Postal History of IndoChina

Postage stamps and brief postal history of Indochina

5c Annam & Tonkin overprint used at Hanoi

5c overprint of 1889 used at Vinh Long

Postage stamps used in the region started around May 1886 with the introduction of postage stamps of the French Colonies, with the overprint of ‘5’ or ‘5 C. CH.’.  These were intented for use in Cochin China (around Saigon).
In January 1888, stamps were crudely overprinted ‘A & T’ (Annam & Tonkin) along the ‘1’ or ‘5’. 

By 1889, the colonial administrations of the region were unified and in January, the 35 Centimes French Colonies stamp was surcharged.  In 1892, the first regular stamps of Indochina were issued and inscribed INDO-CHINE.

4c stamp of 1907, depicting Annamite girl

In 1907, attractive stamps were released featuring native women and in 1919, the currency changeover from the ‘Centimes & Francs’ to ‘Cents & Piastres’ was reflected on a new stamp series.  Local sights were featured on postage stamps issued in 1927 and 1931, while various native emperors and kings in Indochina were depicted on the 1936 series.   Finally, a number of issues in the 1940’s were later overprinted and used by the Viet Minh for usage throughout Vietnam.