Today in Postal History

Middle Congo to France
August 10, 1927

The French territories of Ubangi-Shari, Chad, French Congo and Gabon
were federated in 1910 as French Equatorial Africa
but retained certain separate services (including postal) until 1936.

This cover was sent from Brazzaville, the capital of Moyen Congo (Middle Congo).
Middle Congo was the principal territory in French Congo.

Brazzaville is about 350 km inland.

Brazzaville is on the north side of the great Congo
river opposite Leopoldville (now Kinshasha)
on the south side in the Belgian Congo (now Zaire).

This cover is franked with two 1924 25c overprints of blue green and gray
stamps first issued in 1922 portraying a Bakalois woman (Scott 33).
The article suggests that the illustration was plagiarized from a picture postcard.*
The overprint is

The Bakalois woman was probably a member of the Bakalai tribe.*

The 50 centimes rate for 0-20 grams within France and between France and
French colonies was introduced on 9 August 1926 and continued until 11 July 1937.*

The cover has three BRAZZAVILLE | MOYEN CONGO CDS.
The destination was St. Etienne in Departement Loire about 60 km southwest of Lyon.*

*Thanks to Paul Barsdell for this rate information.
Thanks, too, to Maarten Willems for identifying St. Etienne.
Foolish me, I tried to find Stetienne!
Thanks as well to Mark Morrison for his additions on the source of the stamp's illustration.
Thanks to Anne Burson-Tolpin for identifying the Bakalai tribe.


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