journal of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00020235/00001
 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: 1997
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: UF00020235:00001

Table of Contents
        Page 1
    Officers and representatives of the society
        Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 3
        Page 4
    The making of a catalog by G. D. Seiflow
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
    Soviet air mail to and from Afghanistan by G. Adolph Ackerman
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
    The 1-38 numbered volosts of the Bugul'ma zemstvo district by Pat Eppel
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
    The American relief administration courier mail service in Russia, 1921-1923 by Raymond J. Pietruszka
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
    The allied intervention in Russia, 1918-1925 by Alfred F. Kugel
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
    St. Petersburg's jails by David M. Skipton
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
    New information about the first issue of Armenia by Arkady Sargisian
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
    City of Poltava charitable vignettes, covers, and postal cards by George G. Werbizky
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
    Russia: The "Obezzarazheno" cachets, 1897-1906 by Denis Vandervelde
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
    The Vyatka--Kotlas railway by Leonard Tann
        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
    The Cherleniovsky zemstvo correspondence by Terry Page
        Page 99
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
    The general purpose revenues--essays, proofs, and specimens by J. G. Moyes
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
    Aviaarktika and the beginning of air mail service in the Russian Far North by G. Adolph Ackerman
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
    Mezhdunarodnoe revisited by P. J. Campbell
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
    Verifying overprints of the third stamp issue of the Western Volunteer Army of general Avalov-Bermondt by S. Hornby
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
    The Russian field post in the Caucasian WWI theater-of-war by A. Epstein
        Page 160
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
        Page 173
        Page 174
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
        Page 183
        Page 184
        Page 185
        Page 186
        Page 187
        Page 188
        Page 189
        Page 190
        Page 191
    Placenames Moscow and Kremlin in the USA by R. V. Polchaninoff
        Page 192
        Page 193
        Page 194
        Page 195
        Page 196
        Page 197
    ROSSICA in the US fifty years ago by George G. Werbizky
        Page 198
        Page 199
        Page 200
        Page 201
    Early soviet air mail in the Central Asian region of the U.S.S.R. by G. Adolph Ackerman
        Page 202
        Page 203
        Page 204
        Page 205
        Page 206
        Page 207
        Page 208
        Page 209
        Page 210
        Page 211
        Page 212
        Page 213
        Page 214
    The stamps of Lithuania during the first soviet occupation by Ricardas Vainora
        Page 215
        Page 216
        Page 217
    Russian ship mail by Leonard Tann
        Page 218
        Page 219
        Page 220
        Page 221
        Page 222
        Page 223
        Page 224
        Page 225
        Page 226
    Life of the society
        Page 227
    Minutes of the 1997 annual Rossica officers' meeting
        Page 228
        Page 229
    Member-to-member adlets, membership status, members on the Internet
        Page 230
        Page 231
        Page 232
        Page 233
        Page 234
        Page 235
    Incoming President's message
        Page 236
    Reviews of the philatelic publications
        Page 237
        Page 238
        Page 239
        Page 240
        Page 241
    Society publications for sale
        Page 242
        Page 243
    Results of Rossica 1998-2000 officers election
        Page 244
        Page 245
        Page 246
        Page 247
        Page 248
Full Text


No. 128-129 October 1997

of the


President: David M. Skipton, 50-D Ridge Road, Greenbelt, MD 20770, USA
Vice President: Dr. Peter A. Michalove, 307 S. McKinley, Champaign, IL 61821, USA
Secretary: George G. Werbizky, 409 Jones Road, Vestal, NY 13850, USA
Treasurer: Gary A. Combs, 8241 Chalet Ct., Millersville, MD 21108, USA
Librarian-Pro Ter: Howard Weinert, 7104 Oxford Road, Baltimore, MD, USA
Auditor: Webster Stickney, 7590 Windlawn, Parker, CO 80134, USA

Board of Directors:

George Shaw-Pro Ter, 7596-J Lakeside Village Drive, Falls Church, VA 22042, USA
Dr. G. Adolph Ackerman, 629 Sanbridge Circle E., Worthington, OH 43085, USA
John Barefoot, P.O. Box 8, York Y03 7GL, United Kingdom


Washington-Baltimore Chapter
Steve Alushin, 13103 Wellford Drive, Beltsville MD 20705, USA
Midwest Chapter
Dr. James Mazepa, P.O. Box 1217, Oak Park, IL 60304, USA
Northern California Chapter
Ed Laveroni, 860 East Remington Drive No. A, Sunnyvale CA 94087, USA
Ivo J. Steyn, Postbus 16636, 1001 RC Amsterdam, The Netherlands

All rights reserved. No part of this journal may be reproduced or transmitted in any form by any
means without permission in writing from the journal editor. The views expressed by the authors in
this journal are their own and the editor disclaims all responsibility.

The Rossica Society of Russian Philately, Inc. is a non-profit, non-political organization incorporated in the state
of Maryland, USA, and affiliated with the American Philatelic Society. The Rossica Journal is the official periodic
publication of the Rossica Society of Russian Philately, Inc., published twice a year in April and October and mailed
"surface rate" from the Editor's residence. Price for non-members is US $10 per issue. For air mail delivery, please add
US $5. Subscriptions are available for US $30 which includes air mail postage. Available back issues are listed in the
section titled "In The Back Room." Submit articles for consideration directly to the Editor. Periodically, other Rossica
publications are listed in the back of the journal. Information is available from the Editor or Secretary.
Society dues are US $20 per year with a discount for early renewal. Membership applications can be obtained from
the Treasurer or Secretary at the addresses listed under "Officers of the Society."
Dealers wishing to advertise in the Journal are welcomed. Information pertaining to advertising can be found in the
back of the Journal.
Checks and money orders submitted should be made payable to The Rossica Society of Russian Philately and not
to any officer. Checks not drawn on a US bank must include an additional US $20 for processing fees. Sorry, no credit
cards are accepted. Please make all checks payable to:

c/o Gary A. Combs
8241 Chalet Ct.,
Millersville, MD 21108

Copyright 1997
The Rossica Society
ISSN 0035-8363


Journal No. 128-129 for October 1997

Editor : Gary A. Combs
Editorial Board: David M. Skipton


Topic Page


Editorial 4
The Making of a Catalog-G.D. Seiflow 5
Soviet Air Mail to and from Afghanistan-G. Adolph Ackerman 17
The 1-38 Numbered Volosts of the Bugul'ma Zemstvo District-Pat Eppel 22
The American Relief Administration Courier Mail Service in Russia, 1921-1923 31
-Raymond J. Pietruszka
The Allied Intervention in Russia, 1918-1925-Alfred F. Kugel 37
St. Petersburg's Jails-David M. Skipton 46
New Information About the First Issue of Armenia-Arkady Sargisian 64
City of Poltava Charitable Vignettes, Covers, and Postal Cards 69
-George G. Werbizky
Russia: The "OBEZZARAZhENO" Cachets, 1897-1906-Denis Vandervelde 80
The Vyatka-Kotlas Railway-Leonard Tann 85
The Cherleniovsky Zemstvo Correspondence-Terry Page 99
The General Purpose Revenues-Essays, Proofs, and Specimens-J.G. Moyes 109
Aviaarktika and the Beginning of Air Mail Service in the Russian Far North 121
-G. Adolph Ackerman
ME)KAYHAPOAHOE Revisited-P.J. Campbell 134
Verifying Overprints of the Third Stamp Issue of the Western Volunteer 155
Army of General Avalov-Bermondt-S. Hornby
The Russian Field Post in the Caucasian WWI Theater-of-WAR 160
-A. Epstein
Placenames Moscow and Kremlin in the USA-R.V. Polchaninoff 192
ROSSICA in the US Fifty Years Ago-George G. Werbizky 198
Early Soviet Air Mail in the Central Asian Region of the U.S.S.R. 202
-G. Adolph Ackerman
The Stamps of Lithuania During the First Soviet Occupation-Ric irdasVainora 215
Russian Ship Mail-Leonard Tann 218


Life of the Society 227
Minutes of the 1997 Annual Rossica Officers' Meeting 228
Member-to-Member Adlets, Membership Status, Members on the Internet 230
Incoming President's Message 236
Reviews of Philatelic Publications 237
Society Publications for Sale 242
Results of Rossica 1998-2000 Officers Election 244
Dealer-Member Ads 246

Editorial-Stop Thief!

I have overseen the sales of Rossica publica- thieves? First, they are raising their prices to
tions since the untimely death of Norman Epstein offset the loss and keep a positive cash flow.
some time ago. Sales fluctuate from year to year, Other dealers have started using photocopies of
but generally have been flat through time. Li- the better items in their boxes. When you ask to
brary income is all but nonexistent. Is there a see one of these photocopied items, ever notice
probable cause for this? how closely they watch you? Still other dealers
More than once I have overheard someone are keeping the majority of their stock behind
tell another person they will photocopy a page or them until a customer wants to take a look. They
an entire article for them. Sounds like a perfectly are adding more people at the booths as well.
reasonable idea, doesn't it? But have you stopped Probably the best method of tracking down a
to think that you are stealing? Aw, come on Gary! stolen item will be the computer. Several dealers
Everybody does it and besides they can't do now use bar codes and can tell precisely and very
anything about it. Well, that simply isn't true. quickly which items are missing. With the cost of
The problem is we do not have a lawyer member digital cameras coming down, it is simply a
who would be willing to work pro bono. The matter of time until they can also produce color
Society does not have the financial wherewithal copies of the missing items. However, computers
to pursue it alone. There are other measures cost money and the dealer will recover the cost
which can be used such as expulsion from the from sales. Thus prices go up.
Society and subsequent notification to the APS Another factor is a wealth of forged/fake
for starters. For now, let's just say some people material available. Some of this material is openly
are playing Russian roulette. marketed by established dealers and collectors.
Illegal copying of copyright material is theft, To sell such an item, knowing it is false, consti-
no matter how you attempt to justify it. Dr. Ray tutes stealing.
Ceresa in a recent philatelic publication men- Dealers have become weary of exotic mate-
tions a certain person is copying his works for rial and take extra time or precautions before
profit. Dr. Ceresa is but one of many people. dealing in this material. Time is money and the
Philip Robinson took up the task of doing dealer will recover his costs from the collector.
something about an individual who illegally cop- If you get caught stealing at a show, you're
ied some of his work. Although he did not reap asking for the local police to take you "down-
any monetary refunds, he did score a major town" for a little visit. Stealing from a stamp
success when a German society decided to fol- dealer is the same as stealing from jewelry store
low up on his complaint. Perhaps other authors or a toy store. Think about it.
and societies should follow his example. Believe it or not, collectors are stealing from
Why is the cost of our hobby rising faster than collectors. Sometimes the theft is for profit, some-
inflation in the industrialized world? One factor times because the cover is nice. Not too many
is theft of material. Over the last few years I have people have the time or finances to pursue a civil
attended many stamp shows and have met hun- suit attempting to recover stolen property. Proof
dreds of dealers and collectors. Everybody com- of ownership is often very difficult-your word
plains about the rising cost associated with this against theirs. Keep good records with photo-
hobby. For some people it is enough to quit the copies or photos of items that are likely to be-
hobby. For others, it continues to be a source of come vaporware.
irritation. The benefits of reducing thievery are a plus
One dealer lamented he had lost several thou- for all collectors. It keeps the cost of the hobby
sands of dollars as vaporware (stolen) at a couple down and reduces the number of unwanted indi-
of recent shows. What are the dealers doing about viduals to a minimum. 0
4 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

The Making of a Catalog

By G. D. Seiflow

I have been working on the Rossica Catalog pleasurable than postally-used stamps, much to
"of Russian Stamps (RSFSR Period) for over a the chagrin of many of my "Postal History"
year now and thought it might be interesting to collecting friends. I started off with the goal of
write an article showing the steps I went through acquiring one example of each stamp issued
to reach the current design. If history is any (based on the Scott Catalog). One of the best
indication, there will be many more changes still decisions I made then concerned quality versus
to come. quantity-this time around, I was determined to
There are many interesting articles in the be more aware of quality-a wise decision in
Journal, but seldom do the authors write an retrospect and one I would pass on to all collec-
introduction about how they started collecting tors. I purchased stamps from local dealers and
and what their collecting interests are. I would through the mail, I limited my spending to ap-
find this interesting, so I will "set the scene" for proximately $50 per month, and had an abso-
this article with a brief background introduction. lutely wonderful time.
I started collecting stamps of the world when It did not take long for me to realize that the
I was 8 years old. I would purchase packets of Scott listing was woefully inadequate for my
stamps from the local stores for about 25 cents a needs. As I acquired more examples of the Impe-
packet and would spend hours sorting through rial and RSFSR periods, the number of varieties
the stamps from Spain, Hungary, Portugal, vari- grew exponentially! I became more aware of
ous British Commonwealth countries, etc. I would paper differences, color differences, marginal
find the correct page in my stamp album, and, if markings, and so on. And all of this enjoyment
I was lucky, would add stamps to partially com- was costing me less than $50 a month! I pur-
pleted stamps. I then started collecting mint Brit- chased gutter pairs, blocks of four, panes of 25,
ish Commonwealth, and then,just to be different, sheets of 100. This was FUN! I spent many a
I changed my collecting interests to mint stamps relaxing hour looking through my ever-expand-
from Russia issued in 1961 or later. When I hit the ing collection and rearranging because of new
ripe old age of 16, other interests (cars and girls acquisitions. I guess this is the underlying reason
specifically) superseded stamp collecting; this that so many of us collect stamps-the endless
"hibernation" lasted for about 20 years. possibilities, the ability to define our own col-
About ten years ago, I was browsing through lecting interests, and the vague goal of filling in
some books at a local garage sale when I hap- all the blank spaces.
opened to find a World Stamp Album full of 19th- As my collection grew, keeping an inventory
century and early 20th-century stamps. I pur- became essential. I started off using the Scott
chased this for a very modest sum and took it catalog and circling the entries in the catalog for
home. It took but a few minutes before my which I had examples. This was fine initially, but
collecting interests were as strong as they had as I started specializing in the Imperial and RSFSR
ever been. There were several partially com- periods, accumulating additional varieties, blocks,
pleted pages of Imperial Russia, and this was all gutter pairs, panes, sheets, etc., this method be-
I needed to start collecting Russian stamps again! came impractical.
The first decision to be made was what period
to collect. This proved fairly easy-early Russia
(through 1949) and mint only (preferably never-
hinged). I still find mint stamps infinitely more

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 5
October 1997

The Catalog
To illustrate the progress of The Catalog, I 20-ruble stamp issued on 10 August 1921 (Scott
will use one specific stamp as an example: the No. 180). The Scott entry was as follows:

180 A42 20r blue 1.10 3.00 Scott No. 180.
a Pelure Paper 3.25 2.75
b Double Impression 20.00

Stage 1: The Inventory List

To keep track of what I possessed, I created I worked so I spent many a lunch hour entering
an inventory list. One of the goals was to create the details (there is a lot of data to enter!) This
a list that could be updated and reprinted easily. really worked out well for several years. An
I was able to use the mainframe computer where example of one of the first lists is as follows:

1921 Imperf No Watermark Medium or Thin Paper

Scott Description Mint Used Unit Qty
180 20r blue 1.10 3.00 1 3
2 (Hpair) 1
4 (block) 1
180a Pelure 3.25 2.75 1 3
4 1
180b Double Impression 20.00

Stage 2: The Expanded Inventory List

It became very apparent early on that the obtained back issues of the Journal and other
Scott catalog was somewhat light on details, so pertinent literature in my quest for knowledge.
I started looking for other catalogs that would My Inventory List was expanded to include new
offer more detailed information (these included varieties, additional details, and catalog cross-
Michel, Stanley Gibbons, Minkus, Cercle references.
Philatelique). I had also joined Rossica and

1921 Imperf. Unwmk. Medium/Thin Paper, # Issued: 290.000
Scott SQ Michel Description Scott SGMichel Unit Qiy
180 198 154x 20r blue 1.10 3.00 6.00 1 3
2 Hpair 2
4 1
198a light blue 2.50
198b Indigo 7.50
180b Double impression 20.00
180a 200 154y blue (Indigo) 3.25 1.75 7.50 1 3
200a gray-blue 2.40 1 Tmargin 1
1Fake 1
4 1

6 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Stage 3: The Catalog is Born (the 'Beast' is given life)

I acquired a computer in late 1992 (see notes tee," which was comprised of Rossica members
at the end of this article for details) and a hand- who were interested in the creation of this catalog
held scanner-this was my downfall. Now I had and who also had expertise in a specific area
the ability to create a "real" catalog! I started (translations, postal history, pricing, etc.). I do
creating sample catalog pages. I experimented have some knowledge, but it tends to pale in
with many different software tools, including comparison to the experience and knowledge of
Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, and Quattro the many experts we have in Rossica. This was a
Pro. Each had their pros and cons. Finally settled little intimidating at first, but I hoped that my
on Word as there was slightly more flexibility in computing background and design experience
presentation options. The results were, in my would compensate. And so on 3 March 1996, I
opinion, quite professional, sent out the first letter and draft of The Catalog.
I wanted to discuss this with other collectors There were a surprising number of issues to be
and I had the perfect opportunity at Ameripex. I resolved:
met Dave Skipton in Chicago in late 1995 and
discussed with him the idea of the Rossica Stamp What numbering scheme should be used?
Catalog of Russian Stamps. I also gave a presen- What details should be included?
station to attending Rossica members which was What 'varieties' should be documented?
favorably received. So I decided to create The What overall format would be the most
Catalog. I would start off with the RSFSR period useful to the majority of Rossica mem-
(I had always found this to be particularly inter- bers?
testing) and would then work my way through the Should postal history be included?
Imperial Period and then the Soviet Period. How
long could it take to create an RSFSR catalog- The first draft (it seems so basic now, but at
a couple of months at most? If I had known then the time it seemed pretty decent) looked as fol-
what I know now... lows:
I had several conversations with Dave and we
formed the "Rossica Stamp Catalog Commit-

1921. Aug 10 Definitives

Regular Paper NH Mint Used Pelure Paper NH Mint Used

180 20r blue 180a indigo
gray blue gray blue
violet blue pale ultra.
light blue deep ultra.
indigo (dk violet)
ultramarine 180b imprssn dble
pale ultramarine 180- pelure fake

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 7
October 1997

Stage 4: The Catalog Matures

My intent was to make this the definitive phone, discussing varieties, information sources,
catalog of Russian Stamps for the RSFSR period, etc. I started looking at my collection more care-
I wanted every variety, color shade, paper type, fully and was amazed at the new varieties I found.
and perforation variety clearly listed. I also wanted I was also getting help from the other members of
every variety clearly illustrated. One of the prob- the committee: Andy Cronin, George Shaw, Bob
lems with the majority of catalogs is their lack of Taylor, Pat Eppel, David White, Dave Skipton,
detailed illustrations, which sometimes made it Leon Finik, Howard Weinert, and George
difficult to distinguish between some of the more Shalimoff.
obtuse varieties. This was not going to be a Several of these members I had not met, and
problem in The Catalog. The first draft was really yet some were kind and trusting enough to send
just a merger of all the catalogs/articles I could me their stamps so that I could scan them into my
find. I felt this would be a good start which could system and use their examples in the catalog.
subsequently be shaped to create The Catalog. This I believe is one of the additional benefits of
I then had the good fortune to be contacted by this hobby-trust and respect! Collecting is so
Alex Sadovnikov, who had heard of my endeav- much more enjoyable when people work to-
ors and wanted to participate in the creation of gether for a common goal.
this catalog. Alex has possibly the best collection There were many improvements (some ma-
of RSFSR material in the world, but, much more jor, some subtle) that took place over the ensuing
important was his willingness to share his vast months. I would send out drafts to the various
knowledge with me (and thus with other collec- committee members requesting feedback. Would
tors). We spent many enjoyable hours on the make changes and so on. The one thing that was

1921. Aug 10 Definitives

NH Mint Used
553 20r blue
553a pale blue
553b gray blue
553c deep blue

553D impression double
553Da paper creased
I I Il I I I I I I
5530 image offset on reverse

553P pelure-ultramarine
553Pb pelure-pale ultramarine
553Pc pelure-blue
553Pd pelure-deep blue I I I I I I I I I I

553PD pelure-paper creased I I I I I I I I I

553F pelure-fake

8 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

always in the back of my mind was to make this whatever purpose served the collector best). For
catalog useful for everyone. The next draft was a example, because I collect mint stamps only, I
major improvement with a "check list" as part of would probably use the first column to indicate
the design. single varieties (and enter a number in the appro-
The new numbering scheme was in place, the private box below to indicate the number of single
format hadbeen modified, and I had added 'check' stamps I owned of that particular variety). The
boxes on the right hand side with the intent that second column could be for pairs, the third for
these could be used for inventory purposes (or blocks of four, and so on.

Stage 5: The Index

As more pages were added to The Catalog, To get around this problem I decided to create
page numbering became an issue. I did not want sections, each of which would be numbered from
to have to re-print the entire catalog because page 1. This approach would also facilitate the
information that originally fit on page 2, for publishing schedule-sections could now be
example, now spilled over to page 3, which published as soon as they were complete. The
would force renumbering all subsequent pages. first part of the Section Index is as follows:

Date of Issue Description of Issue Section

1918-1922 .................. Arm s Issue (1k-10R)............................... .................... 1
1918 Jan............ Postal Savings Bank Stamps (1k, 5k, 10k)........................... 2
Nov 7........ 1st Issue of the RSFSR-"Chain Breakers" (35k, 70k)..........3
.................. Provisionals (Locals).................... .... .................. 4
1919 Nov-Dec Arms Issue (1R, 3.50R, 7R)....................... ............... 5
1920 .................. Provisionals-lst Period.............................. ....................... 6
1921 Aug 10...... 1st Standard Issue (1R, 2R, 5R, 20R, 40R)........................7
Aug 15...... Postal Savings Bank Stamps (25k, 50k)................................8

Stage 6: The Latest Draft of The Catalog

The latest draft of The Catalog (minus Postal the greatest benefits of the catalog being stored
History data, which is still being worked on by on disk-it can be easily updated.
George Shaw and Bob Taylor) is illustrated on As previously stated, George Shaw and Bob
the following pages. Several changes are evi- Taylor are working on the Postal History aspect
dent: the numbering scheme was improved; the of the catalog, so there is some hope for those of
check boxes were less intrusive and were now you interested in this aspect of the hobby. As
based on color varieties; gutter-pairs, blocks, more people become aware of this catalog, I am
and panes were listed individually; illustrations hopeful that the flow of information and knowl-
were now included; and a general overview of the edge will increase and find its way into revisions.
stamp was also included. Once again, I felt that Please write to me (1249 St. Claire Place,
this was a significant improvement over the pre- Schaumburg, IL 60173-6544, USA) or send me
vious version. I believe that it addresses the an e-mail (gdseiflow @ttxco.com) with any com-
requirements of most collectors, from beginner ments you might have on this latest draft. I would
through expert. It is flexible and easy to update as truly be interested in hearing from you and will
new information becomes available or existing incorporate all good suggestions.
information needs to be changed. That is one of
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 9
October 1997


August 10, 1921
1st Standard Issue


Printing Method: Lithography

Perforation: Imperf.

