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 by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Bosnia & Herzegovina Pt B - a closer look

1910 Scott 58 50h dull violet "Postal Car"
Birthday Jubilee Issue Emperor Franz Josef
Into the Deep Blue
Austrian designed Bosnia & Herzegovina stamps are delightful, even if the pictorials are a little heavy on the arabesque frames. This is a continuation (Part B) of a review of B&H stamps during the classical era (1879-1918) until its absorption into Yugoslavia.

Bosnia & Herzegovina Pt A - a closer look
Bosnia & Herzegovina & BB Checklist

A closer look at the stamps and issues
100 Heller = 1 Krone (1900)
1910 Scott 54 30h green "Donkey Post"
Birthday Jubilee Issue Emperor Franz Josef
The thirteen stamp 1910 engraved  "Birthday Jubilee Issue" for the 80th birthday of Emperor Franz Josef, was quite similar in appearance (in color and pictorials) as the 1906 issue, except a "1810-1930" label is found at the bottom.

Since the 1906 issue was a highlight for B&H issues, a repeat is certainly not minded. ;-)

But, unlike the 1906 issue, one doesn't need to be aware of various perforations (if that is your thing), as only Perf 12 11/2 was used.

CV ranges from <$1 to $10+.

1912 Scott 64 72h carmine "Vishegrad"
Scenic Type of 1906
In 1912, three additional denominations and scenes were released in the style of the 1906 issue.

Vishegrad is in the eastern part of the country at the confluence of the Drina and Rzav river.

Mehmed Pasa Sokolovic Bridge on the River Drina
The bridge,  built between 1571 and 1577, fortunately still exists, unlike the historic bridge at Mostar, which was destroyed in 1993 during the civil war. (See the "Out of the Blue" section header with the 1910 20h dark brown stamp depicting the "Old Bridge Mostar".)

1912-14 Emperor Franz Josef Issue
Scott 80 72h dark blue
Between 1912-14, a twenty-one stamp engraved issue was released. All the stamps show the Austrian Emperor. There are four frame designs, and two portraits used.

Note these are Military Post stamps.

CV is <$1-$20 for twenty stamps.

1912-14 Scott 82 2k dark gray/blue
"Emperor Franz Josef"
The higher denominations are on colored paper, and in larger format. The 2k and the 10k stamps have this design.

1916-17 Scott 103 4k carmine/green
"Emperor Franz Josef"
Then in 1916-17, another designed Military Post set was released showing the Emperor. The set consisted of eighteen engraved stamps, and two designs.

Franz Josef died on November 21, 1916.

1917 Scott 120 3k green/blue
"Emperor Karl I"
Franz Josef was succeeded by his grandnephew Charles I. That state of affairs did not last long. With the defeat of the Empire on November 11, 1918, Charles I proved to be the last reigning monarch of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

An eighteen stamp engraved set was released in 1917 depicting the new emperor.

CV is <$1-$20+.

I should mention there is also a fourteen stamp set showing Charles I, but never released in B&H because of the defeat of the Empire. However, the stamps were available for a few days at the Vienna Post Office after the Armistice in 1918. They are listed in the catalogue only as unused, and most at CV $10+. (I don't have any.)

1918 Scott 126 2h violet "View of Mostar"
Overprinted in Red
In 1918, the prior issued stamps ( the Scott 47 2h violet & the Scott 66 2h bright blue) were overprinted "1918" in red.

CV is $1+.
1914 Scott B2 12h on 10h carmine "Vrbas Valley"
Looking at semi-postals, in 1914, the 1906 issue Scott 33 5h dark green & Scott 35 10h carmine were surcharged in red.

CV is <$1 for the major numbers.

Vrbus River and Valley
The 146 mile long (235 km) Vrbus river is located in western Bosnia & Herzegovina, and is a right tributary of the Sava river. This is a scene near Banja Luka, the major city on the Vrbus.

"4" in "1914" OP is Type I
Of interest, the "4" of the red overprint "1914" comes in three types. I have two of them in my collection.

This is a close-up of Type I.

1914 Scott B1a 7h on 5h dark green 
"Narenta Pass and Prenj River"
Here is the 5h dark green which shows the Type II overprint.

"4"  in "1914" OP is Type II
A close-up of the "4" Type II.  The CV for this stamp is $3.

1915 Scott B6c 12h on 10h rose carmine "Franz Josef"
Blue Surcharge; Type III
In 1915, the 1912-14 issue Scott 68 5h green and Scott 70 10h rose carmine were surcharged in red or blue.

CV is <$1-$1+ for the major numbers.

But there is an interesting complication: the overprint is found in four types, depending on the length of the surcharge lines.

Type I: Date-18 mm; Denomination 14 mm
Type II: Date- 16 mm; Denomination 14 mm
Type III: Date- 18 mm; Denomination 16 mm
Type IV: Date- 16 mm; Denomination 16 mm

Some of the types have a CV up to $20+.

Turns out my example is a Type III (CV $1+ unused, $4+ used).

1918 Scott B20 40h violet 
"Emperor Karl I"
In 1918 a three stamp semi-postal was released, with each stamp sold at a 10h premium intended for "Karl's Fund". Note there was a similar three stamp semi-postal issue released for Austria, but labeled "Feldpost".

1904 Postage Due Scott J13 200h black, red & green
In 1904, a thirteen stamp postage due issue was printed for B&H. Major numbers in Scott have perf 12/1/2, but there are also seven more groupings (minor numbers) with various perfs in the catalogue.

The major number CV is <$1-$3, while the minor number (different perfs) CV can range up to $60+.

1916-18 Scott J26 3k dark blue
Between 1916-18, a new postage due set was released, consisting of thirteen stamps. Most of the stamps are red, but the higher values (illustrated here) are in blue.

CV ranges from <$1 to $30.

1916 Special Delivery Scott QE1 2h vermilion "Lightning"
Finally, a neat engraved "Lightning" (with Mercury depicted also) two stamp issue for special handling was released in 1916. CV is a very modest <$1.

Deep Blue
1916-17 Issue in Deep Blue
Deep Blue (Steiner) has fourteen pages for the 1879-1918 stamps of B&H. And, as mentioned in Part A, all the Scott major numbers have a space.

1910 Scott 52 20h dark brown
"Old Bridge Mostar"
Birthday Jubilee Issue Emperor Franz Josef
Out of the Blue
So completes a close up review of B&H stamps.

Regretfully, I didn't say much about the accompanying history. For a historical  review of the occupation by the Austro Hungarian Empire during 1898-1908, check out the Dead Countries Stamps entry. Thanks Michael!

Note: pics of the bridge at Vishegrad, and the Vrbus river appears to be in the public domain.


Comments appreciated!


  1. Thank you for the additional work on Bosnia and Herzegovina. I believe that the Militar Post was required because officially the country was under the joint occupation of Austria and Hungary, which were really two different countries which shared a ruler, an army and a navy, and foreign policy, and not much else.

    1. Michael - good point and no doubt correct.

  2. Quite a nice writeup with much additional detail on the various issues from this quite troubled area from a historical and political standpoint. I've always liked the pictures for Charles I used in these stamps.

    1. albumfilling- appreciate your comments, especially your like of the Charles I visage.

      His historical legacy gives mixed reviews: some think he was a weak dilettante, while others believe he tried to be a prince of peace.

  3. To Micheal Purcell's note I might only add Austria and Hungary shared some stamp issues, but even that not for long.
    Have looked and not yet found the postal need for the 1912 supplementary set of 12, 60 and 72h. Perhaps someone here has some insight...

    Another great post.
    Roy Gelder