The Szekula Family of Stamp Dealers

EN / DE

This website is dedicated to the Hungarian born stamp dealers Béla, Géza, Eugen and Frank Sekula. Each one of them ran his own stamp business with emphasis on international stamp trade, most likely driven by money rather than the love of stamps. All four assumed Swiss nationality and were at one time based in Lucerne. Especially Béla’s creative business ideas provoked more than one philatelic scandal during his career. However, the history of philately would arguably be poorer without the Sekula brothers.


Eugen Sekula

 
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Eugen Sekula (1888–1950) was born as Jenő Szekula in Szeged on March 9, 1888. When he was old enough, he joined Géza as an employee at Béla’s Internationale Philatelisten. On August 19, 1912, he married Elisabeth (Erzsébet) Zenner in Budapest. Like his older brothers he then moved to Lucerne, initially still working for Béla. In October 1913, Eugen traveled to the United States representing Béla’s company at New York’s first stamp exhibition, the New York Philatelic Exhibition. First philatelic ads with the address Zürichstr. 62 appeared in Swiss newspapers in 1915, including those offering unused Belgian stamps confiscated by Germany during the occupation. In September 1916 he moved to Grendelstr. 19, where he opened his own Briefmarken-Import und -Export (= stamp import and export) business Eugen Szekula in January 1917. On July 5, 1919 he became a naturalized Swiss citizen of Geuensee. In September 1919 Eugen closed his business at Grendelstrasse 19 and reopened it as Briefmarken-Import und -Exporthaus (= stamp import and export house) at the new address Hertensteinstrasse 56. Like the rest of the family he changed the spelling of his name to Sekula in March 1923. Apparently his business went well for the next ten years, but in 1933 he was facing bankruptcy. As a result, in August of that year Eugen’s stamp import and export firm was converted into a corporation, Eugen Sekula AG, with him as director. In August 1934 the Eugen Sekula AG changed its name to Atlas Briefmarken AG in Luzern (Atlas Stamp Ltd. Lucerne). In February 1935 the board of the Atlas Briefmarken AG in Luzern decided to leave Lucerne and move to Lugano; the corporation was renamed to Atlas Briefmarken AG in Lugano (Atlas Stamp Ltd. Lugano). After less than three years, In November 1937 the Atlas Briefmarken AG in Lugano moved again, this time to Zurich, and became Atlas Briefmarken AG in Zurich (Atlas Stamp Ltd. Zurich). The company continued to sell stamps for another thirteen years, but in the end Eugen Sekula was apparently headed for financial ruin. On Sunday the 29th of January, 1950, the police was called to Sekula’s apartment at Rigistr. 18 where they found the lifeless bodies of Eugen Sekula (62), his wife Elisabeth (57) and their disabled daughter Maja (24). Both parents were already dead when the police arrived; Maja was hospizalized but died one day later without regaining consciousness. All three had taken an overdose of sedative drugs, presumably due to their desperate financial situation. Three months later, in April 1950, the Atlas Briefmarken AG in Zurich was declared bankrupt.
Although he was much less of a traveler, Eugen Sekula’s business qualities probably came close to those of Béla. A failed attempt to establish his own postage paid labels in the Swiss postal system in 1930 shows that he was similarly creative, but he also employed the same sale tactics as Béla sending out unwanted stamp selections and then aggressively demanding payment — eventually with the same result: In 1934 the U.S. Post imposed a short-lived embargo on both of them, even marking postal money orders as fraudulent and returning them to the sender.


Cover — April 13, 1915

Registered mail sent on April 13, 1915, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Rouen, France. Arrived on April 16, 1915.

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Postcard — September 15, 1915

Sent on September 15, 1915, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to New York City, United States.

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Postcard — January 29, 1916

Printed matter sent on January 29, 1916, from Bischweiler, Alsace (=Bischwiller), Germany (today France), to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Cover — February 10, 1916

Sent on February 10, 1916, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Helsingborg, Sweden.

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Scan provided by Max Brack.


Cover — February 21, 1916

Sent on February 21, 1916, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Calbe a.d. Saale, Germany.

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Cover — July 22, 1916

Sent on July 22, 1916, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Ludwigslust, Germany.

