North Vietnam, Raising of Farm Animals, November 28th, 2018, Michel Nr. 236-239; North Vietnam, still being basically an agrarian society kept on coming back to the farming theme when it came to issuing stamps. Four values with the nominals of 2 xu and 12 xi (three stamps) were issued. Perforation: 11.0. Below is the official Xunhasaba stamp bulletin that announces the release of this set.
Mint set in blocks of four:
This set was not officially released im-perforated but a handful of im-perforated trial proofs have come to market.
Here is a trial proof of one of the 12 xu values. Again, note the printing guide marks in the corner of the proof. Also the floor area between the left to pigs is mostly brown in the trial proof but mostly light blue in the issued stamp.
Here are one of a kind stamp sized essay drawings pasted on cardboard of the two values by the stamp designer Tran Luong. Note that proposed images slightly differ from the finally executed design.
Unusual small card sent from Hanoi to East Germany featuring a rare single franking of the 12 xu Farm Animal stamp.
Another rare single franking of one of the 12xu stamps on a letter to the Soviet Union. Moscow airport cachet on front. Moscow arrival cancel on the reverse.
Here is a letter sent to Klewitz in West German two days after the first issue date. It contains the entire set of the Farm Animal set among other stamps. The overall franking amounts to 72 xu which would have been insufficient for a registered air mail letter to West Germany. However, the sender duped the postal clerk by writing “RDA” at the bottom of the address which stood for “East Germany”. Letters to fellow socialist countries only cost 12 xu plus the 60 xu international registration fee totaled to the 72 x affixed to the cover. The fraud was never discovered.
Letter front with a mixed franking that includes a single of the 2 xu stamp of the farm animals issue. The letter was correctly franked with 12 xu (standard letter rate to a fellow socialist country) as it was directed to Czechoslovakia.
Rare registered letter sent from Hanoi to the editor of an East German publication in April of 1964. The letter is franked with the 1D Animal stamp, the 50xu Sun stamp and the 2xu Domestic Animal stamp for an overall postage of 1.52D. The required postage for a standard letter amounted to 12xu plus 60xu for registration, so this letter must have been heavier than the standard 20g.
Here is a letter sent to Klewitz in December of 1965 featuring one of the live stock stamps among other North Vietnamese stamps. The overall franking amounted to 40 xu which was actually insufficient for a letter to West Germany. However, the clever sender duped the postal clerk into thinking that the letter was routed towards East Germany by writing “Germany RD” which stood for East Germany on the envelope. To that destination the required rate was only 12 xu so the clerk accepted the letter without charging any postage due.
Registered letter sent to Klewitz in June of 1963 with the complete perforated set. The cover was franked with 72 xu which was in fact too little for a standard registered letter to West Germany (Tariff of 1.10 Dong), however, the sender duped the postal clerk into thinking the letter was actually routed to East Germany by writing “RDA” at the bottom of the address (which stood for East Germany). To that destination the required postage was only 12 xu for the letter and 60 xu for the international registration fee. To the clerk hence the letter looked like it was franked perfectly fine.
Letter with one of the 12 xu stamps mailed on a registered letter to Klewitz in West Germany. Overall postage applied amounted to 1.14 Dong which was just a whisker above the required rate of 1.10 Dong for a standard registered letter to Western Europe.
Letter with the one stamp of the 12 xu value to Klewitz in West Germany. The cover also is an interesting mixed currency franking of old and new Dong and a mixed franking of service stamps (Mot Cot Pagoda issue) and regular stamps. It is not quite clear how the sender obtained the service stamp as their distribution was limited to Government Bodies, foreign embassies and NGO’s (like the Red Cross for example). The 200 Dong in pre March 1959 stamps were devalued 1,000:1 which meant that in 1965 thew were worth 20 xu. The overall franking hence amounted to 1.12 Dong which is just a whisker above the required tariff of 1.10 Dong for a standard registered letter to Western Europe.