The local postage rate
1830-1862: Postage due letters.
circulating inside a town.
Letters circulating within a
town having a post office are numerous. In addition, a postal rate
already existed since 1800.
Letter from and to TOURCOING dated August 5, 1834. This
in postage due and taxed with a feather with 1 décime
less than 7.5 g).
from and to LILLE dated December 6, 1848. It is in postage
and taxed with 1 décime (letter of less than 7.5 G).
Letters circulating inside a
rural district of a post office.
1830, a letter circulating between the town of the post office and
villages depending on this one was the subject of a reduced postage
rate. It is said that this letter circulates in the Rural District of
Most of the time and at least at the beginning, a Postal District was
composed generally only of the Rural District of a main post office,
because there was little post office stations.
letters circulating in the Rural District of the post office must carry
the "CL" stamp. At the beginning the color to use to strike this stamp
was not specified. One thus meets prints of the "CL" stamps in red,
black, green or blue. The circular n° 34 of October 18, 1834,
specified that the "CL" stamps will have to be struck with
ink like "CD", "PP", "PD" and "PF" stamps .
the post office to the rural municipality:
Letter of less than 7.5 g from SOLESMES to BRIASTRE,
|1849: Letter of less than 7,5
g from VALENCIENNES to CURGIES.
can note that the print of the stamp CL misses some times. These lacks
are excusable at the beginning of the installation of the process,
however they continued very a long time afterwards.
In fact, the mail circulating within a Rural District circulated in
isolation and far from the eyes of the Administration. The control of
the compliance with the rules was finally not very frequent. This
established fact could give place to “short cuts”
interpretations of the regulations. The purpose of these practices were
often to save time in small post offices where the
personnel was very few.
|1838: Letter in postage due
from PONT A MARCQ towards TEMPLEUVE taxed to 1décime.
Letter in postage due from VALENCIENNES to ANZIN.
weighs 7,5g, it is normally taxed with 2 décimes. The heavy
local letters are not very common. The sender often preferred
carry this kind of letter or to pass by another intermediary,
because the amount of the tax on this kind of letters was prohibitory.
From the municipality to
the post office:
Letter put in the mailbox of the village of RECOURT in Pas-de-Calais
(letter-stamp L) for DOUAI (Nord). It could happen that rural
municipalities of a Departement depend on a post office being
located in another Departement. The CL stamp (Local
Correspondence) indicates the letter circulates in the
of the post office of DOUAI (DOUAI+rural villages attached to this post
|1850: Letter from SOMMAING
(letter-stamp M) to SOLESMES. The letter was brought back to post
office on October 15 (probably) after the last delivery and was
delivered the 16.
circulating between too municipalities of the same Rural District:
Letter posted in the village of ETERPIGNY (Pas-de-Calais) for ROUCOURT
(Nord). These 2 villages are attached to the post office of DOUAI.The
CL stamp indicates that the letter circulates within the same Rural
delivery with a rural mailman:
2 letters which follow show what could resemble irregularities (in any
case in connection with the regulations in the General Instruction of
1832). They were collected by a rural mailman either in a rural box or
from hand to hand, but any shows a tax whereas they are intended for
the town of the post office. They should thus have been brought back to
the office, because a rural mailman cannot at that time serve the town
of the office. It is the work of the town mailman..
The General Instruction of 1832 is very clear on this subject.
should be known that mailmen were not able to tax letters,
only to perceive the tax. They could not thus write the amount of the
tax on letters which they received and delivered in the course
his round. This is confirmed implicitly by the circular n° 64
June 9, 1836, circular which announces the installation of the OR stamp.
certain times, it seems that post offices installed temporarily local
delivery (thus in the city of the office) with rural mailmen. The
Administration was completely conscious of it, because in the Special
Instruction of the Post Office Inspectors of May 1838 asked its
inspectors to check if the offices did not contravene article 546 of
the General Instruction. The local service with rural mailmen were
officially authorized since 1847.
|Extract of circular n°
64 of June 9th, 1836.
|1838: Letter given to the
mailman (OR stamp: Origine Rurale) in the village of BERSEE.This letter
would have been brought back to the post office of PONT A MARCQ which
would have taxed it and which would have stricken its date stamp. A
rural mailman could not deliver mail in the town of the post office.
However here, the letter does not seem to have passed by the post
office (no tax, no date stamp). we can thus conclude from it that the
office of PONT A MARCQ had installed a local service with a rural
mailkman, which normally was not authorized by the Administration.
|1837: Letter put in mailbox of
the village of HAVELUY depending on the office of VALENCIENNES. This
letter does not seem to be taxed nor to have even passed by the post
As PONT A MARCQ, the post office of VALENCIENNES had to install
partially a local service in the city by a rural mailman.
circulating between to Rural Districts of the same Postal District:
circulating between 2 different Rural Districts from the same Postal
District of a main post offices were also prone to the local postage.
Letter posted in the post office of COMINES to LILLE. This letter
circulates well between 2 rural districts and was posted in a post
office. It is finally intended for the town where another post office
|1847: Letter from HALLUIN for
the municipality of LINSELLES who depends on the office of TOURCOING.
The "CD" stamp is here out-of-place, because he can be affixed only on
letter circulating in the Rural District of a post station.
|1853: Letter from SOMAIN to
DOUAI in postage due. The post office of SOMAIN was in relationship
with the post office of DOUAI. The postal rate between the district
from these 2 post offices was of 10 c for a letter of less than 7,5 g.
|1847: Letter posted in the
post office of QUESNOY-SUR-DEULE and bound to LILLE.
This letter presents the type 15 date stamp of QUESNOY-SUR-DEULE
without date indicator. In 1847, this post office was always a post
station and thus did not have to possess of a date stamp. Having been
received by mistake, it was used as a linear stamp.
handstamps locally manufactured:
tax on the letters represented a large work since all the taxes were
written according to an imposed penmanship. On June 2, 1831 (circular
n° 30), the Administration provided to all the post offices a
stamp corresponding to the tax between each office and Paris for a
letter until 7,5 g. Certain post offices made manufacture with their
expenses several tax stamps. Here some examples for the post offices of
Nord and concerning the local postage.
Until 1847, works of the taxer agents in the post offices concerning
the local mail was not to be very heavy. Indeed, the statistical survey
carried out between November 15 and 28, 1847 give for the whole of the
post offices of Nord a total of 8461 local letters and 33686
territorial letters. The investigation concerned 785093 inhabitants. By
extrapolating the results over one year, each inhabitant of Nord on
average received less than one letter (0,3).
One knows few tax stamps used before the period of the postage stamp.
To date, only the office of Maubeuge is known to have used in 1841 (at
least) this type of tax stamp.