The cover shown in Figure 1 was sent in 1893 from Amsterdam and addressed to “Schietschool Fort de Kock Java.” What mainly attracted me was the multitude of postal markers on it. On the front it showed a small round cancel “Amsterdam / 4 MRT 93 / 12-6 V”, a numeral marker (#5 (Amsterdam)), a “D.v.O” marker and a “NED.INDIË / FRANSCHE PAKKETB.“ marker. On the back (Figure 2) one notices a Batavia marker, two Weltevreden and two Padang markers, plus a Fort de Kock, Meester Cornelis and V marker.
Since the letter had a Ned-Indië Pakketb. marker on it, it meant to be transported on a French mail boat. Gerard van Welie was nice enough to track the progress of the letter. The letter went by train via Paris to Marseille (France) or via Paris, and Modane (Italy) to Napels (Italy). Often the route via Napels was avoided because on the occurrence of another cholera epidemic such as had happened quite regularly before, from 1883 to 1887. Since there are no train markers on the cover we won’t know for sure its overland route, but most likely it was via Marseille.