Sudan to India Express Mail 1941?

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DaveR
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Sudan to India Express Mail 1941?

Post by DaveR »

I found this curious cover on delcampe - Was there an Express Mail service between Sudan and India or within India in 1941?
Image
https://www.delcampe.net/en_GB/collectables/stamps/sudan-195 ... 23203.html

The various Sudan literature that I have makes no mention of an Express Mail service around this time. Given the stage of the war I would not expect any form of Express Mail service. It would have just been carried on the Horseshoe Route.

Another curiosity with the cover is the 3½ piastres franking. The air mail fee should have been 4½ piastres - underpaid, so no extra payment for any express service.

From a bit of googling, I think the 'Express' label is a British one.

Postmarked Khartoum - looks like 7 March 1941.
Back-stamped Devlali 12 March 1941.

I anyone has any information about an Express Mail service, I would be very grateful.

[Today's trivia - According to wikipedia, the British Army camp at Deolali/Devlali gave us the term "doolally".
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deolali - It is also the source of the British slang noun doolally tap, loosely meaning "camp fever", and referring to the apparent madness of men waiting for ships back to Britain after finishing their tour of duty. By the 1940s this had been widely shortened to just "doolally", an adjective meaning "mad (insane)" or "eccentric".]

Thanks - Dave.

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Re: Sudan to India Express Mail 1941?

Post by Cullen »

I'm no expert in the subject, but it looks to me that someone has 'embellished' this cover at some time.
Cullen

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Joy Daschaudhuri
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Re: Indian Express Mail Service in WW2

Post by Joy Daschaudhuri »

DaveR wrote: Was there an Express Mail service between Sudan and India or within India in 1941?
I anyone has any information about an Express Mail service, I would be very grateful.

Thanks - Dave.
India had an Express Delivery service during WW2 but exclusively for inland mail. The service began from Oct 1,1930 with fixed rate of 2A per article, the rate remained in effect till the decimalization of Indian currency.
DaveR wrote: Given the stage of the war I would not expect any form of Express Mail service.
Not my field but there is an article on WW2 Express Mail service titled "WW2 Express and Priority Airmail from Nairobi to Pretoria" by Jim Findlay; Ref. The South African Philatelist (Vol.LXXXIII No.2 4–6/2007); pp.255-6.

If anyone is interested I can send the article in pdf format. Just send me the e-mail address.
DaveR wrote: Postmarked Khartoum - looks like 7 March 1941.
The cancels are actually Indian.
The Proud type D2 datestamps are of Indian Base Post Office 2 which was in Khartum from Nov 2,1940 to Mar 7,1943.

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DaveR
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Re: Sudan to India Express Mail 1941?

Post by DaveR »

Joy.

Thank you for the reply.

I am very interested in a copy of the article. I will send you a board email.

Which Proud book did the information that the Base Office 2 cancel is an Indian one come from? I have a copy of Proud's Postal History of Sudan; makes no mention of the British & Indian Army cancels.

Stagg's Sudan - The Postal Markings 1867-1970 records that the Base Office 2 cancel is British Army, and was operating in Khartoum from September 1940 to 8 February 1942. Research by the Sudan Study Group has extended those dates to August 1940 to September 1942.

Thanks - Dave.

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Joy Daschaudhuri
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Re: Indian Base Post Office 2

Post by Joy Daschaudhuri »

DaveR wrote: Which Proud book did the information that the Base Office 2 cancel is an Indian one come from? I have a copy of Proud's Postal History of Sudan; makes no mention of the British & Indian Army cancels.
References:

1. History of the Indian Army Postal Service (Vol.III: 1931–14 August 1947)
Edward Wilfrid Baxby Proud.
Proud-Bailey Company Limited, Heathfield, England 1986
Part I
Chapter IV: M.E.F. Sudan, Eritrea and Ethiopia; pp.129, 133-4, 145
Part II
Chapter XIII: Base and Miscellaneous Offices; p.325

2. The Field Post Offices of the Sudan Eritrean Campaign 1939–1945
B de Burca.
Oriental Philatelic Association, London, England 1964
Indian FPO/Base PO; p.8

3. Indian Army Post Offices Locations and Movements 1939–1947
Diljit Sinh Virk.
Army Postal Historical Society, Kamthi 1970
Part III: List of Base Post Offices and Depots; p.67

4. Indian Army Post Offices Locations and Movements 1939–1947
Diljit Sinh Virk.
Ed. Arthur Joseph Brown and William Garrard.
Forces Postal History Society, London, England 1973
Section IV: Base Post Offices and Depots; p.115

5. Indian Army Post Offices in the Second World War
Diljit Sinh Virk.
The Army Postal Service Association, Ramakrishnapuram 1982
Chapter III: Campaigns in Sudan, Eritrea and Abyssinia (August 1940–July 1941); pp.22-3, 25, 27-8

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Joy Daschaudhuri
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Re: Indian Base Post Office 2

Post by Joy Daschaudhuri »

DaveR wrote: Stagg's Sudan - The Postal Markings 1867-1970 records that the Base Office 2 cancel is British Army, and was operating in Khartoum from September 1940 to 8 February 1942. Research by the Sudan Study Group has extended those dates to August 1940 to September 1942.

Thanks - Dave.
Stagg is long outdated and the quoted so-called "research" by Sudan Study Group on Indian BPO 2 is total nonsense.

First, the BPO 2 was essentially Indian, raised in Mumbai in 7/1940 as 2 Section BPO, intended to serve the "Niblick" Force in Iraq but later was decided to send it to Sudan.

It was under the administrative control of NS Sherrard Smith, Deputy Assistant Director, Indian Army Postal Service. In addition to the Indian Forces, BPO 2 also served the British Forces in Sudan.

Secondly, how can the earliest date of operating of BPO 2 be extended to Aug 1940 when it was sent from Mumbai for Sudan only on Oct 11,1940?

BPO 2 reached Khartum only in the end of Oct 1940 and started functioning from Nov 2,1940.

Thirdly, no Br. BPO/FPO datestamp is as large as those of Indian BPO/FPO postmarks used in WW2.

Fourthly, BPO 2 functioned in Khartum till March 3,1943. Both Stagg and SSG which propounded the extended date Sep 1942, are wrong.

And finally, there was no Br. BPO 2 in Sudan in WW2. In fact no designated Br. BPO 2 ever functioned during WW2 in any theater of war.

Proud's Vol.III of "History of the Indian Army Postal Service" is unabashedly quoted verbatim from Virk's works which in turn were based on Ministry of Defense records of Army Postal Directorate GHQ India.

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