German field post in World War II

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Field post with registered mail (1944)

In the case of the German field post in the Second World War, a distinction is made between military field post items that were sent by Wehrmacht services and had a stamp or official seal on the outside, and private items sent by Wehrmacht members as senders or recipients that were sent in personal matters. It was an unrestricted part of the Wehrmacht , the previous dependency on the imperial postal administration for postal technical issues no longer existed.

Usage authorization

Mobile field post office
German soldier reads a field post letter on the Eastern Front (1942).
Field Post in the Navy : Distribution of Mail on a German Outpost Boat (1939).

Those entitled consisted not only of the families of the three services Army , Air Force and Navy active duty, but also from the SS available troops , the SS Death's Head units , the police divisions and other independent associations of SS available troops. Civilians who were on an equal footing with members of the armed forces (Section 35 of the Armed Forces Act of May 21, 1935) and members of the Reich Labor Service who were deployed in the area of ​​operations in the service of the armed forces (this group also included private persons who were in service with the armed forces and received board and lodging from her), could also use the field post. The prerequisite was the allocation of a field post number to the unit or the office, if an open address was used, the accommodation and meals provided by the Wehrmacht in nature or through daily allowances etc. were decisive.

Ordinary postcards and letters (up to 250 g), small parcels (up to 1 kg), postal and payment orders in the field up to RM 1,000 , postal orders and payment cards from the field up to RM 1,000, some newspapers, field post newspaper packages and telegrams were permitted. Excess weights were tolerated for letters up to 25 g and for parcels up to 100 g. Military agencies could also send items by registered mail or insured mail, as well as parcels. Postal orders, cash on delivery, direct mail, letters with a delivery certificate, return receipts and telegraphic payment instructions were completely excluded.

The following fees were charged for private mailings : Parcels up to 1,000 g 20 RPf. For post and payment orders to the field, field post orders and field payment cards from the field and telegrams, the usual domestic fee. For newspapers, half of the order fee was billed to the publisher. Newspaper packages cost 20 RPf. per kilogram or part thereof. Parcels from home had to be franked, parcels going home should be franked. Only the simple shortfall was then charged, this also applied to parcels within the Wehrmacht.

All consignments had to be marked “Field Post” and the exact address of the sender. On consignments from agencies and members of units with a camouflaged address, only the field post address was allowed to be used as the sender information. The field post from members of the Wehrmacht either had to be posted to a field post office or stamped or stamped with the unit's official seal had to be delivered to a post office for onward transport by this same unit. Posting through mailboxes was to be restricted.

Back - favor for Greater Germany

Items that did not meet these conditions were charged the public postal service like normal items. The address of the consignments to the soldiers had to include the rank and name of the recipient, as well as either the five-digit field post number or, if the address was open, the full office address of his Wehrmacht unit. Shipments with the recipient's home address were subject to public charges. These provisions came into force on April 1, 1940.

Soon the weight for field post letters was reduced to 100 g. Private field post consignments over 100 g were now considered postage-free as small parcels up to 250 g. Parcels over 250 g to 1 kg also cost 20 RPf. However, it was quite possible that parcel traffic to the front or home or even completely stopped for some time, the gazette reports about it again and again. It seems that this shipping method was not entirely problem-free. In December 1940, the weight for postage paid carriage was increased to 275 g.


Special stamp from 1944 "Field Post in the East": Field post officer with a mail bag , a
Kraftpost bus in the background
Monthly statistics 1939–1944. The December months are colored red for clarity.

According to records of the Reich Postal Ministry , field post items were sent to and from the field in millions during the war:

  • 1939: 1,167
  • 1940: 3.736
  • 1941: 5,994
  • 1942: 7.205
  • 1943: 7,652
  • 1944: 4,867

The extensive army mail mediated by the field post between the armies is not included in these figures.

German field post
shipments in the Second World War Shipments (news mail and parcels ) to and from the field , in millions
month 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945
January - 285 415 565 710 595 ?
February - 303 402 506 605 568 ?
March - 305 429 549 644 606 ?
April - 225 455 541 639 576 ?
May - 250 493 581 670 566 ?
June - 252 427 575 620 557 -
July - 252 504 583 637 535 -
August - 239 555 604 631 458 -
September 192 327 571 585 620 406 -
October 219 327 540 687 582 ? -
November 340 385 562 745 596 ? -
December 416 502 640 684 698 ? -

List of military postage stamps

General and local expenses

The stamp numbers 1 to 4 are considered "general issues" and were issued by the army field postmaster in the OKH . The brand numbers from 5 on were so-called "local issues".

