General issues: British occupation 1919-1920
Country name on general issues: БАТУМСКАЯ ПОЧТА, БАТУМ either with or without ‘British Occupation’
Currency: 1 Ruble = 100 Kopeks 1919-1920
Population: City of Batum 32 000 in 1920
Political history Batum
Batum – currently Batumi – is a city bordering on the Black Sea in western Asia. Already in the 19th and early 20th century it is an important port, particularly for the transport of oil from the Transcaucasian region. Batum is Turkish until 1878 when it is ceded to Russia. During and directly after WWI, Batum is again contested by Russia and Turkey. In 1918, the contestants agree to withdraw their forces, their place to be taken by British forces to secure a stable supply of oil from the region. The British, in 1920, hand over Batum to Georgia that had gained independence in 1918. In 1920, Georgia and Batum become part of Russia. With the treaty of Kars in 1921 – settling the borders between Russia and Turkey – the region is divided between Russia and Turkey, the city of Batum being awarded to Russia. Currently Batumi is part of the autonomous republic of Adjara in Georgia.
Postal history Batum
The British set up a civilian postal service in 1919, the first stamps for Batum being issued the same year. Locally designed and printed stamps are issued along with hand stamped overprints on Russian issues. The stamps bear the name of the country, several also bear the text ‘British occupation’. Issues that have appeared since 1993 with the inscription Batum are not recognized by the catalogs.