Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Reused Envelopes in WWII England

Envelope with label provided by Royal Naval War Libraries
Back flap of RNWL label
Envelope mailed by Univ. of WI Library in 1940
It is difficult to imagine the hardships that the people of Great Britain endured during World War II. One small indication of the difficulty of this period is shown by two envelopes in my postal librariana collection. They both have labels that have been pasted over a previously used envelope so that they can be reused. The first envelope has a label that was provided by the Royal Naval War Libraries, a wartime charitable organization that provided books to service men and women. These "Economy Labels" could be purchased from the Royal Naval War Libraries as shown by the back flap of the label. The second envelope was originally mailed to the Economic and Statistics Section of the Bank of England by the Library of the University of Wisconsin - Madison (the first address is visible under the label) in 1940. It has been censored by Examiner 5086. The top part of the label has been removed to reveal that it was originally mailed by the UW Library.

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