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Cochin China

FIRST STAMPS France 1862.



1892, 6 puttans = 5 annas.
1911, as India.

After a French punitive expedition against Saigon in 1859, the eastern provinces were ceded to France in 1862. A protectorate was established over Cambodia in 1863 and the remaining area occupied by 1874.

Used French Colonies General Issues 1863-92 (oblit. lozenges of dots with CCH or CCN and a figure, etc).

Annam and Tongking

FIRST STAMPS French Colonies General Issues 1885-92.



1888, as France.

A French protectorate (1883) was established after war with China (1884- 5)

Indo-China (Indochine)



1889, 100 centimes = 1 franc.
1918, 100 cents = 1 piastre.

A union of Cambodia, Cochin China, Annam and Tongking decreed on 17 October 1887 with the addition of Laos after 1893. It also included after 1898 Kouang Tcheou Wau, an enclave of China between Pakhoi and Hoihow, in the area of the Lui-Chow peninsula The constituent parts continued to be identified by name on their cancellers. After the fall of France in 1940, the Japanese controlled the country through a puppet Vichy regime (though the Chinese supported movements in the north resistant to both French and Japanese). The rulers the Japanese set up in 1944-5 in Cambodia and 'Vietnam' and the rival insurgent armies in the north set the scene for future conflicts, though French authority was re-established in 1945-9. On 14 June 1949 Cochin China, with Annam and Tongking, became independent within the French Community as Vietnam. Laos and Cambodia followed as independent states on 19 July and 8 November.

Vietnam (Viet Minh)



1945, 100 cents = 1 piastre.
1945, 100 xu = 10 hao = 1 dong.
NB. Viet Ming = 30xu = 10 Hao = 1 dong.

A 'Democratic Republic' was proclaimed by Ho Chi Minh in Hanoi on 2 September 1945. It was recognized by France on 6 March 1946 as a de facto free state within Indo-China. When its forces refused to give up Haiphong to the French, hostilities flared. From 1946, with fluctuating boundaries, it made war on the French and the rival independent state set up by them under Bao Dai on 14 June 1949.

Stamps inscribed DAN CHU KONG HOA.

North Vietnam

FIRST STAMPS October 1954 (a continuation of the issues of the Viet Minh).


1946, 100 cents = 1 dong.
1959, 100 xu = l dong.

After the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu, Vietnam was partitioned on 21 July 1954 near the 17th parallel. North Vietnam became a recognized Communist republic.



An independent, state within the French Indo-Chinese Union, under pressure from Viet Minh forces in the north.

South Vietnam

FIRST STAMPS 6 June 1955.


1959, 100 cents = 1 piastre.

After the French defeat at Dien Bien Phu, Vietnam was partitioned on 21 July 1954 near the 17th parallel. South Vietnam remained an independent state within the French Union for a year, then after a referendum became an independent republic. Stamps inscribed DAN CHU KONG HOA.

International Commission in Indo-China

FIRST STAMPS 1 December 1954.


1954, as India.

Various stamps of India were over-printed in Hindi characters for use in Vietnam, Laos or Cambodia between 1954 and 1968.

National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam (Viet Cong)

FIRST STAMPS 5 October 1963.


1963, 100 xu = 1 dong.

Communists in South Vietnam fighting with support from North Vietnam and China against the established South Vietnamese government supported by the USA.

Stamps inscribed MAT TRAN DAN TOC GIAI.

Socialist Republic of Vietnam



1976, 100 xu = 1 dong.

After the American withdrawal from South Vietnam, the south was completely overrun and on 2 July 1976 incorporated into a unified Communist state.

French Indo China 1900
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