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Postcard — December 26, 1918

Sent on December 26, 1918, from Naumburg a.d. Saale, Germany, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Cover — February 1, 1919

Registered mail sent on February 1, 1919, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Skive, Denmark. Arrived on February 8, 1919.

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Postcard — April 11, 1919

Sent on April 11, 1919, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Mora, Sweden.

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Cover — April 15, 1919

Sent on April 15, 1919, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Wolfhalden. Arrived on April 16, 1919.

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Cover — June 18, 1919

Insured letter sent on June 18, 1919, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Wolfhalden.

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Cover — December 19, 1919

Sent on December 19, 1919, from Kingston, Jamaica, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Return Envelope — August 1920

Registered mail sent in August 1920 from Copenhagen, Denmark, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on August 23, 1920.

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Cover — September 5, 1920

Official mail sent on September 5, 1920, within Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Scan provided by Bob Medland.


Postcard — October 26, 1920

Sent on October 26, 1920, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to San Francisco, California, United States.

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Cover — October 29, 1920

Sent on October 29, 1920, from Helsinki, Finland, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Parcel Registration Card — February 15, 1921

Sent on February 15, 1921 with shipment from Leipzig, Germany, to Eugen Szekula in Lucerne.

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Cover — February 19, 1921

Official mail sent on February 19, 1921, within Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Scan provided by Max Brack.


Cover — April 1921

Sent in April 1921 from Curaçao to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on April 20, 1921.

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Scan provided by Bob Medland.


Postcard — May 25, 1921

Sent on May 25, 1921, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Millville, New Jersey, United States.

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Cover — July 26, 1921

Sent on July 26, 1921, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Valdivia, Chile. Arrived on September 5, 1921.

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Cover — August 7, 1921

Sent on August 7, 1921, from Nysted, Denmark, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Cover — March 11, 1922

Registered mail sent on March 11, 1922, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Lucerne. Arrived on March 11, 1922.

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Cover — May 28, 1922

Registered mail sent on May 28, 1922, from Vienna, Austria, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 1, 1922.

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Cover — February 9, 1923

Sent on February 9, 1923, from Valletta, Malta, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Cover — March 1923

Registered mail sent in March 1923 from Tunis, Tunisia, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on March 31, 1923.

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Cover — May 19, 1923

Sent on May 19, 1923, from Saint-Pierre and Miquelon to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 4, 1923.

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Cover — September 14, 1923

Sent registered on October 14, 1923 from Lucerne to Seon, Aargau. Acceptance refused and returned on October 15.

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Cover — September 19, 1923

Out of necessity, locally produced fee paid stamps (aka local issues) were officially approved during the hyperinflation in the Weimar Republic and were therefore valid for postage. However, some dealers also seized the opportunity and produced their own labels. The fee paid labels used on this cover are products of the print shop owner and philatelist Ulrich Runge in Halle. Although their use was forbidden immediately, some letters slipped through, even by registered mail and also to foreign countries. See also this cover to Béla Sekula.

Registered mail sent on September 19, 1923, from Halle, Germany, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on September 22, 1923. item item


Cover — October 26, 1923

Sent on October 26, 1923 from Eugen Sekula’s office in Lucerne to his hotel address in New York City, USA.

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Cover — November 2, 1923

Registered mail sent on November 2, 1923, from Roustschouk (=Ruse), Bulgaria, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on November 2, 1923.

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Postcard — January 7, 1924

Sent on January 7, 1924, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Brussels, Belgium.

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Cover — April 19, 1924

Registered mail sent on April 19, 1924, from Castelmoron-sur-Lot, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on April 21, 1924.

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Cover — July 14, 1924

Sent on July 14, 1924, from Gloggnitz, Austria, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on July 16, 1924.

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Postcard — August 30, 1924

Sent on August 30, 1924 by Eugen Sekula to Frank Sekula in New York City, USA. The postcard was carried on the transatlantic delivery flight of the airship ZR-3, built by the Zeppelin company as war reparation, from Friedrichshafen to the US Naval Air Station at Lakehurst, New Jersey.

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Return Envelope — October 6, 1924

Registered mail sent on October 6, 1924, from Bordeaux, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on October 6, 1924.

