Javascript must be enabled to continue!

Constantza


Postal network    EN

Author: ARDELEANU KONSTANTIN

During the Ottoman period, the mail in Dobrudja was delivered by the Austrian post. Since the 1860s correspondence was sent from Cernavodă to Constanţa by train, and official and private mail was sent to different places by mounted couriers. By sea, mail got to Constanţa with the postal steamers of the Austrian Lloyds and the French Messageries Maritime, both having agents in the growing port on the western coast of the Black Sea [1].

The Romanian postal service was active after 1878, but mail communications with the rest of the country only boomed after 1895, when the bridge across the Danube was completed and the province of Dobrudja was better linked to Romania. The conclusion of a postal and telegraphic convention between Romania and Germany in March 1899 greatly favoured the significance of the Constanţa postal office. According to the agreement, a daily train was introduced between Bucharest and Berlin, via Bukowina and Galicia, which was to have connections, at least twice a week, between Buzău and Constanta, where it was linked to the Romanian postal steamers. At the same time the two parties lowered fees for parcels sent via this route from Germany and Northern Europe to Constantinople and the Near East [2].

At the beginnings of the 20th century there were postal offices in 20 localities from Dobrudja. The offices along the way from Bucharest (Cernavodă, Medgidia, Murfatlar) were served by trains, and the rest by coach: daily to Tulcea, three times a week to Mangalia. In rural communes notary offices were also used as post offices, being provided with all necessary facilities (stamps, printers etc.). There were at the moment 27 postmen and 71 postal agents in Constanţa County [3].

The post, telegraph and telephone office in Constanţa was housed in an improper headquarters, a private building rented for a rather large sum, and served by an insufficient number of staff. Thus, correspondence was only distributed with delays, with significant losses for trade. The income of the service was 243,161 lei in 1903–1904, more than in the previous years: 206,809 lei for 1902–1903 and 183,091 lei for 1901–1902 [4]. The statistical data below is the only available for the activity of the Constanţa office.

Table 4.2.5.1_1

Domestic correspondence sent (1903–1904) [5]

Regular correspondence

No.

Letters

211,900

Postal cards

227,682

Newspapers and other prints

55,848

Business papers

4,602

Merchandise samples

5,928

Registered correspondence

No.

Simple

16,093

With advice of delivery

849

Registered official correspondence

2,051

Official correspondence (envelopes)

107,298

Table 4.2.5.1_2

International correspondence sent (1903–1904) [6]

Regular correspondence

Sent

Received

Letters

138,736

169,624

Postal cards

65,650

66,664

Newspapers and prints

10,270

73,840

Business papers

442

78

Merchandise samples

19,734

12,922

Registered correspondence

Sent

Received

Simple

14,789

15,713

With advice of delivery

556

1,211

Official and service correspondence

1,691

1,911

The business papers presented headed towards the following countries: 208 to Hungary, 78 to Greece and England and 26 to Austria, Italy and European Turkey. Those received came from England (52) and Austria (26) [7].

Table 4.2.5.1_3

Merchandise samples (1903–1904) [8]

Countries

Sent to

Received from

Austria

1,326

1,352

Belgium

3,042

364

England

6,422

1,872

France

2,652

2,288

Germany

1,664

1,144

Greece

546

598

Italy

1,326

1,040

European Turkey

1,378

2,002

Hungary

598

494

Other states

780

1,768

Total

19,734

12,922

Table 4.2.5.1_4

Domestic Parcel Traffic (1903–1904) [9]

Private

No

Letters with a declared value

2,152

Money parcels

234

Parcels without value up to 5 kilos

1,991

Parcels with a declared value

860

Parcels without a declared value

2,927

Total

8,164

Official

No

Letters with a declared value

359

Money parcels

1,861

Parcels with a declared value

1,209

Parcels without a declared value

2,233

Total

5,662

Table 4.2.5.1_5

International Parcel Traffic (1903–1904) [10]

Type

Sent

Received

Transited

Letters of up to 10,000 lei, according to arrangement

254

266

1,912

Value boxes, idem

6

8

49

Valueless boxes, according to convention

263

10,052

38,847

Value parcels, idem

123

599

3,689

Letters or money parcels, taxed according the the tarrifs of parcel traffic

74

152

685

Packages, idem

48

125

523

Total

768

11,202

45,705

Table 4.2.5.1_6

International Parcel Traffic by Country (1903–1904) [11]

Countries

Sent to

Received from

Austria

86

3,108

France

63

1,526

Germany

53

4,119

Hungary

94

1,272

Italy

29

352

Switzerland

23

337

Turkey

139

197

Other states

281

291

Total

768

11,202

Table 4.2.5.1_7

Postal Orders, Returns and Trade Effects Received [12]

Type

No

Value

Postal orders issued

21,137

770,205.67

Postal orders paid

15,092

624,066.74

Paid letters with returns

151

2,876.45

Unpaid letters with returns

88

1,256.05

Paid parcel traffic with returns

4,361

254,169.80

Unpaid parcel traffic with returns

182

11,958.55

Trade effects received and paid

86

1,180.35

Trade effects received and unpaid

26

308.80

Table 4.2.5.1_8

International Postal Orders, Returns and Trade Effects Received [13]

Type

No

Value

Postal orders issued

12,028

587,774.55

Postal orders paid

879

80,054.15

Returns received and paid

1,530

31,300.25

Returns received and unpaid

313

8,299.10

Trade effects received and paid

539

9,307.55

Trade effects received and unpaid

290

4,630.50

Presented returns

1

20.00

Table 4.2.5.1_9

International Postal Orders, Returns and Trade Effects Received [14]

Country

Returns

Value

Trade effects

Value

Austria

455

5,680.85

38

1,953.53

Switzerland

53

411.75

210

2,001.10

France

334

5,355.80

426

6,060.30

Hungary

471

11,395.45

140

3,543.90

Germany

147

3,907.10

5

195.20

Egypt

19

267.05

6

119.00

Other countries

364

12,581.35

4

65.20

Total

1,843

39,599.35

829

13,938.05

 


[1] M. D. Ionescu, Dobrogia în pragul veacului al XX-lea. Geografia matematică, fisică, politică, economică şi militară (Bucharest: Ateliere Grafice, I. V. Socec, 1904), 699.

[2] G. Christodorescu, Portul Constanţa. Mişcare comercială şi maritimă în anul 1903 (Constanţa: Tipografia Ovidiu, 1905), 267–269.

[3] Ionescu, Dobrogia, 700.

[4] Christodorescu, Portul, 280.

[5]Ibid.

[6]Ibid.

[7]Ibid., 282.

[8]Ibid.

[9]Ibid.

[10]Ibid., 283.

[11]Ibid.

[12]Ibid.

[13]Ibid., 284.

[14]Ibid.


References

Christodorescu, G., Portul Constanţa. Mişcare comercială şi maritimă în anul 1903 [The Port of Constanţa. Its Commercial and Maritime Movement in 1903] (Constanţa: Tipografia Ovidiu, 1905).

Ionescu, M. D., Dobrogia în pragul veacului al XX-lea. Geografia matematică, fisică, politică, economică şi militară [Dobrudja at the Beginning of the 20th Century. The Mathematical, Physical, Political, Economic and Military Geography] (Bucharest: Ateliere Grafice, I. V. Socec, 1904).


Back