Official Cards

Source: The Stamp Atlas by Stuart Rossiter & John Flower, 1986, Macdonald & Co

Austria

Bavaria

Bavaria was established in 1804. Its stamps ceased to be valid on 30 June 1920.

The card issued by the 1896 Bavarian State Exhibition may be an official card.

Belgium

A court-size card postally used in November 1885

Bohemia

The Kingdom of Bohemia was a medieval and early modern monarchy in Central Europe, the predecessor of the modern Czech Republic. Bohemia came under the control of Charlemagne (Charles the Great) towards the end of the 8th century. Otto the Great (912 to 973) firmly integrated the Duchy of Bohemia into the Holy Roman Empire which was created on 2 February 962 when Otto became its first Holy Roman Emperor. In the 12th century Bohemia became the Kingdom of Bohemia carved out from the previous Duchy of Bohemia. In 1526 the Austrian Habsburgs obtained control of the Kingdom of Bohemia and it became part of the Austrian Duchy which was the Austrian Empire from 1804. When the Holy Roman Empire was dissolved on 6 August 1806, Bohemia remained part of what was now the Empire of Austria. With Napoleon Bonaparte’s final defeat, the German Confederation was established in 1815 by the Congress of Vienna, Bohemia remaining part of the Empire of Austria, now part of the Prussian-led German Confederation. With Austria’s defeat by Prussia in the Seven Weeks War of 1866, the Confederation was abolished. The Austrian Empire retained Bohemia until the Treaty of Neuilly in 1919 when an independent Czechoslovakia was created. In March 1939 Germany once again annexed Bohemia and Moravia as a Protectorate which lasted until May 1945.

This card was written on 3 August 1877 when Bohemia was part of the Austrian Empire.

Cape of Good Hope

During the Napoleonic Wars, the Dutch Republic was occupied by the French in 1795. Thus the Cape Colony became a French vassal and enemy of the British. The United Kingdom invaded and occupied the Cape Colony that same year. The British relinquished control of the territory in 1803 but returned and reoccupied the Colony on 19 January 1806 following the Battle of Blaauwberg.

In the War of the Sixth Coalition (March 1813 to May 1814), a coalition of Austria, Prussia, Russia, the United Kingdom, Portugal, Sweden, Spain and a number of German States defeated France and drove Napoleon into exile on Elba. The Dutch ceded the territory to the British in the Anglo-Dutch Treaty of 1814 The Cape was then administered as the Cape Colony and it remained a British colony until it was incorporated into the independent Union of South Africa in 1910. British control of the colony led Boer settlers to make the Great Trek northwards.

Ceylon

Chile

First founded in 1795 as Murray, Draper, Fairham & Company, the American Bank Note Company developed into the United States’ foremost high security engraving and printing firm in the years prior to the Civil War. It produced paper money, postage stamps, stock and bond certificates. After the Civil War, it produced paper money and stamps for foreign governments, including Canada and Haiti. In 1879, it merged with the National Bank Note and Continental Bank Note companies.

Between 1535 and 1541 the Spanish gained a foothold in northern Chile and founded Santiago. Bernard O’Higgins led Chile to independence in 1818. A regular postal service between Buenos Aires and Santiago was established in 1748 – taking 15 days.

France

This card was printed in June 1878. Unlike most official cards, it is not pre-stamped.

Netherlands

This card from Netherlands arrived in the German post office in Istanbul which existed between 1870 and 1914.

New South Wales

New South Wales was the first state of Australia settled by Europeans. A postal service operated between between Sydney and Parramatta from 1803 at a cost of 2d per letter. The first stamps were issued on 1 January 1850. NSW became a member of the Universal Postal Union in 1891. In 1901 it was federated into the Commonwealth of Australia but continued to use its own stamps until 1913.

Romania

The Romanian state was formed in 1859 through a personal union of the Danubian Principalities of Moldavia and Wallachia. The new state, officially named Romania since 1866, gained independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1877. Following the outbreak of World War I, after declaring its neutrality in 1914, Romania fought on the side of the Allied Powers beginning in 1916.

However, about half of present day Romania was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until 1918, including the provinces of Transylvania, Bucovina, Banat Crisana and Maramures. These provinces were ruled by the Habsburgs for centuries before becoming part of Romania. The card above is from that part of the country while the card below is from the newly-formed state.

In 1899, Austria adopted the krone as its currency which helps us date the card above.

At 16 by 10.3 centimetres, this is an unusually large card.

