North Vietnam, Installation of the radio station in Me’ Tri, June, 1959, Michel Nr. 102-103; The reconstruction after the end of the war with the French continued and the Government was obviously proud to celebrate these occasions by publishing commemorative stamps. Two values were published with perforation 11:0 to celebrate the completion of the radio station at Me’ Tried, 3 xu and 12 xu. The station was rebuilt due to the help of the Soviet Union. It is not clear what the 3 xu value was intended to pay for but it was most likely intended for printed matter mailed locally. Given that most old printed matter was tossed away or perished in the many wars, the very humid climate or intentional recycling to save raw materials, no surviving examples of any printed matter mailings seem to have survived. At least none have ever been seen by the editor in the past 25 years. This issue is subject to significant color tonality that was caused by guiding more or less paint color to the printing plate. Below is the official Xunhasaba bulletin that announces the issuance of these stamps.
Mint blocks of four:
Postally used 12 xu stamp. Postally used stamps are at least ten times rarer than cancelled to order stamps.
Perforation errors do occur but are hard to find. Here is a pair of the 3 xu value on which the vertical perforation is missing.
Very rare single franking of the 12xu value on a handmade adversity cover set from Hanoi to Hai-Phong in December of 1959. Most local letters were destroyed in the multi-decadal war, the tropical climate or recycling due to raw material shortages.
Another, very rare local letter sent from Dong-Trieu (small post office) to Hanoi in September of 1959 using a single franking of the 12xu value. Hanoi machine arrival cancel the reverse.
Mixed franking from October of 1960 of the 3xu Fruit and the 3xu Radio Station stamp for the correct postcard rate of 6xu to a fellow socialist country.
Here is a specimen featuring the set in a mixed franking on a cover mailed to Theo Klewitz on November 24th, 1959. The letter was mailed registered and shows an overall postage of 80 xu. This appears to be the correct postage as the surcharge for registration was 60 xu.
Interesting mixed currency franking of two stamps in Old Dong and four stamps in New Dong (including the 3xu Radio Station stamp). The 200D old stamps were devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959, so were only worth 20xu in November of 1959. The overall franking hence amounted to 30xu which represented the standard surface letter rate since March of 1957. England was still a rare destination in the early 60’s.
Letter with a mixed franking in new currency featuring one of the 3 xu values of the Radio Station set. The letter carries a total postage of 21 xu so is slightly over franked (20 xu was the required rate). Ex Klewitz
Interesting mixed currency franking To Czechoslovakia using the old 50D Reunification stamp that was devalued by 1,000:1 on March 1st, 1959 and hence was only worth 5xu in October of 1959. Together with the new currency stamps of 15xu (including the 3xu Radio Station stamp) the overall postage amounted to 20xu which was the standard letter rate as of April 15th, 1959.
Letter mailed to Theo Klewitz with an interesting mixed currency franking of old and new Dong. The 20 Dong stamp “12 Years of the Republic” was worth 2 xu at the time. The overall franking amounts to 20 xu which was the correct postage at that time. The 3 xu Radio Station value was used as an extension value.
Large envelope sent in June of 1960 by a member of the Czechoslovakian Embassy and by registered mail to Czechoslovakia. This letter is interesting in that it features a triple mix franking of official service stamps and general postage stamps in Old and New Dong. The collection of Old Dong stamps (August Revolution, Cam Phase Mine, Trade Exhibition, Peoples Sport, Union Congress and Democratic Women) amounted to a total of 3,650, the official World Union Congress stamps to 200D and as of March 1st, 1959 were worth only 3.85 New Dong. Together with the stamps in New Dong (Hong-Xuan Sluice, Radio Station Me Tri, 10 Years Peoples Republic of China, Women Day, Hung Vu’o’ng Temple and National Assembly) that amounted to 0.63xu the total postage came to 4.48 New Dong. Very unusual and rare combination.
Registration Nr. 100240