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Cancellations and rates applying to French newspapers

  • jgane
  • Topic Author
3 years 7 months ago #205 by jgane
The Society recently had a query from Mr. S.K. from India
- Hello I am a thematic collector and exhibitor from India. I came across an interesting philatelic item - Journal de L’Espoir - which was printed in the late 19th century . The journal was printed on a paper with stamp pre affixed. I found few samples online.

I would like to know about the postal rates for Newspapers / Journal in France during 1870s. Would you have any information on the same for me , please ? Also, I would be glad if there is more information on this Espoir journal and why it was printed on a paper pre-affixed with stamps .

... I see that all the papers have 2c 2c postage except the 1879 one which has 1c 1c postage. Also I find that only one stamp is preprinted on the paper over which the content is printed , whereas the other stamp is pasted later and canceled.

I would be really happy with any information about this journal and the postage rates of those years. It’s very rare to find a newspaper that was printed over a stamped paper and hence my interest in the items. The example images were extracted from . Thank you.

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3 years 7 months ago #206 by prakelly
I am writing to you in response to your request for information on two points concerning the cancellations and rates applying to French newspapers with the following franking.
18 April 1873 2c typographical cancel + 2c post office cancel.
4 September 1873 the same
20 January 1877 the same
18 April 1878 the same
1879 (date not clear) 1c typographical + 1c post office cancel.

1. Typographical cancellation.
From about 1869 and exceptionally earlier, the Post Office tolerated the practice employed by newspapers of affixing stamps to the news sheet prior to printing, with the stamps being considered as being cancelled once the printing process had taken place and they had been printed over. The purpose of this was to speed up the process of last minute printing before the papers went out to the post office.
The stamp that was typographically cancelled was typically one that covered the reduced rate applied to local usage within the circumscription of the office concerned or within a large town. This was the obvious choice as an additional stamp could be applied to cover territorial use which would then have to be cancelled at the post office with their circular date stamp.

2. Postage rates.
The postage rate structure for journals, newspapers, in France was extremely complex.
As far as your examples are concerned we have to start with the tariff of 1 August 1856 that separates newspapers into two categories.
• Journals and periodicals covering politics and social economy.
• Journals and periodicals confined to non political issues, such as letters, the arts, science, agriculture, industry etc.
These two categories are each broken down into two further categories
• Local mail. Described as being sent within the circumscription of the post office or within a town.
• Territorial mail outside of the above.
(There is the added exception of the departments of Seine and Seine & Oise where no reduction is applied to local usage.)

The postage rates were:
Territorial rate 4c to 40g + 1c per additional 10g
Local rate 2c to 20g + 1c per additional 20g.

All of your examples prior to 1 May 1878 were subject to these rates. The newspaper “L’Espoir” was registered as being political for postal purposed and was published in the department of Ardennes.
Your letter would have been sent at the territorial rate.

A new rate came into force on 1 May 1878 that simplified matters in that a single territorial and local rate was applied irrespective of whether the newspaper was registered as being political or non political.
The new rates were as follows:
• Outside the department of publication or adjoing department
2c to 25g, 3c to 50g +1c per additional 25g.
• Published inside the department of Seine and Seine & Oise and sent within department of publication
1c to 25g, 1 ½ c to 50g + ½ c per additional 25g
• Published in any other department and sent within the department or the adjoining one
1c to 50g + ½ c per additional 25g.

Your example is rated at 2c that could fall into any of these three categories but I believe it was the first one that is the most likely. If you had the entire journal the weight would give you the answer.

I Think that this answers your questions but if you have any other queries please come back to me.
I am copying this to our publications manager as the information may be useful for our journal or website.

Yours sincerely
Peter R,A,Kelly.

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