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Saturday, January 21, 2006

By Airmail from Cherbourg

Early airmail covers to and from Luxembourg are an interesting field of study, especially for rate afficionados. It was sometimes possible for a letter to travel by air only within the country of origin or only from a foreign point to the destination, or both.

The registered cover shown above originated in New York, NY, June 19, 1937, and was sent to Europe by surface transportation. However, since it was endorsed Via AIR-MAIL from Cherbourg, when it reached the French port of Cherbourg (probably by ferry from Portsmouth, England), it was transported by air to Luxembourg-Ville (or perhaps Paris or Brussels, as regular airmail service from Luxembourg had not yet been established), and was received in Luxembourg on June 28, 1937.

Assuming a letter of not more than ½ oz., the 23 cents postage paid the following charges:

  • .05 Surface letter to Europe

  • .15 International registry fee

  • .03 Airmail surcharge within Europe (per 1/2 oz.)

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