Today in Postal History


Germany to Switzerland
May 10, 1922

Most philatelists are aware of the hyperinflation which befell the losers after World War I.
By 1921, inflation was well underway in Germany.
In August, 1921, Germany issued its first 10 Mark postage stamp.
By the end of 1922, the high value was 500 Marks.

This is an early inflation cover with some of the stamps issued in 1921 or 1922.
depending on whether the watermark is lozenges or network.

There are four 5 pfg. claret, an 80
pfg. carmine rose, and a 150 pfg. orange.
If the stamps have a lozenge watermark they are, respectively, Scott 137, 145, and 148.
With a network watermark they are Scott 161, 171, and 175.
There is also a 50 pf. Germania red lilac issued in 1920 (Scott 125).

3 Marks for postage to Amsterdam
was quite a rise from previous experience.

There is a rate question, however.
The rate for 20 gr letters outside of Germany between
January 1, 1922, and July 1, 1922, was 400pf or 4M.*
How this one escaped underpaid is unknown.
It is possible that the deficiency was made up
by stamps posted on the back of the envelope.
It would be nice to know.

Each of the seven stamps received its own Hagen CDS.
Hagen is in the eastern Ruhr Valley about 55 km northeast of Cologne (Kõln).
Westey (?) is an abbreviation for Westfalen.*
Delstern is a "neighborhood" in Hagen.*

The cover was addressed to Zurich.

*Thanks to Helmut Karbach for his help on interpreting this cover.


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