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Cover — October 7, 1924

Registered mail sent on October 7, 1924, from Amsterdam, Netherlands, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on October 9, 1924.

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Cover — November 4, 1924

Registered mail sent on November 4, 1924, from Geneva, Switzerland, to Lucerne. Arrived on November 4, 1924.

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Cover — November 23, 1924

Registered mail sent on November 23, 1924, from Varna, Bulgaria, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on November 23, 1924.

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Cover — November 28, 1924

Registered mail sent on November 28, 1924, from Paris, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on November 29, 1924.

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Cover — December 23, 1924

Registered mail sent on December 23, 1924, from Châlons-sur-Marne (=Châlons-en-Champagne), France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on December 24, 1924.

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Cover — January 2, 1925

Registered mail sent on January 2, 1925, from Lille, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on January 3, 1925.

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Cover — January 27, 1925

Registered mail sent on January 27, 1925, from Strasbourg, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Return Envelope — March 30, 1925

Registered mail sent on March 30, 1925, from Diessenhofen, Switzerland, to Lucerne. Arrived on March 30, 1925.

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Cover — April 8, 1925

Registered mail sent on April 8, 1925, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Dole, Jura. Arrived on April 8, 1925.

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Cover — October 24, 1925

Registered mail sent on October 24, 1925, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Munich, Germany. Arrived on October 25, 1925.

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Postcard — December 9, 1925

A postcard from Eugen Sekula to the editor of the General Anzeiger für Philatelie, where he complains that his advertisement was not printed correctly. The advertisement contained the phrase ordinary nominal value, but he insists on never having used the word ordinary and therefore refuses to pay for it.

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Cover — December 21, 1925

Registered mail sent on December 21, 1925, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Bruges, Belgium, and forwarded to Namur. Arrived on December 21, 1925.

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Cover — June 7, 1926

Registered mail sent on June 7, 1926, from Haarlem, Netherlands, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 8, 1926.

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Cover — June 8, 1926

Sent on June 8, 1926, from ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Cover — July 15, 1926

Sent on July 15, 1926, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Caxias do Sul, Brazil. Arrived on July 15, 1926.

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Cover — November 6, 1926

Registered mail sent on November 6, 1926, from Stavanger, Norway, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on November 10, 1926.

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Cover — March 11, 1927

Registered mail sent on March 11, 1927, from La Sagne-Ste-Croix, Switzerland, to Lucerne. Arrived on March 12, 1927.

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Cover — June 7, 1927

Registered mail sent on June 7, 1927, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Schwäbisch-Gmünd, Germany. Arrived on June 8, 1927.

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Cover — June 25, 1927

Registered mail sent on June 25, 1927, from Antwerp, Belgium, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 27, 1926.

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Cover — July 15, 1927

Registered mail sent on July 15, 1927, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Effretikon. Arrived on July 16, 1927.

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Cover — August 20, 1927

Sent on August 20, 1927, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Montclair, New Jersey, United States. Arrived on August 20, 1927.

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Cover — November 18, 1927

Registered mail sent on November 18, 1927, from Saint-Étienne, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on November 19, 1927.

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Cover — December 1, 1927

Registered mail sent on December 1, 1927, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Holdton, Kansas, United States. Arrived on December 17, 1927.

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Cover — December 24, 1927

Registered mail sent on December 24, 1927, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Reading, Pennsylvania, United States. Arrived on January 6, 1928.

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Cover — January 17, 1928

Registered mail sent on January 17, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. Arrived on January 31, 1928.

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Cover — March 1, 1928

Registered mail sent on March 1, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. Arrived on March 16, 1928.

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Postcard — April 26, 1928

Sent on April 26, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Lyon, France.

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Cover — May 11, 1928

Sent on May 11, 1928, from Harburg-Wilhelmsburg (today part of Hamburg), Germany, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on May 14, 1928.

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Cover — June 21, 1928

Registered mail sent on June 21, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. Arrived on July 2, 1928.

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Cover — June 25, 1928

Special cacheted envelope for the benefit of war invalids traveled by airmail on June 25, 1928 from Riga, Latvia and adressed to Eugen Sekula.

