Banner
Etude monographique du 0,50F Marianne de Béquet
Sa naissance, sa production, son utilisation postale

Ce site philatélique étudie le timbre 0,50F Marianne de Béquet, depuis sa conception jusqu’à son utilisation postale en passant par les différentes présentations dont il a fait l’objet.

logo article ou rubrique
Non stamping postmarks

Introduction

Date stamps are used to frank mail figurines and to affix service indications (date, time and place) on covers. In this article, we will only study the cases where postmark (either manual or mechanical) does not serve to frank stamps.

Cancellation postmarks

When a post office omits to affix its date stamp on outgoing mail, the employee of the office who notices this omission, whether in transit or on arrival, has to cancel the postage stamp by all means in its ownership. Furthermore, the employee must not affix the mail with his own date stamp: if he or she made it, the postmark would not give a valid date and time of the departure, according to the traditional expression. Thus, offices used to frank, in transit or on arrival, with a linear mark with their name, which they usually use to stamp administrative documents. However, as we are going to see, various ways to cancel postage stamp can also be found. As a last resort, the postman has to " cross out figurines " during the postal delivery. We will also show, at the end of the paragraph, the case of international letters.

Before showing a number of cancellation postmarks, I would want to begin with the case which seems the most logical: the departure office notices the error and cancels the stamp with a manual postmark:

 

cancellation of the postage stamp by the departure post office

 

Linear cancellation marks

So-called Montargis slogan

 

cancellation of the stamp, on departure, with the so-called "Montargis" slogan

 
The above slogan is called by philatelists “Montargis slogan” because it first appeared in the city of Montargis on August 07th, 1969. Its exact name is: “special label for the mechanical cancellation of figurines not franked at departure”, according to the article 001.0015 of the nomenclature 500-50 of the PTTs’ material removed in 1984.

Post office marks

The examples given below correspond to more or less classic linear marks of post offices.

 

cancellation of the stamp, on delivery, by a linear mark on 2 lines with the INSEE number

 
It may be noted that the INSEE number differs from the zip code of the city: thus, Saint Cloud’s zip code is 92210, while its INSEE number is 92084 as can be seen on the above image (mystery of the French administration?).
 

cancellation of the stamp, on delivery, by a linear mark on 1 line

 

cancellation of the stamp, on departure, by a linear mark on 1 line

 

cancellation of the stamp, on delivery, by a boxed linear mark on 1 line

 

cancellation of the stamp, on delivery, by a linear mark on 1 line

 

cancellation of the stamp, upon transit of, by the linear mark of a travelling railway office

 

cancellation of the stamp, on departure (?), by the linear mark of a postal military sector

 

cancellation of the stamp by the round stamp of a postman

 

“Makeshift” marks

The following marks can be viewed as “makeshift marks”, which means marks within reach for the person that must cancel one or several post stamps. In some cases, the used mark could be considered as diverted from its normal use.
 

cancellation of the stamp by the square stamp of a postman

 

cancellation of the stamp by a VIII stamp within a circle

 

postage stamp cancelled with 2 0R (Rural Origin) postmarks within a circle

 

The postmark OR (Origine Rurale in French) allowed to frank stamps. It was only used for the mail personally delivered to the postman. Letters were then directly distributed without going to a post office. This cover should be franked according to the usage rule of this postmark, that is applied “strongly, to the upper right angle and to the lower left angle of the figurine”. Such covers are not frequent in modern period; we can even wonder if it is not a complacency cover.

 

letter card with a postage stamp cancelled by a stamp OL (Local Origin) within a circle

 

interior of the above letter card

 
The mark OL (Origine Locale in French) allowed to frank post stamp. It was used as the OR mark, but in town. The above letter-card was sent on 14th December, 1972, came from the railway station of Mailly-la-ville and was sent to an inhabitant of this city.

 

cancellation of the postage stamp by a mark “T” within a circle

 

cancellation of the stamp by a boxed linear mark “DEPANNAGE”

 

cancellation of the postage stamp by a linear mark “DISTRIBUTION PAR PORTEUR SPÉCIAL”

 

cancellation of the postage stamp by the postmark of an inspector

 

Manual cancellation mark

 

cancellation of the stamp by 3 strokes of a pencil

 

The case of letters addressed to foreign countries

Some foreign countries have specific cancellation marks (Switzerland or Belgium for example) extremely recognisable.
 

