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It seems like all the major telegraph companies like Western Union, the Postal and all the other telegraph companies
which were eventually absorbed by Western Union used envelopes exclusively and no seals were used, other than
publicity stickers which were not used for sealing folded telegrams or envelopes. An early telegraph company called
Merchants' Line Telegraph operating out of Providence, Rhode Island, did reportedly use #1 below to seal the envelopes
in which their telegrams were delivered. This company is of interest in that it used the Bain's telegraph system, of one
of Morse's rivals, which worked through a pen on a pendulum and could transmit maps and signatures so that it was effectively
the first fax machine. It is worth googling Alexander Bain and Bain's Telegraph. A second seal which may be regarded as
almost USA is the Marconi seal used in Hawaii in 1916, #2 below.

Updates. The above was written by Steve Hiscocks.
I have added one and renumbered using 'RH' (Revised Hiscocks)
numbers. No pricing as yet.


Seals-pg-57aa JS & SG Rich 1947 Page 8 Seals-pg-57ab
#1 16mm (shield) #2 1849 ? #3 1916

The 1947 book by Joseph S. Rich & Stephen G. Rich, entitled 'United States Telegraph Issues' illustrates this on Page 8.
They say of it 'The Magnetic Telegraph Co. used a black seal on dark blue glazed paper, as early as 1849.
The New York & Erie had a similar seal about the same time. The "Merchant's Line" of the New York & New England Union company
had a rectangular seal with an eagle atop a shield, on glazed paper, in various colors.'


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH1 1 1 Imperf. Black on red. Merchants' Line Telegraph. Eagle and shield. - - -
RH2 2 - 1849? Black on dark blue glazed paper - - -
RH3 3 2 1916. Perf. top and bottom. Red on white. Marconi. - - -






The single seal below was sold as "from Yugoslavia" but I did not obtain it so did not discover whether the date of use
corresponded to the state of Yugoslavia or one of its constituent parts before its formation or after the breakup.
Its colour was lightish blue-grey on white but it has been enhanced for the design to be more visible.

Updates. The above was written by Steve Hiscocks.
Yugoslavia was formed in 1918, initially being called the
Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (S.C.S) or in Serbian,
Срба, Хрвата и Словенаца (С.Х.С.)
The S.C.S / С.Х.С. was renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929.
It was formed from parts of the defunct Astria-Hungarian Empire, Serbia,
Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Yugoslavia broke up in 1991/2, forming a new Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia (FRY) containing just Serbia and Montenegro.
In 2003 this was re-named as the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro.
I will thus take Yugoslavia as existing from 1918 to 2003,
Renumbered with 'RH' (Revised Hiscocks) numbers. No pricing as yet.



Lesser Coat of Arms of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia
1918 - 1941. This is composed of emblems representing Serbia, Croatia and the Slovenes at the bottom.
Yugoslavia 1943-46 Yugoslavia 1946-63 SFR_Yugoslavia
The Arms appeared on the Telegrams
as well as seals of the period.

The date on the emblem was the date of its design.
Originally there were five torches representing the five nations of Yugoslavia:
Croats, Serbs, Montenegrins, Macedonians, and Slovenes.

In 1946, after World War II, this changed slightly, though still with 5 torches.

In 1963 the emblem was changed to this one with six torches, though keeping the same date.
The six torches now representing the six Federal Republics of:
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia.

This double-headed eagle can clearly be confused with those of former Empires.
The clue is in the constituent arms represented.


Military Telegraph   ('ВОЈНИ ТЕЛЕГРАФ' in Serbian).

#1 1921?   (used in Sarajevo)


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH1 1 - 1921? Imperf. Black on white. - - -



Yugo-sp-April 1925
Yugo-sp-May 1925

Yugo-sp-October 1925
#2a 1925 (April), 22mm #2b 1925 (April), 22mm
Numerous differences of detail,
particularly between right leg and tail.
#3 1925 (October)
similar to the previous one, and to the 1939 type. The lightning bolts and
wings look different, but these 4 parts also look different to each other.


Yugo-sp-1926 Yugo-sp-1930
#4 1926, 22.3mm (small eagle) #4 1930, 22.2mm (small eagle)

The shading on the insulators is initially on the right, like similar Austrian seals.


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH2 2 - 1925 Imperf. Black on red. Eagle and insulators. - - -
RH3 3 - 1925 Imperf. Dark green on white. Eagle and insulators. - - -
RH4 4 - 1926-29 Imperf. Dull Blue-green on white. Eagle and insulators. - - -
RH4a 4 - 1930 Imperf. Olive-green on white. Eagle and insulators. - - -



S.C.S / С.Х.С (Serbs, Croats and Slovenes) Postal Administration - 1918 to October 1929

Yugo-1923-Vršac Yugo-DB-Sid2 Yugo-1933
#5 1923, 22.1mm, (Vršac) #6 1929, 23mm, (Shid) #7 1933-40, 23mm, (Novi Sad and Sombor)

#5, #6 and #7 were used on telegrams but have 'Postal Administration' at the top.

