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HQ Postal History

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Old May 12th 09, 04:45 PM posted to rec.collecting.stamps.discuss
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Default HQ Postal History

Czech dead letter offices - http://www.japhila.cz/hof/0528/index0528a.htm

Covers passed through Dead Letter Offices (DLOs) represent a fascinating
collecting topic where each item is a unique piece with own history and
usually with both sides full of cancels, markings, postage stamps and seals.
DLOs process letter mail that is undeliverable to the addressee and cannot
be returned to the sender. Such mail is officially opened and returned if a
valid address is found. DLOs were established at postal directorates and
existed already in the 19th century in Praha (Prague) and Brno. During the
20th century their number increased to 8 in 1949 when most of them were
closed and only the original two DLOs remained. Since 1952 only one DLO
existed; it was in Praha, since 1966 in Trnava and since 1993 in Brno. The
usual Czech term for DLO is "postovni ulozna", sometimes used in the form
"postovni ohlasovna a ulozna" (Dead letter and parcel office). No fees were
associated with processing of mail by the DLO but since 1937 the return
postage was charged. DLOs used paper seals for closing opened covers and a
large variety of manipulation, "fee to collect" and other auxiliary
handstamps to mark necessary data on the covers. The DLOs also used line
handstamps, date stamps and official stamps intended for internal use that
can be sometimes also found on processed mail.

The exhibit "Czech dead letter offices" presents a specialized documentation
of Czech dead letter offices from 1901 (when the usage of paper seals for
closing mail begun) to 1966, examples of newer items are also included. To
ensure best picture quality for the Exponet, this exhibit is derived from a
completely electronic version created by combining text, scans of original
items and computer-made images of the seals. Each item is presented from
both sides: below the original of the font side, a (sometimes reduced) scan
of the back side follows. The descriptions include computer reconstructions
of the pictures of the used seals that are the most collectable artifacts of
DLO items.

528 on line exhibits from 44 countries: http://www.japhila.cz/hof/


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