Sunday, September 09, 2007

Lattes' pictorial cancellations

Second episode of the Lattes topical collection, French commune in Hérault, between Montpellier and Palavas-les-Flots.

In France, until the beginning of the 1990's, a certain number of schools asked to parents to frank some enveloppes for the mail of a school year. But, thank to the reactions of some parents, it was remembered to schools the principle of the free education.

But the situation ante help the young student I was to have pictorial cancellations from my hometown :

To my knowings, the Lattes-Centre post office (Lattes-Centre is the main town of Lattes ; the Maurin area has got its own office with a hand-datestamp "GA" for "Guichet annexe") used two different pictorial cancellations.

From the 1980's to the beginning of the 1990's, the lower one is a summarizing landscape : Saint-Laurent church built during the 12th century, an amphora, memory of the antic port of Lattara rediscovered and explored by a teacher Henri Prades, and the head of a bull. The latter is for the little number of courses camarguaises organized in Lattes : some young men - the razeteurs - try to take off a little object on the bull's head ; the bull is not often very cooperative. The background is the view of Méjean pond, separing Lattes from the littoral coast.

At the beginning of the 1990's (here, the cover's date is 14 June 1993), the picture was changed and the new commune's logotype is used. But, the cancellation is more an advertisment than the first touristical one, because "Port Ariane" is at the time a project of new neighbourhood around a little marina. It was built and was a success (more because Montpellier population exploded than for the boat parking).

Since when the first was in use : no idea, I will look for.

Until when the second was used : I can't tell because my high school years were a philatelic pause. It had negative points : I missed some pretty stamps. And positive : as a low-money university student when I came back to stamps, I have been having a critic eye on new French stamps. I have some documents that will show (in another article) thant the picture is postally alive under another form.

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