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The classic stamps of Danzig

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Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 09/09/2011  02:06 am  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add Jkjblue to your friends list  Get a Link to this Message

I'm a classic WW "generalist", and this is intended as an introduction to Danzig's incredible and lovely classic stamps.


What to do with Danzig?

After WWI, the League of Nations decided to create a "Free City", separated from Germany and the newly reconstituted Poland. For access, Poland was able to use the port on the Baltic Sea ( now Gdansk). But as Danzig was 95% ethnic German, it remained a separate City-State. The Capital naturally was Danzig, and the population was about 400,000 in 1939.

In the beginning, German stamps of 1906-20 were overprinted, but by 1921 Danzig had their own designs. This persisted until 1939, when Germany seized Danzig, and added it to the Reich. After WWII, the city and port became part of Poland.

So lets take a look at the Danzig stamp issues....



The "Germania" stamps of 1906-20 were overprinted "Danzig", and issued in 1920. Here is the 50pf purple & black/bluff, one of fifteen found for the issue. The design should have been very familiar to the Danzig population.



The same year, the "Danzig" overprinted issues were surcharged with various values. Here is a 30pf orange & black/buff with a 1m surcharge. There are some interesting printing techniques used on some higher valued (German) Danzig stamps, including this one, to prevent reuse. Note the thin wavy lines, called "burelage" on the paper?



What better image for a port city such as Danzig to have as their own first stamp design than the "Hanseatic Trading Ship"? Here is a 1920 10m dark green & brown orange, one of ten stamps issued in honor of the Constitution.



The 1921-23 "Arms" design issue had 27 stamps; 53 stamps if one includes the overprinted "Official" stamps, which are illustrated here. The 80 pf green is on white paper. But note the faint gray webbing on the 1m orange & carmine: another attempt to prevent reuse.



Another common design is the 1922-23 "Coat of Arms" stamp featuring two Lions that appear not to be in a good mood. This 100,000 mark deep blue stamp betrays something else: the beginning of hyper inflation.



1,000,000 marks were not enough, how about 10 million? This lovely 1923 10mil m orange existed among horrible economic times.



This 1921 1.20m + 1.20m dark blue & orange semipostal "St. George and Dragon" was intended for "Tuberculosis Week". Semipostals were commonly used to raise funds for charity or for a rebuilding project.



Finally, here is the first Air Post issue; a 1920 40pf on 40pf blue surcharged "airplane" , what a great looking stamp!

Comments and elaborations appreciated!


Edited by Jkjblue - 09/09/2011 02:42 am
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Pillar Of The Community
United Kingdom
1221 Posts
Posted 09/09/2011  03:50 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add AnthonyUK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Very informative. Many thanks.
Your post in essence is what makes this hobby so interesting.
I have a few Danzig items that I'll have to re-visit so again thanks for starting this thread.

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Romania
841 Posts
Posted 09/09/2011  06:03 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Wadmalatz to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

The `St. George` semipostal makes me envy. First one has `ZOPPOT` cancellation (I have one with `TIEGENHOF`, a few `ZOPPOT`, but mostly just DANZIG). Here is the last set issued (1939):



I try to collect Danzig according to Michel, so I keep the forerunners (Vor- und Mitlaufer: 10.01.1920-19.07.1920 before and a short period with overprinted) in the same collection:



Finally here is a postage due, with Coat of Arms:




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Posted 09/09/2011  09:11 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rod222 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply





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Posted 09/09/2011  10:13 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add skilo54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Great thread! I have always like the look of the Danzig stamps.

If I may add to the visual compendium that is developing, here are some scans of some various Danzig Issues, showing some of the other colours, values and overprint types. I sold these to a collector a while back, but since I had the scans I figured adding them here would be hunky-dorry. Another smaller lot of these has developed in my holdings, but I have not organized or scanned these as of yet. Come to think of it, I wonder where they could be....









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Posted 09/09/2011  10:14 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add skilo54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply



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Posted 09/09/2011  10:14 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add skilo54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply



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Posted 09/09/2011  10:15 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add skilo54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply



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Posted 09/09/2011  10:16 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add skilo54 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply



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Posted 09/09/2011  11:22 am  Show Profile Check BeeSee's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add BeeSee to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Excellent post JKblue! I will have to dig out my Danzig (all used ) when I get home. I really like that airmail overprint.


BeeSee in BC
"The Postmark is Mightier than the Stamp"
http://brcstamps.com ---- BNAPS, RPSC, APS
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Pillar Of The Community
962 Posts
Posted 09/09/2011  1:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Jkjblue to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply


Quote:
Excellent post JKblue! I will have to dig out my Danzig (all used ) when I get home. I really like that airmail overprint.


Thanks Bee See, Anthony UK, and Wadmalatz!
I liked the Air Post overprints so well, I had a hard time deciding which stamp to feature.

Skilo54, great cache of Danzig; I especially am taken with the powerful "Aged Pensioner" semipostal on your last image upload.

I have a question regarding printing methods. Obviously the frame and center portion required separate runs giving the inverts as rod222's image upload showed. But who printed Danzig's stamps, and by what method, and who designed- and in some cases engraved- the stunning images?

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Pillar Of The Community
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Posted 09/09/2011  3:51 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Jkjblue to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply


Quote:
They were printed and designed at the printing company Julius Sauer.
Some stamps were also designed by Berthold Hellingrath (St. George stamps).
He designed also some nice postcards:
http://www.danzig.org/Gallery-cat_i...ingrath.html

... and you have also a good ressource for Danzig information at these pages!


Thank you BAYERN1kreuzer for that GREAT resource on Danzig.
I've bookmarked the site for reference.

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Posted 09/09/2011  4:45 pm  Show Profile Check smauggie's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add smauggie to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Thank you, everyone for a glimpse at some attractive stamps!

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Posted 09/09/2011  7:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add mhc99 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Thanks for sharing your scans and info on Danzig. I've recently starting collecting Danzig stamps and look forward to acquiring more of these fine stamps.


Edited by mhc99 - 09/09/2011 7:11 pm
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Posted 09/09/2011  8:36 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cjd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply


A train cancel for the Danzig-Stutthof line.


(I had this in another thread, which escapes me right now.)

A couple more I've shown before, but we have many new faces since then, so apologies in advance to anyone who remembers already seeing these.

Here is a Zoppot cancel, pretty well socked on the nose:



And an as-yet-unidentified cancel:



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Posted 09/09/2011  10:26 pm  Show Profile Check BeeSee's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add BeeSee to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

This interesting article on Danzig and Poland appeared in the Volume 5, No. 12 (February 1925) issue of Scott's Monthly Journal. Danzig of course was still a Free State at the time.




BeeSee in BC
"The Postmark is Mightier than the Stamp"
http://brcstamps.com ---- BNAPS, RPSC, APS
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