Panayotis D. Cangelaris - Greek Diplomat and Collector
 

"THE CZECH SCOUT POST 1918"

 Philatelic Exhibit

 

 This exhibit refers to the auxiliary Scout Post Service that was created in Prague to assist the National Committee during the first days of the Independence of the Czechoslovak Republic.  It is divided in three main parts:

(1)  The Scout Postal Service Stamps
(2)  The Scout Incoming Mail Delivery Service
(3)  The Scout Official Mail Delivery Service

[An introduction and a sample from the material contained in the exhibit are shown here]

 

Introduction

During the first days of Independence of the Czechoslovak Republic (at the evening of 28th October 1918) an auxiliary Scout Post Service was created in Prague to assist the National Committee.  The then Deputy Chief Scout and Member of the Government J.Rössler Orovsky offered in organizing this Service as well as in designing and printing suitable stamps and cancellations.

Between the 7th (official start of mail delivery) and the 25th November 1918 (last day), official correspondence from and to the Members of the National Committee, the Police, different organizations and government stations, as well as individual personalities was guaranteed a rapid, secure and discrete delivery made on foot or with a bicycle by the Sea Scouts having their Headquarters at the Czech Yacht Club, on Streletsky Island in the centre of Prague.  Main destinations, apart of the National Committee’s Headquarters at Harrachovsky Palace, were the Ministry of Justice, the Prague Fortress, the Parliament and the Telegraph Office at the west bank of the Vltava river and the Rail Station, the Post and Telegraph Office and other places in the east bank.

The idea of printing Scout stamps was first put in September that year.  On October 20th a design depicting the national character of the Service was adopted and 30000 stamps of the blue 10 H and 50000 of the red 20 H values plus 1000 pieces of a blue 10 H stationary forming all colours of the Czechoslovak flag were printed.  They were engraved by J.Panenka and printed by Kolmar House, while the relevant postmarks and marks were made by Karnet & Kysely.  All stamps were printed one by one, so there is no block or sheet in existence whatsoever.  Both stamps (600 pieces each) were also overprinted “Arrival of President Masaryk” for that occasion.

 
 The Scout Postal Service Stamps
 
 

 The Sea Scouts of Prague provided postal service (Nov. 7-25, 1918) for the National Committee of Liberation of their country.
Each cover was signed by the messenger Sea Scout upon delivery.

 
 
 

 

 

 

 
 Two values (10h and 20h) were issued.
They are the first scouts on stamps following the foundation of Scouting.  
 

 

 

 

 

 
  “Arrival of President Massaryk” Overprint was later (Dec. 21, 1918) introduced.
It was used for only that day.
 
 
 

 

 
 

 Perforation error reducing the size of the stamp

 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 
 

 10h Blue stamp colour proofs

 

 20h Red stamp colour proofs

 
 
 
 

 

 
 

 20h Red stamp colour proof forgery

 
 
 
 The Scout Incoming Mail Delivery Service
 
 
 10h Blue stamps colour shade variety on cover mixed with a 5h overprinted (2nd Prague overprint) Austrian stamp.
Tied with the N.V. and franked with both the c.d.s. and the delivery Scout handstamps.
 
 
 
 20h mixed with an Austrian stamp on cover. 
 
 
 
 Registered cover delivered to the National Committee bearing no Scout stamp (the service had already ended) but franked with the Scout c.d.s. and the Committee's oval incoming mail handstamp.
 
 
 The Scout Official Mail Delivery Service
 
 
 Cover delivered to the then newly founded Czechoslovak News Agency.
The 10h Scout stamp is tied with the N.V. and franked with both the c.d.s. and the delivery handstamps.
 
 
 
 Cover bearing a 20h Scout stamp tied with the N.V. and franked with both the c.d.s. and the delivery handstamps.
 

To view the full exhibit online, please click here

 

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