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OATs & AV2s

OAT cachets were applied [almost] exclusively to airmail items that were to be expedited by air mail by ONWARD AIR TRANSMISSION. They are known during 1938 and 1970 and OAT's are most usually seen on World War II covers. AV2 cachets were used for essentially the same purpose. These markings owe their origin to the rules and procedures introduced under the UPU Convention and are civil markings even thought many items are known to have been carried on military aircraft.

Where there was a bundle of covers to be expedited only the top cover of the bundle was to be stamped.

For more information on this subject you should consult Murray Heifetz's OAT and AV2 Markings (now in its 2nd Edition), published by the AAMS, American Air Mail Society, where it is available for sale.

Oval OAT Marking

1944, December 21, airmail cover with RED oval OAT marking on a cover from Johannesburg, South Africa to Sweden.

Heifetz OAT type IV

Size:
62.5mm x 41mm
enclosing letter 49mm x 13.5mm.

Opened and resealed using a bilingual South African Opened by Censor tape of censor.

This OAT type also known in violet and black (see below).

OAT - 1942 Iceland to Portugal

OAT - 1944 India to Sweden

Oval OAT Marking

1944, 13 Nov, censored airmail cover from SM Hospital PO Tirupattur Ramnad India to Visby Sweden Via GB.

Inscribed at bottom 'India -UK-Sweden' with large black OAT marking applied in London.

Indian PC90 censor tape tied by DHD/25 on reverse and Crown over PASSED DHD/5 Octagonal censor on front applied in Madras. Not censored in Britain.

Heifetz OAT type IV.

Oval OAT Marking

OAT 1945 Dublin, Ireland to Stockholm, Sweden

1945, June 30, cover from Dublin, Ireland to Stockholm, Sweden with large damaged red oval OAT marking (Heifetz type VI)

Unboxed OAT Marking

1942, April 10, airmail cover with unboxed OAT marking on a cover from Iceland, Reykjavik to Portugal, Lisbon with a meter backstamp dated 29 April 1942.

Heifetz OAT type XIII.

Opened and resealed using a British PC90 Opened by Examiner tape of censor 4255.

Image courtesy Vitor Baltar

OAT - 1942 Iceland to Portugal
According to Heifetz, this mark was first applied in Prestwick and later in London.

Known in red and light violet, it has been seen on Iceland mail that was picked up in Reykjavik on the route from Canada to Britain first flown in 1941 by the RAF Ferry Command and from September 1941 by BOAC.

OAT - 1946 Fleurier, Switzerland to Bombay, India

Boxed OAT Marking

1946, JAN 26, red boxed OAT marking on a registered cover from Fleurier, Switzerland to Bombay, India with Bombay receiving mark on front and back dated 5 FEB 1946.

Franked with 3.60F and "Geneva" in manuscript on front

Probably Heifetz OAT type XI.

This cover is right in the middle of the recorded period of use and complies with the country of most frequent origin.

Boxed OAT / FS Marking

1965, October 17, boxed (Foreign Section) OAT/FS marking on a postcard from Fiji to Sundbyberg, Sweden.

Heifetz OAT type XIX.

Size:
26mm x 14mm
enclosing letter 18mm x 10mm

This type of OAT marking is only known in violet and is seen in use between 1963 and 1971.

AV2 - 1949 Jerusalem, Palestine to Beirut, Lebanon

AV2 - 1949 Jerusalem, Palestine to Beirut, Lebanon

AV2 Marking

1949, August 29, boxed AV2 marking on a cover from Jerusalem in controlled Palestine to Beirut, Lebanon. Multi-colour franking of nine stamp franking of overprinted Jordan stamps.

Heifetz AV2 type 10.

This type of AV2 is only seen on mail from towns in Palestine during October 1948 to April 1950.

Image courtesy Avi Zechory

AV2 Marking

1949, NOV 29, boxed AV2 marking on a cover from Jerusalem in controlled Palestine to Cork, Ireland, transit in Ammam on Nov 30 and Beyrouth, Lebanon on Dec 2.

This is only the second AV2 seem on a piece of irish related mail.

Heifetz AV2 type 10.

This type of AV2 is only seen on mail from towns in Palestine during October 1948 to April 1950.

Image courtesy Avi Zechory

AV2 - 1949 Jerusalem, Palestime to Cork, Ireland
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Updated 9 April 2005
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