Author Topic: Censorship of Mexican Covers to the US and beyond during World War I (1917-1919)  (Read 2150 times)

Mike Ludeman

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The United States entered World War I in April 1917, but it was not until December 1917 that they established a program for the censorship of mail entering and leaving the United States.
Since a large volume of mail from Mexico was sent to the United States or transited the United States to New York and onward to Europe, a number of Mexican covers received censorship treatment at a number of locations along the US/Mexico border.
I've started a small census of such covers with the US censorship labels and hand stamps used on each, primarily to compile a list of the different labels and markings used by the US offices.
A review of the digital issues of Mexicana resulted in very little information about this censorship, and no illustrated examples. 
An example of one of the typical US Censor Labels used and an oval censors hand stamp used by Examiner 729 is illustrated below.  I believe that this style hand stamp was used at the El Paso, Texas Censorship Office, but I have not been able to discover a published list of the Offices and Examiner numbers assigned to each one.
Mail from the United States (and elsewhere which transited the US ) to Mexico also received this US censorship, but examples are much less common.  Of course, not all letters were censored, but some significant portion were.
I would like to hear from any collector who has a cover with these type of censor labels and hand stamps.  With enough response, perhaps we can document this phase of  Mexico postal history.
Mike Ludeman