Paper: Horizontally-Wove

Designer: B. Kynp5IHOB (V. Kupryanov)

Design: Symbols of Agriculture and Industry Wheat, Hammer and

Design Size: 39 mm x 235 mm

1st Known Use Date:

Number Sold: 290,000
Number Printed: 1,390,160
Sheet Data: Issued for sale in sheets of 40 stamps two panes, 4 stamps across,
5 deep, arranged vertically.

10 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997


553Db Dot above 'n'.

p553Db Dot between '11' and 'E'

p553Dc Dot between 'Y' and '5'.

p553Dd Paper creased prior to printing. 553Ea Impression offset on gum side.

S553a Overprinted with fragments of 'OBPA3EL'b' in red ex-G.S.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 11
October 1997


553 Gutter pair (13.5 mm gap) ex-A.S.

F553a Forgery 37.5 mm x 22.5
mm Type I. Top of 'O' extends
above and below the other letters in

F553b Forgery 37.5 mm x 22.5
mm Type H. Top. of '0' and 'A'
extend above the other letters in

12 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997


Wove Paper

NH Mint Used

O 553a blue .................................. 1.25 1.00 3.00
o 553b pale blue ............. ............. 4.00 3.00 5.00
0 553c gray blue .......................... 4.00 3.00 5.00
0 553d deep blue 4.00 3.00 5.00
a b c d
O 553-pupostally used ......................... 15.00 [0 0 0

O vertical gutter pair: 13.5 mm gap..... 7.50 5.00 0 0 0 0
E block of four .................... 5.00 4.00 003 00R
0 pane of 20 ........................ 20.00 15.00 0000
0 double pane of 40 ................. 40.00 35.00 0I I0 I0
S.................... .... ..... 0 0 0 0
S ..................................D000D

O 553Ca locally perforated 11.5 ..............
(oval postmark 'MOCKBA HHK. BOK) ED E l D

O 553Da impression doubled................ 25.00 20.00 ED E D D
D 553Db dot above 'n'....................... 5.00 4.00 DD [

0 553Ea impression offset on gum side ....... 7.50 6.00 0 0 0 0

On Cover
a b c d
O 553a-oc single franking. .................. 250.00 0000
D 553b-oc multiple frankings ............... 250.00 0 [ 0
0 553c-oc mixed frankings .................. 150.00 0000
E 553d-oc incorrect (philatelic) franking(s).... 80.00 0 0 0
O ................................ 000
Single franking (one recorded example):
Registered letter F4: June 7, 1920 December 31, 1920
Letter F5 January 1, 1921 August 14,1921

Multiple frankings (two recorded examples):
Registered letter F5: January 1, 1921 August 14, 1921 40 rubles (2 x 20 rubles)

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 13
October 1997


Pelure Paper
(Whitish through Yellowish paper)

NH Mint Used

O p553a ultramarine ...................... 2.00 1.75 3.00
0 p553b pale ultramarine ................... 5.00 4.00 6.00
0 p553c blue ........................... 25.00 22.00 30.00
o p553d deep blue ........................ 25.00 22.00 30.00
ultramarine blue
a b c d
0 p553-pu postally used ...................... 15.00 O OE O

O vertical gutter pair: 13.5 mm. gap .... 10.00 8.00 00 0 0
O block of four ..................... 8.00 7.00 00 00
D pane of 20 ....................... 45.00 40.00 00 0 0
O double pane of 40 .................. 100.0090.00 00 00
D ....................... ........... 0 0
D .................................. El 0E 0
o ................................ R0 0 0[0
Dl .................................. .0 0 R 00

o p553Da dot above 'n'....................... 10.00 7.50 00 00
0 p553Db dot between 'Jn' and 'E' in 'PYBJIE'. ... 10.00 7.50 00 0 0
0 p553Dc dot between 'u' and 'B' in 'PYBJIEf (#7) 10.00 7.50 0 0 0
"o p553Dd paper creased prior to printing ....... 10.00 7.50 00 00

On Cover
ultramarine blue
a b c d
"O p553a-oc single franking ................... 250.00 00E 00

o p553b-oc multiple frankings ................ 250.00 00 00
0 p553c-oc mixed frankings .................. 150.00 00 00

0 p553d-oc incorrect (philatelic) franking(s) .... 80.00 0 0 0 0

D ................................ E0 0 0 0

14 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997



NH Mint Used

0 P553a light sky blue. .....................
.... ................................


NH Mint Used
ultramarine blue
ab c d

0 S553a with fragments of 'OBPA3EUfE in red.. 0DD D
D .......... ............ ....... DD DD


NH Mint Used

E E553a black on card .....................


NH Mint Used

E F553a Type I 24 x 29 mm. pelure........ 10.00 7.50

'o' extends above and below the other
letters of 'noqTA'

0 F553b Type II 24 x 29 mm. pelure....... 10.00 7.50

'o' and 'A' extend above the other
letters of 'nOITA'

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 15
October 1997

[The catalog example on the previous pages was sent as example is very close to the original and the pictures in
a word-processing file. Due to the complexity of ma- the original are slightly better. However, the rendition
nipulating the image in a word processor, I elected to is more than sufficient to illustrate the scope and depth
reproduce the example in a page-layout package. The of Ged's endeavors.-Ed.]

Publishing Goal Computer Information
The goal is to publish the catalog in various The Catalog was (and still is) produced on a
sections over the next year or so. It will probably Gateway 2000 PC (It is amazing what one can do
be published on 3-holed paper, thus allowing the on outdated technology.):
greatest flexibility. I am still very excited about CPU: 486-DX2-50
this project, as I hope you will be. I hope the fruits Memory: 16 MB
of all the hard work will soon be available to you! Hard Drive: 2.6 GB
Keep your fingers crossed! Scanner: Mustek CG-8000 Hand
PS. I am simultaneously working on the Imperial Printer: HP Lasejet 4 Plus
Period and the Soviet Period, so I guess I' m going
to be busy for the foreseeable future!

Hard To Find Co. -----o-s-r -' E-mail:
P. O. Box 152 HTFNebr@aol.com
Lemoyne, NE 69146 Member of Rossica

Worldwide stamps on approval featuring:

Baltic States, early pre-1920 postcards with readable

Dead and Forgotten Countries, including: Colonies, States,

Worldwide Back of The Book, and Beyond! With Rev-
enues and other non-listed material.

16 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Soviet Air Mail to and from Afghanistan

by G. Adolph Ackerman

Like Russian Central Asia, Afghanistan is a expansion in Central Asia had nearly reached the
rugged land characterized by steep mountains Oxus (Amu Darya) River. The British again
and valleys, barren plateaus, and deserts. It has intervened in Afghanistan to block increasing
limited rainfall and extremes in temperature. To Russian expansion and influence. The Russo-
the north Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Afghan border was settled in 1885-7 and fol-
Tadjikistan lie along its border. The Oxus River lowed along much of the course of the Oxus
running from the Pamir mountains westward River. Afghan independence from British influ-
extends nearly 800 miles along this border before ence over both foreign and domestic affairs be-
turning northward to end in the Aral Sea. Af- gan after WWI (1919). Programs of moderniza-
ghanistan, like Russian Central Asia, has a multi- tion and education began to emerge in the late
ethnic population consisting of nomads and farm- 1920s and early 1930s coupled with civil tribal
ers, most of whom live in tribes. Grain, fruits, strife. Kabul, the capital and largest city, is lo-
cotton, and wool provide major exports and cam- cated in eastern Afghanistan on a plateau at the
els, donkeys, and horses still serve as important foot of barren, rocky mountains 6,000 ft. above
means of transportation (10). sea level. In 1930, Kabul and Mazar-e-Sharif
For centuries, Afghanistan served as a stop- (located on the route between Kabul and Termez,
ping place between the East and West for traders Tadjikistan) were relatively small cities with
and invaders from Genghis Khan, Tamerlane, populations of -80,000 and 20,000 respectively.
Alexander, and Marco Polo to the British and There were no railroads in Afghanistan prior to
Russians during the 19th and 20th centuries (10). WWII. The sights and difficulties with surface
British influence in Afghanistan was required transport from Kabul to Mazar-e-Sharif and
during the 19th century to allow them unrestricted across the Oxus River to Samarkand in 1939 have
communication with India. By 1875, Russian been described by Forbes (14).

a 1 shkhabad (To Khiua/ \
S-s, sl Tashauz) (1930) "

PERSIA Meru Bukhara ,
Chardzhou Samarkandd 1
S[ s-' Tashkent,

S ^Te rmne a shanbe,
Mazar-e-Sharif a

_.-'> I-a -... .. ...-...i .
o A'. .Km 500. I NDI

Figure. 1. Map showing the Tashkent-Samarkand-Termez-Kabul air route.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 17
October 1997

Starting in 1924, the new Dobrolet airline cow and Tashkent began in 1931 (1,6, 11, 12, 17,
began a regional air network between the major 18). The Tashkent-Termez-Kabul air route was
cities in the South Central Asian sector of the Afghanistan's first internal, as well as intera-
U.S.S.R. Soon after, following an agreement tional air link, and was flown only by Soviet
between the U.S.S.R. and Afghanistan in 1927 pilots. This air route was the only operational
(3, 4), Dobrolet established an air link between route to or from Afghanistan until 1938. A sec-
Tashkent and Kabul via Samarkand, Termez, ond postal agreement between the U.S.S.R. and
and Mazar-e-Sharif (fig. 1), a distance of 1,140 Afghanistan was signed in 1932 (9, 20) extend-
km. (2,4-6). This international air service began ing the Soviet postal and air concessions of the
on 14 September 1926 (17) or later in 1927 (11, late 1920s.
16, 18). The flight between Tashkent and Kabul In 1931, Junkers of Dessau completed nego-
was accomplished in a single day, whereas sur- tiations for air service to Afghanistan when con-
face travel across the tall Hindu Kush Mountains editions allowed (8, 20). This air service would
and plateau lands by foot, camel, or horse could have connected Kabul, Herat, and Kandahar with
take up to 30 days (4). Air service was provided a branch to the northwest frontier of India and
weekly (5, 7) or once every two weeks (3, 20) access to the Persian service to connect Afghani-
throughout the year. Mail, freight, and passen- stan with Baghdad. However, no air link was
gers were flown on this route (fig. 2). Junkers' established between Afghanistan and Persia,
monoplanes were used on this route during the China, or India during this period. By 1938, a
first few years and could accommodate up to four Lufthansa air route was formed, connecting Kabul
passengers (7). with Teheran, Persia and on to the West via Herat
(15). The first flight from Kabul to Berlin via
Teheran took place on 19 April 1938 (15). Air
mail from the U.S. to Afghanistan prior to WWHI
Traveled to France and was surface-routed to the
Afghanistan destination, while parcel post from
the U.S. West Coast traveled to India and then by
surface to Afghanistan (19). In 1941, air service
from the U.S. was via Trans-Pacific Air weekly
to India and ordinary routing to Afghanistan;
Transit time was 15-17 days to India. Both routings
"took 3-4 weeks in transit. It would seem that air
service from the U.S. passing through Germany
and the U.S.S.R. should have been faster than the
reported routings for the 1930s, although perhaps
Figure 2. Plane andpassengers arriving at Kabul in it may not have been as reliable.
late 1928 (ref 2). Surviving air mail covers flown on the
Tashkent-Termez-Kabul route prior to WWII
Flight schedules were arranged to make ar- are extremely scarce. It is presumed that most
rival and departure connections with the Mos- mail to or from Afghanistan was largely diplo-
cow-Tashkent railroad, making the combined matic or business-related. The relatively sparse
rail and plane transit time 6-7 days for mail and and largely rural resident population, limited
passengers between these two cities (4). An air literacy of large segments of the multi-ethnic
connection between Tashkent and Moscow was population, civil strife, and the fact that people
finally established in 1930 (3,000 km.) and was failed to save covers and correspondence during
used only for mail and freight during the first year these times probably account for the scarcity of
of its operation. Passenger service between Mos- pre-World War II flown covers (1, 18). In fact,

18 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

the few covers found today are primarily phila- with both Afghan (105 pouls) and Soviet postage
telic in nature and originated from the Soviet (20 kopecks) and are marked "par avion" (fig. 4).
Philatelic Association or from the Soviet com- Kabul cancels dated 29 August 1928 have been
mercial representative in Kabul in 1928 (fig. 3). applied to the Afghan postage, while the added

Figure 3. Moscow, 11 July 1928 via Termez on 21 July 1928 (bks.) to Kabul, Afghanistan, no arrival mark.

The 1928 Moscow-to-Kabul-via-Tashkent Soviet postage bears Tashkent cancels dated 4
covers (fig. 3) used Tsarist postal stationery with September 1928. Soviet postage of 20 kopeck
printed airmail and registered markings (both provided the correct rate for surface transit. No
sizes of postal stationery were used). Covers air connection linked Tashkent to Moscow at this
were franked with a combination of air mail and time. These covers have Moscow arrival
definitive stamps, making up a 63-kopeck rate. backstamps dated 10 September 1928 giving a
These covers were addressed to the "Commer- total transit time of 11 days. A numbered Tashkent
cial Representative of the U.S.S.R. Mr. label illustrated by Dietrich (13) also can be
Welikovsky, Kabul, Afghanistan" and bear Mos- found on these covers.
cow registration and bilingual air mail labels. In It would be expected that business or govern-
the absence r" evidence of Afghanistan transit or ment airmail covers to or from Afghanistan after
arrival postmarks, Dietrich (13) questions the air 1928 would exist as Afghanistan began its mod-
transport of these Moscow-Kabul covers be- ernization and involvement withtheU.S.S.R and
yond Termez. However, the existence of regular the outside world. After long searching, a singu-
air service to Afghanistan based on published lar 1931 commercial cover (fig. 5) carried on the
reports would seem to obviate this conclusion. Tashkent-Kabul route was found. This flown
While desirable, arrival postmarks are not re- commercial cover is from Bremen, Germany (29
quired on flown mail. July 1931) via Moscow (no transit postmark) and
In the opposite direction, 1928 Kabul- Tashkent (backstamped 6 August 1931) and flown
Tashkent-Moscow flight covers are known. The to Kabul with arrival backstamp dated August
covers are addressed to the Soviet Philatelic 1931 (the day's date is indistinct, but is a single
Association in Moscow with the return address digit, probably a 6 or an 8). The transit time for
ofWelikowsky, Kabul. These covers are franked this cover between Bremen and Tashkent was 8

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 19
October 1997
October 1997

Figure 4. Kabul, 29 August 1928 via Tashkent on 4 September 1928 (bks.) to Moscow, 10 September 1928 (bks.). Cover
franked with both Afghan/Soviet postage and endorsed"par avion."

Figure 5a. Obverse: Bremen, Germany, 29 July 1931 to Kabul, Afghanistan, 6? August 1931 (bks.) via Moscow (no
transit marking) andTashkent, 6August 1931 (bks.). Note Russian bilingual air label, the German Luftpost label, Berlin
air transit handstamp, and the inscription "par avion dela de Moscou."
20 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Kurt Henneberg


*.,._k h^ --S~i --- -- -.---",,----

Figure 5b. Reverse: showing transit marks.

days and to Kabul either the same day or 2 days 10. Clifford, M.L. The Land and People of Af-
later (total transit time Bremen to Kabul by air- ghanistan, J.B. Lippincott, Philadelphia,
8 to 10 days). The Russian bilingual air label was 1962.
applied in Moscow over the German Luftpost 11. Davies, R.E.G. A History of the World's
label for forwarding by air to Tashkent and Kabul. Airlines. Oxford Press, London, 1967, p.37.
12. Davies, R.E.G. Aeroflot: An Airline and Its
References: Aircraft. Paladwr Press, Rockville MD, 1992.
1. Ackerman, G.A. Early Soviet Air Mail in 13. Dietrich, H. Luftpostbrief Moskau-Kabul
the Central Asian Region of the U.S.S.R. vom 11 Juli 1928. Pochta, 45:11-12, 1988.
Rossica Journal, in press. 14. Forbes, R. The forbidden road to Samarkand.
2. Anonymous. The development of commer- Country Life, 76:55,100-3, 1939.
cial aviation. Econ. Rev. Soviet Union, 15. Haberer, E. Katalog Deutschen Luftpost. E.
3:394-6, 1928. Haberer Publ., v.2, 1990, p.61.
3. Anonymous. Russo-Afghan air line. N.Y. 16. Islentiev, N. Civil Aviation. In The Soviet
Times, 8 Mar 1928. Comes ofAge. Wm. Hodge & Co. London,
4. Anonymous. Dobrolet air lines. Econ. Rev. 1938, p. 126.
Soviet Union, 4:38-9, 1928. 17. MacDonald, H. Aeroflot. Soviet Air Trans-
5. Anonymous. New air lines in the Soviet port Since 1923. Putman, London, 1975,
Union. Econ. Rev. Soviet Union, 4:233-5, chapt.1.
1929. 18. Pritula, V. Vozdushnayapochta v tsentral'noi
6. Anonymous. New Dobrolet air lines. Econ. Azii. Filateliya, 5: 19-22, 1994 (translation
Rev. Soviet Union. 5[?]:267, 1930. P. Michalove).
7. Anonymous. Soviet air line. London Times, 19. United States Official Postal Guide 1929-
Aug 22, 1931, 12a. 40, Part II, International Service, U.S. Print-
8. Anonymous. Air lines for Afghanistan Ger- ing Office, Washington.
man contract "To the Gates of the Khyber." 20. Uyehara, C.H. & Dietrich, H.G. Afghan
London Times, Feb. 10, 1931, 14e.. Philately 1871-1989. G. Alevizos Publ.,
9. Anonymous. Postal convention signed be- Santa Monica, CA 1995, pp.140-2.
tween Soviet Union and Afghanistan. Lon-
don Times, April 8, 1932, 13e.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 21
October 1997

The 1-38 Numbered Volosts
of the Bugul'ma Zemstvo District

by Pat Eppel

Introduction Actually, when one considers all of the day-
to-day bookkeeping which must have gone on
From 1882 to 1917, the Bugul'ma Zemstvo just to keep 38 accounts straight, I find it difficult
district issued 22 stamps. From 1894 to 1907, six to imagine how the presence of these numbers
of the nine issued stamps were overprinted with aided in the process and, if it did resolve or at least
supposed "control" numbers beginning with "1" ease some problem, why was the practice not
and ending with "38." These numbers designated more widespread among other zemstvo districts?
the volost to which these stamps were assigned. Why only the Bugul'ma district? And why only a
The overprinting was done at the central office in small portion of their issues?
Bugul'ma, and apparently served to control some If I am correct in assuming that it was to
aspect of the day-to-day operation of the Zemstvo control sales of stamps to the volosts, why are so
Post. The exact reason for the overprints has not, many of the stamps one encounters in unused
to my knowledge, ever been ascertained. It should condition? Was it a common habit of the volosts
be noted that the central office at Bugul'ma to buy too many stamps and then sell them back
always used un-overprinted stamps. to the main office?
The most likely reason for these overprints
was one of control. Three other zemstvo districts, The Volost Names
Krapivna, Lubny, and Saratov applied manu-
script overprintss" to at least some of their issues Three slightly different lists of the volost
in an apparent attempt to keep track of what had names have appeared in English language litera-
been sold. These overprints, however, were in ture on the subject. Of significant note here is that
the form of individual sequential numbers ap- neither Chuchin nor Schmidt supply a list. (The
plied to each stamp. That is, they numbered each "Big Schmidt" does refer back to a list occurring
stamp with a unique number. One might ques- in the Schmidt/Faberg6 catalog of 1908-1916.)
tion how effective and efficient this practice was, The first list to appear was published in the
since not all of their issues were so numbered. British Journal of Russian Philately (BJRP),
Unlike these other districts, Bugul'ma as- Number 39, October 1966, in a short article by
signed a number to each of its 38 volosts, and then the noted zemstvo philatelist C. C. Handford. He
applied the corresponding number to the stamps gives no reference as to where the list was found.
apparently sold to the volost. This procedure The only clue provided is a note at the end of the
produces some obvious control issues of its own. list giving alternate spellings for two of the volosts
For instance, each of the volost offices would which were "also given...in German text."
have needed to know its number. The postal Dr. A.H. Wortman published a revised list of
carrier who delivered mail, and presumably the names in Cinderella Philatelist, January 1968. In
stamps, to the volosts would have needed a abriefarticleaccompanyingthelist,Dr.Wortman
master list so as not to confuse the distribution of confirms that C.C. Handford originally found a
stamps. The occasional transfer of stamps from list of the names in a "German publication." But
one volost to another would also have added to again, no specific reference to the publication is
the problem of keeping track of which volosts provided. Dr. Wortman attempted to locate the
stamps were which, volosts from the Handford article on some old
maps and found that not all of them could be
22 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

located. He notes that some of the problems may Schmidt did not distinguish the overprinted
have been caused by the double translation (i.e., stamps from the base stamps at all. It should also
Russian to German, then German to English) of be noted that some numbers in some issues are
the volost names. He consulted the official U.P.U. seemingly harder to find than others. This leads
list of P.O.s in Russia, 1933, to resolve some of to the need to value the stamps by overprint
the problems, volost number within each issue.
One thing which has always puzzled me is
that when this list was published, Dr. Wortman The Overprints
was a prominent member of the British Society of
Russian Philately yet he chose not to publish the There is a basic anomaly with these over-
list in the society journal, but rather in a some- prints. Although there are 38 Volosts and 38
what more obscure (to zemstvo specialists) pub- numbers, there never were 38 individual
location. handstamps! There were only 31. If you examine
The third and last list was originally created the overprint numbers 32-38 very carefully, you
(i.e., translated from some source) by Dr. Gold will find that they are always double overprints
when he mounted the Robert Baughman collec- made up of a "3" and a second digit "2-8," as
tion. This list has been included in the series of appropriate. For issues 1, 2, 3, 4, and 7, the two
zemstvo catalogs being produced by Alex numbers were applied in two separate opera-
Artuchov in Canada. Again, the source of the list, tions. For issues 5 and 6, overprint numbers 32
even whether the English list is translated from and 34-38 appear to have been applied in one
Russian or German, is not indicated, operation by somehow joining two single over-
A side-by-side comparison of the three lists prints to form one handstamp. This accounts for
is provided in Table II along with an attempt by the very wide separation of the digits most com-
Dave Skipton to reproduce the original Russian only illustrated by the number "34." Since
name from the transliterations. Since all the loca- there was only one "3" overprint, "33" in issues
tions were small, any of them could have an "0" 5 and 6 was still done in two separate operations.
or a "SKOE" ending. Many of them do not exist When the source of the number overprints is
in the 1915 Postal guide. understood, it is not so difficult to understand
why there were only 31 handstamps. In Bugul'ma,
The Issues a single handstamp canceler had been in use for
several years before the advent of numbering the
There were seven issues of overprints. Six volost stamps came into practice. If you compare
with the small numbers and one, the last, with the the characteristics of the numbers used in the day
larger numbers. Table I lists the issues, number plug of the postmarking device to the
overprint numbers,
Issue Schmidt Chuchin Date Description you will find they are
identical. The fact
1 9 8a 1894 2 kop., red, the "close" setting they used these re-
2 10 9a (1895) 2 kop., red, permeating print
3 11 10a (1897) 2 kop., red, the "wide" setting movable plugs for
4 12 11 (1899) 2 kop., yellow green the overprinting is
5 16 15a 1904 2 kop., black, blue, red, green, yellow, short 2s witnessed by a num-
6 17 16a 1907 2 kop., same colors, tall 2s, small numbers
7 17 16b 1907 2 kop., same colors, tall 2s, small numbers ber of observations.
First, when used
Table I. The overprint issues. rst e s
stamps are exam-
ined, the number for
It is interesting to note that Chuchin ne- the day in the postmark is very easy to confuse
glected to assign an "a" letter for the 4h issue, and with a badly misplaced second volost number.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 23
October 1997

Handford Wortman Baughman/Gold Probable Russian

STable II. Side-by-side comparison of placenames from the literature with probable Russian names.