Cover to Switzerland franked at 0,80F, canceled on delivery by a linear Swiss mark

 

postcard sent to Italy with the postage stamp cancelled on arrival by an italian postmark

 

postcard sent to Belgium with the postage stamp cancelled on arrival with a doubble roller mark (there is also a Montigny le Tilleul postmark)

 

Postmarks for non distribution mail

During the sending of a mail, it happens that it does not reach destination or it is delayed for various reasons. So, with an incomplete address, an unknown way, a refused taxation..., a letter must be returned to his or her sender. The postal service tries to investigate the addressee of the letter by playing an investigator’s role. To deal with these accidents and to remedy it, the PTT employees have of a plethora of postmarks. This is the purpose of the following paragraphs.

Return to sender marks

The mention return to sender is a mail note serving to indicate that a mail was not able to be forwarded or distributed for a reason independent from the mail service and must have returned to his or her sender, if this one can be identified.

A stamp allowing to affix the mention return to sender was introduced in 1866. Since this date, seven official models of stamp are known, since the 1866 model to that of 1964.
 

cover with the mark "RETOUR À L’ENVOYEUR" on 2 lines and Avignon post office number 269

 

cover with the mark "RETOUR À L’ENVOYEUR" on 2 lines, postman stamp and handwritten NPAI

 

The reasons for non postal delivery can be classified in five categories:

 [1]

Change in the addressee of the recipients

This reason corresponds to the famous NPAI (do not live in the indicated address or lives any more in the indicated address) of Post office.
 

cover with a blue “N.P.A.I.” mark

 

postcard with a red mark "RETOUR À L’ENVOYEUR" and the reason: "N’HABITE PAS À L’ADRESSE INDIQUÉE"

 

cover with the mark “N’habite Pas à l’Adresse Indiquée” on 2 lines

 

cover with a blue mark "N’HABITE PAS À L’ADRESSE INDIQUÉE" and a red mark "Rebuts"

 

slogan with the text “n’habite pas à l’adresse indiquée RETOUR A L’ENVOYEUR” to the right

 

stamps cancelled (wrongly) by a slogan with text “n’habite pas à l’adresse indiquée retour à l’envoyeur”

 

cover with linear mark “N’HABITE PLUS A L’ADRESSE INDIQUÉE”

 

Wrong or incomplete address

In this category of reasons, the stamp “INCONNU” (unknown), but also “ADRESSE INCOMPLÈTE” (incomplete address), “ADRESSE INSUFFISANTE” (insufficient address), “LOCALITÉ INCONNUE” (unknown locality), “VOIE INCONNUE” (unknown way)... may be found.
 

red slogan with text “n’habite pas à l’adresse indiquée retour à l’envoyeur” to the right made by a Sécap machine

 

letter with a boxed mark "ADRESSE INCOMPLÈTE"

 

cover with the local mark "Inconnu à l’appel des facteurs à ASNIÈRES"

 

cover with a red mark ”INCONNU A L’APPEL“

 

 

cover with a mark ”INCONNU A L’APPEL“

 

cover with a mark ”INCONNU A L’APPEL“

 

cover with a red mark ”VOIE INCONNUE“

 

cover with a mark ”ADRESSE INCOMPLÈTE“

 

cover with a red boxed mark ”ADRESSE INCOMPLÈTE“

 

cover with a boxed mark ”ADRESSE INCOMPLÈTE“

 

Exact address but addressee’s absence

Marks as “DÉCÉDÉ” (dead), “DÉMÉNAGEMENT” (move), “PARTI SANS LAISSER D’ADRESSE” (left without leaving a forwarding address)… may be found. In the case of registered letters, we can have delivery notices and the mark “NON RÉCLAMÉ” (unclaimed).
 

cover with a red mark "Délai de garde expiré"

 

cover sent poste restante with a mark ”NON RÉCLAMÉ“

 

registered letter with a mark ”NON RÉCLAMÉ RETOUR A L’ENVOYEUR“

 

Exact address and presence of the addressee

There are usually refused mail. This may be the case, for example, for a registered or for a taxed letter.
 

registered letter with marks “REFUSÉ” and “RETOUR À L’ENVOYEUR”

 

cover with stamps “REFUSÉ” (certainly because taxed) and “RETOUR À L’ENVOYEUR”

 

Exact address but unknown addressee

In this case, the reasons “PAS CE NOM” (not this name), I“NCONNU À L’APPEL” (unknown in the call), “NOM COMMUN À PLUSIEURS PERSONNES” (name shared by several people)... may be found.

