Cover ms endorsed ‘Αεροπορικώς’ (by air) in Greek, stamped with 3-circled black pictorial mark commemorating the union of the Dodecanese Islands with Greece, texted “ΕΝΩΣΙΣ ΔΩΔΕΚΑΝΗΣΟΥ 7-III-1948” around the ancient Apollo design (Dodecanese stamp of 1912), appeared also on the 1947 Greek issue -same copies may exist from nearly 20 different locations.
[After Germany’s defeat in 1945, the islands passed into British hands and in 1947 a Treaty of Peace between Italy and the victorious powers finally transferred them to Greece.]
Shown cover is addressed from Thessaloniki to Trikala; franked with ‘chain’ overprints (1946/47) on 50dr/50dr. ‘Meteora’ and 500dr/5000000dr. ‘Bourtzi Fort, Nafplion’ (Landscapes issue, 1942-44) regular adhesives [to meet 450dr inland 1st eight surface rate plus 100dr for airpost mail] + 50dr. ‘St. Demetrius’ historical monuments surtax + 50dr. ‘Queens Olga and Sophia’ Postal Staff Anti-Tuberculosis Fund. Total franking: 650 drachmae.
All adhesives were tied and cancelled on reverse with ‘ΘΕΣΣΑΛΟΝΙΚΗ – 7 ΙΙΙ 48 ΑΕΡΟΠΟΡΙΚΟΝ’ [Thessaloniki By air, 7 March 1948] date-stamp on departure.
Seemingly, it was transferred by air through the Flamouli (military?) airstrip, about 5km SW of Trikala. Postmarked next day with ‘ΤΡΙΚΚΑΛΑ 8 ΙΙΙ 48’ [Trikkala 8 March 1948] date-stamp, applied upon arrival at final destination.
Worth to note that Gorgopotamos bridge was destroyed three times during the war: in April 1941 (retreat of English troops during the German advance), after its destruction by the sabotage of 25/11/42, and the Germans’ own retreat in October 1944, when the entire railway network was left completely damaged.
In the first post-war years, reparation works started; the bridge was finally given to traffic in August 1948, when the last works were completed].
Item condition: Excellent; see scans.
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