Frontpage Articles Ottoman Empire Stamps Random Notes: III.—Provisional Postage Due Stamps
Random Notes: III.—Provisional Postage Due Stamps PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Peter Michalove   
Saturday, 23 May 2009 19:07
Since Higlett’s 1926 article on the T-overprinted stamps, there have been at least two important further publications on the subject. One, by Ian McQueen, appeared in the OPAL Journal no. 160 for December 1985. I don’t have the page nos. for that article, but it was reprinted in the Tughra Times vol. 7, no. 4 for October/November 1986, pp. 4-7. McQueen makes several observations that add to Higlett’s original article. First, he indicates that the T-overprint does not occur on the 1901 issue, and the practice began with the 1905 issue. Further, McQueen is dubious that they were used on the 1913 Post Office issue; he argues that the 10-para and 20-para values of the 1913 postage due stamps were unissued and apparently sold in bulk to a stamp dealer. The use of the T overprints on this issue would thus be a purely speculative issue. Therefore, McQueen considers the practice of overprinting with the T to apply to the 1905 through 1909 issues. He also points out that we must distinguish between stamps overprinted with a T to be used as postage due stamps; and unoverprinted stamps affixed to letters with insufficient postage and then tied to the cover with a T handstamp. McQueen concludes with a table of handstamps, indicating where each handstamp was used, or appears to have been used, and the issues and denominations on which they appeared. McQueen adds to Higlett’s list usages from Ankara (possibly), Tribizond, and Samsoun (possibly). He also suggests that Smyrna (Izmir) is likely to have used the T-overprints as well, although no conclusive examples were available to him. The second article adding to this topic is by John Garton in the first OPAL ~ Tughra Times joint issue of 1986, pp. 38-42. Garton concludes that the use of the T overprint can be divided into three periods. First, the period 1907-1910/11. (Is the beginning date of 1907 a typo for 1905?). In this period the overprinted stamps were used (a) as fractional postage due when the postage due charge exceeded the issued stamps, and (b) as a supplement when no postage due stamps were available. Garton records a second period from 1914-1922 when postage due stamps from Bradbury and Wilkinson were unavailable, and later during the chaos after the First World War. Garton’s third period is 1920-1923 (thus overlapping with the second period) when no postage dues were available to the Republican Army. Garton adds to McQueen’s list of places Alvalik, Alexandrette, and Izmir (apparently definite now) for the first period. For the third period, he shows the T overprint used on stamps of 1917 as well as earlier issues.
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