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The Bolivian telegraph authorities issued several large seals, which were often, or perhaps usually, torn or cut in half to produce two smaller seals.
Illustration is therefore difficult unless unused seals can be found.

Updates. The above was written by Steve Hiscocks.
I have had to re-number and change the sequence.
I have also added a number of items.
During the 'Chaco War' with Paraguay (1932-5),
The seals used were much influenced by it.
Many of my images were from this Exhibition collection.
Many more plus pricing guides are from Daniel González Fernández
This is my second experiment with pricing.
As always, feedback welcome.


Lithographed by LithographyUnited.

#1 1920 ?


#2 1934, 46mm ? (Republic of Bolivia) #3 1934? 46mm ? (Army of Bolivia)

There are at least two similar types of these, but I think more.


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH1 1 - 1920 Arms of Bolivia. Imperf. Black on cream. 12.00 6.00 48.00
RH2 2 #1 1934. Imperf. machine cut. Red on cream (Republic). 180.00 90.00 240.00
RH3 3 - 1934. Imperf. machine cut. Red on white (Army). 180.00 90.00 240.00

Hiscocks adds the following note:

Note. A left half of #2 has not been seen and the width is estimated on the assumprion that the design is symmetrical around the crest.


T7a T5
#4 1932-5, 56.9mm. ('Bolivia' written low on map) #5 1934-5 54mm. (no border with 'feathered' outer edges, small arms)



T6 T4
#6 1935 (red 'CHACO')   imprint of 'LIT. UNIDAS LA PAZ' #7 1937, 56mm. (with a border, large arms)


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH4 4 (#5) 1932-35. Perf.11.5 Scarlet. 12.00 10.00 50.00
RH5 5 #4 1934-5 54.2mm, Imperf. machine cut. Green (marked shades). 18.00 9.00 30.00
RH6 6 #5 1935. Perf. Dark green. The word 'CHACO' inserted in red. 20.00 10.00 60.00
RH7 7 #3 1937. Imperf. machine cut. Green (marked shades). 18.00 9.00 30.00

Hiscocks adds the following notes:

Note.   #3 and #4 [now #7 and #5] differ in many respects - the 2mm difference in the width, the details of the map, design details in
                the upper corners - but perhaps the easiest to see is the thickness of the lettering along the bottom which is much thinner.
Note.   This seal [#6] would seem to derive from the Chaco War, 1932-35, against Paraguay in which Bolivia attempted to gain control of the
                Chaco region between the two countries in the mistaken belief that it was oil-rich and in the hope of obtaining access to the
                Atlantic down the Paraguay River. Bolivia lost. The seal is probably Die III but I have only seen illustrations on the internet.

My note:     #6 (like Hiscocks' illustration) has a clear imprint for La Pas at the bottom right. the letters 'A' at the bottom are also more splayed.
The name 'Bolivia' on the map of #4 is lower than all the rest.


Part-perforated seal - reconstruction   Simple red seal - reconstruction
These two have also turned up, the left one on a radiogram dated 18 February 1937.

RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH8 8 - 1937. Imperf. x Perf. Black on white. on strips? 25.00 12.50 40.00
RH9 9 - Date?. Imperf. Red on white. 18.00 9.00 30.00


Block of 4 x Uruguay seals
Block of 4 seals (reduced) of Type #10, 1937, 54.5mm each.

Hiscocks adds the following note:

Note. Shades of #10 vary from light blue to dark blue. Used copies seen are all upper or lower half of that illustrated which seems to be
                rouletted around the pair but not between the two seals. The divide on those seen seems to be a straight tear, as if against a
                ruler, rather than a scissor cut.

However, here is a scissor-cut example.

Scissor-cut #11 seal
Scissor-cut example of #10


Here is a horizontal(only) rouletted example.

Rouletted #11 seal
Scissor-cut example of #10 (from telegram dated 18 August 1937)


#11 1934?, 45mm


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH10 10 #2 1937. Roughly rouletted in pairs. Shades from light to dark blue. 15.00 7.50 24.00
RH10a             Rouletted every row, but not vertically. 15.00 7.50 24.00
RH11 11 - 1934?. Perf.11 Green. 30.00 15.00 60.00


Perforated between seals.

white-2 white-1
#12 1944, est. 48mm across lettering on white (thick italic lettering).


yellow-3 yellow-1
#13 1944, est. 47mm. across lettering on yellow (simple thin letters).


yellow-4 yellow-5
#13 1944, 47mm. (bottom edge of sheet)


Blue - left side Blue - right side
#13 1944, 47mm. in blue .

Hiscocks gave the white strips as 13mm wide and the others as 11mm wide.
I find the tape widths to be variable, my white example (September 1944) is 11mm wide.
The type font used however seems more consistent in that the white tapes have much thicker (italic) letters, whilst the others are thinner and simple.

Here is a collage of the blue lettering made from the 4 fragment of the 2 telegrams above.
Blue collage
The width of the lettering is 47mm.
The blue and yellow examples I have are addressed to the sub-treasurer at Sucre, as is the single white.
Perhaps the colouring represents priority ?

RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH12 12 #6a 1944 (sept). Perf.11½. Black on white. thick italic lettering. 15.00 5.00 15.00
RH13 13 #7 1944 (Feb-March). Perf.11½. Black on pale blue. thin simple lettering. 15.00 5.00 15.00
RH14 13 #7 1944 (Feb-May). Perf.11½. Black on pale yellow. thin simple lettering. 15.00 5.00 10.00
RH15 13 #7 1944. Perf.11½. Black on greenish blue. thin simple lettering. 15.00 5.00 15.00

Hiscocks adds the following 2 notes:

Note. 1  By 1944 sheets or strips of fully perforate labels printed in black on various coloured papers were in use.
                There were two settings, those on white as in #12 above and those as #13 on pale blue, yellow and greenish blue.
                All were torn in half and used as half seals, so no complete seals have been seen and the lengths are of the total
                wording and estimated from fragments.
Note. 2  My two yellow half seals are both imperforate at one end but may be marginal copies.


1952, 1960?   Wording changed perhaps due to the MNR.   Perf.11½
The MNR gained power in 1952, however the postage stamps did not get their wording simplified until 1960.

MNR type ?
#14   Date ?   65.2mm.

The imprint says: LIT. É IMP. BOLIVIANA - N. HEITMANN y Co.


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH16 14 - 1952? Perf.11½. Green. 20.00 10.00 30.00



If anyone can provide scans to help with this, I am happy to give appropriate credit.



Comments, criticisms, information or suggestions are always welcome.
Contact:   Emale
Please include the word 'Seals' in the subject.


Last updated 12th. Sept. 2019

©Copyright Notice: This work was originally started by Steve Hiscocks and being continued by myself (Steve Panting).
For simplicity, my additions are under the same conditions as the original work by Steve Hiscocks.


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