The objective of this enterprise, started and maintained by Professor Cedric Prys-Roberts

since 2004, is to make a permanent computer-based record of all postal history material pertaining to Wales,

from the inception of postal services through Wales to Ireland in the 16th century up to

the present day.

 

The ARCHIVE records digital computer images of :

 

entire letters, envelopes (and their contents):

 1711 Post Paid 4d at Hubberston to London.   The image above is the result of cleaning the original image in Adobe Photoshop to remove the text of the letter which shows through the paper, making it difficult to identify  the handwriting "Post Pd 4d at Hubberstone".   

1711 Post Paid 4d at Hubberston to London.   The image above is the result of cleaning the original image in Adobe Photoshop to remove the text of the letter which shows through the paper, making it difficult to identify  the handwriting "Post Pd 4d at Hubberstone".

 

 

postcards :

 1912  Dyserth (Flintshire) - church and castle hill.

1912  Dyserth (Flintshire) - church and castle hill.

parcel post labels :

ABERDOVEY (AAS) 1920 sr-cds on SG 392 (PPL) [aa].jpg

 

adhesive stamps with Welsh postmarks (on or off piece):

 K 48 was a barred numeral used on US mail travelling on the London - Holyhead TPO

K 48 was a barred numeral used on US mail travelling on the London - Holyhead TPO

 

 

and other appropriate ephemera (images of handstamps, writing implements etc):

 

 Decorated portable inkwell - courtesy of Gerald Marriner

Decorated portable inkwell - courtesy of Gerald Marriner

 

 

The main criterion for inclusion in the Archive is that the item was posted in Wales for

transmission within, or out of Wales. Certain items of mail carried into or through Wales

(for instance mail to or from Ireland bearing instructional marks - e.g. the additional

halfpenny or penny) will be included. Also included are items bearing a distinctive postal or

instructional mark, e.g. PostPaid 4d - W.O. (the initials of the Pwllheli postmaster William Owen).

On the reverse is a manuscript Pwllhely -= also written by the postmaster in lieu of a town handstamp.

 

1775 PWLLHELI POST Pd 4d  W.O. (F & B).jpg

 

The ARCHIVE will be a valuable source for anyone interested in the postal history of Wales,

as it is a fully illustrated compendium that will replace existing catalogues such as the

chapter on WALES (edited by Michael Scott Archer) in the British County Catalogue

of Postal History (Volume 5), 1990; edited by Willcocks R.M. and Jay B. 

Moreover, the contents of many of the letters and postcards, in Welsh and English,

will be of considerable value to historians with an interest in the social and communication

history of Wales from the time of Roman occupation to the present time.

 

Computer imaging

All letters, postcards, parcel post labels etc are scanned by a high-resolution scanner

(currently an Epson Perfection V600) connected to an Apple MacPro computer. 

Most items will be recorded in colour at resolutions between 600 d.p.i (letters and postcards)

and 3200 d.p.i. (e.g. Queen Victoria line-engraved, or surface-printed stamps). 

A typical pre-1840 entire letter will be scanned to show the front (obverse) and back (reverse)

of the folded letter, and as many pages of the contents of the letter as are appropriate.

Specific town handstamps, instructional marks, and manuscript marks are usually scanned

additionally at higher resolutions.

 

 Entire from Llanerchymedd, via Bangor to Liverpool, bearing a 1d black pl 3 cancelled by a red Maltese Cross, and a  Llannerchymedd Penny Post  handstamp in red.  Backstamped BANGOR darc-cds in red (code D),  dated AU 27 1840.

Entire from Llanerchymedd, via Bangor to Liverpool, bearing a 1d black pl 3 cancelled by a red Maltese Cross, and a Llannerchymedd Penny Post handstamp in red.  Backstamped BANGOR darc-cds in red (code D),

dated AU 27 1840.

 

Currently (May 2018) the Archive consists of 24,173 items stored (as 20.76 Gb ) on a

primary computer, and also on two subsidiary 1Tb and 2Tb SSD hard disks,

as either a TIFF and/or JPEG files.