The establishment of the Palestinian Authority post

Dr. Josef Wallach [ Hebrew Website ]

Home pageOslo A and BResearchEnvelopesStampsPostmarksFormsDocumentsAdvanced StudyDocumentation

Chapter 6 : Postmarks


The postmark is a fundamental component in the activity of the Post Office . Through applying postmarks on envelopes and other postal items one can identify details of the post from which it is posted and the date . In fact , the introduction of the postmark indicates the beginning of the activities of the post office , and its removal from use marks the cessation of activity .

In this chapter lists of the postmarks used in post offices of the Palestinian Authority in the early years of statehood ( 1995 on ) will be presented . In addition , the postmarks which were used under Israeli post , until their closure (1994-95) , due to the implementation of Oslo- A- and Oslo -B- agreements .

Pal Auth. Postmarks

With the implementation of Oslo -A- , in May 1994 , the Pal. Auth . was not yet ready to operate the postal system In the Territories which came under her responsibility in Gaza Strip and Jericho . There were NO postage stamps , ( they were printed only five months later ) , NOR postmark Closing of Israeli post offices paralized the the P/A. post offices , which focused on distribution of incoming mail. Little is known about posted mail , in the absence of postmarks, some manual, (pen) cancellation, is known at the end of this period (see example in this link) [Postmarks Link 1].
Most outgoing mail in the period was channeled via the Israeli post ( Gaza Strip via " Mevo Gaza” and Ashqelon , and Jericho via Jerusalem ) . On 1. Jan. 1995 the first postmarks of the P.A. post were introduced ..
Types of postmarks
In the period dealt by this study , three main types of postmarks , were put into use in the P.A. Post offices

Bridge type postmarks ( Probably Egyptian made) . Metal postmarks (German made ) . rubber postmarks ( Probably local made ) . In addition , special postmarks , were introduced from time to time to mark special events
Bridge Type Postmarks
At the end of Dec.1994 Pal. Auth . announced its intention to run the post offices on 1.Jan.1995 . This message , sent by fax , included the postmarks designed to operate ( See attached link) [Link 2]
The postmarks which were probably made in Egypt , designed in the conventional format of Egyptian postmarks . Thus the date was integrated within "braces” (=bridge) in the center of the device

The 1..Jan. 1995 cancellations reflect " the official FIRST DAY " of the P.A, Post . The postmarks were applied at one central site , probably at the Gaza town Main post office (see details in attached study) - [Link 3]

Link to details of postmarks applied on official first day - [Link 4]

" The practical (actual) FIrst Day " Took place a fea days later, on 10.Jan.1995. At that time the postmarks arrived at all post offices and , began the actual routine, of post office operation .

( Link to details - first day of practical use) - [Link 5]

Metal Postmarks
The Bridge type postmarks were provisional and used for only a short period : two to three months. . In Early Feb.1995 , began, gradual replacement of the above , with excellent quality , metal type postmarks made in Germany . The new metal postmark replaced the Bridge type which was withdrawn .

(See attached study) - [Link 6]

Link to envelopes carrying the new metal postmarks replacing the Bridge ones - [Link 7]

At all mew post offices opened in Gaza Strip from now on the metal postmarks were introduced

Link to envelopes of later opened offices - [Link 8]

8. Nov. 1995 opening of post office in the West Bank

Rubber postmarks
On Nov.8. 1995 , as part of the Oslo -B- accords 36 (thirty six ! offices were opened in the West Bank area . These offices were equipped with rubber type postmarks , probably produced in the West Bank .

Link to envelopes carrying the rubber postmarks. [Link 9]

In Nov.1995 with the implementation of the Oslo -B- accords and transfer of responsibility of post offices in the West Bank to the Pal. Auth ,. rubber type postmarks , locally produced were introduced . A few months later the German made metal devices were introduced to these offices . .

A few months later metaal postmarks entered into use in post offices in the West Bank . Unlike what happened in the Gaza Strip, metal postmarks have not replaced the rubber ones but the two types were used simultaneously . I later, newly opened , offices in the West Bank , rubber type postmarks were introduced

Link to envelopes of the newly opened offices . [Link 10]

Special Postmarks
At different occasions "Special Events" postmarks were introduced , to commemorate special events and Festivals . They can be associated to a number of groups

Link to "Christmas postmarks" [Link 10_A]

Link to special events postmarks [Link 10_B]

Link to Propaganda cachets [Link 10_C]

Israel Postmarks

As part of Oslo Agreement and the transfer of responsibility to the Pal. Auth . Israel closed the post offices it operated since 1967 in the West Bank and Gaza Strip . Closing the post offices included collection of the postmarks from those post offices . Postmarks collected , usually several days before the deadline for transfering responsibility, in order to allow an orderly closure of the office . Hence we have to differentiate between the day actual last day in which the postmark was used and the official last day one that has been announced as the LAST DAY .
Postal closure of Israeli post offices - Oslo -A-
See details in attached study [Link 11]

Link to details of Israel postmarks [Link 12]

Postal closure of Israeli post offices - Oslo -B-
See details in attached study [Link 13]

Dr. Josef Wallach - Copyright (c) - All rights reserved