A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. Interested? So into the Blues...

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Indochina (French Indochina)

Indochina 1912 Scott 60 5c on 15c orange brown/blue
Stamps of 1904-06 surcharged black or carmine
Quick History
Indochine française, or French Indochina, was a French colonial protectorate in southeast Asia. It consisted in 1887 of the the Vietnamese areas of Tonkin, Annam, and Cochinchina, and also Cambodia. Laos was added in 1893. Saigon was the first Capital (1887-1902), then Hanoi (1902-1939), and finally Da Lat (1939-45) during the classical era. Of interest, During WW II, Vichy France administered the colony, while the Japanese occupied the area.
Expansion of French Indochina
The population was 23,000,000 in 1940.

French Indochina 1913
The Scott Classic catalogue lists French stamps used in Indochina from 1851, but the first Indochina stamps proper were issued in 1889.

1927 Scott 135 40c vermilion & light blue
"That Luang Temple. Laos"
Into the Deep Blue
The 2011 Scott Classic specialized catalogue has, from 1889-1941, 355 major stamp descriptions for regular, semi-postal, air post, air post semi-postal, postage due, official, and parcel post categories.
Of those, 215 are CV <$1-$1+, or 61%.
What is nice about Indochina is the number of the stamps that have images/designs of local import. Makes for interesting collecting.

A closer look at the stamps and issues
1892-1900 Scott 6 5c green/greenish "Navigation & Commerce"
Several French Colony stamps were surcharged/overprinted in 1889, but then the well known "Navigation & Commerce" stamps appeared in 1892.
This issue had 19 stamps with CV of $1+2+ for 9 stamps.

1903 Scott 23 15c on 25c blue, surcharged in black
Two stamps were surcharged in 1903, both CV $1+. This gives me an excuse to show this classic design again. ;-)
1904-06 Scott 25 2c violet brown/buff "France"
In 1904, an issue for Indochina was produced in the classic French design tradition. The 17 stamp set has a CV of  1+-$3+ for 12 stamps.

1907 Scott 44 5c green & black "Annamite Girl"
1907 Scott 53 50c carmine & black "Cambodian Girl"
A new issue was produced in 1907 featuring the "Women" of Indochina. The18 stamp set is classic in design, and somewhat defines Indochina for many WW collectors. The CV is <$1-$2+ for 10 stamps.

1912 Scott 62 10c on 40c black/bluish
1904-06 surcharged in black or carmine
A 6 stamp surcharged issue was produced in 1912. CV is $1+-$2 for 4 stamps. Of interest, there are  stamps with  a wider space between the numbers that should be watched for with this issue.

1919 Scott 67 1 3/5c on 4c blue & black (red surcharge)
1919 Scott 71 8c on 20c violet & black (black surcharge)
In 1919, the 1907 issue was surcharged as shown on 18 stamps. CV is <$1-$2+ for 15 stamps.
Contrary to what is found for many colonies, the stamps of Indochina can be found used easily. I like it.
Note: The values have changed from Centimes/Franc to Cents/Piaster

1922-23 Scott 97 4/5c rose & black/lavener
1922-23 Scott 110 15c orange & black
The design numerals was changed in 1922 for the values. This 21 stamp set has a CV of <$1-$1+ for 18 stamps.
1922-23 Scott 101a Type I & 101 Type II
4c orange & black
Thjere are two types of "Cents" found for the 4c, 5c, 10c, and 12c values. The thin font (left stamp) was initially issued April, 1922, while the thick font (right stamp) was produced beginning in October, 1922. Check your collection for these differences.

1927 Scott 118 4/5c deep brown "Plowing near Tower of Confucius"
1927 Scott 129 11c orange "Bay of Along"
In 1927, a 24 stamp issue was produced, with two designs found for the lower values shown above. The CV is <$1-$1+ for 16 stamps, all with the designs as shown here.

1927 Scott 131 15c dull rose & olive brown
"Angkor Wat, Cambodia"
The 15c and 20c values of the 1927 issue have the design as shown. CV is $2+-$7+. Nice stamp. ;-)

1927 Scott 133 25c orange brown & lilac rose
"Carving wood"
The 25c and 30c value design is illustrated here. CV is $4-$6+. The 40c design is shown at the top of this section.
1931-41 Scott 143 1/10c prussian blue "Junk"
1931-41 Scott 155 6c orange red "Tower of Ruins of Angkor Thom"
A long issue of  34 stamps with four designs was issued between 1931-41. Although the designs are quite attractive, the first three designs are small. That is a "large" demerit for many collectors. ;-)
The CV for the stamps is <$1-$1+, and includes the entire set.