By orienting the stamp so that the cancel is overdue. Face it, as a collector, when I find a
upright, and perhaps applying some magnifica- variety, I want to know if it is a known variety or
tion, the true nature of the stray number should be if I have found something which was previously
revealed. Also, the day portion of the postmark is unrecorded. Since it may also be relevant to the
quite often applied in much heavier ink than the specialized collecting of these overprints, variet-
rest of the mark. This situation would exist if the ies and plate types of the base stamp are also
day number plug had been used in a separate summarized in the following discussion.
overprint operation leaving excess ink on the
plug and re-inserted into the postmark device for The First Overprint Issue
use as the day number plug.
More indirectly, shortly before the last issue Schmidt No. 9. Chuchin Nos. 8, 8a. Issued in
with the larger numbers, there was a new, larger 1894. 2 kop., red (shades), orange red.
postmarking device put into service with, coinci-
dentally, larger numbers. Again, by comparing The base stamp is perforated 11.5 and, ac-
the day numbers in the new device to the last cording to Schmidt, is also known with a dia-
overprint numbers, you will find an exact match. mond-shaped perforation. He does not give the
gauge and I have never seen a copy either with or
The Varieties without overprint numbers. Schmidt does not
mention plate transfer types at all, which implies
The varieties of these overprints are dealt that all 100 subjects on the sheet were done from
with only briefly by Schmidt, and not even men- a single die. He does record four constant plate
tioned by Chuchin. Schmidt organizes zemstvo varieties and I have found at least one more
stamps, in general, by "editions" within an "issu- which, if not constant, is at least recurring.
ing period," usually several years, and usually
distinguished by major changes in design. Within Plate Types:
"editions" are quite often a series of "issues,"
which are further distinguished by a variety of a. With horizontal strokes in "E" in
factors such as paper printed on, sheet layout, 3EMCKAMI-ZEMSKAYA extended to
color, and so forth. left. 7th stamp.
His comments often pertain to the "issuing b. Colored spot in "K" in BYFYJIbMCKAI-
period" in general and not to the individual "is- BUGUL'MSKAYA and "T" in HnOITA-
sues" during that period. Such is the case here. POChTA split. 21st stamp.
The first four overprint issues are basically the c. White spot before "2" in oval. 26t stamp.
same design and are, therefore, grouped in d. Spot in head of "2." 61st stamp. (Note, a
Schmidt for his comments on varieties. For these better description of this variety would
issues, he says, "Double overprints are known for be: White spot with tiny colored dot in
Nos. 3, 8, and 13. Inverted overprints are also center joining the curved end of"2" to the
known. When stamps were transferred from one shank.)
district to another, they received an additional e. Tiny colored spot in the head of the "2,"
overprint. About 20 cases of two overprints are roughly on a diagonal between the "H"
known. Three overprints are also known on one and "C" of the district name (about 1-2
stamp." Note: This translation is taken from the o'clock). Position on sheet unknown.
Baughman collection and Vol. 1 of The Zemstvo
Postage Stamps of Imperial Russia, by Alex The overprints are applied in all shades from
Artuchov, 1987, Toronto, Canada. He might as light blue to almost purple. The variation appears
well have said "some varieties exist." A more to be based on how much ink was present during
comprehensive listing of the varieties is long the overprinting operation.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 25
October 1997

Overprint varieties the base stamp. The ink used for this issue has
permeated the paper and often appears "oily"
a. 8 inverted when viewed with back lighting. Still perforated
b. 8 on 6 11.5. Overprints applied in shades of blue to
c. 8 on 7 purple as the first issue.
d. 13 double
e. 16 as 6 on 15 Overprint varieties
f. 20 on 11
g. 23 as 2 and 3 a. 13 as 3 on 11
h. 32 on 11 b. 16 as 1 and 6
i. 36 on 11 c. 18 on 6
d. 29 on 11
Note: Remember that numbers 32-38 are always
the combination of two single handstamps. Thus, Note: Same observation as before on 32-38.
since this is "normal," they do not qualify as
I have a single item: a forged 5 on a genuine
I have two numbers, 7 and 17, which appear 6. The 5 is smaller than the genuine 5 and very
to come from an entirely different type font than "square" in appearance. It is applied in the cor-
the originals. They are handstamped in violet, rect color ink approaching purple. The 5 is of the
The shape of the 7s is identical and varies consid- same type as the 5 of the forged 15 and 25 in the
erably from the originals. A genuine and a forged next issue.
"17" are illustrated in fig. 1.
The Third Overprint Issue

"Schmidt No. 11. Chuchin Nos. 10, 10a. Issued in
Si1897 or 1898 (Chuchin). 2 kop., brick red. Wide

SStill the same design as the first two issues,
but the space between stamps has been increased
n T | Is Iin. to 4 mm (from 2.5 to 3 mm for the previous
S- 1 issues). This results in significantly more white
space between the design and the perforations.
No known plate types or constant plate varieties.
Figure 1. Genuine and forged "17" overprint. Still perforated 11.5. Overprints still in shades of
blue to purple.
The Second Overprint Issue
Overprint varieties
Schmidt No. 10. Chuchin Nos. 9, 9a. Issued in varieties
1895 (?). 2 kop., rose red, permeating print, a. 1 on 2

Although it is the same design as the first b. 5 on 2
overprintissue, this issue's base stamps are printed c. 8 inverted
from new plates of much better quality than the d. 12 on 2
former. No plate types. No recorded varieties on e. 14 as 1 and 4
26 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

f. 15 on 6 T
g. 20 on 21
h. 28 on 2
i. 38 with inverted 8

Note: Same observation as before on 32-38.


All of the following appear to come from the
same "family." That is, all of the forged numbers
are applied in the correct color and all appear to Figure 3. Forged "22" overprint.
be of the same font. This font is identical to the
forged 5 from the last issue. The Fourth Overprint Issue

Forged: Schmidt No. 12. Chuchin No. 11. Issued in 1899.
2 kop., yellow green (shades).
1 with genuine 3 (forming 13)
2 with genuine 3 (forming 23) Still the same basic design as preceding is-
2 on genuine 17 (forming 12) sues, but new plates were made which contain 15
15 possibly forged 1 and forged 5 plate types. Schmidt does not give particulars on
22 on genuine 17-possibly two how to distinguish the types. He says only that the
forged 2s types resulted from improvements to the shape of
25 on genuine 17-possibly forged the 2. I have been unable to locate enough mate-
2 and forged 5 rial in blocks or sheets to identify the types any
further. The color has been changed to yellow
Actually, all of the above forgery combina- green, possibly to thwart the forgery problem of
tions can be done with only 3 forged numbers: 1, the last issue. Still perforated 11.5, but shows
2, and 5. Genuine and forged 15s and 22s are evidence of significant problems in applying the
illustrated in figs. 2-3. horizontal perforations. Extra rows of horizontal
perforations and greatly misplaced horizontal
perforations are easily found with a variety of
overprint numbers.

'- -- Overprint varieties

SBad horizontal perforations with numbers: 2, 3,
S4, 5, 6, 8, 16, and 34. (I suspect they all exist.)

f. 13 as 1 and 3
Figure 2. Forged "15" overprint g. 14 as 4 on 11
h. 16 as 6 on 11

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 27
October 1997

i. 16 as 1 and 6 on 11
j. 18 on 2
k. 20 on 11I
1. 21 as 2 on 11
m. 22 as 2 on 21
n. 23 as 2 on 13
o. 23 as 3 on 27
p. 26 as 6 on 25
q. 28 as inverted 8 on 27 .. Kon.
r. 31 as 3 and 1 1. .-,
s. 36 as 6 on 35

Note: Same observation for 32-38 as before. Figure 4. Forged "7" overprint.

Pertaining to the triple overprint variety "i" The Fifth Overprint Issue
above: what apparently happened here is the
stamp began with an 11 overprint. It then became Schmidt No. 16. ChuchinNos. 15, 15a. Issued in
necessary to change it to 16. Well, the easiest way 1904. 2 kop., black, light blue, red, green &
was to overprint the second 1 of "11" with a 6. yellow. Short 2s.
But when they did that, the 6 was very heavily
inked and the 11 had been applied very lightly The base design of this issue is completely
with much less ink. This left them with a stamp different than the preceding ones. Nine plate
that looked, at a casual glance, more like a 6 than types which Schmidt again does not describe in
16. So the only thing left to do then was to apply detail. He only says that they differ in the shapes
another 1. Hence, we have a triple overprint, of the 2s. The 2s on this issue measure about 6.75
An item from the Baughman collection also mm high. Still perforated 11.5 and known imper-
deserves special note here. Baughman had a forate vertically.
block of 40 of this issue (8 x 5) where the first 38 These stamps are slightly larger, which al-
stamps each had a different number and stamps lows for a new overprinting technique with num-
39 and 40 were not overprinted. The block was bers 32 and 34-38. Two single handstamps were
almost certainly done as a favor to some local somehow attached to each other and the over-
resident or collector, printing was done in one operation instead of the
previous two single operations. The result is a
Forgeries wide, consistent spacing of the digits. In some
respects, these may be considered "single"
Forged: handstamps.
The color of the overprints has been changed
7 on genuine 1 to black, probably due to the previous blue to
purple not showing well against the colors of this
The "7" is shaped very strangely. Very issue. Several numbers beginning to show signs
"square" and upright with a pronounced down of wear, but still distinct enough to clearly iden-
stroke at the left end of the top bar. Probably from tify them.
the same font as the previous forgeries, but it is
taller than the previous Is, 2s, and 5s. The color
is, again, correct. A genuine and the forged 7 are
illustrated in fig. 4.

28 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Overprint varieties a. 9 on horizontal pair, imperforate
a. 8 inverted b. 22 on thin transparent paper
c. 4 inverted-at top of stamp
Note: Remember that number 33 is always the d. 4 inverted-at bottom of stamp
combination of two single handstamps. Thus, e. 8 inverted
since this is "normal," it does not qualify as a f. 13 placed diagonally in lower left
variety, corner
g. 34 inverted-at top of stamp
Forgeries h. 34 inverted-at bottom of stamp
i. 34 placed diagonally in lower left
None encountered. corner
j. 36 double overprint (one 6 nearly
The Sixth Overprint Issue absent)
k. 38 with inverted 8
Schmidt No. 17. Chuchin Nos. 16, 16a. Issued in 1. 38 inverted-at top of stamp
1907. 2 kop., black, light blue, dark red, green & m. 38 inverted-at bottom of stamp
yellow. Tall 2s.
A couple of notes here. There are actually 4
Same basic design as the previous issue, but "normal" positions and orientations for these
new plates which resulted in 15 plate types, again overprints. Until this issue, all of the inverts,
not described by Schmidt. The 2s on this issue are except the inverted 5 in issue 4, were placed
now slightly taller at 7.0-7.25 mm. Still perfo- properly at the bottom of the stamps. However,
rated 11.5, and also known imperforate vertically if, during the overprinting operation, the sheet of
and double-perforated horizontally. I can also stamps is handled in an inverted position, the
add a pair, imperforate between, overprinted "9" overprint will appear at the top of the stamps.
on both stamps. The Baughman collection also This is arguably different than holding the over-
noted a strip of 4 stamps on "very thin transparent print device in an inverted position and applying
paper," all overprinted "22." the inverted overprint in the proper position. This
A new, larger canceler had been introduced is the reason for the distinction in the list of the
in 1904, which used larger numerals. For what- different positions of the inverts.
ever reason, however, the older, worn, small And secondly, the two listed as appearing
numbers were still used to overprint this issue, diagonally in the corner are remarkably different
Still black overprint numbers, of which several from any others I have seen from any issue. One
are now showing considerable signs of wear. can speculate that perhaps a left-handed clerk
This should not be surprising, since the numbers did the overprinting. It seems a natural position
had been in use in the canceler from 1883 to 1904 for a left-hander. Are they true varieties? Maybe.
and were used in all previous overprint issues.
Overprint varieties
None encountered.
Schmidt lists 4, 8, 9, and 34 as existing
inverted, and 9 and 25 double, but does not The Seventh Overprint Issue
distinguish between this issue's small overprints
and the next issue's large overprints. Schmidt No. 17. Chuchin Nos. 16, 16b. Same
base stamp as last overprint issue. Large over-
print numbers.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 29
October 1997

Same base stamps as the previous overprint overprints are very similar in spacing and align-
issue, but now they have switched to the larger ment; more so than would be expected by two
numbers, which came with the new canceler separate overprint operations. There is somevaria-
introduced in 1904. Overprints are still in black. tion, however, which indicates that the two over-
print numbers, 3 and 8, were probably being held
Overprint varieties together for a "single stroke" overprint opera-
tion. The minor differences in the overprints,
See the comments on the previous issue for though, confirm the fact that they were not "fas-
Schmidt's listing. tened" together into a single handstamp.

6 inverted-at bottom of stamp Concluding Remarks
27 inverted-at bottom of stamp
Any collector with additional information is
In general, several of these overprints seem urged to contact the author either directly or
to "wander" toward the 3 o'clock position on the through the Rossica Society of Russian Philately
stamps as opposed to the more normal 6 o'clock or the British Society of Russian Philately.
Patrick J. Eppel
Note: Same observation as before about 32-38. 108 Pinewood Circle
Apple Valley, MN 55124
The Baughman collection had an irregular USA
block of fourteen stamps overprinted "38." The

Baltic States

Estonia Latvia Lithuania
Central Lithuania + Marienwerder
Memel + Upper Silesia

Want lists filled at reasonable prices.
Sets Singles Souvenir Sheets

Personalized Collection Building Service


115 Courthouse Butte, Box 21359, Sedona AZ 86341-1359

Phone: 520-284-2485

30 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

The American Relief Administration
Courier Mail Service in Russia, 1921-1923

By Raymond J. Pietruszka
During the famine of 1921-23, the Soviet hub. The major relay points were: Samara for
Government accepted the offer of the American parts east, Khar'kov for the Ukraine, Minsk for
Relief Administration (ARA) to help feed the western Russia, and Riga for mail to and from
Russian people. On 20 August 1921, a formal western Europe and the rest of the world. The
agreement was reached. From September 1921 courier service ran weekly and primarily used the
to March 1923, the ARA fed over 8,500,000 railroads. All ARA official mail, private mail,
children and adults, saving the lives of millions. food remittance letters and cards, cash, and sup-
From its headquarters in Moscow, the ARA plies were carried by the courier system (fig. 1).
established a private mail system independent According to the agreement, most govern-
from the Russian postal system. Using a courier ment services including postal service, rail trans-
system between the Moscow office and every portation, and telegraph service were provided
feeding center in western Russia, the system free to the ARA.5 Surprisingly, services used
delivered the mail in relays with Moscow as the were not accounted for by voucher. Train tickets

SAD I]RESS^r f -c, -

Figure 1. Envelope to a dress company in NYC mailed from the New York Office on 3 June 1922, couriered from
Russia with uncanceled Russian Stamps.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 31
October 1997

were issued to the couriers and stamps were The handling of the cards changed over time.
placed on the correspondences. All supplies came I have identified four different phases:
through or from Moscow; this most likely in-
cluded the stamps, blank forms, etc. Phase One. 100% of the Relief cards were
The most common examples of this private handled by the Courier Service. They
mail system are the ARA Relief Cards. These were deposited into the destination
cards were used to request donations to help feed country's postal service uncanceled. This
people outside of the charter given the ARA by phase covers the period of December
the US Congress. (See addendum 1). 1921 until early March 1922. Cards of
Past studies of the ARA relief cards have this type bear no indication of having
concentrated on cataloging the different types of passed through the mails unless the des-
cards. This work is documented in Rossica Jour- tination Post Office backstamped them.
nal Nos. 81, 83, 85. I believe these cards were Indications are that very few cards passed
printed either in Moscow or in the West and this way. Cards of this period have the
shipped out to the districts through the courier correct postage on them (fig. 2).
service. Since the agreement with the Soviet
Government gave the ARA free access to the Phase Two. The British Post office took
mail, this implies that the stamps used on the exception to the handling of these cards
cards were issued to the ARA without charge, and, in March 1922, the Royal Post Of-
The ARA mail courier service not only cov- fice in London refused to accept the cards
ered the ARA offices in Russia, but also carried without canceled Russian stamps.4To get
mail to its offices in Europe, London, and New them into the mail stream, the ARA had
York. TheARAreliefcardsrarelypassedthrough to affix British domestic postage to the
the Russian postal system. The only known ex- cards. About the same time, the US Post
amples which passed through the Russian mail Office required the same. Cards of this
have the same postmark and return address on the period are identified by having domestic
back of the card. A study of 68 of these cards does postage of the destination country and a
not yield a single example having gone through local cancel. This was done only to mail
the Russian postal system. that was either in the pipeline at that time
The relief cards, along with the rest of the or cards that were discovered later not
ARA mail, were also handled by the couriers in having a Russian cancel. The bulk of the
relays. Since Odessa is the source of most of cards have receiving postmarks dated
these cards (See addendum 2), I will trace the between March and June, and have the
route from there. First the cards were placed in a correct Russian and destination postage.
sealed pouch. As part of the weekly courier run,
thepouchmovedbyrailfromOdessatoKhar'kov, Phase Three. The solution which the ARA
where a second courier would take the pouch to used for this problem was to have the
Moscow. At the central mail office in the ARA's cards favor canceled in Moscow. After
Moscow headquarters, the cards were sorted by being canceled, they were returned to the
destination (if that had not already been done) ARA and delivered by courier. This ac-
and put into new pouches. From Moscow, they tivity began after 24 March and contin-
would travel to Riga. At Riga, the pouches would ued through at least June 1922. Most of
travel with a courier to the appropriate office in these cards have a Moscow machine can-
Europe or to London. From London, they would cel without the three triangle overseas
then be taken to New York. At the destination cancel found on most outgoing mail of
city, they were deposited into the local mail this period. My survey shows that most
service for delivery, cards were canceled in April and May

32 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997


pl'Z" I -N ,' '

Fiur 2.PAse 1a ARACad, to NewYork City.Ucnee tmspi h 00rbert ai rm2


-' STATIONis Adel~~Eivering pacage
"Figur 2.fhaseI AeRACard w Yk City

many warehouses in RUSSIA. Write-
to the t ...
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~llEIEW~l

and askfor tan- Application FoiRO
forfood .remittances. By this me-,

ans you can prove Ofayiniiu
J IIEI$dJ~~'INU]I~f: m. i]!11 111 '"

a] in Russia with standard Ameri-
cA.. Re Admi.ni..ti.. .FO OD.

Figure 3. Phase 3, Group I ARA Car, to Minnesota. Canceled in Moscow on 21 April 1922. Old rate of 6000
rubles (1000-rub. and 5000-rub. on 5-rub. stamps).
Fiu2 Panse yo A Cand provided ayor liv-. Unacee t(_pi he600rbe ae airm2

Rossica Jour n u al Number 128-129 33- -'

October 1997 -
Figur 3.Pase 3 Goupe 1n A SRA Ca, o innesot.CacldiMoown21prl92.Odatof60

Otbr 199

1922 (53 out of 68) with 20 April, 21 origin of the card. They were franked
April, and 15 May being the most com- with the full postcard rate. This phase
mon Moscow postmarks. The cards fall began after the ARA started shutting down
into three groups based on the postage operations in Russia.7 Ihave not seen any
paid. of these cards, but they should exist.