Dead letter marks

Set up from the first half of the XVIIIth century, many changes have come to pass for the dead letter office since its inception.

For the period between 1971 and 1978, this office was centralized in the city of Libourne in Gironde (except for military and pneumatic covers) and was called “Centre de Recherche du Courrier”. This centre had three missions: search for addressee of a mail not having been able to be distributed, retaining of this mail for a certain period if the addressee was not able to be found and the removal of these dead letters.
 

cover with a blue mark "N’HABITE PAS À L’ADRESSE INDIQUÉE" and a red mark "Rebuts"

 

letter with the handwritten comment "Homonymes" and discarded

 

PTT letter from the “Centre des Recherches du Courrier de Libourne” sent to the person having sent the above letter and containing this letter

 

Postage pre-paid and frank postmarks

Postage pre-paid allows a company sending a lot of letters to make bulk mail without needing to frank letters. However, postage meter markings may be found with a date stamp with the mention P.P. and cancelling a stamp.
 

cancellation of the stamp by a blank slogan P.P. (postage prepaid)

 

The postal franchise is a provision by which the delivery of some types of mails is free. At the time of the stamp 0,50F Marianne de Béquet, the President of the French Republic had this postal franchise for mail sent to France, but not for mail sent to foreign countries.
 

cover from the presidential administration with a stamp because it is sent abroad

 

Exceptional routing postmarks

From July 1, 1972, a 90 mm x 140 mm minimal size was imposed by the PTTs for letters, because of the commissioning of straightening machines. However greeting cards had a size lower than the imposed one. These cards will systematically be sent to the Libourne research centre, which will affix a red imprint.
 

exceptional routing postmark from the “Centre de Recherche de Libourne” with the stamp “DIMENSIONS MINIMALES 9x14 NON RESPECTÉES”

 

exceptional routing postmark from the “Centre de Recherche de Libourne” with stamp “REBUTS”

 

Greeting card of the same dimensions as the two previously shown cards , but accepted because prior to July, 1972

 

Postmarks for incidents and accidents

Incidents and accidents can be due to mailing machines or to the ways used to transport mail.
 

mark “TROUVÉ À LA BOÎTE” on an EXPRÈS mailing

 

double mark “TROUVÉ À LA BOÎTE” on a pneumatic letter

 

The mark “TROUVÉ À LA BOÎTE” (found in mailbox) is affixed on the correspondences not deposited at the post office but which should have been done.
 

lettre with a boxed mark “CORRESPONDANCE RETARDÉE”

 

letter with a boxed red mark “CORRESPONDANCE ACCIDENTELLEMENT RETARDÉE”

 

pneumatic letter with the mark "RETARDÉ FORTUITEMENT"

 

letter with the mark "Objet détérioré dans nos services"

 

letter with the handwritten comment "accident de machine" and repaired with sticky tape of the PTTs

 

torn letter with the mark "LETTRE ACCIDENTÉE AU COURS DE L’OBLITÉRATION MÉCANIQUE"

 

letter with the mark "CORRESPONDANCE ACCIDENTÉE" and repaired on the back

 

back of the above letter

 

letter with the handwritten comment "Homonymes" and discarded

 

PTT letter from the “Centre des Recherches du Courrier de Libourne” sent to the person having sent the above letter and containing this letter

 

letter with burn marks and the 3 lines mark "courrier détérioré lors de l’accident aérien du 25.7.74"

 

letter burnt in the plane crash of July, 25 to 26, 1974

 

letter sent o the adressee of the burnt letter

 

envelope in which the above letter and burnt envelope were sent