A GB postal stationery newspaper wrapper postmarked Army Post Office S.40 28 05 21
with handstamped COLOGNE POST, addressed to Nelson, New Zealand.
Postmarked Army Post Office, date unreadable.
GB KGV ½d postal stationery newspaper wrapper overprinted THE COLOGNE POST and THE RHINE ARMY DAILY NEWSPAPER
Postmarked Army Post Office S.40, 12 June 1929.
Newspaper wrapper overprinted The Cologne Post and Wiesbaden Times, franked ˝d KGV green
Army Post Office S40 was established in Cologne in 1919 to provide
postal support for the first British Army of the Rhine (BAOR). When the
British Army withdrew from Germany in 1929 the Army Post Office was
On 31 March 1919 the first issue of a daily newspaper for British Armed
Forces in Germany was published. The Times newspaper reported on this event as follows
This morning was published the first number of the Cologne Post, a daily paper “published by (and primarily for) the Army of the Rhine"
at the price of 20 pfennigs, or rather less than a penny. It is to appear every day except Monday, and it will be a great addition to the
life of our men in the occupied territory, and doubtless also of the troops in Belgium and France.
To-day's issue consists of four pages, and it has a refreshingly English look about it. The front page consists chiefly of political and
personal news, and comment on subjects of the day, such as the Danzig difficulty, Bolshevism, and the League of Nations.
The third page is devoted to sport at home and in the Army of the Rhine, and on the back page there is a useful map showing
the British advances from August 8 to November 11.
The title of the leading article is "Why We are Here."
We are here in Cologne, the writer reminds his readers, because the British Army took a big share in the fighting by which the
Allies brought the German and Austrian combination to its knees. We are here to enforce on the aggressors the terms which justice demands.
He points out that it was the enemy Military Headquarters, including Hindenburg and Ludendorff, and not Berlin, which insisted that an
armistice must be concluded at once. "Lest we forget " is, in fact, the main motif of his argument. “To wish to live on good terms with our surroundings,"
he writes, "is a natural human feeling, and there is no need for discourtesy, still less for truculence, but there is need to remember."
The newspaper, the Cologne Post, continued to be
published till 17 January 1926. The name of the paper was then changed
and from 28 January 1926 till 3 November 1929 it was published as The Cologne Post and Wiesbaden Times.
When British troops were sent to Upper Silesia an Upper Silesian
edition was published in Opole (Oppeln) between 17 June 1921 and 6
Very little information appears to be available about this newspaper.
What little I have managed to gather is as follows
In an obituary for William Edward Rolston (Royal
Report of the Council to the 102nd AGM, in February 1922) the following
is stated:- After the Armistice he went
with the Army of Occupation to Cologne. There he was attached to the
Military Governor’s Staff and became the founder and managing editor of
the Cologne Post, a remarkable daily newspaper printed in English by
German compositors, and much appreciated by the British troops in
Cologne. Rolston threw himself with unsparing zeal into the labours of
his task; and when British Forces went into Upper Silesia in the summer
of 1921, an Upper Silesian edition of the Cologne Post was issued,
which aimed at supplying news at Oppeln forty-eight hours ahead of that
in the papers received from home. It seems clear that he must have
overtaxed his strength, for he died after a few hours’ illness on 1921
August 9, in the midst of his work, and on the very day that he was
expecting his wife and children to join him at Cologne. He was buried
at the Stüdfriedhof with military honours—a man of earnest
character and of public-spirited interests. His early death in the
prime of life is a matter of deep regret to his colleagues and many
War Graves Commission site gives Rolstons’ rank as Captain serving
in the The Buffs (East Kent Regiment)
and shows him as Publicity Editor of the Cologne Post.
In the book "Germany as it is To-day"
(by Alan Lethbridge, published by Eyeleigh Nash Company Limited in
1921, page 43), the following is stated:- And then there is the daily
paper, The Cologne Post. Who its responsible editor is, I am unaware.
But it is an excellent publication, replete with the latest cables from
London, plenty of sporting news dear to the heart of all Tommies, and
notes as to what is happening in the City. There are editorials and
special articles contributed from outside, and all are written with the
most complete absence of prejudice.
reports that on 1 May 1919 a question was asked in the House of Commons
by Mr. Bottomley who "asked the
Secretary of State for War whether his attention has been called to
advertisements of German firms appearing in the ‘Cologne Gazette’ which
is described as a daily paper published by the Army of the Rhine;
whether the Army authorities have any control over such paper; and, if
so, whether directions will be given for the exclusion of such
advertisements in future?"
Mr. Churchill replied that "the
'Cologne Post' is under the control of the General Officer Commanding
the Army of the Rhine. A Report on the matter has been called for."
reports that on 1 August 1923 in reply to a written question
to the Under-Secretary of State for War, Lieut.-Colonel Guinness stated
that "... the 'Cologne Post' ... is
an independent organisation not financed from Army funds."
War Memorial website show this photograph with the caption "Cologne, Germany. c. 1918. The machine
room of the Kolnische Volkszeitung where the British Rhine Army
published a daily paper called The Cologne Post. This machine could
print 18,000 copies per hour. The manager and editor are in this
photograph. (Donor British Official Photograph C3341)"
British Library lists the Cologne Post as an
Armed Forces Newspaper for the British Army
Issued from 31 March 1919 to 17 January 1926 : Nos. 1-1815; New edition
Continued as: The Cologne Post and
28 January 1926 - 3 November 1929 : Nos. 89-481
Published in Wiesbaden, Germany from 28 January 1926 onwards
A daily paper published for the Army of the Rhine
The Cologne Post (Upper
17 June - 6 August 1921 : Nos. 1-43
Published in Oppeln (now Opole, Poland)
A daily paper published by the Army of the Rhine for the British Forces
in Upper Silesia
The above wrappers are the only ones from "The Cologne Post" that I have ever seen.
Do any other ones exist?
Email me if you know of any other copy.