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USA Military Post Offices 1941-79

The purposes for which the United States Army personnel were sent to Iran during the period of World War II are clear.  They were to convey weapons of war, food and other materiel to the Russians and to control the shipping routes (railway, highway, airways) from the Persian Gulf ports to the Russian occupied North.  

            The Commandin...

The purposes for which the United States Army personnel were sent to Iran during the period of World War II are clear.  They were to convey weapons of war, food and other materiel to the Russians and to control the shipping routes (railway, highway, airways) from the Persian Gulf ports to the Russian occupied North.  

            The Commanding General set up his Headquarters in Baghdad on 30th November 1941.  Iranian Mission Headquarters was moved from Basra, Iraq to Shah Reza Avenue, Teheran in January 1943, thence to Camp Amirabad on the outskirts on 18th July 1943.  The exact date on they moved into Iran is unclear; but it was prior to 28th May 1942, the date of the earliest cover shown from A.P.O. 824 Abadan.     

            There was no limitation on the number of letters soldiers on active service could send, subject to the rules of the United States Postal Authorities mentioned hereafter.  First class surface mail (i.e. letters and postcards) was free of postage if sent to the U.S., its territories or possessions, which accounts for the many covers that were sent unfranked.  (Mail addressed to foreign countries required postage at international rates as if mailed from the U.S.)  The military franchise did not apply to special services, such as airmail, registration, special delivery or parcel post, on which postage had to be paid at United States domestic rates.  Thus, one sees much use of 6¢ red airmail stamps and 6¢ orange imprinted postal stationery as the troops were anxious to get their messages delivered more quickly back home. One philatelic cover franked with a 1 ½ cent stamp, cancelled at A.P.O. 824, Abadan, on 12th September 1942   is shown I believe this is the printed matter rate at the time.   

                        The American Army Air Force had an efficient system for carrying mail by air to U.S.A. The only cover shown with an arrival handstamp shows that it was only 9 days in transit.  The postmark on a V…- Mail cover shows it was in transit for 10 days

            The mission of the American troops in Iran was declared accomplished on 25th June, 1945.  On the last day of 1945 the last American Units, of what was now called Persian Gulf Service Command, sailed away from Khorramshahr.    However, subsequent to the end of World War II in 1950 and later, other U.S. Army and/or Air Force Post Offices opened in Iran to service the needs of the Embassy of the United States of America, Tehran and other American Military Missions.

            At no time during World War II or later did the Iranian Government question the right of the American Army or Air Force to establish their own postal service.

 

            During the period under review 1941 – 1979 the following A.P.Os were opened:-

 

            A.P.O.                           A.P.O.                                  A.P.O.

 

            205       Tehran               523     Tehran             535       Dorud

 

            616-A   Tehran               680     Ahwaz             688       Vahdati A.B.

 

            783       Khurramabad      784    Hamadan         795       Khorramshahr

 

            796       Bandar Shahpur  797    Andimeshkh     799       Sultanabad

 

824              Abadan                      

 

            09202   Tehran                           09205  Tehran                        09230   Tehran

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