1931-41 Scott 165 25c deep violet "Planting Rice"
Interesting third design in the set. Hand planting rice does not look easy. ;-)

1931-41 Scott 170 2pi red
"Asparas, Celestial Dancer"
The five upper values have this interesting motif. Credit to France for permitting local designs.

1936 Scott 180 1pi rose violet "Emperor Bao-Dai"
1936 Scott 192 2pi black "King Sisowath Monivong"
The issue of 1936 was divided between 11 stamps for use in Annam, and 11 stamps intended for use in Cambodia. Each featured the local ruler. Of interest, France permitted the local emperors and kings dynasties to continue, but they were basically figureheads. CV for 18 stamps is $1-$3+.

1939 Scott 27 23c ultramarine
"Mot Cot Pagoda, Hanoi"
A four stamp issue in 1939 was produced for the Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco. CV is $1+.
1914 Scott B1 10c+5c red & black
1915-17 Scott B4 15c+5c violet & black
The initial Indochina 4 semi-postals are surcharged/overprinted as above. The CV is $1+-$2.

1919 Scott B10 24c on 35c +25c, surcharged
On France B5-B10
In 1919, An interesting 6 stamp semi-postal set was overprinted/surcharged using some post WW I  French semi-postals. CV is $1+-$6+ for 3 stamps.

1933-41 Scott C15 2pi yellow orange "Airplane"
A long 20 stamp air post set was isssued between 1933-41. Actually, the French Vichy government continued the set during WW II, minus the "RF" in the left bottom corner. So don't confuse. ;-)
The CV for the issue is <$1-$1.

1908 Scott J8 10c carmine "Dragon from Steps of Angkor Wat"
1922 Scott J36 4c orange -new values in cents & piasters
The 1908 postage dues are a 13 stamp set with a CV of $1 for 7 stamps. Note France continues a tradition of actually having a "design" for a postage due, rather than a "numeral".
The change in value denominations produced a new issue for 1922 with 13 stamps. The CV is <$1-$1+ for 12 stamps. (There is also a surcharged issue of 1919 with the new values, which is not shown.)

1927 Scott J44 2/5c violet brown & orange
"Pagoda of Mot Cot, Hanoi"
In 1927, a 13 stamp set with two designs was issued. CV is <$1-$1+ for 9 stamps. Lovely postage due design.
1931-41 Scott J67 10c red/orange
Value surcharged in black or blue
The last postage due issue during the classical era is shown above. This 18 stamp issue has a CV <$1 for 16 stamps.
1933 Scott O5 5c deep violet , blue overprinted
The "Service" or Official stamps for Indochina are overprinted regular issues. The 6 stamp initial set, shown above, is CV <$1-$1+.

Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has 25 pages for Indochina, and follows the Scott catalogue for all major numbers.
Big Blue and the 1922-23 Issue page
I managed to place stamps on 20 pages, although, admittedly, Big Blue's coverage would have probably sufficed for my present collection.

1931 Scott 142 10c on 1.50fr dull blue
"Common Design Type for Colonial Exposition"
Big Blue
Big Blue '69, on six pages, has 128 regular, 45 postage due, 10 semi-postal, and 15 air post, for a total of 198 spaces. Coverage is 56%.

• Inexpensive selection, save for one $10+ stamp.
• Nice selection for BB, except perhaps more CV $1+-$2+ could have been added for the earlier issues.
• BB has no Official stamps included. Some 20 stamps are CV <$1-$1+.










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A) Most expensive stamps ($10 threshold):
1938 Scott B14 18c + 5c bright ultramarine ($10+)

B) (   ) around a number indicates a blank space choice.

1938 Scott 202 18c bright blue
"Governor-General Paul Doumer"
Out of the Blue
Unique designs for Indochina, and generally inexpensive.
Now I need to fill some holes. ;-)

Note: Maps appear to be in the public domain.
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