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Scan provided by Albert Little.


Postcard — July 4, 1928

Sent on July 4, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Montréal, Canada.

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Postcard — July 4, 1928

Sent on July 4, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Edmonton, Albert, Canada.

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Cover — July 20, 1928

Sent on July 20, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to New York City, United States. Arrived on July 20, 1928.

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Scan provided by Albert Little.


Cover — August 28, 1928

Registered mail sent on August 28, 1928, from Aix-en-Provence, France, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on August 29, 1928.

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Cover — September 26, 1928

Registered mail sent on September 26, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Corvallis, Oregon, United States. Arrived on October 10, 1928.

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Cover — November 30, 1928

Registered mail sent on November 30, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Arrived on December 1, 1928.

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Cover — December 27, 1928

Printed matter sent on December 27, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States.

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Cover — December 31, 1928

Registered mail sent on December 31, 1928, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Arrived on January 1, 1929.

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Airmail Rhine–Main 1912 Postcards — 1929

On June 1st, 1912, the Imperial Post Office granted permission for mail transport with a zeppelin and an airplane as part of a charity event for the benefit of the Grand Ducal Center for Mother and Infant Care in Hesse. The Postcard Week aka Airmail on the Rhine and Main (Ressource in German), one of the first flight events with official airmail transport worldwide, was scheduled to take place from June 9th to 16th. Airmail was transported between the cities of Frankfurt a.M., Offenbach a.M., Darmstadt, Worms and Mainz. Postcards meant to travel by aircraft could be placed in any street mailbox of the participating cities during the event, but in addition to regular stamps paying the actual postage (e.g. 5 Pf for a postcard) they had to be franked with semi-official stamps issued by the organizer. Although these so-called flight stamps had no postal value, they also received a post office cancellation. On Sunday, June 9th, air post offices began selling official charity postcards and stamps. Military bands providing a respectable supporting program turned the Postcard Week into a folk festival which was publicly observed far beyond the guild of stamp collectors. On June the 10th the first airmail was transported from Frankfurt to Darmstadt by the Gelber Hund (Yellow Dog), a double-decker with yellow wings built by August Euler. Two days later, the airship Schwaben (Swabia) arrived at Frankfurt for a roundtrip with stops at Offenbach, Darmstadt und Mainz. At each stop, mail bags were dropped on parachutes and new mail was picked up with ropes and hooks while the airship stayed hovering about 50 m above the ground. Several more flights took place during the following days. Due to delays caused by technical problems and the weather leading to undelivered mail, but also to increase sales of charity postcards, the fair was extended to Sunday, the 23rd. However, delivery of the mail lasted beyond the end of the fair. The Schwaben, already back at her home base in Baden-Oos, had to return to Frankfurt, and on June 24th (according to some sources June 27th) she carried out the final flight, transporting mail that had actually been intended for the – now defective – Gelber Hund plus last-minute postcards quickly prepared by the patronage and addressed to Altes Palais Darmstadt. Unsold remainders eventually ended up with stamp dealers like the Senf brothers, Leipzig, and Eugen Sekula, Lucerne. It is important to note that all these postcards were actually flown and thus qualify as airmail.

Eugen Sekula acquired his stock of postcards long after the event, around 1929, when they were already classic items. The flyer below promoting their sale also served as certificate of authenticity.
 
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First German and rarest airmail!
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GOOD OLD TIMES!
Sekula postcards can be identified by a hand-stamped number on the front (№ 832 … № 835) and the presence of one of several short typewritten messages on the back. ¹
 
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№ 835:
This postcard flies under the patronage of the Grand Duchess of Hesse.
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№ 834:
This flight under the most difficult circumstances presents a historical document
(as well) as a technical achievement.
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№ 832:
This flight under the most difficult circumstances presents a historical document
(as well) as a technical achievement.
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№ 833:
The Grand Duchess of Hesse and by the Rhine supports with this flight a good cause.

¹ There are other messages than the ones shown here, e.g. To commemorate the first flight attempt of the tailor from Ulm.


Return Envelope — March 8, 1929

Airmail sent on March 8, 1929, from Berlin, Germany, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Scan provided by Albert Little.


