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German Empire

Offices in the Turkish Empire

Postage Stamps

The German Empire (North German Confederation) opened its first post office in the Turkish Empire, in Constantinople, in 1870.

Between 1870 and 1871, definitive postage stamps of the North German Confederation were used in the post office at Constantinople.

Between 1872 and 1883, German Imperial postage stamps were used in the post office at Constantinople.

There are many varieties of these "vorläufer" or "forerunner" issues, and the postmarks and postal history of this 13 year period can be a philatelic study in itself.  Some examples are shown above.

Considering the immense size of the Turkish Empire, Germany only maintained five post offices there, those being Beirut (in Lebanon), Constantinople (Istanbul, Turkey), Jaffa (in Israel), Jerusalem (in Israel / Palestine), and Smyrna (in Turkey).


In January 1884 the contemporary German definitive postage stamps were overprinted and revalued in Turkish currency.  These were the first "official" issues for the German post offices in the Turkish Empire.

These stamps exist in vertical gutter pairs, but as such, they are very expensive.


In 1889 and 1900, the new Numeral and Reichs Eagle stamps of the German Empire were overprinted and revalued for use by post offices in the Turkish Empire.  They are all shown above.

These stamps come in many different shades, some of which are very expensive.  They also exist in vertical gutter pairs.

There are quite a few plate faults on these stamps.  See the Michel Deutschland Spezial-Katalog volume I for details.


In October 1900, the Germania and Representative Subject definitive postage stamps of Germany, inscribed REICHSPOST, were overprinted and revalued for use by the German Empire post offices in Morocco.  They are all shown above.

ALL the stamps with UPPERCASE overprints are overprint Type I. In the case of these stamps, the letter "A" in "PARA" and in "PIASTER" is pointed at the top.

In the same manner as the high denomination Representative Subject issues of Germany, the 2 Mk. denomination comes in two types, the 3 Mk. denomination comes in two types, and the 5 Mk. denomination comes in four typesHowever, with the exception of the 5 Mk. Type I, all of the different types are reasonably affordable.  For detailed information on the different types, please refer to the Germany - Empire / Germania Issue - 1900 page and the Michel Deutschland Spezial-Katalog volume one.


Between 1902 and 1904, the Germania and Representative Subject definitive postage stamps shown above were overprinted and revalued in a new, thicker font.

ALL these new stamps have overprint Type II. In the case of these stamps, the letter "A" in "PARA" and in "PIASTER" is flat at the top, with wide serifs.

Other UPPERCASE OVERPRINT denominations of the Germania and Representative Subject REICHSOST set exist with overprint Type II, but they were not officially issued or sent to post offices in the Turkish Empire.


In October 1905, the 1902 Germania and Representative Subject  definitives, printed on unwatermarked paper, and inscribed DEUTSCHES REICH, were overprinted and revalued for use at post  offices in the Turkish Empire.  They are all shown above.


Between 1905 and 1913
, the 1905 Germania and Representative Subject Peacetime printing definitives, printed on Lozenge Watermarked paper, and inscribed DEUTSCHES REICH, were overprinted and revalued for use at post offices in the Turkish Empire. They are all shown above.


In
August 1908, the five denominations of the 1905 Germania and Representative Subject Peacetime printing definitives, shown above, were revalued diagonally in French currency.

With the outbreak of World War I in 1914, the German post offices in the Turkish Empire were all closed.




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