Page two, The Early Maximum Cards of Mexico, by Susan Toomey Frost
(Return to page one)
Mauricio Yañez was another prolific producer of photographic postcards during this same period. Even the shadows cast in his handsomely composed photograph are faithfully reproduced in a 1933 revenue stamp (Stevens CF399) illustrating the same view of Tepotzotlan, a beautiful example of Colonial ecclesiastical architecture some 20 miles north of Mexico City:
Once again, the federal tax stamp is tied to a regular postal stamp (Scott 650, "El Salto de Agua" Public Fountain, issued 1923-34). The cancel reads: MEXICO D.F. / 12.AGO.33.16." Like the previous three maximum cards illustrated, this card also gives no evidence of having been postally used.
"Exclusivos Julio" was the leading producer of real photo postcards in Guadalajara, Mexicos second largest city. Julio's panorama showing the citys cathedral was likely repeated in a stamp (Scott 773) honoring the 400th anniversary of the founding of Guadalajara:
Although the reverse side includes the imprint "Obliteration premier jour," the actual cancel on the stamp itself reads February 14, 1942, some three days after the official date of issue listed in the Scott Catalogue.
The last example is an unusual double maximum card that has three different cancellations. Osuna, another prolific photographer making postcards in the first half of the century, took the view shown below of the statue of Christopher Columbus and the Monument of the Revolution in Mexico City. The postcard initially became a maximum card in 1931 with the addition of the Columbus stamps on the left. Nine years later the stamps on the right were issued, attached to the card, and then cancelled:
The three stamps on the left-hand side of the card are the 4- and 5-centavo values of a stamp featuring the Christopher Columbus Monument (Scott 653-54, issued 1923-34). The Columbus Monument stamps were canceled on October 8, 1931, in Mexico City. Six years later, someone added two 4-centavo stamps showing the Monument of the Revolution (Scott 709, issued 1934-40). These new stamps were canceled August 7, 1940.
The Osuna postcard is unusual not only because it is a double maximum card, but because two months later it traveled unprotected through the mails. Collectors rarely mailed their maximum cards, although they are carefully postmarked, indicating that these images were primarily regarded as individual, unique creations that should be well protected in an envelope when mailed to another collector. The same card was used to send a message to Dr. Jose Buil Belenguer in Papantla, Veracruz, by an individual who signs himself "Pablo A." The address side is hand-dated "20-10-1940" and postmarked that same day.
No doubt many more such maximum cards than these five examples are safely filed away in collections. As we discover and study them, many more insights about the design sources of stamps will continue to come to light. Furthermore, we can appreciate the individual creative effort displayed by earlier collectors when they maximized their cards and shared them with fellow collectors.
Return to page one | Email the author