Postcard — March 21, 1929

Sent on March 21, 1929, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Modesto, California, United States.

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Covers — August 8, 1929

Two registered covers sent in August 1929 from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Bad Homburg, Germany.

August 9, 1929.
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August 20, 1929.
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Cover — August 30, 1929

Sent on August 30, 1929, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Holden, Massachusetts, United States.

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Cover — September 16, 1929

Registered mail sent on September 16, 1929, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Luxembourg, Luxembourg. Arrived on September 17, 1929.

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Cover — October 7, 1929

Sent on October 7, 1929, from Pécs, Hungary, to Lucerne, Switzerland.

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Picture Postcard — November 2, 1929

Sent on November 2 from Friedrichshafen, Germany, to Lucerne. Carried by the airship Graf Zeppelin making her first trip to Switzerland. The postcard was printed on thick paper rather than cardboard to reduce the weight.

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Cover — December 3, 1929

Registered mail sent on December 3, 1929, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Effretikon. Arrived on December 3, 1929.

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Cover — December 31, 1929

Sent on December 31, 1929, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Alfred, New York, United States. Arrived on December 31, 1929.

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Scans provided by Albert Little.


Cover — January 15, 1930

Registered mail sent on January 15, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Vienna, Austria.

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Cover — February 25, 1930

Sent on February 25, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Gabolshausen (today part of Bad Königshofen, Bavaria), Germany.

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Cover — March 3, 1930

Registered mail sent on March 3, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Arrived on March 3, 1930.

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Cover — April 17, 1930

Sent on April 17, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Baltimore, Maryland, United States. Arrived on April 17, 1930.

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Cover — May 8, 1930

Registered mail sent on May 8, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Effretikon. Arrived on May 9, 1930.

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Postcard — May 28, 1930

Sent on May 28, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Osijek, Yugoslavia (today Croatia).

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Return Envelope — May 29, 1930

Sent on May 23, 1930, from Cincinnati, Ohio, United States, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 5, 1930.

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Cover — June 1930

Sent in June 1930 from Triebendorf (=Třebařov), Czechoslovakia (today Czech Republic), to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 17, 1930.

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Cover — August 16, 1930

Registered mail sent on August 16, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Fabbenstedt (today part of Espelkamp, North Rhine-Westphalia), Germany. Arrived on August 18, 1930.

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Cover — September 2, 1930

Sent on September 2, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Bern. Arrived on September 2, 1930.

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Postcard — September 14, 1930

Sent on November 14 from Geneva to Lucerne. Carried to Zurich by the airship Graf Zeppelin (LZ 127) on her way back from her first trip to Geneva.

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Postcard — October 4, 1930

Sent on October 4, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Lübeck, Germany.

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Vignettes — October 9, 1930 – October 20, 1930

In 1930, Eugen Sekula had a very special idea for injecting his own creations into the philatelic market: instead of printing or writing the words Porto bezahlt, Port payé or Porto pagato (German, French and Italian for Postage paid) on envelopes meant to be sent out as cash paid printed matter, he had postage-stamp-like labels made for that purpose. On September 24 the post office no. 6 of Lucerne granted permission to use these labels. After preparing a few hundred covers he began sending them out on October 10. His marketing ploy only lasted 10 days. On October 20, as soon as the postal administration of Lucerne became aware of this, further use of these labels was prohibited because they violated Swiss postal regulations.
Instead of feeling defeated the businessman Sekula immediately saw an opportunity. Pointing out the rareness of his vignettes in ads placed in various philatelic journals he began selling his leftovers at high prices! Complete sets of all four stamps were offered in special glassine booklets in German, English, and French. The ones shown below contain the scarcer set of tête-bêche printed pairs.

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Four covers and a picture postcard franked with Eugen Sekula’s vignettes postmarked between October 11 and October 18, 1930. Due to the short period of time these labels were accepted by the Swiss post office in Lucerne, traveled covers with these labels are scarce.
 
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Cover — December 19, 1930

Registered mail sent on December 19, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to German: Mährisch Schönberg (=Šumperk), Czechoslovakia (today Czech Republic). Arrived on December 21, 1930.

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Scans provided by David Rossall.


