The Austrian Newspaper Post

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Austria issued special stamps for over 70 years, from 1 January 1851 to 28 February 1922, for the inland postage of officially-registered newspapers. They were sold only to newspaper publishers, to prepay a discounted postage rate. The exhibit shows these stamps, including shade variations, cancellations, perforations, official & private imprints, and type differences; with examples of them in use. Frame 1 provides an overview and covers the 1851 issues; frame 2 the 1858, 1861 and 1863 issues; frame 3 begins the 1867 issue; frame 4 continues the 1867 and covers the 1880 issues; frame 5 is the 1899 issue; frame 6 is the 1908 issue; frame 7 the 1916 and 1919 issues; and frame 8 the 1920 and 1922 issues.

The system was evolved to facilitate postal subscriptions via the Post Office. The reduced-rate newspaper stamps were supplied only to designated post offices, where the publishers could buy them, in whole sheets only, for cash. The special rate was per-copy, including (without weight limits until 1920) all the supplements so beloved by Austrian newspapers. Where several copies were addressed to a specific delivery post office, they had to be address-labelled and franked, then posted in one bundle addressed to that post office. The cancellation of their stamps was done at the delivery post office. If there was only one addressee at that office, its wrapper had its stamp cancelled by the originating post office. Many of the cancellers were not used on ordinary mail. From 1900, publishers could commission private wrappers for one or more copies, imprinted with the same design as the loose stamps but in different colours. Separate Newspaper Sections existed in the larger post offices, to handle newspapers, to accept subscriptions, and to sell the discounted stamps.

A list of General References is given after the thumbnail-table.

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General References

  1. "The 1867 Newspaper Postage Stamp" in the APS Journal "Austria" issue 148 pp f5s49
  2. "Die Zeitungsmarken 1867: Violetter Merkur" by Ing. Johann Klauninger in "Die Briefmarke", Feb-April 1988.
  3. "Österreich 1850-1918" by Prof Dr U. Ferchenbauer, 2008 edition vols I & II
  4. "Österreich-Ungarn: 125 Jahre Ausgabe 1867" by Puschmann et al. Pub. Vindobona, Vienna, 1992. Chapter 10
  5. "Die Postwertzeichen der Oesterr.-ungar. Monarchie" by Kropf, Prag 1902, pp 9f2s93
  6. "Belege der Österreichischen Inflationszeit 1918-1925" by Peter Kroiss, Biedermannsdorf 2008, pp 220-250
  7. "Austrian Newspaper Post from the accession of Charles I." in "Austria" 178 pp 1f3s29
  8. "The 1851 Newspaper Stamps of Austria and Lombardy-Venetia" by Edwin Müller. "The Collectors Club Philatelist. Vol. XXX, No. 1" [Jan 1951]
  9. "Die Postmarken von Österreich" by Edwin Müller. Vienna 1927.

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©APS. Completely revised 23 Jan 2015; images made larger & navigation explained better 5 Jun 2015; replacement items added May 2016; post-ABPS-at-York improvements Aug-Sep 2016; expanded to 8-frame version for ABPS-at-York in July 2017; awarded 87 points = gold medal.