Group 1. These cards show a 6,000- By no means was the pattern described above
ruble rate, which was the correct rate followed completely. Cards were under- and
until 31 March 1922, and usually bear over-franked. Cards were used as blank stock for
a cancellation dated before 21 April ordinary post cards. Issues still have to be ex-
1922. These cards must have been plained. The following provides just a few ex-
prepared before the end of March at amples.
the preparation center, usually While most of the relief cards followed the
Odessa, and did not reach Moscow courier routes described above, (through Mos-
until April (fig. 3). cow and Riga to the West, etc.) there are some
Group 2. These cards show a 7,500- exceptions. Several cards appear to have gone
ruble rate. They may have been pre- directly from Odessa to Constantinople; all have
pared very late in March or early receiving dates of 5 July 1922. This places them
April before the 8,000-ruble rate was in Phase 3 when all cards were being favor
settled on. These are postmarked be- canceled in Moscow or had local postage paid.
fore 21 April (fig. 4). However, these cards have neither and were
Group 3. These cards show an 8,000- probably delivered by a ship's captain on his
ruble rate. Prepared in April and be- return while going through the Bosporus. These
yond, most are canceled starting 20 particular cards usually have an arrival stamp of
April 1922. This 8,000-ruble rate STOMBUL (fig. 6). Therefore, cards to
causes problems for postal historians Constantinople are examples of mail that trav-
since it does not conform to any pub- eled outside of the ARA mail service as well as
lishedofficial rate.Ibelievethe 8,000- Russian. Of note is that all of these cards in my
ruble rate was a special ARA rate collection are French ARA cards having the Paris
approved by the Moscow Post Office return address.
to help satisfy the foreign post offices The last mystery is what happened to the
and not require a lot of stamps. It is cards after June 1922. ARA documents indicate
twice the domestic postcard rate of that the Royal Post Office was still not willing to
4,000 rubles, which gives it the ap- accept the cards from the ARA Courier Mail
pearance of having some thought. I Service even with Moscow cancels, viewing it as
am still looking for the documenta- an infringement of the State (Russian) monopoly
tion to confirm this, but the proof is in to deliver the mail. As of 24 November 1922, a
the cards (fig. 5). Considering the mass of cards was being held by the ARA in
stamps available in April 1922, the London. The ARA planned to destroy them if the
international postcard rate of 18,000 British government did not change its position.6
rubles would not have fit on an ARA Were these cards destroyed? There does not
relief card. Besides, as stated earlier, seem to be many around from after June. The
indications are the ARA did not have effort started to wind down in July and the feed-
to pay for the postage, ing of all but children stopped in September.7 Are
the cards we have today the result of that mass of
Phase Four. Some time after July 1922, the cards being sold for the stamps? Additional study
cards were placed into the mail stream of the archives is still needed. Any information
first in Moscow and later at the point of on this from our British members?
34 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

,' Russian Food Remittance Department,
,'- 42 Broadway, New York Cily, ....
*.':'and ask for an Application Form l. '
Fg for foaod.remittances. ,In this way C C i Ml12S
Inoifiaprovide us with packages o

"-na ALg UA Sa of.Amerdcf

Figure 4. Phase 3, Group 2 ARA Card, to Bogota, Columbia! Canceled in Moscow on 20 April 1922. Short term
unofficial rate of 7500 rubles.

7 "SpRATION- is .dellvsrlg. package
o American foodstuffs 'from iti
many warehouOes In RUSSIA
-; ""- .Wfrite to the. .,

Blieta a istratio n :r 1
e rFood R1mlttance Department. '
.l- 42 Broadway. New York Cuy, ..+
and k for an, Application Form ;
:bre food: remittainces. In" this way .:.
*crA'n'-prpvfde us with packages .
v n aihingf Americamn f Foodstuffs. '.
N' OURw reISTRISi. .

Figure 5. Phase 3, Group 3 ARA Card, to Philadelphia. Canceled in Moscow on 15 May 1922. Special rate of
8000 rubles (200 rub. and 300 rub. revalued to 2000 rubles and 3000 rubles).
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 35
October 1997


of. lsitI, Paris, Franc, ( m r e .o 20

Smentaires par la Socita Ameri-
caine d Secours.e d

of Paris, Frane (5-rub. savings stamp revalued to 250 rubles).

The ARA courier service closed down in addition to the relief cards, requests for donations
March 1923, its job finished. The ARA mail were made directly to the public and through
service had delivered over 200,000 pieces of other charities. The basic donation was $10. This
mail. bought over 100 pounds of food stuffs, enough to
feed a family for a month.3 Indications are that the
Postlog: ARA relief cards were follow-up requests seek-
The story of the ARA Courier Mail Service ing additional contributions.
and most of the information in this article is based
on original documents of the ARA stored at the Addendum 2
Hoover Institute. My personal thanks to Ms. C. I believe that the ARA relief cards were
A. Leadenham for her efforts in finding the follow-up cards used to seek additional contri-
documents. If any member of Rossica lives near butions from individuals who had already con-
Stanford University in California and would like tribute. I base this on the following logic: Most
to assist in continuing the research on the ARA, cards are from Odessa. Odessa was one of the
please contact the author. major ports of entry for the food stuffs brought in
by the ARA. A list of donors may have accompa-
Addendum 1 nied the shipments. This list would have been
The ARA, already active in Europe, was needed to ship the personal food parcels to the
funded by the US Congress to feed the children of recipients. The ARA could have set up an opera-
Russia during the famine.2 To feed the rest of the tion where these cards were prepared and shipped
population in the affected areas, private funding to Moscow.
had to be used. These funds were obtained by a
drive that took on international proportions. In
36 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997
October 1997

Notes: Socialist Republic, "The Riga Agreement," 20
1. "The Most 'Stupendous' Act of Mercy," Liter- August 1921. Documents of the ARA Russian
ary Digest, 26 August 1922. Operations, 1921-1923; Vol. ??, Stanford Uni-
2. "Hungry Russia" by Vernon Kellog, The Inde- versity, CA, 1931.
pendent and the Weekly Review, 26 November 7. "Herbert Hoover and Famine Relief to Soviet
1921. Russia: 1921-1923"by Benjamin M. Weissman,
3. "The Life-line of the ARA," The Independent Hoover Institute Publication No 134, Hoover
and the Weekly Review, 25 March 1922. Institute Press, Stanford University, Stanford
4. Telegram Number: Black 406, dated 24 March CA, 1974.
1922; ARA Russian Unit Collection, Box 45,
Folder 3. Other References: "History of the Administration
5. Telegram Number: 841, dated 24 November Division from Beginning to March 1923, Mail De-
1922; ARA Russian Unit Collection, Box 45, apartment and Courier Service," Documents of the
Folder 3. ARA Russian Operations, 1921-1923; Vol. IV,
6. Agreement between the American Relief Ad- Stanford University, CA, 1931.
ministration and the Russian Soviet Federated

The Allied Intervention in Russia, 1918-1925

by Alfred F. Kugel

This article is an updated and expanded ver- and keep large numbers of German troops
sion of one which originally appeared in the tied down;
Postal History Journal, No. 102: October 1995, 2. to prevent large quantities of munitions
reprinted here with their kind permission. and other supplies that had been shipped
In the aftermath of the November 1917 Bol- to Russia from falling into German hands;
shevik Revolution against the provisional gov- 3. to prevent Murmansk from being used as
ernment that had been set up upon the abdication a German submarine base to threaten
of the Tsar earlier that year, the new regime took Allied shipping in the Atlantic; and
Russia out of the war by signing the Treaty of 4. to repatriate 60,000 Czechoslovaklegion-
Brest-Litovsk with Germany in March 1918. naires back to Europe for service on the
The revolutionary leader, Vladimir Lenin, deter- Western Front.
mined that the country lacked both the resources
and will power to carry on the fight, and that he Multinational forces were sent to three areas:
needed time to consolidate his power inside Siberia, North Russia, and South Russia. All of
Russia, without trying to carry on a struggle the major Allies participated in the intervention,
simultaneously against external enemies. As a with contingents from 13 countries eventually
result, the Allies became concerned (correctly, as serving in Russia. Americans, British, Canadi-
it turned out) that peace between Germany and ans, French, and Italians actually served in all
Russia would mean that large numbers of Ger- three areas. In addition, a large contingent of
man troops would be shifted from the Eastern Japanese soldiers was deployed throughout Si-
Front for a new offensive in France. beria, as well as on the northern half of Sakhalin
In response, the Allies decided to send inter- Island, and a small number of Chinese troops
vention forces into Russia with four primary were sent to guard the railways. Also in Siberia,
aims (not all of which were supported by all of the foriner prisoners of war from the Austro-Hun-
participants): garian army were recruited and organized into
1. to attempt to restore apro-Allied govern- ethnic contingents to fight the Bolsheviks, in-
ment that would reopen the Eastern Front cluding not only the Czechoslovaks, but also
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 37
October 1997

Italians, Yugoslavs, Poles, and Romanians. Railways. The RRSC consisted of 288 employ-
Lastly, a small number of men from Belgium and ees of the Great Northern and Northwestern
Greece served in South Russia for a brief time. Railroads andof the Baldwin Locomotive Works,
In retrospect, the intervention activity was who were commissioned by, but not inducted
both unwarranted and unsuccessful. The effort into, the U.S. Army. When the Allied interven-
mounted was too little to affect the outcome of tion forces came to Siberia, the RRSC operated
the civil war in Russia and too late to have any the railways for them.
impact on the fighting in Western Europe. For the In South Russia, the intervention occurred in
most part, but not always, the actual hostilities various areas around the Black Sea, including
between the Allied forces and the Russians did Odessa, the Crimea, and Transcaucasia, as well
not turn into full-scale battles, so casualties were as in the Transcaspian region. Most of the Allied
relatively light on both sides. However, the clash activity there was conducted by the British and
poisoned relations between the intervening coun- French military missions (28,000 and 10,000
tries and the Russians for many years in the men, respectively) sent to support the "white"
future, thus helping to set the stage for the Cold forces of Admiral Denikin and Baron Wrangel
War that took place following WWII. In the end, during the Russian Civil War. There, too, the
most of the Allied forces withdrew in 1919 and effort was unsuccessful, and the final action by
1920, although the last Japanese units did not pull the British was the evacuation by sea of the
out from northern Sakhalin until 1925. remnants of the anti-Bolshevik forces from the
As a specific example of the timing of the Crimea in October 1920. Because the United
intervention, the first U.S. Army troops arrived States was highly desirous of not becoming in-
in Siberia in August 1918 and in North Russia in volved in the civil war, no American combat
the following month. The bulk of the U.S. forces forces were sent to South Russia. However, we
departed from North Russia in June 1919 and were represented by intelligence and liaison of-
from Siberia by January 1920. The final Ameri- ficers and did engage in relief and diplomatic
can contingent, a small group of Marines guard- activities.
ing the naval radio station on Russian Island in In addition to the deployment of soldiers,
Vladivostok Bay, left in November 1922. Allied warships participated in all three interven-
The scale of the forces employed in the inter- tion areas, mainly to keep supply and communi-
vention was extremely limited as compared with cations lines open, as well as to assist in the
the overall size of the armies deployed in WWI. eventual withdrawal of the forces. Following the
For example, approximately 9,000 U.S. troops end of the war in Europe, postmarks used by
went to Siberia and 4,500 to North Russia, as some American naval vessels began to indicate
compared to two million men sent to France. the specific locations of the ships (i.e.,
Also in North Russia were 13,000 British, 2,300 Vladivostok, Siberia; Kola, North Russia, etc.).
French, 1,250 Italians, and 600 Canadians. In Most of the others can be identified only by
Siberia, the non-U.S. intervention troops in- studying naval records that provide the dates on
cluded a large force of 70,000 Japanese (who which the various vessels arrived and departed
obviously came to stay) and the ethnic legions, Russian waters.
plus 4,200 Canadians and small numbers in the The philatelic aspects of the intervention
other contingents. period are very interesting but quite complicated,
One unusual aspect of the intervention in considering the whole affair was merely a side-
Siberia was the presence of the Russian Railway show in the overall scope of WWI. In part, this
Service Corps (RRSC). It was originally re- reflects the complexity caused by the large num-
cruited in the fall of 1917 to assist the Russian ber of nations involved and the interplay of the
Provisional Government, then an ally in the war historical, geographical, and political implica-
against Germany and Austria-Hungary, in oper- tions of the events. In Siberia and South Russia,
ating the Trans-Siberian and Chinese Eastern each country established its own arrangements
38 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

for the postal services provided to their forces. vak Legion and the Japanese forces. The Czechs
However, in North Russia several of the contin- used a wide variety of postmarks and unit ca-
gents used the extensive British postal service chets, and entire exhibits have been created on
with the famous P.B. (Polar Bear) datestamps. this subject alone. Japan established nearly 40
The American forces used the British facili- fieldpost offices in Siberia as well as five more on
ties in North Russia, but established their own Northern Sakhalin, and its forces remained in
military postal system in Siberia. In addition to Russia the longest-with final withdrawal not
the U.S. postal agency at Vladivostok, there were occurring until 15 May 1925.
three branch offices located to the west along the In contrast, the force size and available mail
Trans-Siberianrailway. Six differentpostmarks, of some of the other contingents is extremely
including two for registered mail, and sixteen limited. In fact, only about a half dozen covers
different censor markings are recorded. Some of each have been recorded from the Yugoslav
these were used only briefly and are extremely Legion and the Chinese troops. (One story is that
difficult to find. Examples of registered mail the Yugoslavs got into a fierce battle with the
from the AEF Siberia are highly prized among Bolsheviks early in the campaign, thus suffering
collectors, with only 21 such covers having been heavy casualties and leaving very few survivors
recorded over three-quarters of a century. to send mail once their homeland was liberated.)
As noted above, the British established an Only two covers are recorded as originating with
extensive postal system in North Russia, with the Belgian military mission in South Russia.
two base post offices at Archangel and Murmansk The degree of collector interest in the subject
and 13 fieldpost stations at various outlying of intervention mail is surprisingly high. Perhaps
locations. There was even a railway mail service it is because there are some aspects of a fairy tale
which used a TPO cancel. (This is a highly prized to the events-they occurred at a time long ago,
marking, with only four examples having been in a land far away. Notwithstanding the 80-year
reported over the years.) The small British con- gap between the actual events and the present,
tingent in Siberia initially used the Canadian interest seems to be maintained by new finds,
postal facilities, which had three postmarks and which continue to be made, so that previously
15 censor markings as well as five different unit unrecorded material can still turn up for the
cachets. However, the British did establish their enhancement of collections. Specialists in the
own military mission post office after the Cana- subject search to find examples of each of the
dians returned home. different postmarks, censor markings, corner
The French did not establish post offices in cards, and other distinctive features or unusual
either Siberia or North Russia. They sent most of uses. In general, the naval mail from the interven-
their mail by military pouch to Paris, where it was tion period is especially scarce and is sought after
forwarded to the addressees. Thus, such letters by naval collectors as well as military postal
must be identified either by unit cachets or manu- historians.
script indications of origin. In South Russia, the The quantity and quality of the literature
French employed the widely-used "Tresor et available on the military postal history of the
Postes" (Paymaster and Postal Officer) markings intervention varies greatly between the forces
but with the number excised, as the troops must involved. Readers will find that the material on
have brought these cancels from elsewhere. the American, British, and Canadian units is the
The Italians applied unit cachets, but had no most extensive, with that on the U.S. forces being
postal facilities in Russia. Thus, mail was either the most up-to-date. Mail from the Japanese
forwarded by military pouch directly to Italy or, forces and the Czechoslovak Legion has been
in the case of Siberia, sometimes sent through the extensively researched, but the literature needs
Italian post office abroad in Tientsin, China. updating. For readers desiring more details about
With by far the largest contingents, a sizable the intervention and its postal ramifications, alist
quantity of mail is available from the Czechoslo- of useful references in English is appended.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 39
October 1997

Useful References in English by the Czechoslovak Philatelic Society of Great
Britain, 1991.
AMERICAN: "The North Russian Campaign
1918-1919" by C. D. Brenner and Joseph Tay- FRENCH: A Chronology of French Military
lor, Chapter 13, and "A Classification for Sibe- Campaigns and Expeditions With Their Postal
rian AEF Covers" by David R. Opperman and Markings by William Waugh and Stanley Luft,
Alfred F. Kugel, Chapter 14, The Postal History published by France & Colonies Philatelic Soci-
of the AEF, 1917-1923, edited by Theo. Van ety. 1984, pp. 114-17.
Dam, published by the War Cover Club, 1990.
ITALIAN: "The Italian Presence in Russia Dur-
BRITISH: "Russia (including North Russia, ing WWI and the Civil War" by LucianoBuzzetti,
Siberia and South Russia)" by Alistair Kennedy The Post Rider, Vol. 15,November 1984, pp. 42-
and George Crabb, The Postal History of the 46.
British Army in World War I, Chapter 26, pub-
lished by George Crabb, 1977. JAPANESE: "Japan's Fieldpost in the Siberian
Intervention, 1918-22" by Edward J. Rasmussen,
CANADIAN: "Canadian Military Postal His- Postal History Journal, No. 76, June 1987, pp. 6-
tory" by Ed Richardson, BNA Topics, January- 21.
February 1983, pp. 12-30.
JUGOSLAV: "Yugoslav Volunteer Troops in
CZECHOSLOVAK LEGION: The Field Post Russia 1918-20" by Miodrag Vukovic,
of the Czechoslovak and Allied Forces in Russia Jugoposta, No. 41, June 1995, pp. 26-27.
1918-1920, compiled by W. A. Page, published


Figure 1. American: Registered cover from "U.S. Postal Agency Siberia" mailed from Vladivostok
on 27 February 1920 (the latest recorded date for this postmark).
5 ... "^i{^ ^ .

t j7- ........ 1

Figure I. American: Registered cover from "U.S. Postal Agency Siberia" mailed from Vladivostok
on 27 February 1920 (the latest recorded date for this postmark).

40 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Figure 2. Belgian: Cover from "the Military Representative of Belgium in Russia, "franked with South Russian
(Deniken Government) stamps. Sent by diplomatic pouch to London where it entered the mail stream
on 22 January 1920 for local delivery.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 41
October 1997

.tP J 1

6 .,4

Figure 4. Canadian: YMCA patriotic cover from a member of the Canadian Expeditionary Force (Siberia) to
Ontario on 23 November 1918, with handstamp of "Base Headquarters" in Vladivostok.

g.' 'L"'K 4-'-. E

42 Rossica Joural Number 128-129

October 1997
7Ocobe 1997lr

.. .

Figure 6. Czechoslovak: Cover to Prague from a Legionnaire at the Epidemiological and Bacterial Diseases
Research Institute, probably in 1919.


Figure 7. French: Cover from a member of the "French Military Mission in Siberia" to Fribourg, Switzerland, in
1919. Required UPU postage was affixed and postmarked in San Francisco.
*October 1997r j '
1919r. ReurdU U psa y an psak

f/ /2 Vf i A

v^^s^^^^/ ^' : .I'

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 43
October 1997


Expeditionary Corps in North Russia.
4 '& "

S................... _

Figure 8. Italian: Postcardfrom Murmansk to Turin in 1918, with small version of the unit cachet of the Italian
Expeditionary Corps in North Russia.

", I t o S

Figure 9. Japanese: Postcard from Field Post Office 53 on the occupied northern half of Sakhalin Island. Post-
mark dated 1 January 1925 indicates that this is one of the latest examples of mailfrom the intervention period.

44 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

i i U-/" Z "

Figure 10. Jugoslav: Card from a member of the 1st Jugoslav Rifle Regiment, formed (as were the Czech units)
from ex-POWs of the Austro-Hungarian Army. Sent from Tomsk to Opatija in 1919.


Sales each February & September

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P. O. Box 20837
Indianapolis, IN 46220

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E-mail: dannmayo@indy.net
Web Site: http://al.com/stamps/

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 45
October 1997

St. Petersburg's Jails

by David M. Skipton

As befits the center of an imperial govern- bigger jails listed here, neither censormarks nor
ment, St. Petersburg had more than its fair share covers have been recorded, but I include them in
of prisons,jails, lock-ups, and detention centers, the hope that one day another yeti will be found.
Their function was very straightforward-to hold This article makes no pretense of being com-
those who were a threat to society (common prehensive, either in the histories of the jails or in
criminals), and to entomb those who were con- the lists of censormarks and notations. An entire
sidered a threat to the government (revolutionar- book could be written about the Trubetskoi Bas-
ies,terrorists, and anti-monarchists of all stripes), tion alone, and it was nowhere near the size of
"Souvenirs" from some of these jails are Kresty or the Transit Prison. These are thumbnail
preserved in the addresses, messages, and prison sketches only, and I would be very disappointed
or court censormarks that appear on envelopes and amazed if "St. Petersburg's Jails" exhausts
and postcards. As a reflection of the tsarist Rus- the possibilities for court and prison censormark
sian penal system, they can be treated as a topical varieties in "Piter."
or a civil censormark study. Either way, they Because of their location in the capital, sev-
offer us a fascinating glimpse into the great eral of St. Petersburg's jails enjoyed a special
struggle between those who sought to topple the status in the hierarchy of the imperial prison
throne and those who tried to save it. system. The Preliminary Detention Facility, cor-
This article will address only the major pris- rective labor section, Transit Prison, and the
ons in the capital; there were numerous police sections for women and juveniles at the St. Pe-
precinct station lockups, but these were probably tersburg Prison were all immediately subordi-
too small evertohaveboasted a censorhandstamp. nate to the Main Prison Administration1, and
Given the kinds of prisoners kept there and the their chiefs were all hired and fired by the Min-
relatively short duration of their stays, it is very ister of Internal Affairs in conjunction with the
doubtful much mail found its way into or out of Main Prison Administration Chief.2 The Inde-
their cells, pendent Corps of Gendarmes ran things at the
In fairness to the lock-ups, it must be admit- Peter-and-Paul Fortress, also under the Minister
ted that even the big incarceration facilities have of Internal Affairs, and, of course, the Ministry of
yet to disgorge all of their censormarks. And of Justice was also closely involved. And the St.
those that have been recorded, most of them are Petersburg gradonachal'nik (city chief) was ulti-
about as common as the yeti. For several of the mately responsible for the Debtors Prison.3

46 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

The map below shows the approximate locations for the major facilities.


St. Petersburg Key:

1) Peter-and-Paul Fortress.
2) Litovskii zamok.
3) SPB Okhrana Section.
4) Preliminary Detention Facility.
5) Kresty.
6) Prison of the Third Section.
7) Military Prison.
8) Gendarme Administration.

Although covers to and from prisoners of the Indeed, the earliest recorded censormark for this
empire can be found from the last quarter of the city is 1905. (Notations go back to the early
19th century, the overwhelming majority of 1880s. Earlier censormarks and notations should
censormarks and notations appear on mail from exist.)
1905 to 1917, and St. Petersburg is no different.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 47
October 1997

The Peter-and-Paul Fortress (Petropavlovskaya krepost')

J Trw 11J "1'" rp+.nnocr. (..-Ut pfnoetry pr,

Figure 1. A Granville postcard ca. 1910. The Englishman who sent it wrote, "The Peter and Paul Fortress, used for
political prisoners. Like the Loches of France & Tower of London in olden times. Once in-no getting out..."

