Late in August, 1900, after the Russians suspended the use of the Finnish coat of arms stamp for mail usage abroad, the "Mourning Stamp" first made its appearance. Because of the anti-Russian attitude the Finn's had during this period, patriotic societies were formed to rid the country of the Russian's. No doubt, one or several of these societies had these stamps printed and distributed. The cost of these stamps were printed on the back side (put cursor on stamp to view back side) of the stamp.
|When the Mourning Stamp was used it expressed mutely the feelings of the Finnish people regarding the "Russification" of the Finnish postal service and other governmental agencies.. Even though this stamp never paid postage, people pasted large strips of them on the face of envelopes, barely leaving enough space for the address, so that the stamps showing the double eagle of Russia, had to be affixed on the back of the envelope (this type of cover is rare and highly prized). This practice soon found disfavor with the Russian Department of Interior, and after a few days the use, the mourning stamps outlawed. The mourning stamps were sold to the public through private agencies. The proceeds from the sale of this stamp, small as they were, was used in the fight against Russian dominance and the establishment of Finnish independence. This independence didn't occur until 1917.|
(Click on one of the globes or stamp for additional information
and examples of the Mourning Stamp story.)
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