Upper Silesia Plebiscite Passport 1921 Issued In Rybnik

Upper Silesia Plebiscite Passport 1921 Issued In RybnikThe Upper Silesia plebiscite was a plebiscite mandated by the Versailles Treaty and carried out on 20 March 1921 to determine a section of the border between Weimar Germany and Poland. The region was ethnically mixed with both Germans and Poles; according to prewar statistics, ethnic Poles formed 60 percent of the population. Under the previous rule by the German Empire, the Poles had faced discrimination and racism, making them effectively second class citizens. The period of the plebiscite campaign and interallied occupation was marked by violence. There were two Polish uprisings, and German volunteer paramilitary units came to the region as well.

The area was policed by French, British, and Italian troops, and overseen by an Interallied Commission. The Allies planned on a partition the region, but a Polish uprising took control of over half the area. The Germans responded with volunteer paramilitary units from all over Germany, which fought the Polish units. In the end, after renewed Allied military intervention, the final position of the opposing forces became, roughly, the new border. The decision was handed over to the League of Nations, which confirmed this border, and Poland received roughly one third of the plebiscite zone by area, including the greater part of the industrial region.

A Upper Silesia Plebiscite Passport is quite rare to find nowadays. In 15+ years of research and collectiong passport history I only saw a few of them, often in bad condition because of their weak durability of the thin one page travel document. Mostly used to travel to nearby areas.

Upper Silesia Plebiscite Passport 1921 Issued In Rybnik

The one displayed shows three travels to Breslau.The passport picture on Theodor Buhl is very nice, he worked as teacher by the way. The picture shows him at age 51. There are two Prussian revenue stamps 10Mk and 2Mk, overprinted with C.G.H.S. The condition is very good with small defects a the foldings.Rybnik was one of the larger districts in upper Silesia and more than 65% of this district voted in the plebiscite for Poland and against Weimar Germany.

 

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