To: KOBASHI Touzaburo and FUJII Masuai
Okayama Prefecture, Japan
From: FUJII Kohei
Kurashiki Industries Negros Farm
No. 62 Luzuriaga Street
Negros Occidental Province, The Philippines
COTTON DEVELOPMENT DURING THE JAPANESE OCCUPATION
Rare Foreign Mail from Bacolod, Negros Occidental, 1944
This is a rare example of a non-philatelic Japanese Occupation cover displaying the First Class 7-cents letter postal rate for Foreign Mail that became effective May 15, 1944 in the Philippines. It is franked with a single Scott #N4 "Thick Top Bar" type and a pair of Scott #N12. The stamps are tied to the cover with a poor but legible impression of the "BACOLOD OCCIDENTAL NEGROS, P.I." provincial postmark dated SEP 18, 1944, with the distinctive single numeral "4" representing "1944" (reference Garrett's "Bacolod -1b" provincial cancel). There are no receiving postmarks or censor markings.
What I find truly interesting about this cover is the story that it reveals through the addresses of the sender and the recipient. The cover is addressed to KOBASHI Touzaburo and FUJII Masuai, Oojima, Kurashiki-Shi, Okayama Prefecture, Japan, and the sender is FUJII Kohei, Kurashiki Industries Negros Farm, No. 62 Luzuriaga Street, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental Province, the Philippines. The cover is addressed on the front and back using Japanese kanji and furigana. Furigana is a Japanese reading aid, consisting of smaller kana, or syllabic characters, printed next to a kanji (ideographic characters) to indicate its pronunciation. In vertical text, or tategaki, they are placed to the right of the line of text.