This card: This seems to be an order in 1887 by a firm called Christovich freres of Brăila, Romania, to E. A. Naether in Zeitz, a city in what is now Saxony-Anhalt in Germany. The order is for children’s high chairs, the first being 1 St. hohen Kinderstuhl .

Ernst Albert Naether (1825 to 1894) was a German entrepreneur considered the founder of the German pram industry. About 1850 Naether started to produce wooden miniature children’s trolleys in Zeitz In 1852 he exhibited his children’s pram at the Leipzig Trade Fair. In 1876 his sons Ablin and Richard took over the management of the company. In 1910 the company was transformed into an stock corporation. In 1946 like most companies in East Germany, the company was expropriated and transferred to the VEB Zekiwa.

On 10 September 1892 the Romanian Official Monitor journal published a court order against Christovich who had left no forwarding address, requiring him to carry out specified repairs at his his former tenancy. This must be urgent by now.

Russia

The heading ОТКРЫТОЕ ПИСЬМО translates as OPEN LETTER, the original Russian wording for postcard.

Sweden

Switzerland

Swiss Federal Council

  • Grasset D. Florian S.

In 1900 the Swiss Federal Council organised a celebration of the 25 years anniversary of the Universal Postal Union and commissioned special stamps and postcards. The same design123 was used for 5, 10 and 25 cent stamps and postcards bearing the design to the left of the address at the 5 and 10 cent level. S. Florian, of Paris, prepared the original die from the design of D. Grasset. The printing was entrusted to Max Girardet, of Berne, and was effected in colour on white paper124. Girardet was secretary of the Swiss Society of Painters and Sculptors125 and it is not clear if he also printed the postcards. He was later prosecuted for selling used plates and proof sheets of the stamps126.

United Kingdom

Stuckey’s Bank, as so often happened in the early days of banking, evolved almost imperceptibly from a general merchanting business, that of Samuel Stuckey of Langport. His bank there dated from 1772 and Langport remained its Head Office throughout the 137 years independent life of the bank. 1806 saw the opening of the Bristol Office at 50 Broad Quay. Stuckey’s Bank, a joint stock bank and the second to be formed in the country, was created in 1826 by the amalgamation of three Stuckey family banks along with a private Bristol bank. From 1828 they came under the name Stuckey’s Banking Company, also known as Bristol & Somersetshire Bank. In the heyday of Vincent Stuckey (24 March 1771 to 8 May 1845) their note-issue was the largest in England and Wales after the Bank of England and their notes were widely preferred locally.

USA

In 1835, Connecticut merchant John Pitkin purchased the land of the Town of New Lots north of New Lots Avenue. He founded the East New York Boot, Shoe & Leather Manufacturing Company shoe factory at what is now Williams Street and Pitkin Avenue in 1838, with its sales department in New York city. Pitkin named the area East New York to signify it as the eastern end of New York City

The company obtained contracts for the labour of one hundred and fifty convicts in the Albany County Penitentiary and for the labour of two hundred and fifty boys in the Providence, R. I., Reform School. They also added the labour of the prisoners in the Rhode Island State Prison and established another factory in the city of Providence. The labour of some three hundred Albany county prisoners, then employed by a rival firm, was offered as an inducement to move its plant to Albany.

The East New York Shoe Co., 129 Duane street, are looking for the man who has been borrowing money on the strength of their reputation. He has victimized several firms in Boston and elsewhere by representing himself as buyer for the company. Notwithstanding this, the “Ballou Flexible” shoe increases in popularity, and Mr. F. E. Pitkin says it is the “boss” shoe for ladies’, misses’ and children.

The Boot & Shoe Recorder 5 October 1887

In 1880, the East New York Shoe Company had its factory department at 226 to 236 Hamilton Street, Albany and Albany Penitentiary. Charles T Whitman (died July 1906). In the spring of 1889 the contracts for penal labour were closed through adverse State legislation. The company placed advertisements seeking to recruit first-class shoe workmen in bottoming department from as far away as Boston to move to Albany.

This depression caused a reorganization of the company which was successful until the spring of 1890 when difficulties arose with the labour unions. These were partly settled in 1891 and on 28 January 1892, the Boston Daily Globe reported a settlement made in favour of their employees by the company after a two year strike. However, the financial depression beginning in 1893 made itself felt in the business and it was wound up in 1894 and 1895 all obligations honourably liquidated.

Source: Landmarks of Albany County

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