Cover — December 30, 1930

Registered mail sent on December 30, 1930, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Lok, Czechoslovakia (today Slovakia). Arrived on January 5, 1931.

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Cover — February 4, 1931

Registered mail sent on February 4, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Chicago, Illinois, United States. Arrived on February 18, 1931.

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Cover — February 19, 1931

Sent on February 19, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Vienna, Austria. Arrived on February 19, 1931.

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Cover — March 30, 1931

Registered mail sent on March 30, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Munich, Germany. Arrived on March 31, 1931.

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Cover — March 30, 1931

Registered airmail sent on March 30, 1931, from Tintigny, Belgium, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on March 31, 1931.

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Cover — May 25, 1931

Registered airmail sent on May 25, 1931, from Saint-Ursanne, Switzerland, to Lucerne. Arrived on May 25, 1931.

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Cover — May 27, 1931

Sent on May 27, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Columbus, Ohio, United States. Arrived on May 27, 1931.

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Scans provided by Albert Little.


Cover — June 2, 1931

Sent on June 2, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to New York City, United States. Arrived on June 10, 1931.

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Postal Card — June 17, 1931

Sent on June 17, 1931, from Tarrasa, Spain, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on June 20, 1931.

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Cover — July 10, 1931

Registered mail sent on July 10, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Werdau, Saxonia, Germany. Arrived on July 11, 1931.

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Cover — July 17, 1931

Registered mail sent on July 17, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Fabbenstedt (today part of Espelkamp, North Rhine-Westphalia), Germany.

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Postcard — July 28, 1931

Sent registered via airmail on July 28, 1931 to Steingau (today part of Dietramszell, Bavaria), Germany, to collect payment by cash on delivery. Acceptance refused and returned on August 1.

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Return Envelope — July 29, 1931

Sent on July 29, 1931, from Valparaíso, Chile, to Lucerne, Switzerland. Arrived on July 29, 1931.

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Postcard — July 30, 1931

Registered COD airmail sent on July 30, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Oberiflingen (today part of Schopfloch, Baden-Wuerttemberg), Germany. Arrived on July 31, 1931.

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Postcard — August 28, 1931

Sent on August 28, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to New York City, United States.

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Scans provided by Albert Little.


Postcard — September 17, 1931

Postcard sent on September 17, 1931 via airmail to Vienna, Austria, to collect payment by cash on delivery. Returned to Lucerne on September 21 (backstamp) because receiver refused delivery.

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Cover — December 4, 1931

Sent registered on December 4, 1931 to Anaconda, Montana, USA. Acceptance refused and returned to Lucerne on January 9, 1932.

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Postcard — December 12, 1931

Postcard sent on December 12, 1931 via airmail to Oberifflingen, Germany, to collect payment on delivery.

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Cover — December 31, 1931

Sent on December 31, 1931, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Schenectady, New York, United States. Arrived on December 31, 1931.

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Postcard — March 15, 1932

Sent on March 15, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Benton Harbor, Michigan, United States.

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Cover — March 17, 1932

Registered mail sent on March 17, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Virginia Beach, Virginia, United States. Arrived on April 1, 1932.

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Cover — May 10, 1932

Registered airmail sent on May 10, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Nitra, Czechoslovakia (today Slovakia).

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Cover — June 4, 1932

Registered mail sent on June 4, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States. Arrived on June 17, 1932.

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Postcard — July 4, 1932

Registered COD airmail sent on July 4, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Hauzenberg, Bavaria, Germany. Arrived on July 6, 1932.

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Postcard — August 30, 1932

Sent on August 30, 1932, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to New York City, United States.

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Cover — May 5, 1933

Sent on May 5, 1933, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Liestal. Arrived on May 5, 1933.

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Cover — May 27, 1933

Sent on May 27, 1933, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Ennenda (today part of Glarus). Arrived on May 27, 1933.

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Cover — August 26, 1933

Registered mail sent on August 26, 1933, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Königstein, Saxony, Germany. Arrived on August 28, 1933.

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Cover — December 21, 1933

In 1933, Eugen converted his company into a corporation to avoid bankruptcy. On August 22, the Eugen Sekula company was replaced by the Eugen Sekula AG (Eugen Sekula Inc.) with him as director.

