Aftermath of the Civil War in Spain – Refugees in France
As General Franco’s Nationalist forces overran all of Spain, bolstered by the Italian army and the German Condor Legion, approximately 400,000 Spanish Republicans fled to Southern France, where they were interned in camps. On March 31, 1939, the Republican Government in Exile organized the Spanish Republican Emigration Service (S.E.R.E.), to secure visas, travel, and accommodation in Mexico and South America for exiled intellectuals and political leaders.
Pictured Above: Camp Argeles-sur-Mer was a dismal camp that held 80,000 Spanish refugees behind barbed wire, guarded by French sentries.
The 90-centime blue peace stamp of France overprinted with a black “F” was issued for the exclusive use of Spanish refugees. Each refugee received two stamps per month. Despite the denomination, mail franked by these franchise stamps went postage free within France.
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