Today in Postal History

India to Argentina
September 13, 1940

This censored commercial airmail cover was mailed from Bombay to Buenos Aires.
It was mailed before the Japanese entry into World War II raised havoc with Transpacific mails.

The envelope is a typical low-weight airmail paper which wrinkled readily.

The sender requested transit via India (?)/Hong Kong/U.S.A.

The cover bears an airmail etiquette.

There is a straight line XXXX POSTAL CERTIFICATE stamp below the routing request.
I have no explanation for this marking.
Help, anyone?

There appear to be three censor marks and a censor tape on the cover.
The censor tape was applied in India and tied
with a small triangular PASSED BY CENSOR | C | 11 stamp.
There is also a larger purple triangle PASSED CENSOR with a bold 9 in its center.
This was a Hong Kong censor mark.*
In addition, there is a bold box stamped on the flap closure.
The box surrounds a 57 with what may be 1s or possibly some other symbol on both sides.
I believe this is another censor mark although I do not know where it was applied.

The VICTORIA HONG KONG CDS on the rear indicates a transit on September 21.

Surprisingly, there is no evidence of handling through the United States.
It is possible that the cover was diverted via another route.

The cover arrived in Buenos Aires on October 6.
The cover was cancelled with a roller cancel indicating VIA AEREA.
There is evidence on the front of the cover that
either the roller cancel backing roller or the table on which the
roller was applied had been inked and was offset to this cover.

The cover is franked with three stamps from the 1937 King George VI definitives.
There are a 3 a. 6 p. bright blue Dak camel
, a 6 a. turquoise-green
mail lorry, and a 2 r. purple and brown King George VI.

*Thanks to David Benson for identifying the Hong Kong censor mark.


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