Registered cover sent on December 21, 1933, by Eugen Sekula Inc. from Lucerne to Williamsport, Pennsylvania, USA.
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Cover — March 26, 1934

Printed matter sent on March 26, 1934, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Wooster, Ohio, United States.

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Cover — April 7, 1934

Registered mail sent on April 7, 1934, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Reading, Pennsylvania, United States. Arrived on April 7, 1934.

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Cover — June 18, 1934

Registered mail sent on June 18, 1934, from Lucerne, Switzerland, to Columbus, Ohio, United States. Arrived on June 29, 1934.

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Letter — August 27, 1934

On August 20, 1934, the Eugen Sekula AG in Lucerne changed its name to Atlas Stamp Ltd. Lucerne.
The letter below was sent one week later to inform a customer in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, about the name change.

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Cover — September 18, 1934

Express mail sent on September 18, 1934, from Lugano, Switzerland, to Algiers, Algeria. Arrived on September 21, 1934.

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Postcard — September 25, 1934

Registered COD airmail sent on September 25, 1934, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to Ustrzyki Dolne, Poland.

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Cover — October 29, 1934

Official mail sent on October 29, 1934, within Lucerne, Switzerland, and forwarded to Lugano.

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Cover — April 16, 1935

Registered mail sent on April 16, 1935, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to New York City, United States. Arrived on April 25, 1935.

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Cover — May 1, 1936

Registered mail sent on May 1, 1936, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to Maplewood, New Jersey, United States. Arrived on May 9, 1936.

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Cover — May 21, 1936

Registered mail sent on May 21, 1936, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to New York City, United States. Arrived on May 29, 1936.

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Cover — July 29, 1936

Registered mail sent on July 29, 1936, from Brussels, Belgium, to Lugano, Switzerland. Arrived on July 30, 1936.

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Cover — February 4, 1937

Sent on February 4, 1937, from Lugano, Switzerland, to German: Peterswald bei Karbitz (=Petrovice u Chabařovic), Czechoslovakia (today Czech Republic).

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Postcard — April 12, 1937

Sent on April 12, 1937 from Montreux to Atlas Stamp Ltd., Lugano, on the occasion of the forthcoming Montreux Convention Regarding the Abolition of the Capitulations in Egypt (concluded on May 8, 1937).

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Cover — June 11, 1937

Registered airmail sent on June 11, 1937, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to New York City, United States. Arrived on June 22, 1937.

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Cover — June 17, 1937

Sent on June 17, 1937, from Alozaina, Málaga, Spain, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — June 20, 1937

Sent on June 20, 1937, from Alozaina, Málaga, Spain, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — July 10, 1937

Registered mail sent on July 10, 1937, from Castagnola (today part of Lugano), Switzerland, to Konolfingen. Arrived on July 12, 1937.

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Cover — July 16, 1937

Sent on July 16, 1937, from San José, Costa Rica, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — August 5, 1937

Registered mail sent on August 5, 1937, from Brussels, Belgium, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — October 29, 1937

Sent on October 29, 1937, from Barcelona, Spain, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — November 22, 1937

Registered mail sent on November 22, 1937, from Barcelona, Spain, to Lugano, Switzerland.

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Cover — December 1, 1937

Registered mail sent on December 1, 1937, from Lugano, Switzerland, to Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, United States. Arrived on December 18, 1937.

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Cover — January 31, 1938

Registered mail sent on January 31, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Long Island, New York, United States. Arrived on February 8, 1938.

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Postcard — February 14, 1938

Postcard prepared on February 14, 1938, by Atlas Stamp Ltd., Zurich.

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Cover — March 8, 1938

Registered mail sent on March 8, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Chicago, Illinois, United States. Arrived on March 18, 1938.

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Cover — May 10, 1938

Sent on May 10, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to West Grove, Pennsylvania, United States.

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Postcard — May 11, 1938

Sent on May 11, 1938, within Zurich, Switzerland.

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Postcard — May 22, 1938

Sent on May 22, 1938 from Bern to Atlas Stamp Ltd., Zurich, commemorating Switzerland’s first Pro Aero flights promoting aviation.

