North Vietnam, 12 Years of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, Michel Nr. 61-62; In honor of the 12th anniversary of the creation of the Republic the postal authorities issued two values denominated with 20D and 100D. The 100D value represented the standard domestic letter rate in force at the time and the 20D may have been intended for printed matter or functioned as a completion value for odd postal rates. The Vietnamese Postage Stamp Catalogue reports that the stamps were issued in perforation 12.5 which appears to be correct as all the samples in the collection of the editor have that measurement. Michel and Scott report a perforation of 13.0 and that does not appear to be correct. The perforation was often pretty poor as the holes are often not fully punched out, so well perforated specimens deserve a surcharge. Produced in the National Bank Printing Works in Hanoi.

Here is a mint set.

The majority of used stamps are cancelled to order like this set

Much harder to find are postally used samples. They are worth at least three times that of CTO sets.

First Day Covers are known but they are basically home made versions such as the example below.

Complete letters are rare. The nominals appear to be ideally suited for letters to Hong Kong where the tariff apparently amounted to 360 Dong. Here are two identical frankings from November 1957 to Hong Kong. Arrival cancel “Hong Kong”.

Printed matter mailing from the Government owned philatelic distribution agency Xunhasaba announcing the issuance of the 1959 air mail stamp (Michel Nr. 109) franked with 20D green plus 350D of the Bay of Ha Long series also from 1959 (Michel Nr. 93) for a total franking of 370D. Note the red propaganda cachet. 

Xunhasaba bulletin mailing introducing the Fish set from 1963 and the Military Free Frank from the same year. The bulletin is franked with a mixture of standard stamps (300D Textile Mill, 20D 12 Years Democratic Republic) and the 500D official Cu Chin Lan stamp for an overall postage of 820D. 

Mixed franking of one of the 100D value with a number of other early NVN stamps for an overall postage of  1,000D. The letter was sent by the Trade Policy Department of the East German Embassy to East Berlin in December of 1958. The base surface letter rate at the time amounted to 300D, the surcharge for East Germany 350D and the air-mail sucharge to 300D. So, the letter appears to be slightly over-franked.

Interesting mixed currency franking featuring one of the Cam Phase stamps in 150 Old Dong, the 12 Year Republic 20Old Dong and two of the Tru’ng Sister stamps in 13 new xu. The old Dong was devalued by 1,000:1 so the two old stamps were only worth 17xu. So, there overall franking amounted 30xu which represented the surface letter rate to China.

Another mixed currency franking on a rare Specimen/Printed Matter mailing by Xunhasaba from December 1963. Great Britain was still an unusual destination in the early 1960’s. The 240D worth of the 1957 stamps was devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959 so was only worth 24 new xu. Together with the 50xu Animal stamp the overall postage amounted to 74 xu. Note the red Air Mail Hanoi Berlin hand stamp that indicated the routing through East Berlin.

Mixed currency franking of the 20D Democratic Republic stamp in Old Dong (which was devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959) with the 4xu Mother and Child stamp, 3xu Fruit and 3xu national Savings stamp for an overall postage of 12xu, which was the required tariff for letters to fellow socialist countries.

Mixed currency franking using the old 100D 12 Years Democratic Republic stamp that was devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959 and hence was only worth 10xu at the time of mailing. The overall postage amounted to 30xu which represented the standard international surface rate as of March 13th, 1957.

Mixed currency franking using the 1957 20D Democratic republic stamp that had been devalued on March 1st, 1959 so was only worth 2xu on the day of mailing. Together with the stamps in new Dong the overall postage was 20xu which represented the standard letter rate to fellow Socialist country as of April 15th, 1959.

Mixed franking most likely from a member of the East German Consulate (which had access to official stamps) featuring a mix of regular stamps (including the 12 Year Democratic Republic set) and two official Union Congress stamps (40D and 100D) for an overall postage of 1,740D. The letter was registered. The basic surface letter rate abroad amounted to 300D, the air mail surcharge to 350D (for every 5g) and the registration fee to 600D. So this letter must have weighed between 10-15g.

Mixed franking between normal stamps (including two of the 100D Democratic Republic stamps) and the complete set of the official Union Congress set on an envelope sent by a member of the East German Consulate to East Germany in February of 1958. The overall postage amounted to 1,100D.

Mixed currency franking of the 100D 12 Years Democratic Republic stamp (that was devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959 and hence only worth 10xu at the time of mailing) with two of the Space Exploration stamps for an overall postage of 72xu (12xu postage plus 60xu registration fee) on a rare registered letter to Czechoslovakia.

Registration Nr.100055

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