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Smithsonian National Postal MuseumTitle: The Pichs CollectionSan Carlos Institute
HomeRoberto PichsThe Pichs Collection, Exploring Cuba's History Through Postage StampsSan Carlos InstituteCredits
Smithsonian National Postal Museum The Pichs Collection, Exploring Cuba's History Through Postage Stamps
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International Mail (10)

An early example of mail prepaid through the use of a postage stamp. This folded letter, dated May 12, 1855, is prepaid by an example of the new half real plata postage stamp depicting Queen Isabela, which first appeared for sale in Havana on April 24, 1855, less than one month previously.

By Royal Decree dated December 18, 1854, Queen Isabela ordered that postage rates within the West Indian colonies or to Spain be established as 1/2 real plata (silver real) for a single letter weighing not more than 1/2 ounce, 1 real plata for a double letter, weighing not more than one ounce, and so on in like progression.

Probably carried by a Spanish or Cuban vessel, this letter arrived at Santander, Spain, on June 6, 1855. There is no postage due marking on this letter as it was recognized as fully prepaid.

Envelope
Tome I, p.18: Havana to Santander, Spain. 12 May, 1855.
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