Today in Postal History

Ottoman Empire Internal Use
September 8, 1920

This commercial cover was sent from the Italian post office in Constantinople.

In 1873 Italian post offices were established in Constantinople, Smyrna, and Beirut.
These were suppressed in 1883.
In 1901 Italian post offices were opened in Albania.
In 1908 Italian post offices were opened (some by threat of force) in Constantinople
(Galata, Pera, and Stamboul), Smyrna, Jerusalem, Salonica, and Valona.

This cover was likely posted in Galata as suggested by the corner card.
Galata was a cosmopolitan neighborhood with many foreign residents.

The destination was Smyrna (now Izmir) which is little over 300 km
southwest about midway on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey.

The cover is franked with a two 1908 Italian Offices in Constantinople
20 para overprints on Italian stamps (Scott 2).

There are three strikes of the Italian Constantinople Post Office CDS.


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