Milestones in the Postal History of the Holy Land
The Foreign Post Offices in the Holy Land
הדואר הצרפתי, רחוב יפו, ירושלים
The French Post, Jaffa St., Jerusalem
Around the middle of the 19th century, the great powers
of France, Austria and Russia sought to extend their
spheres of influence in the eastern Mediterranean Sea
at the expense of the Turkish Empire. Their goal was to
increase and secure trade with the Middle East.
The deficiencies of the Turkish inland postal system
were a welcome cause for the foreign powers to use as
a pretext to exert economic and political influence with
their own local agencies. An additional excuse of the
Christian countries of France and Austria was the “need of
protection” for the holy sites in the Holy Land. Consular
offices, already established in some places before 1850,
were entrusted to assure both economic and supposedly
religious interests.
The Turkish postal system at that time was entirely
inadequate to fill the various growing needs of the
foreign demand. This did not change when Turkey joined
the Universal Postal Union in 1878. Consequently, France,
Austria and Russia operated their own post offices in the
Holy Land, with the assistance of their consular agencies
and corresponding shipping companies. Within time, the
German Empire and Italy claimed the same privileges for
themselves. All foreign post offices in Palestine were
closed with the outbreak of World War I by the Turkish
authorities on 1.10.1914.
1...,127,128,129,130,131,132,133,134,135,136 138,139,140,141,142,143,144,145,146,147,...196