King Alfonso XIII of Spain Tarjeta Postal

King Alfonso XIII (17 May 1886 – 28 February 1941) was the Spanish monarch who was born in 1886. He was immediately proclaimed king under the regency of Maria Cristina ( his mother). In 1902, on his 16th birthday, he assumed full authority as king until his abdication in 1931.

Tarjeta Postal – Postal Card/ Postcard

King Alfonso XIII postcard commercially used dated January 17,1906 by Pototipia de Hauser V Menet Undivided Back (c. 1901-1907) Madrid

He was the ruler of the country, when Cuba gained their independence, Philippine, Guam, Puerto Rico were sold to the United States of the treaty of Paris in 1898. The remaining islands of Caroline islands ( Islas de Carolinas) formerly part of Spanish East Indies were eventually sold to Germany in 1899 for 25 million pesetas or 17 million golds mark. Spain only remaining colonies are the Spanish Sahara in Northern Africa and some enclaves.

Aside from the decline of Spain as a world power, This was also one of the most turbulent episodes in Spanish history.

back portion of the tarjeta postal – the postcard was send from Spain to England with King Alfonso XIII stamp

Popular Myths Behind King Alfonso XIII coins and stamps

There are coins, banknotes, postage stamps, telegraph stamps and tarjeta postal issued during the Spanish regime in the country which bore his portrait – Almost same design were also issued in Puerto Rico, Guam, Cuba with few minor differences. When the coins were minted in Madrid and issued in Manila for general use, They were not so popular compared to Queen Isabel 2 and King Alfonso XII.

The XIII or number 13 was sometimes considered “unlucky” to those people collecting them. There are some old time collectors who recounted their stories , that some do not even dared to touch the coins due to the fear of getting “unlucky” (malas).

As years passed by, The coins, stamps and ephemera of King Alfonso XIII became popular because a lot of the items were destroyed during the Spanish civil war during the middle part of 1936 to early 1939. Some of the local collection were lost during the last world war, natural calamities, fires and even neglect by their owners.

Some of the coins were eventually remelted down after the war up to the 1980’s for the use in different local silversmith ateliers, altar pieces or reselling them. Those are just some of the contributing of the scarcity of the coin.

There are still some King Alfonso XIII or King Alphonse XIII stamps and postcards that are still affordable for sale in popular online auction sites or local stamp collecting bourse.

It had been more than 1 year since the last local stamp club held their local bourse due to IATF and enhanced community quarantine restriction.

Bought this postcard in an online auction site, few months ago for a price of a fast food burger meal. It was quite rare to find this in local stamp bourse/ auction club meeting.

King Alfonso XIII Abdication and Death

He left Spain voluntarily after the municipal elections of April 1931, which were taken as a plebiscite on abolishing the monarchy. Alfonso XIII renounced his rights to the defunct Spanish throne on June 15, 1941 in favor of Juan. He died of a heart attack in Rome on 28 February of that year. He was buried in Spanish National Church of Santiago and Montserrat (Santa Maria in Monserrato degli Spagnoli) in Rome before his body was repatriated in 1980.

He was re interred in El Escorial in Spain.

Popular Ancient Spots in Rome, Italy thru Vintage Postcards

Popular landmarks in Rome was a favorite theme in many vintage or old postcards issued in Italy. The postcards had a peculiar way of affixing the stamp. The stamp is usually posted at the face of the postcard rather than the back. portion.

Popular Tourists Spot in Rome and Vatican

The postcard seller posted 4-cartes postales anciennes, old-postcards-ITALIE – The first set of landmarks includes includes Tomb of Caecilia Metella, Saint Peter’s Basilica and Square, Forum of Trajan and Colosseum used to be retailed at 3.95 Euro but was on sale for 2.77 Euro ( Php 160.21). The first set was probably issued between 1910 to 1920’s.

The popular landmarks are also some of the ancient landmarks which dates back during the middle or late Roman empire. Some of which are at least hundreds or even at thousand of years -old.

