While looking through my stock of excess colonial pre-philately, I come upon several documents mostly on sealed paper which showed on the margins philatelic markings, often of great rarity. Sitting down with some of my philatelic colleagues we tried to come up with a reason for the markings but could not find a good reason for their being and assistence for help from our philatelic friends.
The only common denominator we could find was their age; all originating in the 1770’s and 1780’s and all involving legal matters. One, with a beautiful Latacunga and Franca mark is a testament signed in Quito. Another postmarked Quito and Franca involves a suit for damages i.e. nothing that would give us a clue as to the application of postal markings.
Here are the four documents:
1. Sealed paper for six reales (Second Class) from 1731-1732-1733-1734 revalidated for 1782-1783. Post mark Quito-Franca in red with a Quito Type I marking which chronologically follows the same marking in black. Date January 1, 1782.
2. Sealed paper for six reales (Second Class) from 1752-1753 revalidated for 1782-1783. Post mark Latacunga Franca in black with earliest known postmark from that city. Date Quito, June 18, 1783.
3. Sealed paper of ¼ of a real (Fourth Class) from 1762-1763 and revalidated for 1770-1771. Manuscript annotation on various pages that it also serves for 1772. Postmark Riobamba in black. Earliest known postmark of that city and less than a handful known. Date Riobamba January 28, 1772.
4. Sealed paper for One Real (Third Class) from 1758-1759 revalidated for 1780-1781 with manuscript annotation on various pages that it also served for the year 1772. The final page of this document which is in my collection shows the date of October 15, 1776. Postmark Ysquande in black. The first and only known mark of its kind.
In my private collection I have several other documents of one or more pages marked with a postmark. These are in chronological order: Riobamba (1772), Popayan and Buga 1780), Cali (1783), Latacunga (1783), Buga (1784) and Quilichao (1788).
Since most of these documents are of postal content Y am wondering if the postal directors stamped them as a sign of authority rather than as postmarks.
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