The First F.I.S. Set of 1933

The International Federation of Sports (whose initials are F.I.S. in the French language) held its winter games at Innsbruck during January 1933.

Four magnificent stamps, depicting various skiing events, were produced in photogravure using photographs for the central designs and frames designed by Rudolf Junk. These frames repay special study since, in addition to the initials F.I.S. and the words "WETTKÄMPFE 1933", the "floral" pattern is composed of "leaves" of ice crystals.

The designs are:

12g green: "The Climb"; 80,000 issued

24g violet: "The Start"; 50,000 issued

30g scarlet: "The Race"; 65,000 issued

50g blue: "The Ski Jump"; 50,000 issued

The stamps (ANK551-554) were issued on 9 January 1933 and could be bought in complete sets at double face value from selected Post Offices (could be ordered from others). In addition, the 12g and 30g values could be purchased singly but also at double face value. This explains the differences in the numbers issued and the marked differences in current value between loose 12g and 30g stamps on the one hand and 24g and 50g stamps on the other.

The hidden surcharge was for the Championship (and, some sources add, for the society "Youth in Need").

The 30g stamp is known with the right hand side imperforate, and all values are known imperf-all-round. The stamps were line perf 12½; and were valid for postage until 31 March 1933.