Paul Fortress:
11. 1 5 C 0 -%0 00

Paul Fortress:
1: The Trubetskoi Bastion;
2: Alekseevskii Ravelin;
3: Ekaterininskaya Courtine;
4: Nevskaya Courtine.7

48 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

When Peter the Great started building his prisons went, none of these places could be
window to the West and named it St. Petersburg, considered large. For instance, as of 1 February
one of the first things to be constructed was the 1870 the Ekaterininskaya Courtine held all of 46
Peter-and-Paul Fortress, to guard the sea ap- prisoners.5) It should be pointed out that any of
preaches to the city; thousands died in the build- the bastions, courtines, or the two ravelins could
ing of it. For many years, this forbidding pile of be used to hold prisoners; stone and iron can
stone was used for more than just defense; it confine as easily as they can repulse... Accord-
made an excellent prison. And when the authori- ing to Kropotkin, the Trubetskoi Courtine held
ties decided upon a prisoner's fate, the Fortress inmates for a time, too.6
often served as the initial end of a very long road For those taking a trip from the Department
to Siberian exile or hard labor.4 of Police at Fontanka 16 to the Peter-and-Paul
Nicholas I made use of it when he locked up Fortress, it was a short, scenic ride. Over the
hundreds of Decembrists there in 1825, and the Chain Bridge, past the Summer Gardens and the
list of people who were held there over the next Field of Mars, and across the Troitskii Bridge.
92 years reads like a who's who of the opposition. For prisoners, the scenery ended abruptly there.8
Prior to 1871, political were locked up in the A cover addressed to one man who made that ride
Nevskaya and Ekaterininskaya Courtines. (As is shown in fig. 3.

-.. -'<^ / y ,K T

W' /

S ., :<.,,.,,,.-

Figure 3. "To St. Petersburg. To the Department of State Police, for losif Ivanovich Nagornyi, who is being held in
the St. Petersburg Fortress. From the Zen'kov cossack Ivan Nagornyi." (The cossack's son, I. I. Nagornyi, was one of
four revolutionaries involved in the murder of the police spy Preim, for which he was hauled in September 1882 before
the St. Petersburg Military District Court and sentenced to life at hard labor. His three compatriots got life, 20, and
four years at hard labor, and all four of them were packed off to Kara.9

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 49
October 1997

Figure 4. "Ostavit' pri dyelye"-Keep with the case file. Color: blue. Recorded range: 17 October 1882. Number
recorded: 1.

Remarks: Nagornyi may not have seen hisfather's letter because of these instructions. Or, ifthe procedure was the same
as at Shlissel'burg some 25 years later, Nagornyi would have been allowed to read the letter, but it would then have
been taken back from him and stuck in his file.

It is unknown in which part of the fortress cover in fig. 3 either by a gendarme, a Depart-
Nagornyi languished, so I include one of the ment of State Police official, or conceivably by a
earliest recorded censor notations here, under the prosecutor, but this last supposition is very un-
generic heading of "Peter-and-Paul Fortress." likely, because Nagoryi had already been con-
This was written in blue pencil on the back of the victed, and was awaiting an "etap" to Siberia.

The Trubetskoi Bastion in The Peter-and-Paul Fortress.

Construction on the Trubetskoi Bastion Prison confinement cells with windows that faced on the
inside the Fortress began on 19 June 1870. The high opposite wall, so that little or no sunlight
prison inside the Bastion was a five-sided, two- ever penetrated to the prisoners. To prevent the
story stone edifice with walls that ran parallel to inmates from communicating by tapping on the
the bastion's walls. Each floor held 36 solitary walls, the cells were "upholstered" with felt and

"Z-7 7-

Figure 5. Inside the prison of the Trubetskoi Bastion, a gendarme guard peers through the "Judas hole" ofa cell door
at the prisoner inside."
50 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

netting. (The prisoners still managed to tap...) No censormarks have been recorded for this
The constant dim light, plus humidity from the prison. One explanation for that may be found in
Neva River, made the cells a haven for mold. Lepeshinskii's account of his stay at the Bastion:
Prisoners had the option of suffering from the "All letters from the prisoners to the outside
dankness, or firing up their stoves to the point passed through strict police censorship. Excep-
where the heat nearly killed them.10 tionally suspicious, it saw violations in what was


Figure 6. A standard solitary confinement cell in the Trubetskoi Bastion Prison.12

Prince Kropotkin, one of the distinguished permitted in correspondence even where there
alumni to graduate from the Trubetskoi Bastion, were no attempts to circumvent censorship rules.
thought that it held no prisoners until 1873, but Suspicious letters were not forwarded to their
documents uncovered by Gernet show that it was destinations."14 A few covers can be placed there,
functioning as a jail as early as October 1872. though, thanks to the names of the individuals in
Some of the other famous revolutionaries and the addresses.
terrorists who were held in the Trubetskoi Bas- Figure 7 shows one such item, sent to a
tion included Vera Figner, Maksim Gor'kii, member of the Narodnaya Volya central execu-
Nechaev and many of his followers, and Vera tive committee. He was captured, tried in the
Zasulich. During the period following the 1905 "Trial of the 20" (9-15 February 1882), and
Revolution, the Trubetskoi Bastion held rela- convicted on charges of trying to assassinate
tively few prisoners, from a high of 101 in 1907 Alexander n, belonging to a secret organization,
to a low of 3 in 1913. It served as a preliminary attempting to overthrow the government, and
detention facility until 1917.13 armed resistance to the authorities. Lev

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 51
October 1997

Solomonovich Zlatopol'skii avoided the death rotting away at the Trubetskoi Bastion when this
-tn F y (q. d g hs e ws quietly

SOctobe L 1997r '

Figure 7. Sent registered on 9 May 1882from Nikolaev, Kherson Province, to "St. Petersburg, the Department of State
Police, at the Chain Bridge, State prisoner Leo Zlatopol'skii." The "N 46." at upper left may have been Zlatopol'skii's
cell number, prisoner number, his case number, or just a one-up serial number put on each letter in his file.

Solomonovich Zlatopol'skii avoided the death rotting away at the Trubetskoi Bastion when this
penalty, but was hit with 20 years at hard labor, letter was sent. Sometime thereafter, he was sent
Although he was held at the Preliminary Deten- to Kara to serve out his sentence. s
tion Facility (q.v.) during his trial, he was quietly

The Alekseevskii Ravelin in the Peter-and-Paul Fortress

Figure 8. The Alekseevskii Ravelin.16 Construction on this facility began the year after the Trubetskoi Bastion's start.

52 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

X0 g,0

Figure 9. "Registered. St. Petersburg, in care of the Main Prison Administration, for the political criminal Mikhail
Rodionovich Popov." At bottom, in a different hand (probably a notation by an MPA official), is "From Samarskoe
in Rostov-na-Donu District, Vera Alekseevna Popova." Popov (1851-1909) was a member of "Zemlya i volya,"
sentenced in July 1880 by the Kiev Military District Court to life at hard labor.17 When this letter was sent, he had been
transferred from hard labor at Kara back to St.Petersburg, where he was tossed in the Alekseevskii Ravelin on 18
September 1882. As if Kara and the Fortress were not enough, he was transferred to Shlissel'burg in August 1884, and
stayed there until he was freed by the Amnesty of 21 October 1905.18

The Peter-and-Paul Fortress ceased to be an government while they underwent questioning
imperial prison at midday on 28 February 1917, by the Extraordinary Investigative Commission.
when it capitulated to rebel troops. It started a One of them was the man who had been its
new career a few days later as a Provisional nominal head-A. T. Vasil'ev, the last chief of
Government prison, holding officials of the tsarist the Okhrana.19

Figure 10. "Prison of the Ochrana Fired by Rebels.20"

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 53
October 1997

The City Prison (Gorodskayatyur'ma). Also large by the standards of the day. Only the two top
known as the Litovskii zamok (Lithuanian Castle). floors were used as a prison, and people were
Built by Catherine the Great, it did not achieve its only held there for short periods of time. Then
final form until the reign of Nicholas I. Kosciuszko they would be shuffled off to the Preliminary
was held there for a time until released by Paul 1.21 Detention Facility, or the Peter-and-Paul For-
"It contains 103 rooms for 801 inmates... The tress. No writing materials were allowed there26,
rooms are dreadfully dirty; even on the staircase and given the short stays, it is unlikely there were
you feel the smell which suffocates you. The any censormarks; covers addressed to it are not
black holes produce a dreadful impression; they likely to pop up, either.
are almost absolutely deprived of light; the way The St. Petersburg Preliminary Detention
to them leads through dark labyrinths, and in the Facility (Sankt Peterburgskii Dom
holes themselves all is wet: there is nothing but predvaritel'nago zaklyucheniya). Located at
the rotten floor and the wet walls. A man coming Shpalernaya 25, not far from the Alexander
from the open air rushes away asphyxiated. Bridge, this massive six-story edifice opened for
...Specialists say that the most healthy man will business on 1 August 1875. At that time, it
surely die, if he be kept there for three or four boasted 63 communal cells and 317 solitary
weeks. The prisoners who were kept there for confinement cells, and was rated for 700 in-
some time went out quite exhausted; several mates.27 It was the only one of its kind in Rus-
could hardly stand on their feet. Only a few sia-no other major city had such prison just for
prisoners of the less important categories are preliminary detention. Holding someone under
allowed to work. The others remain with crossed guard while his case was being developed was
hands for months and years."22 not intended as a punitive measure, so that in
Despite the fact this facility was a rotting theory, at least, conditions in the cells were
carcass well before 1875 when the PDF was supposed to be better than for convicts in prisons.
built, the Litovskii zamok was still in business in However, since most other places in Russia lacked
1894. Since it was a city prison, the city of St. any sort of separate quarters for preliminary
Petersburg was responsible for most of its yearly detention, the accused were usually tossed into
funding and upkeep.23 cells with convicted prisoners, so that their situ-
No censormarks or covers have been re- ation was no better.28 Reflecting the PDF's unique
corded for this prison, status, a special supervisory commission over-
The St.Petersburg Military Police Direc- saw all its management and finances. One or two
torate (Peterburgskoe komendantskoe representatives from the SPb City Duma, one
upravlenie).24 No censormarks or censor nota- individual appointed by the prosecutor's office,
tions recorded. two directors from the prison Committee, and
The St.Petersburg Okhrana Section one to five members appointed by the Minister of
(S.Peterburgskoe okhrannoe otdelenie). Located Internal Affairs sat on this commission.29 By the
at the Department of Police's headquarters at turn of the century the jail was listed as having
Fontanka 16. Before the Department of Police 239 communal cells and 299 single cells. Its
occupied it, the building had housed the Depart- average population was 605, reaching a high of
ment of State Police and the Third Section before 623 in 1899. As of 1 January 1900, the PDF held
it.25 598.30 It contained prisoners awaiting trial, those
The so-called "Third Section Prison" being tried, and the recently-convicted awaiting
(Tyur'ma III Otdyeleniya), located nearby at further disposition. At some point after April
Pantaleimonskaya#9, was used to keep prisoners 1889, it "welcomed" the debtors that had been in
for interrogation, or as a temporary holding facil- the temporary custody of Kresty on Vyborgskaya
ity immediately after their arrest. In the 1870s, storona, but they were kept separate from the
the 8 cells in the three-story building were quite other prisoners.31

54 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Peter Kropotkin had few kind words for the doors are shut, the place is literally suffocating.... The
PDF. cells are ten feet long and five feet wide; and at one
time the prison rules obliged us to keep open the traps
in our doors to the end that we might not be asphyxi-
But the pride of our authorities-the showplace for ated where we sat. Afterwards the rule was cancelled,
foreign visitors-is the new 'House of Detention' at we w c yelled
and the traps were shut, and we were compelled to
St.Petersburg. It is a 'model prison'-the only one of ae as we ud the eets of a temperature that
face as best we could the effects of a temperature that
its kind in Russia-built on the plan of the Belgian was sometimes stiflingly hot and sometimes freez-
was sometimes stiflingly hot and sometimes freez-
gaols. I know it from personal experience, as I was
detained there for three months, before my transfer to ing.
the lock-up at the Military Hospital. It is the only
clean gaol for common prisoners in Russia. Clean it The PDF was the site where General Trepov
certainly is. The scrubbing-brush is never idle there, had the prisoner Bogolyubov flogged for failing
andtheactivityofbroomandpailisalmostdemoniac. to doff his cap to him, which in turn led to a
It is an exhibition, and the prisoners have to keep it protest at the jail, which in turn led to further
protest at the jail, which in turn led to further
bright. All the morning long do they sweep, and
scrub, and polish the asphalt floor; and dearly have repression, and soon thereafter Trepov's assassi-
they to pay for the shine upon it. The atmosphere is nation by Vera Zasulich.
loaded with asphaltic particles (I made a paper-shade It survived into the RSFSR period under the
for my gas, and in a few hours I could draw patterns same name, as illustrated by the cover in figs. 12a
with my finger in the dust with which it was coated); and 1, but only after it had been stormed by the
and this you have to breathe. The three upper stories
receive all the exhalations of the floors below, and the mobs in Petrograd during the October coup and
ventilation is so bad that in the evenings, when all all its prisoners set free.34

~ - -

-]_ =._ -g g-----...._ _. --- _- .... _.

Figure 11. The exercise yard, with afew prisoners strolling around under the watchful gaze ofa guard on the platform.
Both the platform and the guard towers on top of the sixth floor are covered by umbrellas.33

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 55
October 1997


p.j .
J, 5,0 -
.". '. ...:: ... .-:-....... .. r -'..-Z' -..-.
. ;. VI *

From T Rovtsov, Cell 107, Section 6.
.,.A .1";:'! -,.% .. ..
.. --- 1. ..

-" *. :.. .. . .;. '< "*-vf "' ""'... -. .'; ".- ,.

/ ': '4i-i^LJ^

From --'. Cel 7 .c 6 1 '- ':'"" "" "'

F..,: T b r cesr. r-d "c, W o e i-mi ar Dete .n F
Sicecortprosecutors ra the mai of thos thecou. H owve, 't'h'e: w"ard thre. didc

y^. ....: -:... ,,.: .,, /,z*^p-. ,
'f.** . \ ,. v. :
,..._ ,,.I .i ..,,, ^,-, : ^-^,

L'--- i/: ... .. ^ :

Figure 12b. Reverse. The blurry censormark reads, "Checked, Warden of the Preliminary Detention Facili.

since most of those held at the PDF were awaiting below. (Note: Most of the censormarks illus-
trial or on trial, the overwhelming majority of traded in this article are tracings, and therefore not
censormarks seen on covers to this jail are from 100% accurate.)
56 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

PDF Prison Censormarks fTpOBepexo
/at. ,,WU O,,AaM
n OAYn mHO 1Tpedepum. 3a*o4vIwua

11 I B 1909 Figure 17. 5)PROVERENO/Nachal'nikDoma/Predvarit.
"e,. Os zaklyucheniya (CHECKED [by the] Warden of the Pre-
W liminary Detention Facility). Color: violet. Recorded
range: 8 Dec. 1922. # recorded: 1.

Figure 13. 1)POLUChENO/11 FEVR. 1909/SPB. DOM Remarks: On a postcard written on 8 Dec. 1922
PREDV. ZAK. (Received/11 Febr. 1909/SPB Prel. Det.
Facility) Color: violet. Recorded range: 11-18 Feb. 1909. to A.P. Semenov Tyan-Shanskii, a relative of the
# recorded: 2. famous explorer. See figs. 12a & b above.

Remarks: A prison receiving mark that may or PDF Manuscript Prison Notations
may not indicate a censorship function. Both
markings are on mail sent FROM the PDF. Ap-
pears together with the court censormarks in figs. &0 C64Z -
19 & 20.

SPOC l I Figure 18. 1) Zdaet starye pisma (He turns in [his] old
letters). Color: unknown. # recorded: 1. Recorded range:
Figure 14. 2) PROSMOTRYeNO (Examined). Color:
violet. Recorded range: 24-1-1912. # recorded: 1.

Remarks: Recorded by V. Kalmykov.36 On cover
IRA O 3 from Zima-Poselok, Irkutsk Province. Appears
with court censormark #2 and manuscript court
notation #8 below. (Prisoners were often re-
Figure 15. 3) SPB. Dom Predvaritel'nago Zaklyucheniya quired to hand their letters back to prison authori-
Prosmotryeno (SPB Preliminary Detention Facility- ties after they had read and retained them for a
ties after they had read and retained them for a
Examined). Color: violet. Recorded range: 21-11-1912.
# recorded: 1. Reduced to fit. while.)

Court Censormarks on PDF Mail


VoiMccafeA*M ,
~npeA~~fl)aT.r ux. IOC OTNti*O
----- 1 r T o s aprn e x i

Figure 16. 4) Prosmotreno /_" 191 Komissar doma
/ predvarit. zaklyucheniya (Examined [on] 191, Com-
missar of the Preliminary Detention Facility). Color:
unknown. # recorded: 1. Recorded range: 25-?-1918.
Figure 19. 1) PROSMOTRYeNO / TOVARIShchEM /
PROKURORA (Examined by the Deputy Prosecutor).
Remarks: Recorded by V. Kalmykov, who states Color: gray or violet. Recorded range: May 1905 to 13
that this marking was in use from 1918 to 1920.35 June 1913. # recorded: 3.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 57
October 1997

Remarks: Probably a St. Petersburg Appellate
Court censormark. This supposition is based on
two postcards mailed by the prisoner I.A. Brykov
(a worker) to his attorney, S.K. Vrzhosek. The Hp0CMOTpbHO
two postcards were mailed 7 days apart, but the Ri ,
early one bears this court censormark, and the
later one the censormark shown in #2 immedi-
ately below. Since #2 is an Appellate Court
marking, I suspect this one is, too. Figure 22. 4) Prokurorom S.-Peterburgskago / *
OKRUZhNAGO SUDA / Prosmotryeno (Examined by
the St.Petersburg District Court Prosecutor). Color: vio-
...4. -let. Recorded range: 24 December 1911 to 16 January
1912. # recorded: 2.

nE a a Manuscript Court Notations
,- on PDF Mail

--/a'y / ^ r.W.^. *.........,

Figure 20. 2) Prosmotryeno /v Kantselyarii/Prokurora
/SPB. Sudebnoi Palaty (Examined in the Chambers of the
St. Petersburg Appellate Court Prosecutor). Color: oc-
curs in violet and blue. Recorded range: 18-2-1909 to
12-4-1913. # recorded: 8. Figure 23. 5) Propustit' (Let it through). Black pencil.
Recorded range: 8 April 1913. # recorded: 1.
Remarks: This is the most "common" of all
Imperial court censormarks. There are undoubt- Remarks: Appears with with court censormark
edly many more than the eight I have recorded, #2 above, and manuscript censormark #6 imme-
given the minimum 4+ year range and the size of diately below.
the PDF. (The example shown in Mr. Kalmykov' s
article is slightly inaccurate, omitting the "v"
before "Kantselyarii," and as a result the latter
word is in nominative case, ending in a "ya;" it
should be in locative case, ending in "i.")


I P 0 CM OTP H 0. Figure 24. 6) Za Sudebn. Slyedov. 25 uch. gor. Spb.-ga
(For the SPB 25th Precinct Court Investigator). Red pen-
cil. 8-4-1913. # recorded: 1. Reduced to fit.
SUDA/PROSMOTRYeNO(ExaminedbytheSPBDistrict Remarks: On a local cover from the SPB 2nd
Court Prosecutor). Color: violet. Recorded range: 19 Postal Branch Office. Appears with court
January 1910 to 7 November 1912. # recorded: 4. censormark #2 above, plus the black-pencil
"Propustit"' in #5 above.
Remarks: Also found on money order "kupony"in #5 above.
when messages are present.
58 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Fie 2. 7)Z S. O z. S m (r te SB Figure 28. 10) Tov. prok. 14 uch. g. SPb (Deputy Prosecu-
Figure 25. 7) Za Spb. Okruzhn. Sudom (For the SPB to of the SPB 14h Precinct). Blue pencil. # recorded: 1.
tor of the SPB 14th Precinct). Blue pencil. # recorded: 1.
District Court). Red pencil. # recorded: 1. Recorded 12 A 1 R
Recorded range: 12 April 1913. Reduced to fit.
range: 22-5-1913. Reduced to fit.

Remarks: On cover from Tambov with court
Remarks: On a cover posted aboard the Irkutsk-
censormark #2 above.
198-Krasnoyarsk mailcar. No handstamp
censormarks present.

Figure 26. 8) Pr. (This could either stand for
"prosmotryeno" examined, or "propustit"' let it
through.) Blue pencil. # recorded: 1. Recorded range: 13
June 1913.

Remarks: On a local "Sister Elena" cover from
the SPB 57th Postal Branch Office, with court
censormark #1 above.37

Figure 29. 11) Za prokur. Spb. okr. suda (For the SPB
District Court Prosecutor). Blue pencil. # recorded: 2.
Range: 13-8-1-913 to 23-8-1913.
Figure 27. 9) Za tov. prokur. 14 uch. gor. Spb-ga (For the
Deputy Prosecutor of the 14th SPB Precinct). Color: Remarks: On local covers mailed at the SPB 28th
unknown. # recorded: 1. Recorded range: 10 April 1913. and 57th Postal Branch Offices, with court
Reduced to fit. censormark #2 above.39

Remarks: On cover from Zima-Poselok, Irkutsk
Province, with court censormark #2 above. Re-
corded by V. Kalmykov.38
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 59
October 1997

The St. Petersburg Solitary Confinement
Prison (Odinochnaya tyur'ma). Popularly known
as "Kresty," ("Crosses"-so called because of its C n. .
two big, "X"shaped brick buildings40, it also n7O TPBA O.
went by the name of "Vyborg Solitary Confine-
ment Prison." Completed in 1892 at Arsenal'naya
naberezhnaya 5 (Arsenal Quay #5) on the Vyborg
Storona, just opposite the Petrozavodsk Wharf Figure 32. 3) S.P.B. / TYuR'MA / PROSMOTRYeNO
Storona, just opposite the Petroavok Wharf (St.Petersburg Prison, Examined). Color: violet. Recorded
on the Neva River, this jail was built to hold 1,150
range: 12 Sep. 1910 to 24 Jan. 1914. # recorded: 7.
inmates in cells measuring 8'x13'. I do not know
when construction started, but the "Systematic Remarks: Kalmykov states that this marking was
Compendium" states that the Debtors Prison was in use from 1907 to 1910.43 This would extend the
closed in April 1889 and its inmates were moved range from 1907 to 1914, and the number re-
to "a special facility in the St. Petersburg Prison corded to at least eight.
on Vyborgskaya storona" on a temporary basis.
From there the debtors were transferred to the
PDF.41 It survived at least to the end of the Soviet Aecypttl 7[ITo ozwpo oc
period, as a pretrial prison.42 C..B. T"op,.
Kresty has accounted for a grand total of five
censormark types, which is surprisingly low given
its huge size, literate "clientele" and location in Figure 33. 4) Dezhurnyi Pomoshchnik / S.P.B. Tyur'my
the capital. (Duty Warden of the St.Petersburg Prison). Color: violet.
Recorded range: 3 October 1912. # recorded: 1.
Kresty Prison Censormarks


II xop\.

