POSTAL HISTORY  OF NORD
Small and large numeral cancels Local postage rate
1830-1878
German field post  in Valenciennes 1914-1918 Other  subjects

Chargé and declared value letter during the numerals cancels period. 

The postal rate of July 1854 didn't allow the use of registered letter. Only "Chargé" letters were allowed (with declared value or not). "Charging" a letter allowed the sender to have a proof of deposit and to have the insurance of  a particular postal treatment for his letter and that it was given to the addressee. The Post Office granted a compensation in case of loss.
Chargé and declared value letter had to franked and well closed by wax seals (2 at least).
The price of the postage of such letters took into account that follows:
- the price of the shipment according to the weight of the letter;
- a fix registration fee (20 c, in the 01/07/1854 rate).

Extract of postal almanac of 1857 showing the ways of sealing a letter.


Until June 1859,  Chargé letters didn't bear any special postal marks except the post office date stamp and the "chargé" handstamp struck in red ink.  From July 1st,  1859, a new handstamp appeared. It a to be struck on the back of each Chargé letter. This boxed stamp allowed the postman to indicate the weigth, the number of wax seals and their colour.

Extract of the circular n° 129 showing the new type of handstamp for Chargé letters.

In December 1862, when the French postal administration decided to renew the the alphabetical directory of the post offices, these post offices were asked to exchange their declared value stamp folowing the new alphabetical order.
The law of June 4th, 1859 (applicable on July 6th, 1859) introduced a different scales of weight for these letters and allow to put values in them.

The scales of weight for standard letters were at that time (01/07/1854 rate) :
1st scale: to 7.5 g inclusive;
2nd scale: more than 7.5 g to 15 g;
3rd scale: more than 15 g to 100g.
The scales of weight for declared value letters were in juin 1859 as follows:
1st scale: to 10 g inclusive;
2nd scale: more than 10 g to 20 g;
3rd scale: more than 20 g to 100 g

The shipment of the letter as well as the registration fee can be paid with stamps, but the insurance fees had to be paid in cash at the post office. 
The post office stations could send and recieve Chargé letters, but couldn't send or receive declared value letters.
Chargé letter from Bailleul to St Omer franked with 60 c for a weight of 15,4 g ( 2nd scale of weight). The franking is as follows: 
40 c for a 2nd scale of weight; 
20 c for registration fees.

The circular n° 129 of june 1859 was not clear about the colour in what the declared value stamp had to struck. However, since the circular  n° 36 of October 18th, 1836, the CHARGE stamp had to struck in red.
Chargé letter from Cambrai to Paris franked with 40 c for 6.2 g.
The franking is as follows:
20 c for a 1st scale of weight;
20 c for registration fee.
Declared value letter containing 400 fr and weighing 9.7 g from Armentières to Vervins.
The franking is as follows:
20 c for a 1st sacle of weight;
20 c registration fee;
40 c for insurrance fees to be paid at the post office (10 c for 100 Fr). 

The new postal rate of January 1st, 1862 didn't have an impact on Chargé and declared value letters. 

Chargée letter from Valenciennes to  Douchy franked with 40 c.
The adressee was dead before recieving it and his heirs refused it. The mail man put on the letter: "Décédé....Refusée par les héritiers." (deciesed, refused by heirs)
In such case a return to sender letter had to go to the dead letters branch in Paris. 
This branch had to find the sender sometimes by openning the letter. 

The general instruction of 1868 forget to speack about the colour of the declared value stamp.
An erratum was print in August 1868 to say that this stamp had to be struck in red ink.

declared value letter containing  1250 Fr and weighing 10.7 g from Lille to Paris.
The franking is as follows:
40 c for a 2nd scale of weight;
20 c for registration.
The sender had also to pay  1Fr30 of insurance fees.

On June 1st, 1870, the sender could pay the insurance fees with stamps. 

On September 1st, 1871, postal rates changed.

Chargé letter weighing 5.7 g from Lille-Fives to Paris.
The franking is as follows:
25 c the 1st scale of weight;
50 c for registration.
Chargé letter weighing 15 g from Lille to Paris.
The franking is as follows:

40 c for 2nd scale of weight (more than 10 g);
50 c for registration.
Chargé letter from Merville to Niel (Belgium) franked with 80 c.
30 c for 1st scale of weight  (10 g);
50 c for registration.

The circular n° 135 of July 1859 allowed the sender to ask for an acknowledgement of receipt.This acknowledgement cost 10 c.  
The acknowledgement of receipt forms had various shape but always 4 sheets.

The notice n° 103 is  first sent with the Chargé letter to the post office of destination. This letter was posted in Lille and bound to Orchies. 
The post office of Lille did already fill the first frame, the post office of Orchies had to fill the second one if the letter had been given to the adressee. 
The post office of Orchies sent back this notice to Lille.
Once the letter recieved, the post office of Lille gives this notice to the sender. The stamp was put on this notice by the post office of Lille before the notice went to Orchies. 

The Administration realized that this form was often not properly filled by its her agents and that this form was not enought complete. In March 1867, a new form appeared.

If the form changed, the process remainded the same.





On September 1st, 1871, the price this notice of reciept went to 20 c. 


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