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Local Stamps

Finsterwalde - 1946

Local stamps were issued by the town of Finsterwalde during 1946.

A reminder:  One must realize that in the months and years following the collapse of the Third Reich, up to about 1948, there was really no civilian or commercial infrastructure, no local government, and the only national governments were those of the Allied occupation military forces.  All of the local issues of Germany from this period, especially the ones with obliterating overprints on the stamps of the former Third Reich, have been heavily counterfeited.  Authentic mint and used stamps from this period are actually very scarce.  One must assume that unauthenticated mint condition examples of some of the local issues are either forgeries or reproductions.  Likewise, one must assume that unauthenticated used condition examples from this period are either of "philatelic" in origin or have been favor-canceled.  These all have minimal philatelic value.  If one is buying unauthenticated examples of the post-war local issues, please keep this in mind and DON'T spend too much money on them.

Located in the Soviet Occupation Zone, the town is about 25 miles Southwest of Cottbus, in a wine-growing region of the state of Brandenburg.

Finsterwalde was first mentioned in 1288 in historical texts, and it was a possession of Saxony after 1635. It has a Gothic church, built in 1581, and a castle, which are shown in the picture at the left. Today, it is basically an industrial town of foundries, mills, and factories. The town is famous for the "Four Singers from Finsterwalde".

The twelve local semi-postal stamps shown above were issued on February 16, 1946, to raise money to pay for local reconstruction projects. They depict the Finsterwalde City Hall, with the coat of arms below. They are unwatermarked and printed on grayish brown paper with heavily grilled gum.

The souvenir sheet shown above comes in two varieties, one with a small coat of arms, and the other with a larger coat of arms. The souvenir sheets are considerably scarcer than the stamps of this issue.

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Germany - Allied Occupation

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Local Stamps - Finsterwalde - 1946