World War II mail to a Civilian being repatriated from Japan via the M.S. (Mercy Ship) Gripsholm.

World War II mail to a Civilian being repatriated from Japan via the M.S. (Mercy Ship) Gripsholm.

Sent from Berkeley, California to New York City to await the ship’s arrival: 29 Nov 1943. Unbound. Envelope only; no letter. The airmail envelope was franked with a carmine 6c airmail stamp (Scott #C25) and postmarked in San Francisco. It was opened by U. S. Censors and re-sealed with official “Examined By” tape. The cover is in nice shape. Very good. Item #008971

Long-term negotiations between the United States and Japan culminated with an agreement to exchange approximately 1,240 civilian nationals who had been stranded in each other’s’ country since the beginning of the war. The exchange was conducted at the port of Mormugao, Goa, on 22 October 1943, and the U.S. returnees boarded the M.S. (Mercy Ship) Gripsholm bound for New York with a scheduled arrival date of 2 December. Swiss representatives compiled a list of those to be repatriated and informed the United States State Department. The American Red Cross notified families and requested that they not come to the port. Instead, they were directed to remain at their hotels or homes and inform their returnees of their location by mail at the address shown on this envelope. Upon arrival, the mail was delivered to the repatriates, and the Red Cross assisted them in coordinating transportation. One of only three extant pieces of repatriation ship mail reported in philatelic literature, and the only one for a U.S. repatriate sent via the American Red Cross at New York.

Price: $250.00

See all items in History, Philately, Transportation