The Bizone issued the set of stamps shown above on August 15, 1948. They commemorate the 700th anniversary of the laying of the cornerstone of the Cologne Cathedral in 1248.
The stamps depict the Madonna, the Three Kings, and two
different views of the Cologne Cathedral. The surtax went to fund the
reconstruction of the cathedral.
Beginning on September 1, 1948 and extending into 1951, a brand new set of definitives was introduced, featuring German Buildings. The stamps were lithographed on white paper which was watermarked multiple "D P". The stamps were issued both line perforated and comb perforated, resulting in both perforation gauges 11 1/2 x 11 and 11 x 11. The set is shown in the images above.
The new Pfennig denomination designs depicted the Frankfurt Town Hall, the Church of Our Lady in Munich, the Cologne Cathedral, and the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. The new Deutsche Mark designs depicted the Holsten Gate in Lubeck.
The Deutsche Mark denominations come in two major types. Type I has four steps in the entryway of the gate (short stairway). Type II has seven steps in the entryway of the gate (long stairway). The Type II stamps are the scarcer of the two. The stamps shown in the image above are all Type I.
The 2 Pf., 4 Pf., 5 Pf., 6 Pf. orange, 10 Pf., 15 Pf., 20 Pf. carmine, 25 Pf., 30 Pf. blue, 40 Pf., 50 Pf. blue green, 60 Pf., 80 Pf., 90 Pf., and the 1 DM (Type II) were also issued with perforation gauge 14. In most cases, these are scarcer than the perforated 11 1/2 x 11 or the perforated 11 x 11 stamps. Many of the stamps in this series also exist imperforate.
the specialist, this series offers a multitude of collecting
opportunities. Of special note is the watermark used on this series,
which exists in four different varieties, with the "D" in the watermark
pointing to the right, downward, left, and upward.
The final two Bizone stamps issued during 1948 are shown above. The two stamps, issued December 14, 1948, feature the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin and they are inscribed "HELFT BERLIN" or "HELP BERLIN". The surtax amount provided aid to the city of Berlin.
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