L-R top view Saint Peter’s Basilica and Arch of Titus, Below (L-R) Roman Forum and Trevi Fountain with stamp in front view ( timbre cote vue)

second lot includes Saint Peter Basilica, Arch of Titus, Roman Forum and Trevi Fountain the first set of postcard was on sale for 2.77 Euro about (Php 160.21) but used to be retailed at 3.95 Euro, there was a 29% off on these set of postcard. the shipping is standard Euro 1.75 or about ( Php 101.21) the second set was issued between 1911’s to 1920’s.

(TVC) Timbre Cote Vue

“Timbre Cote Vue” shorter abbreviation for is TVC is a French term for where the stamp then the cancel were placed on the face or picture side of a postcard. The message from the sender is also written on the front of this card and it is dated on the back by the sender.

L-R Santa Maria de Cosmedia, Spanish Steps ( Scalinata di Trinità dei Monti) Rome, Saint Peter’s Basilica (Vatican City) and La fontana delle Naiadi . All the four postcards have 5 and 10 centisimi definitive stamp posted from Italy. The stamp were posted in front view.

Lot number 3 originally for sale at 3.95 Euros, but was marked down for just 2.77 Euros ( Php 160.21) with 29% discount. The postcards and stamps are dated between 1910 to early 1920’s. The postcards are between 100 to 110 years-old. Considering the big discount, We lost no time to contact the seller and bought the three lots.

This fad is not just in Europe but also in many parts of the world. In the Philippines, This was the practice by some postal authorities and postcard senders in the late 19th to mid 20th century. A sample timbre cote vue is the Puerta Real postcard featured several months ago.

References, Sources and Bibliographies:

Italy Stamps from 1900 to 1909 Stamp World

Stanley Gibbons- Italy Stamps

Scott’s Publishing Company Catalog- Italy

Further Readings and Related Links:

American Regime Manila thru postcards (part 1)

American Regime Manila thru postcards ( part 2)

American Regime Manila thru postcards (part 3)

American Regime Manila thru postcards ( part 4 )

Chicago Postcard Museum

Herpin, Georges. “Bapteme” in Le Collectionneur de Timbres-Postes, Vol.I, 15 November 1864, p.20.

Sutton, R.J. & K.W. Anthony. The Stamp Collector’s Encyclopaedia. 6th edition. London: Stanley Paul, 1966.

Patrick, Douglas & Mary. The Hodder Stamp Dictionary, Hodder & Stoughton, London, 1973, p.261. ISBN 0-340-17183-9.

Philippine Postcards page 130 to 137 Consuming Passions

Vintage Pope John Paul 2 postcards from Vatican and Rome

There was a big sale few weeks ago by an online seller from France. The seller also sells vintage postcards, stamps, coin, banknotes, photos and first day covers.

The postcards were thematic and featured then Pope John Paul 2 in the early 1983 to mid- 1980’s, mostly issued in Rome, Italy and Vatican City. These types of postcards were commonly sold to pilgrims, tourists, collectors of stamp ( philatelists) and postcards (deltiologists) who collect these types of thematic collection.

( This postcard lot initially cost 3.95 Euro had a marked down price of 2.77 Euro during the flash sale)

Technically, all the postcards were about 37 years-old and are highly collectible items. Thousands of these postcards were printed in many parts of the globe. This marked a long 26 year term from October 16, 1978 to April 2, 2005.

Vintage Pope John Paul 2 Postcards from Vatican and Rome, Italy

( one of the postcard depict Pope John Paul 2 with Vatican Papal seal )

Pope John Paul 2 postcards were sold per lot of 4 pieces – each lot initially cost Euro 3.95 , During the big sale, The lots were sold at Euro 2.77 or almost 30% discount , all the three lot cost only Euro 8.31 excluding shipping.

The three lot cost about Php 480.15 based on April 1, 2021 rate. This is also one way to commemorate his 16th death anniversary.

Pope John Paul 2 postcards dated 1983 ( Pope John Paul 2 upper left side a repeat postcard from the second lot)

According to a fellow deltiologist, Pope John Paul 2 postcards are highly collectible theme and the retail price of the postcard had risen by at least 3 to 5 times over the time.

EDSA People Power Vintage Postcards

Epifanio de los Santos Avenue or acronym called EDSA. The highway stretches about 23.8 kilometers (14.8 miles) and traverses major Metro Manila towns and cities like Caloocan, Quezon City, San Juan, Mandaluyong, Makati and Pasay.

