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

since 2004, is to make a permanent 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):

This early example of a 1733 letter carried by the Lampiter Post, originated in Ross-on-Wye and carries, on the reverse, the earliest recorded ROSS town cancellation (near albino).  

This early example of a 1733 letter carried by the Lampiter Post, originated in Ross-on-Wye and carries, on the reverse, the earliest recorded ROSS town cancellation (near albino).

 

1733 LAMPITER POST  ROSS  ALBINO (M).jpg

 

postcards :

High Street, Brymbo, Denbighshire  1906

High Street, Brymbo, Denbighshire  1906

parcel post labels :

1905  RHOSCROWTHER sr-cds rub violet  SG.236 (PPL) [ab].jpg

 

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

K 12 (1) 5:- rose      C-B, C-C, C-D  Bettws-y-Coed sr-cds 31.08.1888.jpg

 

 

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

Courtesy of Gerald Marriner

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. Missent to Pwllheli.

1858 envelope addressed to Ynysgau nr Crickieth, and bearing a rare manuscript Missent To adjacent to a PWLLHELI darc-cds.  The correct address would be Ynysgain Fawr, nr Criccieth.

1858 envelope addressed to Ynysgau nr Crickieth, and bearing a rare manuscript Missent To adjacent to a PWLLHELI darc-cds.  The correct address would be Ynysgain Fawr, nr Criccieth.

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 (November 2017) the Archive consists of 23,550 items stored (as 19.65 Gb ) on a

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

as either a TIFF and/or JPEG files.