POSTER STAMPS AND LABELS OF THE OLYMPIC GAMES

      INTRODUCTION

      STATISTICS

      UNSOLVED MYSTERIES

      SOLVED MYSTERIES!

       SUMMER GAMES
1894 - Modern Games Founded
1896 - I Olympiad - Athens
1900 - II Olympiad - Paris
1904 - III Olympiad - St. Louis
1906 - Intercalated Games - Athens
1908 - IV Olympiad - London
1912 - V Olympiad - Stockholm
1913 - Berlin prepares for 1916 games
1914 - 20th Anniversary of Rebirth of Games
1916 - VI Olympiad - Berlin
1920 - VII Olympiad - Antwerp
1924 - VIII Olympiad - Paris
      - Post Cards
1928 - IX Olympiad - Amsterdam
1932 - X Olympiad - Los Angeles
1936 - XI Olympiad - Berlin
1940 - XII Olympiad - Tokyo
      - XII Olympiad - Helsinki
      - New Zealand Centennial Games
1944 - XIII Olympiad - London
      - German POW Games
1948 - XIV Olympiad - London

1944 - German POW Games - Woldenberg & Gross-Born

Post card Commemorating the 50th Anniversary of re-birth of Olympic Games

Click on image below to open an enlarged version in a separate window/tab
Click on the DuBois number beneath the image to display technical data about that label.

CLICK HERE for a pdf of the DuBois pages on this subject.

World War II was at its height in 1944, and although London had been designated to host the Games if the War had ended by then, it had not, and the Games were cancelled. No preparations had been made, as all the UK's resources were consumed in fighting the war, so no posters or poster stamps were created.

However, "Polish Prisoners of War (POWs) in the Woldenberg (Dobiegniew) Oflag II-C POW camp were granted permission by their German captors to stage an unofficial POW Olympics during July 23 to August 13, 1944 and an Olympic Flag made with a bed sheet and pieces of coloured scarves was raised. The event has been considered to be a demonstration of the Olympic spirit transcending war."

The camp had an active postal service, which issued its own stamps, and according to DuBois, "At the motion of the Camp Olympic Committee the camp post, upon the closure of the Woldenberg games, issued a commemorative postage-due stamp of 10pf. face value."

       

Woldenberg POW camp stamps

It was "Designed by graphic artist Czarnecki. Printed on small pieces of paper, just large enough to hold one stamp, hence, does not exist in pairs. A total of 17,500 stamps were printed." All stamps were printed in red, but 100 more were printed later in black. Then the "plate" was defaced. Stamps in other colors are considered spurious.

The news about the Camp Olympic Committee in the Woldenberg camp soon reached the Gross-Born camp situated several dozen kilometers away. There, too, a Camp Olympic Committee was set up and organized the Gross-Born Games which lasted from July 30th to August 15th. On the opening day three Olympic stamps were issued.

During the final days - i.e. from August 12th to 15th, the local philatelists club (there was one in the camp) organized an exhibition of stamps. This event was commemorated with a miniature sheet which depicted the three above-mentioned Olympic stamps, in different colors. Only 1155 copies of the sheet were printed.

Gross-Born POW camp stamps

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Read Sherwin Podolski's excellent paper with the full story of the POW Games HERE  (PDF document)

Read Roman Babut's excellent paper with the full story of the POW Games HERE  (PDF document)

      STILL MISSING

      ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

      UPDATE HISTORY

       SUMMER GAMES
1952 - XV Olympiad - Helsinki
1956 - XVI Olympiad - Melbourne
      - XVI Olympiad - Stockholm
1960 - XVII Olympiad - Rome
1964 - XVIII Olympiad - Tokyo

       WINTER GAMES
1924 - I Winter Games - Chamonix
1928 - II Winter Games - St Moritz
1932 - III Winter Games - Lake Placid
1936 - IV Winter Games - Garmisch-Partenkirchen
1940 - V Winter Games - Sapporo
      - V Winter Games - St Moritz
      - V Winter Games - Garmisch-Partenkirchen
1944 - V Winter Games - Cortina d'Ampezzo
1948 - V Winter Games - St Moritz
1952 - VI Winter Games - Oslo
1956 - VII Winter Games - Cortina d'Ampezzo
1960 - VIII Winter Games - Squaw Valley
1964 - IX Winter Games - Innsbruck

       OTHER TOPICS
      - U.S. OLYMPIC SHIELD DECALS
      - Workers' Olympics


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I am indebted to Robert J DuBois for allowing me to use images and information from his Catalog of Olympic Labels on these web pages.

All text and images are the property of the author. Any errors are his.
REWARD! If you have better or additional information about anything shown or discussed here, please email the author.
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All text Copyright © 2013, William M. Senkus

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Created -- 07/27/2013
Revised -- 06/03/2016