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?

I can only suggest that large printings may have been made of other values, sufficient to supply the needs of most offices for many years, and only these two values most in use were really wanted in quantities during the years mentioned. It must be borne in mind that we are dealing with a country having a large number of illiterates and much less correspondence by letter than we have had here. The places having large postal business would naturally be the capital and its surroundings, and the great centres of trade. These, or some of them, would be the most likely to exhaust their supplies of other values.

The 1 piastre and 2 piastres values issued between 1901 and 1913 did not fill the requirements of the post offices at such places, and other values were provided by overprinting, or hand-stamping, ordinary postage stamps of the required values with the letter T, to convert them into postage due stamps. Each office using these provisional stamps appears to have had its own type of overprint, and I am able to present illustrations of the ten different types known to me, with identification and some other particulars, dealing only with those which are found in my own collection. Whether there are others or not, I do not know.

I give the office of use for each of the above numbers, and the stamps on which I have this overprint:


Type 1

No. 1. Stamboul, head office.

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 2

No. 2. Stamboul, head office.

1909 issue, 10 pa.

Type 3Type 3 Sample

No. 3. Galata.

1905 issue, 5 pa., 20 pa.

(Editor's note: The overprint on the original image is indistinguishable at places from the stamp. The color sample may not be the same as the original.)

Type 4Type 4 Sample

No. 4. Galata.

1905 issue, 10 pa., 1 pi.

1908 issue, 10 pa., 1 pi., 2 pi.

Type 5Type 5 Sample

No. 5. Galata.

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 6Type 6 Sample

No. 6. Fatih (adjoining Stamboul).

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

1913 issue, 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 7

No. 7. Kadikeui (opposite Stamboul, in Asia).

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 8Type 8 Sample

No. 8. Pera (foreign quarter of Stamboul).

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 9

No. 9. Taxim (adjoining Pera).

1909 issue, 5 pa., 10 pa., 20 pa.

Type 10Type 10 Sample

No. 10. Beyrouth.

1905 issue, 5 pa., 20 pa.

The Beyrouth type resembles one of the Galata types rather closely (Editor's note: The Galata type is Type 3). The specimen illustrated shows part of a Smyrna postmark, presumably from a letter addressed to Smyrna where it was postmarked, as Smyrna itself never made use of these provisional stamps (Editor's note: The specimen in question here is the Type 3 specimen).

Recently I have obtained stamps in current use having new types of such overprints, and I am in­formed that they are probably from Angora, where such provisionals have recently been in use, but as yet I have not sufficient information for publication of any details. Generally speaking, since 1913, the post offices have been well supplied, and there has been no need for these provisionals, except perhaps for this recent use at Angora.

It will be seen that these overprinted stamps are worth including in collections, and have more claim to be there than many others which have obtained catalogue rank.