Welcome to Rainer's
Overland Mail Baghdad Haifa Pages



The Overland Mail Baghdad-Haifa is a relatively little known part of the middle east postal history, formed after the 1st world war by two young New Zealanders (Captain Norman Nairn and Driver-Mechanic Mr. Gerald Nairn) who had served with the Royal Army Corps

These Pages try to explain primarily the postal history aspect of this company, however, for a good measure also historical facts and background information's like company pamphlets and other miscellaneous items are shown.

This picture gives you an idea how adventurous the travel thru the desert has been.

Please click on the image to view it in full size (1.65 MB). That image will open in a new image layer.
(click to enlarge)

3rd Place in Class "Digital Media"


HELP REQUIRED / REQUESTED (Updated 14 July 2018) Whereabouts of known items (Updated 14 July 2018)
Norman Collins Archive, REQUEST FOR HELP TO IDENTIY ITEMS!  (Updated 20 APRIL 2017)  

Whats new!

September 16, 2018 I was able to find 2 covers from Canada to Iraq dated 1929 respectively 1930 from the time when the surcharges have been withdrawn. Images are uploaded, Details will follow shortly.
Copy of cover with most likely Route Instruction Handstamp HS-46 (1) added.
August 9, 2018 The English translation of a interesting letter sent on November 28, 1923 from the Belgium Ministry of Railways, Navy, Post and Telegraphs to the Secretary of the General Post Office of London, inquiring about the use of the Overland Mail Haifa-Baghdad by the Belgium Post by using English stamps for the surcharge and Belgium stamps for the postage.
July 26, 2018 New discovered Route Instruction Handstamp now listed as HS-N60 added. That Route Instruction Handstamp is similar to HS-23, HS-24, HS-25, HS-N03 and HS-N41 but with slightly different size.
July 20, 2018 Created the first page of the a Forerunner Section, in which i became interested recently. Stay tuned for further updates on that interesting area.
July 14, 2018 Help required / requested page has been updated
July 13, 2018 New discovered Route Instruction Handstamp now listed as HS-N59, used on a Picture Postcard card from Bagdad to England, dated 11 December 1924 added
June 21, 2018 Postage rate table for Belgium has been updated.
June 7, 2018 A new page has been created which tries to explain then End of the Overland Mail Baghdad-Haifa. That topic is not yet much researched so information provided on that page is some sort of historical facts mixed with some assumptions. The latest cover sent eastwards of which I am aware of is however shown.
June 3, 2018 After 20 years of collecting the Overland Mail i can finally show a cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-12 (1).
June 2, 2018 A letterhead from the Eastern Transport Company, the company that was taken over by Nairn Transport Company, added.
May 18, 2018 A dedicated page with my philatelic articles/writings related to the Overland Mail Baghdad-Haifa has been added.
May 12, 2018 Cover with a most likely previously unrecorded Route Instruction Handstamp added, now listed as HS-N58
April 21, 2018 Transcript and English translation of Dienstorder 38 of 19 January 1927 of the Dutch/Netherlands Post has been added.
April 20, 2018 Dienstorder 38/1927 from the Dutch / Netherlands Post, indicating the surcharges for the Overland Mail Haifa-Baghdad / Autodienst, added. A transcript and English translation will be added shortly.
April 3, 2018 Another cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-88 (3) on cover from Teheran to Italy added.
The Revision History Pages have been split into yearly pages for easier viewing/handling and a separate submenu for it has been created.
April 1, 2018 On the request of some collectors i have created pages which group the Eastwards and Westwards countries as per the grouping in the contemporary literature.
March 31, 2018 Further cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-20 (3) added.
A Picture Postcard sent in 1930 from Port Said / Egypt to Baghdad / Iraq apparently as printed matter.
Newspaper Clippings from French Newspapers related to the Overland Mail Route from France and the French Mandate Syria and Lebanon added
March 29, 2018 Further cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-04 (3) added. After comparing the other covers with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-04 if may be that the cover with handstamp HS-04 (1) in fact is a different handstamp but the quantity of items known does allow so far for a clear judgment.
Newly found Route Instruction Handstamp, now listed as HS-N57 on a cover from Baghdad to England. Sender is the again Ezra Moshi Shayaa, the same sender who is known as having used HS-04 (2 and 3).
March 28, 2018 Started to completely revise the Postal rates and Overland Mail Surcharges from Iran, reflecting the current state of research. So far a total of 8 Rate Periods could be noticed! This revision work for the Rate Periods pages is ongoing, please be patient!
March 24, 2018 Newspaper notices from "Le Radical", "Le Petit Journal" and "L'Homme Libre" dated 5 March 1924 stating that the French decree of February 20, 1924, came into force on March 5, 1924
March 24, 2018 Comprehensive table with Postage rates and surcharges from the French Mandate of Syrian and Lebanon, relevant to for mail sent by the Overland Mail has been added, in addition, scan of the relevant decrees have been uploaded.
March 19, 2018 Another manipulated item added, this time a 1922 cover from Basra/Iraq to Egypt with an Overland Mail Route Instruction Handstamp. But, in 1922 the Overland Mail was not yet in operation!!!
Another cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-N35 (3) added.
New found Route Instruction Handstamp, now listed as HS-N56 on a cover from England to Baghdad added.
March 16, 2018 I have received additional information on Postal Notices/Decrees issued by the French Mandate in Syria and Lebanon. These decrees i will do a transcript from, translate them into English and upload them here. Stay tuned...
March 15, 2018 After having received some new purchases i can add a new discovered Route Instruction Handstamp which i have earlier believed to be another copy of HS-N07 but after having measured it it turned pout to be a new discovered Route Instruction Handstamp, now listed as HS-N55.
March 2, 2018 Another cover with Route Instruction Handstamp HS-N35 (2) added.


For older updates, please view the "Revision History" Page!