TURKEY, Random Notes, 1926, G. A. Higlett, Harris Publications Limited

Section IV

In consequence of the carriage of letters by travel¬lers in large numbers, infringing the post office monopoly, and causing loss of postal revenue, the authorities created a special postal contraband service. These contraband letters were taxed at double rates of postage, and half of the fees collected thereon was supposed to be given to any informer. The Turkish word for contraband is Katchak, and this special organisation was known as the Katchak Post.


TURKEY, Random Notes, 1926, G. A. Higlett, Harris Publications Limited

Section III

Original book contains two pages with images. These images have been moved to the list for easy identification and recent color copies of some overprints have been added.

When postage stamps were first introduced in 1863 special stamps were issued for denoting tax on unpaid letters, and such stamps have been continued ever since. For many years they were similar to the ordinary postage stamps, but printed in special colours. It may be seen by the catalogues that while several values were provided in the issues of 1863 to 1901, from 1901 to 1913 only the two values of 1 piastre and 2 piastres were issued. Why was this?

TURKEY, Random Notes, 1926, G. A. Higlett, Harris Publications Limited

Section I

In considering the stamp issues of Turkey one must not expect to find the same strict adherence to official regulations that may prevail in this country. On innumerable occasions when there have been shortages of stamps of a particular value, use has been made of stamps of double that value cut in two and used for the half value. Such shortages have naturally occurred much more frequently there than in a country like our own, with its constant and rapid communications. I have specimens of the first issue of 1863 thus bi-sected and used for half value, and I have specimens of the current stamps similarly treated. This practice was particularly the case with the Postage Due stamps, as the values provided did not properly meet the requirements. Sometimes even the stamps were cut into quarters, and used for quarter values. I believe that the practice is now supposed to be unauthorised and irregular, but these bi-sected specimens still continue to pass through the post and properly pay postage.

TURKEY, Random Notes, 1926, G. A. Higlett, Harris Publications Limited

Section II


1909. Jaffa Overprint.

In the Yvert & Tellier catalogue there is listed a series of stamps under the Nos. 139 to 145, consisting of six values of the 1908 issue, stated to be overprinted in commemoration of the accession of the Sultan. They are priced at from 40 to 500 francs each.

This overprint was never sanctioned by the Constantinople authorities. It was a purely local speculative issue, made for getting money out of collectors. To achieve this aim, and secure admission to the catalogues, so as to create a market for the stamps, a good number of letters were passed through the post bearing these overprinted stamps. It was probably done by, or in connivance with, local postal officials.

Because of its high catalogue quotations, this series has also been imitated by the forger, and such imitations are to be found printed also on other issues than the correct one.