image description Issue date draft Printing process particularities Michel no.
Luftfeldpostmarke.jpg Registration stamp for airfield mail letters April 18, 1942 E. Sea forest Letterpress 1
Approval stamp for field post parcels July 10, 1942 Marggraff Letterpress 2
Stamps of Germany (DR) 1944, MiNr 3 (795) .jpg Brand comes from the Hitler series November 24, 1944 Richard Klein Letterpress with overprint The stamp was issued with a two-line imprint 'FELDPOST / 2 kg' as an approval stamp for field post parcels up to 2 kilograms from November 24, 1944 in a one-off campaign to units with field post numbers after all field post parcel traffic over 100 grams had already been discontinued due to the war . The stamps were intended exclusively for field post parcels with winter clothing from home to the front. 3
→ 795
Field post parcel approval stamp for Christmas parcels to the home front up to 1 kg October 20, 1944 Marggraff Letterpress 4
like no. 2
Field post stamp North Africa 1943.jpeg Date palm with swastika in a meander frame March – April 1943 Roleff Lithograph for the troops in North Africa 5
1 and 2 with overprint Inselpost 1944/1945 Letterpress Inselpost 6-11
Overprint Christmas / 1944 on stamps from the Aegean Islands (Michel-No. 105) December 1944 Letterpress Rhodes island 12
Registration mark Peninsula Hela 1945.jpeg Registration mark for the troops cut off on the Hela Peninsula March 1945 B. Paetsch Offset printing U-Boot Hela, Text: Deutsche Feldpost / By U-Boot
Edition: 150,000
Registration mark April 1943 Newsprint Kuban bridgehead 14th
Registration mark November 1943 Newsprint Crimea 15th
Registration mark March 1945 Halved registration stamp No. 4 for airmail in Courland 16
Registration mark April 1945 Letterpress with overprint field post 17th

The stamp (Michel no. 795) was issued with a two-line imprint 'FELDPOST / 2 kg' as an approval stamp for field post parcels up to 2 kg from November 24, 1944 in a one-off campaign to units with field post numbers, after all field post parcel traffic was over 100 grams had already been discontinued due to the war.

The stamps were intended exclusively for field post parcels with winter clothing from home to the front.

Private expenses

The following field post stamps are not registration stamps, but were private donation vignettes from the local welfare organizations for the benefit of the volunteer soldiers in the Waffen SS and in the Wehrmacht and their families. These editions had no postal significance.

image description Issue date draft Printing process particularities Michel no.
Feldpost2.jpg Emperor portraits of Charles V August 9, 1943 Gravure printing XIV
Stamp Legion Vlaandern.jpg Soldiers and planes 1945 no longer published Waffen SS Legion Vlaandern XIX

See also


  • Ortwin Buchbender , Reinhold Sterz (ed.): The other face of the war. German field post letters 1939–1945. 2nd Edition. Verlag CH Beck, Munich 1983, ISBN 3-406-08677-2 .
  • Veit Didczuneit, Jens Ebert, Thomas Jander (eds.): Writing in War - Writing from War. Field post in the age of world wars. Klartext Verlag, Essen 2011, ISBN 978-3-8375-0461-3 .
  • Jens Ebert (ed.): Field post letters from Stalingrad. November 1942 to January 1943 (= dtv 34269). Unabridged edition, Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, Munich 2006, ISBN 3-423-34269-2 .
  • Jörg Echternkamp : Theater of war Germany 1945. Living in fear - hope for peace. Field post from home and from the front . Edited by the Military History Research Office , Schöningh, Paderborn 2006, ISBN 978-3-506-72892-0 .
  • Anatoly Golovchansky (Ed.): "I want to get out of this madness". German letters from the Eastern Front 1941-1945. From Soviet archives. Wuppertal / Moscow 1991.
  • Ingrid Hammer, Susanne zur Nieden (Ed.): I have very rarely cried. Letters and diaries from the Second World War from people in Berlin. Zurich 1992.
  • Martin Humburg: The face of war: field post letters from Wehrmacht soldiers from the Soviet Union 1941-1944. Opladen, 1998.
  • Konrad Jarausch , Klaus Jochen Arnold (eds.): "The silent death ..." Field post letters from Poland and Russia 1939–1942 . With a foreword by Hans-Jochen Vogel . Schöningh, Paderborn 2008, ISBN 978-3-506-76546-8 .
  • Hellmuth Karasek (Ed.): Letters move the world . Volume 6: Field Post . teNeues, Kempen 2013, ISBN 978-3-8327-9733-1 .
  • Walter Manoschek (Ed.): "There is only one thing for Judaism: annihilation." The image of the Jews in German soldiers' letters 1939-1944. Hamburg 1995.
  • Andreas Rasp: Letters from the East. The story of a change. Field post from the musician Hanns-Joachim Weber, who died in Russia in 1942, to his wife Maria (= AT edition). ATE (Lit Verlag), Münster 2008, ISBN 978-3-89781-138-6 .
  • Frank Schumann (Ed.): What are we doing here? Soldiers' mail and home letters from two world wars . Verlag Neues Leben, Berlin 2013, ISBN 3-355-01816-3 .
  • Gerhard Sprenger (Ed.): Siegbert Stehmann: We keep silent about the bitterness. Field post letters 1940–1945. Lutherisches Verlagshaus, Hannover 1992, ISBN 3-7859-0640-4 .

Web links

Commons : German field post in World War II  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ↑ Concise dictionary of the postal system . 3. Edition. P. 668.
  2. ↑ Concise dictionary of the postal system. 3. Edition. P. 671.
  3. ^ "Figures of the Deutsche Reichspost (1871 to 1945)"; P. 44.
  4. Michel Germany Special 1999, field post stamps / approval stamps for field post in World War II, p. 828.
  5. Michel Germany Special 1999, field post stamps / approval stamps for field post in World War II. P. 828.