Figure 30. 1) Prosmotryeno /II korp. (Examined, Build-
ing Two). Color: violet. Recorded range: 30 November
1907. # recorded: 1. Figure 34. 5) PROSMOTRYeNO / TYuREMNOI /
?TsENZUROI? (Examined by Prison ?Censorship?). Of the
Remarks: There is likely to be a similar marking two examples I have seen, neither strike has been clear
for Building One. enough for positive identification of the last word. Color:
violet. Recorded range: 17 September 1913. # recorded: 2.

% : .. U. ..,l6a .- Remarks: The second example is undated. Both
S"MiiN ,. .. ..' COcovers are addressed to Finnish notary publics
imprisoned at Kresty. (In 1913, twenty-three of
Figure 31. 2) Pomoshchnik Nachal'nika / them were brought up on charges of refusing to
ZavyedyvayushchiilKorpusom(DeputyWarden in charge implement Russian laws, convicted, and thrown
of Building One). Color: violet. Recorded range: 27 into Kresty. I wish I could give a proper cite for
October 1908 to 27 July 1909. # recorded: 2. this work, but only four pages have come to me
at second hand, all extracted from a book entirely
Remarks: The same style as some of
in Finnish.)
Shlissel'burg' s censormarks.
60 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Kresty Manuscript Prison Notations

Figure 37. 7) Inmate status. "Kat., "Kator.Kator. o atorzhan" if it was a hard-labor prisoner, or "sr. (possibly
"srok ter, if serving a sentence that was just incarceration, not hard labor).

The St. Petersburg Transit Prison (Peresyl'naya
tyur'ma). Finished in 1894, this facility was rated
for700prisoners.4 It was designedtoholdpeople
who had already been tried and convicted, and
were awaiting transfer to some other prison, or
exile. Very often, the path a criminal or a political
would take after arrest would be through the
Figure 35. 1) Building numbers. Usually seen as "I Preliminary Detention Facility, trial, incarcera-
korp., II korp. (Building One, Building Two) in red, tion for weeks or months at the Transit Prison,
blue, or black pencil, and then off to Shlissel'burg, or Kresty, some
other big "central," or Siberia. Unfortunately,
Gernet and Baedeker are silent about this prison's
address, nor do any of the covers I have seen
contain anything other than the name of the
prison, the building #, and the name of the pris-

Transit Prison Censormarks

Figure 36. 6) Cell numbers. In red or black pencil, usually
three digits. Often (but not always) followed by a "k," / POCMOTPt-
standing for cameraa" (cell).C T

C.lb. n lnEPE C.TOPbM.

(Evamined. St. Petersburg Transit Prison). Color: violet.
Recorded range: 27 May 1908. # recorded: 1.

fROMLuHHwX Ha'alabXHHa

Figure 40. 2) Pomoshchnik Nachal'nika (Deputy War-
Figure 38. 8) "Pro. Evidently an abbreviated den). Color: violet. Recorded range: 17February 1911. #
"Prosmrotrveno" or "propustit'"-see under "Pr. for recorded: 1.
PDF #7-scribbled by a prison officer too much in a hurry
to spell it out.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 61
October 1997

Transit Prison Manuscript Notations I have seen no censormarks from either sec-
tion, and have found no other information about
them. It is very likely that any letters sent to a
female prisoner there would bear the same Krestv
censormarks as listed above, and the only way to
tell they were destined for the women's section
Should be by the name in the address. This part of
Kresty remained as a women's prison during the
Soviet period, and a section of a psychiatric
prison was opened there after 1949.41
The Military Prison Overlooking
Figure 41. 3) po K. rabote (at hard labor). Red pencil. On Nizhegorodskaya St. on the west and the railroad
cover ii .--' above. Essentiallythesameasfig. 37above. tracks to the Finland Station on the east. No
censormarks recorded, no covers recorded.
4)Kat. orKator. (hard labor). Blue or red pencil. This Gendarme Administration Located at
The Gendarme Administration. Located at
appears more frequently than handstamp
censormarks, and denotes not only the prisoner's the corner of Gorokhovaya St. and Admiralty
status, but the act of censorship as well. See fig. 37 Square in the St. Petersburg City Chief's Build-
above. (not illustrated) ing, this facility may have had holding cells. This
supposition is based on the evidence of two
5) A cell number followed by "k, in blue or red
covers addressed to a prisoner named Rappoport.
pencil. See fig. 36 above.
ci. Seefig. 36 abovebut since the gendarmes also controlled the Pe-
ter-and-Paul Fortress, these missives may very
The St. Petersburg Debtors Prison. No
well have been intended to be passed on to
censormarks recorded, and only one cover from a t thee ath tan at te Gendare
te c n Rappoport there, rather than at the Gendarme
the prison.45 (Weinert collection)
Administration. Fully aware that these covers
with their court censorship markings may be
The St. Petersburg Detention Center (Arestnyi C
Te S. P r D o C e assigned to the wrong place, I include them under
dom). This was the place where justices of the assi
this separate "category.
peace sent people for minor infractions, often for
one or two days. Peasants and petty bourgeois Court Censormarks on
accounted for almost 96% of the population thereenarme mnsraon
Gendarme Administration Mail
in 1898.46 No censormarks or covers recorded for
this facility, and given the short duration of the
sentences and the illiteracy of most inmates, it is nPocMoTP Hw nPO YPOPOM
doubtful that any would ever turn up.
C.Rn.. CYAEs. rnAAATbl
The St. Petersburg Women and Juveniles'
Prison Sections. Figure42. 1) PROSMOTRYeNOPROKUROROM/S.P.B.
SUDEB. PALATY (Examined by the Prosecutor of the
These facilities were part of the "Kresty" SPBAppellate Court). Color: none-embossed. # recorded
complex on Vyborgskaya storona. The women's 1. Range of recorded use: 14 November 1882.
section was run by a "smotritel'nitsa" (female
overseer) who answered directly to the Main Remarks: This embossed marking appears on a
Prison Administration Chief and the Minister of cover addressed to the SPB District Court Pros-
Internal Affairs. Beginning in 1893, candidates ecutor, but since it was checked by the Appellate
for this post were put forward by the Board of Court Prosecutor, the prisoner(Rappoport) could
Directors of the local Women's Prison Charity just have easily been held at the Peter-and-Paul
Committee.47 Fortress or the PDF when this letter was sent.
62 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

SnpOCI OTPtHO 14) Ibid, p. 148.
"ToB.nPOK. 15) Ibid, vol. 3, pp. 109, 111, 153.
16) Ibid, vol. 1, p. 177a.
C c.n. 17) Margolis, p. 173.
Figure 43. 2) PROSMOTRYeNO/TOV. PROK./S.P.B. 18) Gernet, vol. 3, pp. 188 & 238.
SUD. PAL. (Examined by the Deputy Prosecutor of the 19) Vassilyev, pp. 224 & 234.
SPB Appellate Court). Color: none embossed. # re- 20) Ibid, p. 218a.
corded: 2. Range of recorded use: 10 to 13 June 1884. 21) Baedeker, p. 152.
22) Kropotkin, pp. 236-237.
Remarks: These two covers are the ones ad- 23) Kokovtsov & Rukhlov, p. 164.
dressed to the Gendarme Administration at the 24) Gernet, vol. 4, p. 80.
City Chief's Building. 25) Ruud & Stepanov, p. 82.
26) Gernet, vol. 3, pp. 289-291.
Manuscript Notations on 27) Ibid, p. 377.
Gendarme Administration Mail 28) Brockhaus & Efron, vol. 49, p. 96.
29) Ibid, vol. 21, p. 8.
30) Ibid, vol. 67, p. 366.
31) Kokovtsov & Rukhlov, p. 154.
32) Kropotkin, pp. 59-62.
33) Gernet, vol. 3, p. 357.
34) Vassilyev, p. 217.
., 35) Kalmykov, "Shtempelya pechati...," p. 35.
Figure 44. 1) "D" in black or blue pencil. Appears with 35) Kalmykov, "Shtempelya pechati..p. 35.
court censormark #2 immediately above. 36) Ibid, p. 33.
37) Skipton, "Good Seats on the 70," p. 85.
Remarks: I do not know what the "D" signifies. 38) Kalmykov, "Shtempelya i pechati...," p. 33.
It could denote a cell, and it might stand for 39) Skipton, p. 86.
"Dom," i.e., Rappoport was being held at the 40) Rossi, p. 183.
PDF, and that is where the mail was to be for- 41) Kokovtsov & Rukhlov, p. 154.
warded. "D" could also be for "dyelo," indicating 42) Rossi, p. 183.
that the letter was to be kept with Rappoport's 43) Kalmykov, "Novoe o tsenzure...," p. 52.
files. It might be "Dozvoleno" (Permitted), too. 44) Gernet, vol. 3, p. 377.
45) Skipton & Michalove, vol. 1, pp. 223-225.
Endnotes 46) Brockhaus & Efron, vol. 56, p. 336.
47) Kokovtsov & Rukhlov, p. 155. 48) Rossi, p. 9.
1) Kokovtsov & Rukhlov, p. 154.
2) Ibid, p. 155. Bibliography
3) Ibid, p. 154.
4) Ruud & Stepanov, various. Brokgauz i Efron, Dom predvaritel'nago
5) Gernet, vol. 3, p. 141. zaklyucheniya, Ehntsiklopedicheskii slovar',
6) Kropotkin, p. 249. t 21, s 8, 1893.
7) Ibid, p. 87. -, Peresylka arestantov i ssyl'nykh, t. 45, ss.
283-284, 1898.
8) Baedeker, map between pp. 94 & 95. 283-284, 1898.
9) Gernet, vol. 3, p. 112. -, Presyechenie sposobov uklonyat'sya ot suda
10) Ibid, pp. 141-142. i slyedstviya, t. 49, ss. 94-96, 1898.
11) Ibid, vol. 4, p. 70. -, Sankt-Peterburg, t. 56, s. 336, 1900.
12) Ibid, vol. 3, p. 240a. -, Tyur'ma, t. 67, ss. 359-366, 1903.
13) Ibid, vol. 4, pp. 76-77 & 173.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 63
October 1997

Baedeker, Karl. La Russie, 2-me ed., Leipzig, Margolis, A.D. Tyur'ma i ssylka v imperatorskoi
1897. Rossii. Issledovaniya i arkhivnye nakhodki.
Channel Island Stamp Company, Postal Bid Sale Izd-va Lanterna i Vita, Moskva, 1995.
No. 125, Guernsey, C.I., 28 Apr. 1995. Rossi, Jacques. The Gulag Handbook, Paragon
-, Postal Bid Sale No. 141, 30 Aug. 1996. House, New York, 1989.
Gernet, M.N. Istoriya tsarskoi tyur'my, 5 tt., Ruud, Charles & Sergei Stepanov. Fontanka, 16
Moskva, 1963. Politicheskii sysk pri tsaryakh, "Mysl',"
Kalmykov, V. Shtempelya i pechati sudebnoi i Moskva, 1993.
tyuremnoi tsenzury na pochtovoi Skipton, D.M. Good Seats on the 70, "Rossica"
korrespondentsii Rossii, "Sbornik- #122, Apr. 1994, pp. 85-88.
kollektsioner" ## 30 & 31, Moskva, 1996. Skipton, D.M. & P.A. Michalove. Postal Censor-
Kalmykov, V. Novoe o tsenzure pochtovoi ship in Imperial Russia, 2 vols., John Otten.
korrespondentsii v Rossii, "Filateliya," #10, Champaign, IL, 1987.
1996, ss. 51-53. Smith, Edward Ellis. The Okhrana -The Russian
Kokovtsov, V.N. & S.V. Rukhlov (sost.). DepartmentofPolice, HooverInstitutionBib-
Sistematicheskii sbornik uzakoneniy i liographical Series XXXIII, Stanford Uni-
rasporyazheniy po tyuremnoi chasti, 2-oe versity, 1967.
izd., Tipografiya I.N. Skorokhodova, S.- Vassilyev, A.T. The Ochrana The Russian
Peterburg, 1894. Secret Police, J. B. Lippincott Company.
Kropotkin, Peter. In Russian and French Prisons, Philadelphia and London, 1930.
Schocken Books, New York, 1971.

New Information About the First Issue of Armenia

By Arkady Sargisian, Yerevan, Armenia

One of the fascinating aspects of Armenian arrived one day later on 11 July 1919. It is franked
philately is that it continues to provide opportu- with one 60-kop. surcharged 1-kop. arms-type
nities for discoveries to students and collectors. imperforate stamp, 1917 printing. The rate for
The research carried out by this author shows inter-city mail is correct. The 60-kop. surcharged
the first postal issue of Armenia during the inde- stamp with the Alexandropol' type 60-AIII, S. D.
pendence period, 1918-1920, took place earlier Tchilinghirian & P. T. Ashford (T & A) sug-
than previously recorded. Postally used covers- gested classification, canceled with the
non-philatelic-tend to prove the first Armenian Alexandropol' "3" datestamp may very well be
national issue took place several months earlier the earliest issue of national Armenia. It was. in
than stated in serious studies which place the first all probability, prepared by the Alexandropol'
issue, consisting of the 60-kop. surcharge on the post office with the permission of the Central
1-kop. Russia arms type, in October 1919 (Scott Postal Administration. It is quite likely that the
catalog gives only the year 1919 for this sur- Alexandropol' post office stock of stamps was
charge and the framed monogram, handstamped surcharged in response to a 9 July 1919 directive
in violet or black). of the Minister of Finance to "take urgent mea-
The two covers illustrated here place the date sures in safeguarding national currency and im-
at 10 July 1919. Figure 1 illustrates a cover with print distinguishing marks on the existing stocks
that date. So far, this is the earliest recorded date of postage stamps and stationery," as requested
for the first issue of Armenia. The cover was by the Governor of Kars in a letter to the minister
mailed from Alexandropol' to Ehrivan, where it dated 30 June 1919.
64 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Figure 2 illustrates a registered cover also then accepted by other authors. Covers franked
from Alexandropol', mailed on 17 September with stamps with the framed monograms and
1919 to Ehrivan, where it arrived the next day. canceled earlier than November 1919 are yet to
This cover is franked with two imperforate, 1- be found, but in the opinion of this writer they
kop. arms-type stamps, 1917 printing, 60-kop. surely must exist.
surcharge (type 60-E.I), [it appears to be Scott
No. lb-GGW]; the rate of 1 rub. 20 kop. is [Translated by George G. Werbizky]
correct for an inter-city registered letter.
It should be noted the Alexandropol' 60-kop. References:
surcharged stamps were quickly exhausted be-
cause of the limited supply of 1-kop. arms-type 1. Tchilinghirian, S. D. & P. T. Ashford. "The
stock (it should be viewed as a local issue) and Postage Stamps of Armenia," Part 1, Bristol
Ehrivan type 60-E.I (T & A classification) sur- England, 1953.
charged stamps were made available from cen- 2. Ceresa, Dr. R. J. "The Postage Stamps of
tral stocks. Russia, 1917-1923," Volume 1, Armenia,
We also note that the unframed monogram Part I, Cambridge, England, 1978.
issue appeared approximately three months ear- 3. Zakyan, C. A. & S. A. Saltikov. "The Postage
lier than stated by several well-known philatelic Stamps of Armenia," Yerevan, Armenia,
researchers: 1988.
1. T & A, in part II of their handbook, state
(Illustrations on following pages.)
the issue date of the "unframed Z" is not
known, but can be approximately placed
at February 1920 for the large mono-
gram, and March 1920 for the small one.
2. Dr. R. J. Ceresa in Part 4/5, Volume 1 From Russia with Love
(Armenia), has a date for the unframed
monograms of March-April 1920.
3. C. A. Zakyan & S. A. Saltikov in the "The 15 Different Russian stamps-25 cent
Postage Stamps of Armenia," are inclined with Fabulous Russian approvals
to accept the T & A dates.

However, the cover in fig. 3 shows the use of Want Lists Filled
the "unframed Z" on 11 November 1919. This
registered cover has a clear Igdir postmark with
that date. From Ehrivan. where it arrived on 23 Approvals Sent
November 1919, it was forwarded to Echmiadzin,
arriving on 28 November 1919. The franking is
correct: 1 rub. 20 kop. for an inter-city registered
letter. The two surcharged arms-type 60-kop.
stamps have unframed monograms, small and J. Pehr
medium, Type I [stamps appear to be Scott No. P.O. Box 3012
The framed monogram issue appeared first, Miami Beach, FL 33140
followed by the unframed issue. Therefore, in all USA
probability, the framed monogram stamps were
issued earlier than November 1919, the date
given by T & A in Part I of their handbook, and

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 65
October 1997

0- 0: e -_ -"e- ^^ i 9

'r, ,---.c -y L

II <\I7I

Figure 1. An ordinary cover with the 10 July 1919 date. Front at top, reverse at bottom.

66 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

,, .' .-.* :, t- ." ."

3, "... &. .t- -- II/ v. 5 ,
S*." "- '. ,

,* -'-:'. .-? .- -. :r- -
"- "

S" ".- .--, *-" ... ... '
-. .. '." .. ,- -. ..

... ,,... P..M r ,tv : -'-

'4-1 "'4.
.-^. -.. ^ ..i -.I v.-

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 67--

.. ^ ,:.. .,^ ?'.. I.-. ... ".: ... . .
.... /;. ,'* ^ .. .. -
'"- ^... 1 ,:.^ ",

'.: :. .,.- .. ; .. _


'~~K //

*~ *

(f ; 1\i~. ziosL
o /
yS/[ ;-WC~~~ -Z Lco

Figure 3 Cover showing use of the unframed Z" on 1 November 1919.

68 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997
11 -* l l ^ K ? ^ 1 -- :

fe-" 'Lgt *^.
-' ;
Figure^ -- (^l^^sown s fth ufaedZ nI ovme 99

68 Rojic ^ /y ***-^ \ l^ / ube 128 /

Figue 3 Covr sowig us ofthe"unfame Z" on 1 ove ber 1919.

City of Poltava Charitable Vignettes,
Covers, and Postal Cards

by George G. Werbizky

In 1915,whilethepopularsupportforRussia's four Russian words meaning Poltava Municipal
entry into and continued participation in WWI Council. Usually at the top is the slogan
was still strong, the Poltava (today in Ukraine) "nOJ1TABA BOHHAM-Poltava to its soldiers."
Municipal Council issued a series of attractive, Some covers and postal cards have rectangles,
charitable vignettes with patriotic themes. On the usually in the upper right-hand corner, with the
top of each vignette is the inscription "BOHHAM word "MAPKA-stamp" within the rectangle. In
H HX CEMb5IM-To soldiers and their families." the lower right-hand corner, in a circle, is the
The center is occupied by reproductions of monu- price-3 k(opecks).
ments, portraits of Peter the Great, and the Poltava Every cover has an elaborate ornament in a
Cathedral, all commemorating the Russian vic- color which is different from the cover itself.
tory against the Swedes and Turks on 27 June Some covers show an Easter egg, which is al-
(old style) 1709 at the battle of Poltava. Tribute ways red, with the letters "X.B." which stands for
is also paid to I. Kotlarevskii, the famous 19th- "'XPHCTOC BOCKPECE-Christ has arisen."
century Ukrainian writer, whose likeness ap- Covers also exist, and so far all postal cards
pears on two vignettes. Below the center of each which contain the same central design as the
vignette is the abbreviation "HOJ1T.(ABCKOE) vignettes, except for the frame and inscription.
F.(OPOICKOE) OBLLl.(ECTBEHHOE) Y. (FIPAB- The postal cards fully reproduce the design of the
IIEHHE)"-Poltava Municipal Council. vignettes. The covers illustrated in this article
It should be mentioned that several of the have three different ornamental designs: "C"
pictures noted on these vignettes are also on the design, the right-hand side is open; "box" de-
1909 issue of the Poltava zemstvo stamps, which sign, an ornament on all four sides; bottom de-
celebrated the 200th anniversary of the battle of sign, the bottom is open. All designs are tabulated
Poltava. and illustrated in this article.
The Catalogue Specialdes Timbres de Guerre The tables describing the covers and postal
de Russie (Special Catalog of Russian War cards are based on items in my collection and that
Stamps) is an illustrated catalog listing the vi- of Mr. Jack Moyes. They are probably not com-
gnettes of Poltava as well as other locations. The plete since this is the first attempt to summarize
catalog was published in France probably circa this issue. Since the design of these covers and
1917 since the last listings are for 1916. Mr. Jack postal cards resembles that of the vignettes, in
Moyes from England kindly sent me two pages part or wholly (and the vignettes reproduce in
from the unpublished Catalog of Russian Vi- part the design of the zemstvo stamps), they were
gnettes, Part II, WWI, by Emile Markovich. probably conceived, drawn, and printed at about
There is another Poltava Municipal Council the same time as the vignettes.
issue which has remained essentially unknown to Vignettes are rarely seen. Covers and postal
date. This issue, which consists of covers and cards are even scarcer. Nopostally used covers or
postal cards in several designs on white or col- postal cards have been reported. One can reason-
ored paper, was prepared for the same purpose as ably conclude these items were never issued, but
the vignettes. The covers have the following were specimens that, for whatever reason, re-
common features: At upper left are four letters mained in the proposal stage.
"H.r.O.Y.," which represent the first letters of the

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 69
October 1997


Color of Ornament Type Easter Egg Stamp Design Place for
Envelope Present Depicted Stamp Z

Light green with "C" in brown Yes Poltava coat-of-arms, zemstvo stamp No
light-blue thread
Light gray with "C" in orange Yes Monument, 1 kop. vignette No
light-blue thread o
Light blue with "C" in light green Yes Poltava coat-of-arms, zemstvo stamp No
light-blue thread
Light blue with "C" in orange Yes Poltava coat-of-arms, zemstvo stamp No
light-blue thread
Light green with "C" in orange Yes Peter the Great on several vignettes No
blue thread
White "C" in green No Poltava coat-of-arms, zemstvo stamp Yes
Cream "C" in orange No Monument, 1 kop. vignette at right, coat-of-arms at left No
Cream "C" in red No Monument, 3 kop. vignette at right, Monument, 1 kop. vignette at left No
White "C" in red-brown No Monument, 1 kop. vignette Yes
White "C" in violet No Monument, 3 kop. vignette Yes
White "C" in blue No Peter the Great on several vignettes Yes
Cream Box design in violet No Poltava coat-of-arms at left Yes
Cream Box design in blue No Poltava coat-of-arms at left Yes
Light blue with Box design in orange No Poltava coat-of-arms at left Yes
light-blue thread
Light blue with Box design in orange Yes Poltava coat-of-arms at left No
blue thread
Light blue with Box design in green Yes Poltava coat-of-arms at left No
blue thread
Light blue with Box design in green No Poltava coat-of-arms at left Yes
light-blue thread
Cream Box design in violet No Poltava coat-of-arms at left Yes
White Box design in blue Yes None Yes

Table I. Poltava Charity Covers.

