Postage stamps and postal history of Lithuania

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The First stamps of Lithuania - First Vilnius Issue (date of issue: December 27, 1918; Michel cat. No. 1-2)

The postal history of Lithuania started around the 10th or 12th century or even earlier, with a pre-Christian messaging system known as krivūlė. The first mail service was introduced in 1562, connecting Vilnius with Kraków, and Venice.

The first Lithuanian postage stamps ("Baltukai" issue) were issued in Vilnius in 1918. A total of 768 stamps of different designs were issued by the Republic of Lithuania between 1918 and 1940, with more than 2,000 variations due to errors, misprints or perforations. The first airmail stamps were issued in 1921. After the 1940 occupation by the Soviet Union, Lithuanian postage stamps were replaced by Soviet stamps. After the restoration of independence in 1990, Lithuania again issued own stamps ("Angelas" issue).

There were also several local and occupation issues, including the Raseiniai local issue (1919), Telšiai Postmaster's provisional issue (1920), Grodno issue (1919), "LTSR" (Soviet occupation reprints on Lithuanian stamps), several 1941 post-Soviet reprints on Soviet stamps (Vilnius, Raseiniai and other local offices), WW-I German local issues ("Postgebiet Ob. Ost"), Central Lithuania issues ("Litwa Środkowa"), Klaipėda issues ("Memel") and others.

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