Czech Legion 1920 Siberia Russia Feldpost PRESIDENT GRANT Expertized YMCA
Item #:99386
Polni Posta / Feldpost / Field Post cover from member of the Russian Czech Legion on board the USS President Grant on his way home. Franked with Legion stamps and tied by Polni Posta na Rusi cancels, along with PRESEIDENT GRANT cachet. Expertized twice at right by Franek. Slightly worn, trimmed open at left, excellent condition, as per scans. In one of the lesser known but more remarkable stories of WWI, Czech POW's in Russian camps volunteered to fight their former masters in the form of the Austrian Empire, hoping (correctly) that if the Allies on the war, Czechoslovakia could get its long-sought-after independence from the Habsburgs. The were organized and fought heroically for the Czar at Zborov. But the Communists took over, exited the war, and didn't like all of those foreign nationals with guns. So they tried to disarm them, which didn't turn out so well. The Czech's turned on the faithless Reds and fought their way across Russia and Siberia on the Trans-Siberian Railway until they reached the Pacific, where they were eventually evacuated by the Allies long after the end of WWI, in 1920. Interestingly, the Czar and his family were being kept in Ekaterinburg, which was on the railway, and were executed as the Czechs approached, fearing the Legion would free the Imperials.

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