Postal Card Vignette
Color Reproduced
Inscription (always at left)

Blue Yes, in gold Cathedral,
Easter Egg
Blue Yes, in silver Cathedral,
Easter Egg
Light blue Yes, in red Peter the Great
Light green Yes, in red Peter the Great
Light blue Yes, in orange I. Kotlarevskii
Light blue Yes, in red Peter the Great
Light green Yes, in orange Peter the Great
Light green Yes, in orange Peter the Great
standing in profile
Buff No Cathedral in violet,
Easter Egg in red

Table II. Poltava Charity Postal Cards.

Poltava Vignettes


Monuments commemorating the Russian victory over the Swedes and Turks on 27 June 1709 (old style) at the battle
of Poltava.

Poltava cathedral and two Peter the Great monuments.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 71
October 1997

Ukrainian writer Kotlarevskii at left, Peter the Great at right.

. I A. M.. B O I A fwU C E C M^MB"

TOnj Ou Jorr 10 Osm.Y

Peter the Great

Poltava Zemstvo Stamps with Vignette Designs

Left to right: Poltava coat-of-arms, 2 Victory Monuments, and Poltava Cathedral.

72 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Cover with "C" (open right) ornament, Easter egg, and monument. Same as the 1-kop. vignette.

Cover with "C" (open right) ornament, Easter egg, and image ofPeter the Great. Same as the 5-and 1O-kop. vignette.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 73
October 1997

r ', : r' -,.- i. 4.


.'.,, ... .

S....... .. a,

Cover with box (all around) ornament, Easter egg at right, and Poltava coat-of-arms at left.

Cover with "open bottom" type ornament, Easter egg in the middle (top), and place for stamp at the bottom, middle.
"74 Rossica Journal Number 128-129

October 1997
"- "4 ": ;, --

"C t

r k.October 1997

Cover with "C"-type ornament, monument at left, Peter the Great image at right.

Cover with C"-type ornament, Peter the Great at left, place for stamp at right. Same as on 5-and lO-kop. viginettes.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 75
October 1997

Cover with "C"-type ornament, Poltava coat-of-arms at left, place for stamp at right.

SOctober 1997

Cover with "C"-type ornament, monument at left, place for stamp at right. Same as 3-kop. vignette.

76 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Cover with "box"-type ornament, Poltava coat-of-arms at left, place for stamp at right.

Cover with reproduction of the vignette at left, no text.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 77
October 1997

OA^ M. Mbl I i;' lPT* Hi. I. t 1H.

..*. . .. .

S- -

Two postal cards, both reproducing vignettes at left, place identifiedfor stamp at right.
Printed "Postal Card-nOITOBAFI KAPTOqKA."

78 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

A M O H Hi H P T 0 4! H "-

Two postal cards, both reproducing vignettes at left, place identified for stamp at right.
Printed "Postal Card-IIOLTOBA3I KAPTOUKA."

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 79
October 1997

I n

Postal card with reproduction of vignette at left, place identified for stamp at right.
Printed "Postal Card-nOITOBA3l KAPTOlKA."

Russia: The "OBEZZARAZhENO" Cachets, 1897-1906

by Denis Vandervelde

In May 1897, the Russian Government is- India, to Mauritius, Madagascar, and elsewhere
sued an order requiring letters and printed matter east of Suez. In all, a dozen different handstamps
from "plague-infested locations" to be disin- have been recorded in Pratique, most of them
fected by steam. Was this an attempt to prevent attributed to specific locations.
the introduction of cholera (which, as Dr. Robert Although no copy of the original order has
Koch had established thirteen years earlier, was come to light, we do have the rules of the Ministry
spread by a waterborne bacillus, and thus could of Internal Affairs. These were published in May
be conveyed on dry paper)? Or was it motivated 1897; and reproduced (in Russian, of course) in
by the prevention of plague, spread by rat fleas, the Pravitel'stvennyi Vyestnik. They translate as
the prime concern of the International Sanitary follows:
Conference that year (and equally unlikely to be
carried by letters)? 1. Letters and printed matter from plague-
Whatever the rationale, the Russians had infested locations will be subjected to
straight-line cachets reading "OBE33APA)KEHO" disinfection with steam.
(disinfected) made up and used at frontier posts 2. Letters (packets) with declared value from
and at selected ports. Several new types appeared plague-infested locations will be returned
between 1897 and 1901, probably as the result of to their place of origin.
the spread of plague from its traditional home in
80 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

3. Parcels and wrappers containing articles As I interpret the rules, this means that mail
from plague-infested locations whose for St. Petersburg could have been disinfected in
importation is prohibited are also unac- that city's post office, or it could have been
ceptable. intercepted at the port or frontier-office of entry
4. Disinfection will be carried out: into Russia. In the case of bagged mail from
"* on the western land borders at overseas, the latter course would surely have
Verzhbolovo, Aleksandrov, Granitsa, been preferred.
Volochisk, and Radzivilov;
"* at [the ports of] Odessa, Sevastopol', The Seriffed Cachets
Batum, Baku, and Vladivostok;
"* on the Persian border at Dzhul'fa and While most of the cacheted mail of this pe-
Gaoudan; riod bears a variety of sans-serif
"* on the Chinese border at Troits- "OBE33APA)EHO" marks, a small number of
kosavsk. seriffed examples are known. Most of these are
48 mm in length and 5 mm high, and are struck in
Correspondence sent from abroad in spe- a light purple ink.
cial mail sacks to St. Petersburg, Mos- In our initial attempt to classify these cachets,
cow, Warsaw, Riga, Mitau, Libau, or this seriffed type was designated "Ov" and attrib-
Tiflis will be disinfected at the post of- uted to St. Petersburg, following the view of Kaj
fices in those towns. Pischow in a Finnish article (see Pratique 1981,
p. 49). Later on, I ventured to query this attribu-
5. To certify disinfection, each letter or wrap- tion. Now that the same mark has been recorded
per will be stamped OBE33APAAEHO. on a wrapper of July 1899 addressed to Moscow
(fig. 1), a full-scale reconsideration of its usage
The postal authorities of British India seems due. All the examples I have recorded
have been asked to provide advance noti- were posted in the Indian Ocean (or beyond) and
fiction via telegraph when sending cor- addressed to Russia or Finland in the latter half of
respondence which could be damaged by 1899 or January 1900. Although the Finish cov-
steam disinfection (for example, valu- ers must have traveled via St. Petersburg, it
able papers, documents with wax seals). seems likely that they were disinfected before

^ ..-'

SLDE --0.,.

ING. p &-N.N' J;SSE,
PARIENZA-1890'. RITORNO-190" .

Figure 1. Wrapper, Saigon to Moscow, posted 13 July 1899.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 81
October 1997

that, while the wrapper in fig. 1 would not have ence between calendars.] It was conveyed on the
needed to travel to St. Petersburg at all. M. M. Ligne U, Paquebot No. 1, which according
The logical port of entry was surely Odessa, to Salles4 was the SS Yangtse. She left Port Louis
in which case we would have to accept that the on 14 July, arriving at R6union on the 17th and
sans-serifhandstamps certifying treatment, used finally docking at Marseille on 13 August. Using
there from mid-1897, were augmented by July Salles'chart4, she could have reached Port Said
1899 by another, this time with serifs. on 9 August.
The rationale for Odessa is that these three If she had off-loaded her bagged mail for
covers (and a postcard in the collection of Eric Russia there, the earliest it could have reached
Quinn from Colombo in January 1900) were Odessa would have been 16 August. Even if the
each carried across the Indian Ocean and through disinfection process and certification on each
the Suez Canal by French (Messageries piece of mail took only a couple of hours, itwould
Maritimes) steamships. These vessels all called have been late evening before it reached the
at Port Said with mail bags for Alexandria; and Odessa railway station. From there, it faced a
from Alexandria there was a reliable weekly long journey. Baedeker5 reveals that the fastest
"Express" service, maintained by R.O.P.i T., to time available to a passenger in 1901 for the
Odessa. R.O.P.i T., the Russian State service, journey from Odessa to St. Petersburg was 44
had two regular steamships on this line, the hours, with lengthy stopovers at Kiev and Mos-
Nicholas II and the Queen Olga. cow. So, in the best of all possible worlds, cover
However, even the "Express" service was not number one could not have reached St. Peters-
particularly fast. Baedeker's Guides confirm the burg until the early hours of 19 August. Since
information in Tchilinghirian' that it included BorgA(nowPorvoo,eastofHelsinki)datestamped
calls at Piraeus, Smyrna, and Constantinople. it on 17 August, we can be sure it did not travel by
The "leg" from Piraeus to Alexandria took from this route.
morning on day one to 2 PM on day two.2 It seems The second cover, which was conveyed on
reasonable to assume a similar journey from M. M. Ligne T, Paquebot No. 3 (the SS Austra-
Alexandria to Piraeus. In 1905, the Express lian)6, has no backstamp of arrival, so cannot be
steamer left Piraeus on a Monday afternoon, used for this purpose.
Smyrna at 4 PM on Tuesday, reaching Con- The third item is a postcard which tells a story
stantinople on Wednesday at 7 PM, but not sailing similar to the first. In synopsis:
again until 10 AM on Friday, resulting in arrival at
Odessa at 3 PM on Saturday3. While the days may 23 November 1899-posted at Singapore
have changed, it seems most unlikely that the 24 November 1899-conveyed on Ligne N.
R.O.P.i T. Express steamer carried mails from Paquebot No. 6 (SS Sydney), which reached
Alexandriato Odessa in less than six days and six Marseille on 16 December 18997
hours in 1899, i.e., that at least seven days must 12 December 1899-ship called at Port Said.
have elapsed from trans-shipment at Port Said to
arrival at Odessa. (If the weekly steamer had left, If she unloaded her mails there, earliest ar-
this presumably would extend to something ap- rival at Odessa would have been 19 December.
preaching 14 days, unless an alternative could be The earliest time at St. Petersburg would have
found.) been early 22 December. The arrival handstamp
Let us now look at the three Finnish covers. of Nikolaistad (now Vaasa) is 22 December. but
The earliest was posted in Mauritius on 14 July Vaasa is nearly 300 miles beyond Helsinki. and
1899 and backstamped at Borgh, Finland, on 17 the journey from St. Petersburg would not have
August. [Finland, unlike Russia, was already been accomplished in less than one day. So. it
using the Gregorian, or new-style calendar, so would seem that we must look for another route
there is no need to adjust schedules for the differ- into Russia. By a happy chance, a display at

82 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

FEPA '94 by a Russian collector, V. Sinegubov, frontier quarantine station of Granitsa, after the
included a cover with an OBEZZARAZhENO baggedRussianmailhadbeenlandedfromFrench
seriffed cachet, and a clue to the mystery. I must steamers at Naples.
emphasize that this was a different cachet-46 In future articles, I shall explore the implica-
mm rather than 48 mm, so far as I could measure tions for the usage of the sans-serif cachets.
it through the glass protecting the material, and
struck in purplish-black ink. But alongside the References:
postmark of the British P. O. at Hankow and the
Moscow arrival mark of 17 April 1900, was a 1. Stamps of the Russian Empire Used Abroad:
FPAHHIA of 14 April. Tchilinghirian & Stephen, Part Two, p. 183.
Granitsa, as it was more often spelled (liter- 2. Baedeker's Guide to Egypt: 1908.
ally "the frontier" in Polish), was the first town on 3. Baedeker's Guide to Russia: [German Edi-
the Russian (Kingdom of Poland) side of the tion] 1905.
frontier with Germany and Austria, some 30 4. La Poste Maritime Frangaise: Tome VI, p.
miles WNW of Krakow. It was on the mail 157.
railway line from Vienna to Warsaw. "The King- 5. Baedeker's Guide to Russia: [German Edi-
dom of Poland will be entered, if coming from tion] 1901.
Austria, at GRANITSA: luggage and passports 6. La Poste Maritime Francaise: Tome VI, p.
undergo examination. Through carriages from 47.
Vienna to Warsaw, 21 1/2 hours."s For mail from 7. Ibid.: Tome V, p. 113.
the Indian Ocean to transit Granitsa for Moscow, 8. Murray's Guide to Russia: London 1892, p.
it must have landed at a western European port 398.
with good rail connections. The Messageries
Maritimes landed its mails for northern Europe at
Naples, usually a day before docking at Marseille. V. Denis Vandervelde is Chairman of the Disin-
So, cover No. 1 could have stayed on board fected Mail Study Circle and Editor of Pratique,
the Yangtse until 12 August. Her bagged mails from which this article is reprinted, with permis-
would have been in Vienna by the 13th, and, sion.
according to Murray8, in Warsaw by the 14th and
Moscow early on the 15th. From Moscow to St.
Petersburg, express trains took only 12 hours
according to Baedekers. I conclude that it could
have reached Porvoo by 17 August.
Cover No. 3 could similarly have stayed on
the Sydney until she reached Naples on 15 De-
cember. By the same all-rail route, her bagged
mail would have been in Vienna on the 16th, in
Warsaw on the 17th, in Moscow early on the 18th,
and St. Petersburg late that evening. There was
thus ample time for the long journey via Helsinki
to Vaasa by the 22nd.
Circumstantial evidence can never give posi-
tive answers, but I believe that the rare, but well-
known, seriffed OBEZZAREZhENO cachets are
unlikely to have been used at St. Petersburg, and
could not have been used at Odessa. All the
available evidence points to their usage at the

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 83
October 1997

From legitimate to bogus, franked with locals will be sent on approval. Prices range from $5 to $15
each. 20 different covers $40. Foreign Stamp Service, Box 1005, Great Neck NY 11023, USA
""---- AKA3HOE "''--.-

t e.e-i-j'-- ____ few,_._'I"_ ....


-4l 8Y R t1W-rfi "*>1tl^^a"" = QO1
S Ev -1 w h o01LUNK.Y.112H USA ..
------------4MH.AO ,n-,-=---,


Collection of 10 different pre-stamp covers (1830-1862) from
Galizia (Sambor, Lisko, Stryj, Zolkiew, etc.)-$500

1918 Lwow Austrian Air Mail cover with Austria C2 or C3.-$225

1918-1920 covers or M.O.-s-$50 to $100 each.

1992-1993 Covers with local issues- $4 to $10 each.

Sent on approval, at your request.

Foreign Stamp Service
P.O. Box 1005
Great Neck, NY 11023
84 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

The Vyatka-Kotlas Railway

by Leonard Tann

While composing these notes, a couple of of the Tsarist period-just the northern branch
recent auction catalogs happen to have offered itself-are likewise very scarce. Examples illus-
items with railway postmarks of the Vyatka- treated here are from my own collection, unless
Kotlas railway and noted them as "unrecorded" otherwise credited. In spite of the catalog refer-
or "This postmark and line are very rare and ences mentioned above, these postmarks have
unrecorded." Let us remedy those circumstances been recorded in the published edition of the
with these notes. Robinson-Kiryushkin Russian Railway Post-
The railway line running westwards from marks book (p. 123 top row) and in the adden-
Perm' to Vyatka and then northwards to Kotlas dum.
was opened in May 1899, and the whole "sec- Figure 1 illustrates a very fine 3-kop. statio-
tion" was allocated route numbers 219-220 and nery postcard addressed to URZhUM, VYaTKA
named the Perm'-Kotlas Railway. The rail link GUB., sent from Tiflis, 19/V/1901. Somehow,
westwards from Vyatka-Vologda-St. Petersburg rather oddly, it was routed via the Chelyabinsk-
was not completed until 1906, the main line then Perm' line, as noted by the fine circular
being Perm'-Vyatka-Vologda-St. Petersburg, POChTOVYI VAGON No 82 serial 5, 23/V/
and the northern branch Vyatka-Kotlas retaining 1901 at the center left. It passed on to the Perm'-
the numbers 219-220. Kotlas section, receiving a very fine circular
In some ways, this northern branch line could POChTOVYI VAGON No. 219, serial 5, 23/V/
be described as a "branch to nowhere." This area 1901. The town of Urzhum was to the south of
was extremely sparsely populated, the villages Vyatka. As far as I am aware, this is the earliest
being very tiny and far between. The main pur- recording of 219. The Robinson-Kiryushkin
pose of this branch was to link the Kotla Wharfer, Addendum of October 1996 records the circular
which stood at the confluence of the Vichegda types of route 220 with serials 3, 4, and 5 for
River and the North Dvina River, and was an 1901. But, as with almost all branch lines, up the
important waterway (when not frozen up) and a branch to the main line and onwards transmission
water route up the Dvina River to Arkhangel'sk. is always more common than down the branch to
The waterways of Russia were an ancient means the remote terminus.
of transporting goods, materials, and food. We Figure 2 shows a fine postcard franked with
could guess that the railway via Perm'and Kotlas a 4-kop. Arms type with two strikes of
was useful for the transport of goods and materi- POChTOVYI VAGON No. 219, serial 2, 12/II/
als to and from the Arkhangel'sk waterways. 1906. The postcard is addressed to Austria and is,
It follows, therefore, that route numbers 219- in fact, an Austrian postcard showing an Austrian
220 from 1899 until 1906 operated on the whole station and rail sidings. This was presumably
Perm'-Kotlas section. The section up to Perm' posted on the first railway TPO to pass-even
(Ekaterinburg-Perm') was route 81-82. In 1906, though it was going in the wrong direction.
route 81-82 was extended to take in the whole Figure 3 adds even more to our knowledge of
Chelyabinsk-Vyatka section, and route numbers this branch line. The postcard is addressed (last
219-220 were limited exclusively to the Vyatka- line of address) ST. KOTLAS. On the stamp and
Kotlas branch. However, it has to be stated too at the base of the card there are two fine strikes of
that in spite of the fact that pre-1906 route the circular POChTOVYI VAGON No. 219,
numbers 219-220 were used on the whole Perm'- serial 6, 26/ III/1906. At the bottom right corner,
Kotlas section, examples are still very scarce there is a beautiful matching circular KOTLAS/
indeed. Examples of 219-220 of 1906 to the end 1/ZhELYeZNODOR. PO of the same date.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 85
October 1997


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

3 / ,
v e "nil dopolii nit ei i n

Figure 1. Postcard sent from Tiflis addressed to Urzhum, Vyatka Province, 19 May 1901.

-/fr -t"-4-llatle :'-|-

^fty^^s^'^'^ ? ,^^s^-

PArt* e 4,atin *^ "

Figure 2. Postcard franked with a 4-kop. Arms type, 12 February 1906.

S. .......................

Figure 2. Postcardfranked with a 4-kop. Arms type, 12 February 1906.

86 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997


OTrprUToe nmic. Carle Postale.
Allhemn or n 0p)Wopflflcdoulils Ar)pc


Postkarte- Carte postal
Weltpostvein Union poste universe lle

Levsezo.Lap Corrssponduzkaie Dopisnice
Karta korpondsnmyjna KIornpondenini liatek
Figure 3. Postcard addressed to Kotlas Station, 26 March 19065.