This multi view photo postcard with yellow border was among the most popular postcard sold and was out of stock just few months after this was release. The reason was the yellow border which associate the new regime.

EDSA History

EDSA used to be called Avenida 19 de Junio from 1946 to early 1950’s then Highway 54 from the mid- 1950 to 1959. On April 7, 1959, De los Santos’ birthday, Republic Act No. 2140. It was then referred to as Epifanio de los Santos Avenue or EDSA since then.

single view postcard of the people who joined the 1986 EDSA People Power revolution

It was at the Ortigas corner EDSA which is near Camp Crame and Camp Aguinaldo where the popular four day uprising from February 22–25, 1986. There was a sustained campaign of civil resistance against regime. There were at least several hundreds of thousands to more than 2 million people which went to the 4 day peaceful rally.

It with triumph of the peaceful revolution, Popular National Bookstore printed postcards while other smaller bookstore soon followed. This was popular items send to postcard / deltiologist in different parts of the world.

There were at least a dozen or so multi-view photos per postcard, While there were also single photo postcard which captured the people en mass.

multi-view photos of the EDSA 1986 People Power Revolution

Some local deltiologists and souvenir sellers quickly capitalized the newly released people power stamps issued by PHLPOST and sell them on tourists, deltiologists and maximum philately collectors from all parts of the globe.

1986 People Power Revolution stamps and souvenir sheet (mint condition)

The new administration of President Corazon Cojuangco Aquino together with Vice President Salvador “Doy’ Laurel were featured in the 4 pieces set of stamps (60 centavos – quantities: 1,000,000, 1.20 pesos- quantities: 1,000,000, 2.40- quantities: 641,500 and 3.00 pesos -quantities: 1,000,000 ) and a souvenir sheet stamp ( Php 7.20)quantities -50,000. The stamps also comes within presentation folder, which had a premium and first day issue with different cache designs.

First Day Cover had -Makati cancellation, Camp Crame cancellation, with another variation Makati and Camp Crame cancellation. The stamps and first day cover were printed by APO Neda Printing Company. The used stamps were sold at much cheaper price compared to the mint one.

2021 marked the 35th anniversary of the peaceful change of power with postcards and stamps serves as reminder of the not so distant history.

EDSA People Power :Popularity of Postcards

EDSA People Power postcards during the 1980’s up to early part of 2000 were sold in many bookstore and was used for different purposes. It was used for school projects by students of both private and public schools in their Social Studies, Araling Panlipunan, History, Humanities,Political Science among other subjects. It was reprinted several times and sold en mass by some bookstores in Divisoria and sold in the provinces.

However it is not somewhat rare to find EDSA 1986 People Power postcards even in local stamp bourse, curio stores and online auction sites.

Sources and References:

Personal interview with postcard collectors

Scott’s Stamp Catalog 1987 Philippines

Century -Old Valentine’s Day Postcard

Happy Valentine’s Day to all,

Sharing this circa 1905 Valentine’s Day postcard which we were able to buy few years ago in a popular online site. This was on SALE for just a couple of bucks with handwritten note at the back. The featured drawing was two cupids ( mailman ) calling each other with the use of another state of the art form of communication- telephone.

Valentine’s Day Postcard

Valentine’s Day is widely celebrated all over the world. Postcards and greeting cards were popular an inexpensive medium to communicated and the first Valentine’s day greeting cards were issued in the late 18th century.

Valentine’s cards which soon became immensely popular. It is estimated that by the mid 1820s, some 200,000 Valentines were circulated in London. While postcards soon were issued in Great Britain and the United States of America.

Hallmarks soon printed thousands if not hundreds of thousands of greeting cards by early 20th century. The personalized postcards are highly desired by collectors since they are not produced in mass quantity.

2021 Valentine’s Day stamp from Philippine Postal Corporation (PHLPOST)

While stamps which celebrates the occasion were issued by several postal authorities and Philippine Postal Corporation also issues Valentine’s Day stamp. The 2021 Philippine Valentine’s Day stamp was issued few days ago in virtual launching held at the Manila Central Post Office main building on February 10, 2021.

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