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Scans provided by Max Brack.


Cover — May 23, 1938

Registered mail sent on May 23, 1938, from Copenhagen, Denmark, to Zurich, Switzerland. Arrived on May 24, 1938.

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Cover — June 13, 1938

Registered mail sent on June 13, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to London, England.

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Postcard — June 15, 1938

FDC Postcard prepared on June 15, 1938, by Atlas Stamp Ltd., Zurich.

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Cover — June 30, 1938

Sent on June 30, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to New York City, United States.

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Cover — October 18, 1938

Registered mail sent on October 18, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, United States. Arrived on October 26, 1938.

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Cover — November 12, 1938

Registered mail sent on November 12, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Cleveland, Ohio, United States. Arrived on December 2, 1938.

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Cover — December 6, 1938

Registered mail sent on December 6, 1938, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Sankt Gallenkappel (today part of Eschenbach). Arrived on December 7, 1938.

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Cover — December 7, 1938

Registered mail sent on December 7, 1938, from Colombo, Ceylon (today Sri Lanka), to Zurich, Switzerland. Arrived on December 22, 1938.

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Cover — July 18, 1939

Sent on July 18, 1939, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Fort Wayne, Indiana, United States.

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Cover — May 15, 1940

Registered mail sent on May 15, 1940, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Syracuse, New York, United States. Arrived on May 29, 1940.

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Cover — August 4, 1940

Sent on August 4, 1940, from Lugano, Switzerland, to Asbury Park, New Jersey, United States.

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Cover — August 28, 1941

Registered mail sent on August 28, 1941, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Gelterkinden. Arrived on August 29, 1941.

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Cover — November 25, 1941

Registered mail sent on November 25, 1941, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Solothurn. Arrived on November 25, 1941.

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Cover — December 2, 1942

Sent on December 2, 1942, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Aadorf, and forwarded to Wallenwil.

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Cover — September 6, 1943

Sent on September 6, 1943, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Vallée de Joux, Vaud. Arrived on September 6, 1943.

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Cover — April 1944

Sent in April 1944 from Zurich, Switzerland, to Aabenraa (=Åbenrå), Denmark.

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Cover — November 21, 1944

Registered mail sent on November 21, 1944, within Zurich, Switzerland.

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Cover — June 8, 1945

Sent on June 8, 1945, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Bordeaux, France.

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Cover — October 2, 1945

Sent on October 2, 1945, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Schaan, Liechtenstein.

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Cover — September 12, 1946

Sent on September 12, 1946, from Christchurch, New Zealand, to Zurich, Switzerland.

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Cover — June 7, 1947

Registered mail sent on June 7, 1947, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Detroit, Michigan, United States. Arrived on July 2, 1947.

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Postcard — April 17, 1948

Sent on April 17, 1948, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Montréal, Canada.

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Postcard — September 23, 1948

Documenting Switzerland’s first (experimental) helicopter mail flight on September 23, 1948.

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Cover — October 20, 1948

Registered mail sent on October 20, 1948, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Geneva. Arrived on October 21, 1948.

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Cover — February 9, 1949

Registered mail sent on February 9, 1949, from Bollnäs, Sweden, to Zurich, Switzerland. Arrived on February 10, 1949.

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Postcard — February 9, 1949

Sent on February 9, 1949, from Zurich, Switzerland, to St. Joseph, Michigan, United States.

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Scan provided by Max Brack.


Cover — May 3, 1949

Sent on May 3, 1949, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Akron, Ohio, United States. Arrived on May 3, 1949.

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Cover — May 21, 1949

Sent on May 21, 1949, from Zurich, Switzerland, to Santiago, Chile. Arrived on May 27, 1949.

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Peter Winter Postcard — 1980 – 2000 ?

Several decades after his death, philatelic libertine Eugen Sekula himself fell victim to another creative spirit on the collectors’ scene. The collage on this postcard, which is part of a booklet of 32 whose first edition was only published in 1979, is a complete fabrication produced by the well-known forger Peter Winter (1941?–2018). The Pro Juventute precursor of 1912, the Lausanne postmark dated March 9, 1913, and last, but not least the Eugen Sekula handstamp are all forgeries.

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