Bosnia, Karlfonds

The lands that we term ‘Bosnia’, which are as of 2012 split into two jurisdictions after a long civil war, were before the First World War occupied by the Austrian military. The postal service for everyone used stamps inscribed ‘K UND K MILITARPOST’, [Imperial and Royal Military Post]. By July 1918 the Austrian war effort was almost exhausted, and the young Emperor Karl and his wife Zita lent their name to a charity for the soldiers, known as the Karlfonds. These beautiful letterpressed stamps were sold, from July 1918, with a 10 heller surcharge towards this charity. This cover I have seen on eBay shows proper use, in Bosnia, at Prijedor. 


A very similar set was issued in the name of the ‘FELDPOST’, 10, 20 and 45 heller. In Gibbons it is listed as a Military Post issue, under Austria, so it was presumably for military personnel only. It was later in 1918 overprinted for use in Poland. At the time, Gibbons were offering overprinted sets for 50p for the three stamps. That’s about £60 in today’s money. Gibbons price the set now at about £15. There were many short-lived issues at the end of that war, that have not lived up to the investment value that was promised at the time. Collect what you enjoy!

 


So I think ‘Feld’ which translates as ‘Field’ means military, and ‘Militär’ means everyone. I trust that is clear!