PostaRossica Joute rnalCarte postal 128-129 87
lpOctoberin Un po1997e univell
Leelitidj-Lap Cormpondmkarie Dopisnics -
Kata kawpandentyjna Kainpondonini istek 1 7j
Britkaart CaritOlina paalt Post Iard Brinflkrt
(OTpuToe-nici.to ,lunmcin KHa|Irn1

2 iOY T T-O 3

Figure 4. Postcard addressed to Kotlas Station with mark of the Perm' Station on the Ural'sk line, 13 March 1905.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 87
October 1997

Figure 4 is another postcard addressed to ST. guesses that the sender took the postcard and
KOTLAS. It is postmarked PERMSKOYePO/2/ posted it either while en-route on the branch,
URAL'SK. Zh. D., 13/III/1905, and alongside where it was put on the southbound 220 TPO, or
the stamp at the top, a similar beautiful postmark posted on the train at Kotlas Station. The circular
KOTLAS/1/ZhELYeZNODOR. PO 15/1II1905. 220 serial "6" has taken the year of the date, 1906,
So far, we can list the 219 postmarks as but the day and month have failed to strike.
follows: Figure 6 illustrates the drawing given in the
Kiryushkin-Robinson Russian Railways Post-
Circular PV No. 219: marks book (fig. R220.1) with thanks. We would
like to see more examples of the circular 220,
Serial 2, 12/II/1906 both in the 1899-1906 period when it was the
Serial 5, 23/V/1901 whole Kotlas-Perm' section, and after 1906 when
Serial 6, 26/11/1906 it was just the southbound route of the Kotlas-
Vyatka branch. To complete the tabulations, with
Kotlas Station circular-type postmark: appreciation, I quote from the Kiryushkin-
Robinson Addendum, adding in the Jack Moyes
15/Im1/1905, 26/1I/ 1906. example:

For the circular type 220 (up the branch to the Circular PV 220:
main line) I am delighted to illustrate fig. 5, from
the collection of our member Jack Moyes, and Serial 2, 9/IV/ 1901
with thanks to him. The picture side shows the Serial 3, 22/1V/1901
front of the Vyatka railway station. Franked with Serial 4, 16/111/1901, 12/IV/1901
a 2-kop. and 1-kop. of the 1902-6 issue, it is Serial 6,....1906
addressed to the town of Veliki-Ustyug, on the Serial 8, 7/IV/1901
North Dvina River not far from the branch. One

OTKpbIToe nnlbMO.-Carte Po5tale.
BCe[IIphk,; noTOByTo C0e. 3 FGCC in

Figure 5. Postcard to Velikii Ustyug, 1905. Pochtovyi Vagon No. 220, serial 'b." Picture of Vyatka Station.
88 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997
R BD.b ".. i ,t,_I-
S. ,, '_: ,. ,,. /

October 1997

BA ** branch line operated as its own section, there was
0~ 20one train per day in each direction, serving the
-22 -1 359 versts (238 miles) of the branch. The 1910-
. II2 i 11 railway timetable illustrated here in fig. 7
-O (again with thanks to Philip Robinson) tells us the
journey took some 14 1/4 hours! One can imag-
R220. 1 R220.2 ine that postal clerks would want some variation
Figure 6. Kiryushkin and Robinson drawing. of duties to alleviate the boredom of this very
long, tiring journey day after day.
The fact there were up to eight cancelers in The route illustrated on the accompanying
use on this railway indicates either very little has map was:
survived or more material is waiting to be re-
corded. Vyatka-Myedyanka-Yur'ya-Velikaya-Murashi
So far, unless more material turns up or (the railway crossed the provincial boundary
readers advise us of further items from this line in from Vyatka Province to Vologda Province)-
their collections, we have recorded six serial Starovyercheskaya-Oparino-Al'mezh-Pinyug-
numbers on the "down to terminal" route 219, Lundanka-Luza-Susalovka-Savatiya-Kotlas
and eight serials on the "up to main line" route Kotlas Wharf.
220. Regulations were clear, and there is no (It is interesting to note that some time in the
reason to suppose they did not apply on this Soviet period- illustrated on later and modern
branch as well, the serial numbers/letters on maps-the railway line was extended from Kotlas
cancelers designated the post-office clerk or westwards to link up with the Vologda-
postal-clerk on the TPO. We would not imagine Arkhangel'sk railway line at Konosha.)
there was more than one clerk on each Vyatka-
Kotlas-Vyatka TPO, or a need for more than one. Two trains ran on this route each day, one
But, it is possible that at a fairly busy railway northbound (Vyatka-Kotlas) and one southbound
junction station such as Vyatka, several clerks (Kotlas-Vyatka) and both traveled overnight.
were on duty and were switched around on the The northbound train left Vyatka at 5:26 in the
postal sections. From (early?) 1906, when this afternoon, reaching Murashi at 10:13 PM, Pinyug
at 2:42 in the morning, and arriv-
ing at Kotlas at 7:45 AM. Its com-
174as. BRnsTa R.oraac it n o6paTHo. panion train left Kotlas at 9:30 in
81 1oft e ~(niealtstlos. ......1.69
Ito -7 e 1tpw's 1z.... 11 < 7. t) o the evening, reaching Pinyug at
4.20 103 Bcmmca ........... O o 2:32 AM, Murashi at 7:14 AM, and
a -I or. C.Iemep6ypts.... p 11 .40
s.o0 50 + BnoAa .......... sa + .20 pulling in to Vyatka at 12:05, just
t10.15 *115S IfT K mna ........... on -6 L- 0
ft- l He ,p.x-xa, atien. Dop. 1k TI after midday.
"I.T4v I Because of time allowance at
or. U. I y........ .......
6 2 BJ RIa TK i ........................... as 11.53 a railway stations, the two trains
7 1 8 M-AASq M s K......................... I 10.83. 6
an 82 I lopi ...................... .... I s24 9.33 a crossed at Pinyug. Pinyug was, as
9 19S 88 + BeAI.a......................... 21 8.27 -
t11 1 143 t CTapoBtp'eeas ..................... 21 6.14 Pm station on the railway to have a
12 173 Onap ............... ............... 187 I5
i a t19 + Ain erc, ......................... 11 S L 7 post office at the station. The ex-
2|7 Or 2 n .... tremely rare examples known will
i "9 25 t .T.Iyna, ........................4. f 11 "
1_5 257 IF .tl a ........................2 be covered later. It is most likely
r 1- Cyano"a :.............:: ...:: ...::.. I that in this period, like similar
6.60 $30 + Casaift ............................ 101- I
7.45 5as9's lTO KOAn. (Ct. A1,A) ........... a0. branch lines, the Vyatka-Kotlas
Figure 7. 1910-1911 Railway timetable.
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 89
October 1997

railway was single tracked, with loops and sid- The 3-kop. printed index is canceled by a beau-
ings for trains, goods trains particularly, to pass. tiful strike of KOTLAS*220*VYaTKA / 5 14-
Looking at the tabulations noted above for 3-17. At left, there is a Vyatka transit postmark.
the circular types of 219-220, the very meager and across the base of the TPO postmark, a
listings stretch from 1901 to March-April 1906. Vyatka war-censor marking.
The Vyatka rail connection to St. Petersburg Let us tabulate the above oval types. They are
opened in February 1906. It would be a fair all 220, the southbound route. Regretfully. we
assumption to accept that from February 1906 have no northbound 219 ovals to show.
the numbers 219-220 were limited to the north-
ern branch, Vyatka-Kotlas. At some point, the Oval postmarks 220, Kotlas-Vyatka. Size 31 x
circular types would have been replaced with 27mm.
oval TPO postmarks. However, the oval post-
marks I can illustrate here are dated between Serial 1, 30-12-16, 27-11-17.
1915 and 1917. Serial 3,...12-15.
Figure 8 illustrates a postcard addressed to Serial 5, 26-4-16, 14-3-17.
Ekaterinburg with major portions of ovals
KOTL(as) 220 VYaTKA/ 3, ...12-15. Figure 9 Five examples are thus recorded of this scarce
illustrates a postcard addressed to Stantsiya route, 220. So far, there is no recorded example
Vyatka, oval KOTLAS 220 VYaTKA / 1, 30- of the oval 219, Vyatka-Kotlas. There is no
12-16, with alongside a fine oval VYaTKA/ doubt that both the circular and oval postmarks of
VOKZ "a" 2-1-17. Figure 10 illustrates a post- this remote northern branch are indeed scarce.
card addressed to a village west of Pinyug, We appeal to members and readers. If you have
Podosinovets, Vologda Province. The address further examples of these ovals, please let us
contains Cherez St.(antsiyu) Pinyug (via Pinyug know so that we can publish an addendum with
Station). It was posted on the southbound train, details and illustrations.
receiving an oval KOTLAS 220 VYaTKA / 5, In conclusion, it is my pleasure to show an
26-4-16. At center base there is a receipt post- extremely scarce example of a "doplatit'" (post-
mark (cannot be common) of Podosinovets, age due) cachet of this line. Figure 13 illustrates
Volog. a postcard from August 1918 addressed to
Finally, with thanks to Alexander Epstein of Petrograd (note there is no hard sign "b" on the
Tallinn, fig. 11, which illustrates a postcard to end of the capital's name, conforming with the
Revel, Estlyand Gub. The writer dates the mes- reformed orthography ordered by the Bolshevik
sage 26/XI/1916. I think the writer is in error, Government). Sent unstamped, there is a very
since all the postmarks on the card are dated fine oval cachet DOPLATIT'/POChT. VAGON/
1917. The stamp is canceled by a part of oval 220, filled in for 40 kop. There is a Petrograd
KOTL.......A, with a somewhat clearer strike receipt postmark at bottom left, 22-8-18.
next to it, KOTLAS.......A/I, 27-11-17. The For the oval types, we have recorded only
Revel' town arrival postmarks are from an auto- examples of the southbound 220 route. none for
matic machine clearly reading 3-12-17. Inter- the northbound 219 route, and only three serials:
estingly, the message contains "Oparino"- one 1, 3, and 5. Certainly, there must have been
of the towns on the Vyatka-Kotlas line. Confir- serials 2, 4, and possibly 6.
mation of November 1917 use is the 5-kop.
stamp, the rate for that period. MAVERICK!
Our last illustration of an oval type is figure
12, with thanks to Jack Moyes. This is a postcard The question now arises about what hap-
to Germany, almost certainly from a prisoner- opened between March-April 1906. the latest date
of-war being held in this lonely, far away region. we can record for the circular types, and Decem-

90 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

J 7pgy f,,---LrU ........ .-.., fii

4-& tie {Q44.'Ae

9 1Y j,&-f11L '/.4a

Figure 8. Postcard addressed to Ekaterinburg with oval Kotlas 220 Vyatka mark, ..-12-15.

"- ... : .. -

Figure 9. Postcard addressed to Stantsiya Vyatka I with oval Kotlas 220 Vyatka and Vyatka
terminal marks, 30-12-16.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 91
October 1997

'll [ Uniun posr;,le universelle Ru,1sie.
MU-cT'ro axAi IQppecnotl.ie"nlHI Ajpechb. ''

10 .a w

.' iZArf jo. d,, :. ,. C.-

t3 'W "d.t ":'* f!
,, V0 A'- *_^. "."

S....., .- ... ,,

,-j. >'- C _TL_ .. .* /__-f
,S .- .. ., .. ..
[LL~l~tA^^r lC~ 'iLLC/. Hbf ;

Figure ]0.Postcard addressed to a village in Vologda province with oval Kotlas 220 Vyatka mark, 26-4-16.

j -^.A^, ^^-^o /^w HA- ., ,-


,/f. "- ,5 .--/-,-,'3 0 4- +

V A '- ) ,,e 9I ej' -
*t ^/, 7s. P ... .

Figure 11. Postcard to Revel' with partial Kotlas oval mark, 27-11-17. (A. Epstein collection)

92 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997



,/ ........ 9 ..U

Figure 12. Postcard to Germany with oval Kotlas 220 Vyatka mark, 14-3-17.

Carte postal Postkarte Post Card
Cartolini pusIlle- Dujtinice L.weelc:Lap Yitr ioris nn'lenc'; :i Briskaart y
Conrespondneairt -- Tarjeta prl. '- Bruion Br',eoit Oltnprit4' "'<

Figure d m u o l V l, t 1919

-October 1997

Figure 13. Postage due mark used on the Kotlas 220 Vyatka line, August 1919.

Rossica Journal Number 128-129 93
October 1997

kBC'E.M1'LUi HOl' l1 iCOJOLi'L. pOcri. 2?

tntr 11 R10b? w0 A Ci..

.. I Nr ,,7

-110H ... 0103%O \POCCIII.&
Z- zz0

Figure 14. Postcard addressed to St. Petersburg with oval Vyatka 220 Kotlas, at top. Enlargement of postmark, at
center/ Philip Robinson drawing ofpostmark, at bottom.

94 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997
October 1997

ber 1915, the earliest we can record for the oval "family" or "group" of ovals for the route 219-
type. It seems incredible that for a period of a few 220 were introduced some time after 1906, per-
months short of ten years we have no example of haps 1908?, and were replaced by a second
material from this railway! We cannot say with "family" of ovals around 1914-1915, the ovals
any certainty at what stage the circular types were recorded in the tabulation earlier. We obviously
replaced with the ovals! need to see more examples to substantiate or
I refer now to fig. 14, which appeared in a negate such an hypothesis.
recent Sheynberg sale in the USA (with thanks to
Dr. Sheynberg for the photocopy). The postcard [One must also consider that it may be yet another of
is addressed to St. Petersburg and is franked with the excellent fakes/forgeries reaching the West in re-
a 3-kop. stamp of the 1902-6 issue. The oval cent years.-Ed.]
postmark is struck twice. The middle illustration Station Postmarks
illustrates an enlargement and the lower illustra-
tion a reproduction (with thanks to Philip Kotlas Station
Robinson). The postmark reads: VYaTKA 220
"* KOTLASS / 2. 5-4-09. Two things are imme- We earlier recorded the circular type post-
diately noticeable: marks for Kotlas Station KOTLAS/
ZhELYeZNODOR. PO, March 1905 and March
1. Either the number is wrong, or the names are 1906, which are obviously scarce. The Robinson
round the wrong way. The 220 route was & Kiryushkin Railway Book records Kotlas S
from Kotlas to Vyatka. As the names stand on station as opening in June 1899, and closing in
the postmark, the number ought to have been July 1909. Surely there ought to be more ex-
219, but we do know of other postmarks amples of this mark! Was there ever an oval
where this has occurred. We have to say that postmark reading KOTLAS/VOKZ. (or
this is certainly at variance with the official VOKZAL)? There are many station post offices
lists and numbering, andthe laterovals known, that retained their circular types-Kruti, Kerch',
listed above. and others-so it is highly possible that seeing
2. The name KOTLAS is spelled here with a little use, there was no need for an oval replace-
double "SS," which could be just an error in ment, particularly if it ceased to be a "railway-
the postmark. We know of other misspell- administeredpostoffice" in mid-1909.Weknow
ings. The size of this "maverick" postmark is of many examples of the oval VYaTKA/VOKZ.
32 x 26mm and is certainly more "oval" in It was a busy station office. Again, the K&R
shape than the later ones listed before. Railway Book indicates that the Vyatka Station
Post Office opened in February 1910, in which
We do not have any indication of the place of case there never was a circular type and that the
origin of the postcard, but that it was going to St. oval type was the only type ever used here.
Petersburg convinces me that it was on the
southbound 220 route. This 1909 date is three Pinyug Station
years after the latest circular type we know, and
6 1/2 years earlier than the other ovals we know Figure 15 shows a postcard franked with a 3-
of. It is certainly consistent with the period of kop. Romanov stamp addressed to Vologda. It
oval postmarks. bears a postmark (not 100%, but clear enough on
I would venture the following suggestion, the original) ST. PINYuG / PERM' KOTL. Zh.
which may be supported or demolished when and D. (Stantsiya Pinyug/Perm'-Kotlas Railway) 3-
if further examples come to light. 9-15. The postcard was put on board a southbound
After the circular postmarks of this branch train, arriving at Vyatka and being taken further
line, there was a "family" of ovals introduced, of via the line to St. Petersburg-Vologda, arriving
which the one in fig. 14 can be included. This on 5-9-15. This postmark is recorded in the
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 95
October 1997

-C fir. f cr o|

/^ ,,,,/,,j "' -
,, /./ c, c ".-/. ,, Q..t, V Io n c fe ,...

-'"1 a /'e4 #. (U 4 S_ 4*, ; .. ........

*-..ta f P & -C< f/

^t~'^A^ ,^~l i,' rc 4
ti V* i t

Figure 15. Postcard from 1915 with strike of Pinyug station.

Kiryushkin & Robinson Addendum of Novem- for much of the year, leaving only the brief
ber 1996 for 24-12-06 and 26-3-17. Still, three summer months for possible water-borne trans-
recorded examples hardly makes it common! It is ports. However, it could be the river side at
scarce! Arkhangel'sk itself, with a "Kotlas Wharf being
In conclusion to these notes on this interest- the stopping point for shipping from Kotlas.
ing northern branch line, the material is scarce, Kotlas certainly was not in Arkhangel'sk Prov-
and to complete the picture, if we ever can, we since, it was in Vologda Province, so it is possible
need to see more from: all three periods of the that this was the Kotlas tie-up wharf at
circular postmarks; the "first family" of ovals, Arkhangel'sk.
1908-14?; the second "family" of ovals, 1914- Figures 17 and 18 illustrate two postcards
15 onwards, particularly the unrecorded serials 3 that were, at one time, in the collection of Dr.
and 5; any of the unrecorded 219s; and certainly, Raymond Casey and with thanks to him for the
more examples of the Kotlas and Pinyug station photocopies, and apologies to the present (un-

scarce oval postmarks of ship mail on the North
ADDENDUM Dvina river. Figure 18 is a postcard addressed to
Vologda with oval postmarks reading" 1-E
Figure 16 is a reproduction of a postcard in KOTLASSKOYe / PAROKh. "a" 27-8-09 (1st
the collection of Jack Moyes (with thanks). Dr. Kotlas/steamer). In the ice-free summer months,
Raymond Casey has a similar one. This shows a this service operated on the approximately 300-
rail spur at the river side. The caption on the mile journey from Vyelikii-Ustyug, via Kotlas
postcard reads "ARKHANGELSK Kotlas along the North Dvina to Arkhangel'sk. Our
Wharf." There is some dispute anrcorderehis is. guess is that this item was put ashore at Kotlas,
It is possibly the Kotlas Wharf rail extension and sent via the Kotlas-Vyatka railway and on to
from Kotlas Station, at the river side, where the Vologda. Figure 19 shows a similar oval, but
North-East River Vichegda meets the North "2nd Kotlas/Steamship" 14-9-10 addressed to
Dvina River flowing from Velikii-Ustyug to- Velikii-Ustyug, carried by the returning steam-
wards Arkhangel'sk. These rivers were frozen ship to that town.
96 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997

Ap xa3rrci.c :L -ArclhangId.

..' .

Figure 16. Postcard with picture of "Arkhangel'sk, Kotlas Wharf (Jack Moyes coll.)

Figure 17. 1st Kotlas Steamship mark. Overlay drawing from P. Robinson. (unknown collection)

'.AO ''Yt N

Figure 17. 2nd Kotlas Steamship mark. Overlay drawing from P. Robinson. (unknown collection)
October 1997
*7 4--- Ca 1
0/9>y, e.o c^ '* ^ ^ Q

Figure 17. Ist Kotlas Steamship mark. Overlay drawing from P. Robinson. (unknown collection)

October 1997


This cover illustrated above arrived after card bearing two strikes of the Kotlas/
layout of the journal and is included as an adden- Zheleznodor. PO circular type dated 21-IV-
dum. Thepostcardis addressedtoVelikii-Ustyug. 1907. A third example of this rare postmark can
There are two good strikes of the oval now be included in the tabulations.
VYaTKA*219*KOTLAS, serial 1 postmark. We
can now include in the tabulations at least one FINALE
example of the 219 route in the oval types. I have tried to present as much information as
In the July 1997 issue of the Australia-New .ie t r rm
Zealand Journal Pochta No. 22, there is an article possible o this branch line. There are many
,more pieces of the jigsaw puzzle. However, it is
by Vladimir Leonov of St. Petersburg on station,
ai o S. A te i st no longer correct to refer to this railway line as
and railway postmarks. Among them is a post- unrecorded" or "unknown"!
"unrecorded" or "unknown"! -


A new pricelist for the classic postal stationery of Russia has been issued. It covers postal cards,
letter cards, envelopes, wrappers, China, Levant, Zemstvo envelopes ex. collection Oleg Faberg6,
figure cancellations from St. Petersburg and Moskau.

A second pricelist is available for the postal stationery of Ukraine.

Enquiries invited.

Dr. Peter Steinkamp
P.O. Box 65 06 27
22366 Hamburg

Fax: +049-40-6022068

98 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
"October 1997

The Cherleniovsky Zemstvo Correspondence

by Terry Page

The activities of Aleksandr Yakovlevich existence suggests that his main occupation may
Cherleniovsky of Odessa were discussed in an have been running a business which required a
article by George Werbizky back in 1993 (Rossica quantity of pre-printed stationery. Those covers
120) following the discovery of a circular letter dated after 1909 are all addressed in manuscript,
he sent out to the different zemstvo districts, no doubt originating directly from the zemstvo
These circulars requested information to facili- offices themselves.
tate research for an intended literary work to be The various zemstvo districts went to some
entitled "A scientific work: 'Items Dealing with considerable trouble to produce philatelically
the History of the Zemstvo Post in Russia, Its interesting covers, often applying cachets and
Significance and Operations.'" This extremely other makings with considerable generosity. Fur-
long-winded title was probably as far as the work thermore, imperial stamps were added to each
got since publication never materialized. Despite cover (except the illustrated Lokhvitsa item) de-
this, however, the philatelic legacy of the covers spite the presence in some cases of free-frank
which Cherleniovsky received in response to his seal cachets which by themselves would have
request is not without interest, served to carry the items to Odessa without
To the four covers mentioned by Mr. charge. Cherleniovsky would almost certainly
Werbizky can be added a further thirteen. have affixed imperial postage stamps to his own
Cherleniovsky conducted his correspondence self-addressed covers, and it is possible he may
over a period of at least nine years. The earliest have enclosed those which franked the hand-
recorded date is the form letter illustrated in the written replies. All this is interesting because
earlier article; 28 December 1906, and the latest, with the exception of the Poltava registered cov-
a cover from Nolinsk mailed on 2 September ers produced by Ganko, philatelic zemstvo cov-
1915. The printed, self-addressed envelopes used ers are virtually unknown. Consider also that it
by Cherleniovsky are of two sizes, and their was probably quite flattering for small rural au-


(0.. '

%^v/ -^ A ji e K e a m n y ml J B It 4 IV

q, FP I ,EH 1j fil., ,-O .XY

Figure la. Front of cover. Lebedin (Khar'kov Prov.) July 1907. Massive 24-kop. zemstvo franking on reverse
made up of a pair plus a single 5-kop. indigo and blue, a strip of three 2-kop. carmine-rose and a single 3-kop.
violet and lilac (Chuchin Nos. 7, 9, 10).
Rossica Journal Number 128-129 99
October 1997

.1 .Pa


Figure lb. Reverse of cover showing zemstvo franking.

thorities to be singled out for mention in a "scien- collection. I have seen photocopies of the other
tific work" and one can understand their desire to two which are both from Lokhvitsa, dated July
put the best foot forward. After all, a proud and 1910 and June 1911 respectively. Interestingly,
attractive cover, at least in these circumstances, this makes a total of three Cherleniovsky covers
would make a positive statement about the recorded from this one district. I regret to say,
zemstvo district. A good advertisement! though, that I have never seen any additional
Of the additional thirteen covers mentioned form letters or corresponding zemstvo replies.
above, I am able to illustrate eleven from my own

r :O E C C A, -

XepcoHcKso r)6
;j II Figure 2. Byelozersk (Novgorod
S. Prov.), May 1908. Registered let-

Water franked with 3-kop. red

'9," .-j -----: '.---


100 Rossica Journal Number 128-129
October 1997