Monday, November 30, 2015

Mažeikiai-Riga Railway post 1912

Муравьево / Muravjevo (now Mažeikiai, Lithuania) - Riga

Альт-Ауц / Alt-Autz (today Auce, Latvia)

This is an Imperial Russian postal stationery with a railway post cancel of 1912, line 86 between Муравьево / Muravjevo (now Mažeikiai, Lithuania) and Riga which was also a part of Russia at that time. The destination of the card is Альт-Ауц / Alt-Autz, a German place name spelled in Russian alphabet. It sounds a bit weird but it was perfectly normal because the gubernia of Kurland was German speaking despite being part of the Russian Empire. The town  of Альт-Ауц / Alt-Autz is today simply called Auce, part of Latvia, just 5 km from the Lithuanian border and 25 km north east of Mažeikiai. I had been curious if "Neu-Autz" exists. If "Alt-" does, why not the "Neu-", and yes! it does actually. Wikipedia tells me it is Jaunauce which is literally the "New Auce", located just 4 km west of Auce.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Klaipėda 1941

Close up of the picture part

This is a real nice postal stationery featuring an image of Memel (now Klaipėda, Lithuania) issued in 1941 as a part of a big series of beautiful places in the Third Reich. Memel is described as the northernmost city of Greater Germany in the text. It just makes me wonder where is the present northernmost city of Germany...
From my opinion, it would have been a perfect card if there wasn't the head of Hitler on the corner... Well, it's history, what can I do...

Friday, November 27, 2015

Kaunas 1941

This super ordinary looking simple postcard is actually a pretty rare stuff. This is a postcard sent in August 31st 1941 from Kauen, Ostland (now Kaunas, Lithuania) to a unreadable location. The card is stampless, no indication of any kind that it is a military field post and no sign nor trace of any stamp being soaked. Actually, this is exactly how it supposed to be. According to "Deutsche Dienstpost 1939-1945 Handbuch und Stempelkatalog" written by Dr. H. Schultz, The post office of Deutsche Dienstpost Ostland in Kaunas opened in 26 July 1941, banned the use of the Lithuanian overprinted Nepriklausoma issue (at least in Kaunas) and established their own postal network. The German Reich stamps were introduced in September 1941 and finally at November 4th 1941, they have issued the overprinted Ostland Hitler stamps. The postcard in question has been used during this very short stampless period between 26 July and 1 September.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Ukmergė 1943

Arrival cancel Freiburg (Breisgau) 1 on the back of the cover

This is a registered cover sent in 1943 from Ukmergė, Ostland to Freiburg i. Br. (im Breisgau), Germany. The German Dienstpost Ostland actually used the name Wilkomir and not Ukmergė but the regular post office kept using the old postmarker of the First Rupublic as you can see on this cover. The sender also puts his address as Ukmergė but the registration label provided by the Dienstpost states Wilkomir. Interesting... You can see that the sender is Lithuanian from his name and therefore, wasn't able to use the postal service of the Dienstpost since it was reserved to the German nationals.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Kudirkos Naumiestis 1941

Wow... I mean, this was a pure coincidence that I did bump up to such Soviet stamps. Who would expect to see a 1941 Kudirkos Naumiestis postmark on a Soviet definitive, just like that... More over, the date is June 22nd 1941, day one of the Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of Soviet Union. Kudirkos Naumiestis was located near to the German border at that time so probably by the end of the day, the entire city was on the German hands which means that it is also the final day of the first Soviet Annexation of Lithuania and their postal service as well of course. It seems like they weren't using CCCP postmark but the old "Naumiestis Trg." postmarker from the first Lithuanian Republic which was pretty common in regional towns at that time. The stamps still have gum on the back which suggests that it is a CTO. I have once read an article about a German Dienstpost Ostland post office worker in Tallinn, Estonia, cancelling stamps with CTO on the last minute before closing down the post office in 1944 when Soviet troops were about to reach the city. I don't know about Kudirkos Naumiestis but I can believe if something similar happened there as well.