#5 was used in Vršac (Вршац), in the South Banat District of Vojvodina, one of the two
Socialist Autonomous Provinces within Jugoslavia, the other being Kosovo.
These were within the Socialist Republic of Serbia within Jugoslavia.

#6 was used in Šid (Шид), in the Syrmia District of Vojvodina.

#7 is very similar in blue, though the crown is different. My examples are used in
Novi Sad (Нови Сад), the capital of Vojvodina and Sombor
(Сомбор) also in Vojvodina.
The 1940 one was used in Erdevik (Ердевик),Šid municipality, in the Srem District, Vojvodina province.

RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH5 5 - 1923 Scalloped 8. Black on Mauve. Kingdom Emblem. - - -
RH6 6 - 1929 Imperf. Green on white. Kingdom Emblem. - - -
RH7 7 - 1933-40 Imperf. Blue on white. Kingdom Emblem. - - -


YUGOSLAVIA - 1929 to 2003

Seals-sp-1935 Seals-pg-24ba-b
#8 1932-5, 22.5mm (different crown) #9 1933-6, 22mm (different tail)


Yugo-1939 Yugo-1939 ?
#10a 1939-41, 22mm (wings narrower) #10b Date? 22.5mm (tail different)

#10 appears to be a return to the 1925 design.


Up to 1941, the shading on the insulators is on the right, but during the NDH period in late 1942 or early 1943, switched to the left.
This might be helpful in dating unknown seals. Croatia did the same about this time. I do not know the significance of this.



Yugo-1947 Seals-pg-57b
#11 1935-43 #12 1946-7, 20.5mm #13 1947-8, 23.2mm


Cyrillic FNRJ Yug-1 Yugo-1950
#14 1949 23.2mm. Cyrillic FNRJ #15 1948-52, 22mm H15a 1949-50

#11 says 'Краљевина Југославија / Управа Поште' (in Serbian Cyrillic) or 'Kingdom of Yugoslavia / Management of Post',
but I have seen them used on two telegrams. The name 'Kingdom of Yugoslavia' was given October 1929

#13 has latin script for the Ministry of posts with FNRJ at the bottom.
This means 'Federativna Narodna Republika Jugoslavija' (Federal People's Republic of Jugoslavia)
The name used from 1945. Again, seen used on a telegram, this marked 'MINISTARSTVO POSTA'.
#14 has the same in Cyrillic script.

#15, like #2-4,8-10 and #12 seems to be for telegrams only. This one was used at Stara Fuzina, Federal Republic of Slovenia.
I have another used on the island of Sutivan, Brač in July 1950.


RH # Type. was Description Mint Used On telegram
RH8 8 - 1932-5 Imperf. Green on white. Eagle and insulators. - - -
RH9 9 - 1933-6 Imperf. Green on white. Eagle and insulators. Different tail. - - -
RH10 10 Croat#2 1939-41 Imperf. Yellow-green on white. Eagle and insulators. - - -
RH11 11 Serb#3 1935-43 Imperf. Dark blue on white. Kingdom Emblem. - - -
RH12 12 - 1946-7 Imperf. Green on white. 1943 emblem. - - -
RH13 13 #1 1947? Imperf. Light blue-grey on white. 1943 emblem. FNRJ. - - -
RH13a             1947-8, grey-green on white. - - -
RH14 14 - 1949 Imperf. black on white. 1943 emblem. Cyrillic FNRJ. - - -
RH15 15 Croat#4 1948-52 Imperf. Black on buff. 1943 emblem and insulators. - - -
RH15a   -         1949-50, dark green on buff. - - -


According to Wikipedia: "During World War II, Zagreb became the capital of the Independent State of Croatia,
which was backed by the Nazi Germany and Italians. The city was liberated by the partisans at the end of the war."

The (half size) fragment of telegram below dated 1946 and used in Zagreb with a Yugoslavian seal, shows the Croatian arms at the top overprinted with the arms of Yugoslavia.

Overprinted telegram.

This similar one from a few days later, used in Donji Miholjac has the Croatian arms overprinted with a star.
Overprinted telegram.
This should be considered as Croatian.


This one is interesting, it has no indication of country and was sold as being Russian, used in Saint Petersburg. However it is Петровград / Petrovgrad not Петроград / Petrograd.
Additionally it is dated 1943, at which time Petrograd was called Leningrad. It appears to be written in Bosnian. At this time, the city called Petrovgrad from 1935 to 1946
was in Vojvodina, Yugoslavia and occupied by German forces. In 1946 the city was re-named Zrenjanin and is now in Serbia.

1943 Petrovgrad telegram.



By the end of 1952 (in Zagreb at least), telegrams were sent in envelopes so that seals were no longer needed.

1960 telegram.

Here is a telegram dated 12/1/60 used in Osijek.



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 16th. Dec. 2018

©Copyright Notice: This work was originally started by Steve Hiscocks and is 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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