Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport

Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport

This service passport was issued in 1993 and expired in 1998. The document shows no travels and was issued after his parents’ execution in 1989. An exciting travel document of Cold War times.

Dictator Ceausescu - Son's Passport
The service passport of Valentin Ceaușescu, the eldest son of the dictator.

Valentin Ceaușescu (born 17 February 1948) is a Romanian physicist. He is the eldest and only surviving child of former communist President Nicolae Ceaușescu and his wife, Elena. Valentin Ceaușescu was born in Bucharest on 17 February 1948, less than two months after the establishment of the Romanian People’s Republic. His father, future dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu, was an active member of the Romanian Workers’ Party, earning himself various political and military positions; he was the country’s Minister of Agriculture at the time Valentin was born. His mother was Elena Ceaușescu (née Petrescu). Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport

Unlike many other family members, including his younger brother, Nicu, Ceaușescu was not involved in politics. Attending the University of Bucharest, he completed his undergraduate degree in physics. In 1967, he decided to pursue further education by enrolling at Imperial College London in the United Kingdom. He played association football as a goalkeeper on a college team during his time at Imperial College. Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport

In December 1989, during the Romanian Revolution, Ceaușescu was arrested, along with the other family members. Known worldwide for their extravagant lifestyle, they were accused of undermining the economy of Romania. Valentin is said to have had a position managing the Steaua București football club. He reported that he had watched his parents’ trial on television while he was under arrest. Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport

The dictator’s son had fled Bucharest on December 22, together with his girlfriend, Roxana Dună, the daughter of a nomenclaturist. She would become his wife in 1995.

Evil mouths say that Valentin would now live on the money of his father-in-law, Constantin Dună, a difficult name in the Romanian banking world, a former member of the Board of Directors of the Romanian Bank for Foreign Trade, former president of the Romanian Association of Banks, a former member of The Board of Directors of the Romanian Banking Institute and of the Deposit Guarantee Fund in the banking system, the man who tried to save Bankcoop Bank from bankruptcy, without success.

Valentin and Roxana Ceaușescu have a daughter together, Alexandra, now 21 years old, an Architecture student.

Ceaușescu was freed from prison nine months after no charges were brought against him. During that time, his collection of 50 paintings by Romanian masters, engravings by Francisco Goya, and hundreds of rare books were confiscated. When he asked for restitution, the Romanian authorities argued that no documents proved that he was the owner and that the art collection belonged to the Romanian state, which promptly donated them to the National Museum of Art. Ceaușescu sued the government for restitution. The courts found in favor of Ceaușescu in 2009 and ordered the museum to return forty pictures. Most of the works were collected by him and his former wife personally. Dictator Ceausescu – Son’s Passport


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FAQ Passport History
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1. What are the earliest known examples of passports, and how have they evolved?

The word "passport" came up only in the mid 15th Century. Before that, such documents were safe conducts, recommendations or protection letters. On a practical aspect, the earliest passport I have seen was from the mid 16th Century. Read more...

2. Are there any notable historical figures or personalities whose passports are highly sought after by collectors?

Every collector is doing well to define his collection focus, and yes, there are collectors looking for Celebrity passports and travel documents of historical figures like Winston Churchill, Brothers Grimm, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Read more...

3. How did passport designs and security features change throughout different periods in history, and what impact did these changes have on forgery prevention?

"Passports" before the 18th Century had a pure functional character. Security features were, in the best case, a watermark and a wax seal. Forgery, back then, was not an issue like it is nowadays. Only from the 1980s on, security features became a thing. A state-of-the-art passport nowadays has dozens of security features - visible and invisible. Some are known only by the security document printer itself. Read more...

4. What are some of the rarest and most valuable historical passports that have ever been sold or auctioned?

Lou Gehrig, Victor Tsoi, Marilyn Monroe, James Joyce, and Albert Einstein when it comes to the most expensive ones. Read more...

5. How do diplomatic passports differ from regular passports, and what makes them significant to collectors?

Such documents were often held by officials in high ranks, like ambassadors, consuls or special envoys. Furthermore, these travel documents are often frequently traveled. Hence, they hold a tapestry of stamps or visas. Partly from unusual places.

6. Can you provide insights into the stories behind specific historical passports that offer unique insights into past travel and migration trends?

A passport tells the story of its bearer and these stories can be everything - surprising, sad, vivid. Isabella Bird and her travels (1831-1904) or Mary Kingsley, a fearless Lady explorer.

7. What role did passports play during significant historical events, such as wartime travel restrictions or international treaties?

During war, a passport could have been a matter of life or death. Especially, when we are looking into WWII and the Holocaust. And yes, during that time, passports and similar documents were often forged to escape and save lives. Example...

8. How has the emergence of digital passports and biometric identification impacted the world of passport collecting?

Current modern passports having now often a sparkling, flashy design. This has mainly two reasons. 1. Improved security and 2. Displaying a countries' heritage, icons, and important figures or achievements. I can fully understand that those modern documents are wanted, especially by younger collectors.

9. Are there any specialized collections of passports, such as those from a specific country, era, or distinguished individuals?

Yes, the University of Western Sidney Library has e.g. a passport collection of the former prime minister Hon Edward Gough Whitlam and his wife Margaret. They are all diplomatic passports and I had the pleasure to apprise them. I hold e.g. a collection of almost all types of the German Empire passports (only 2 types are still missing). Also, my East German passport collection is quite extensive with pretty rare passport types.

10. Where can passport collectors find reliable resources and reputable sellers to expand their collection and learn more about passport history?

A good start is eBay, Delcampe, flea markets, garage or estate sales. The more significant travel documents you probably find at the classic auction houses. Sometimes I also offer documents from my archive/collection. See offers... As you are already here, you surely found a great source on the topic 😉

Other great sources are: Scottish Passports, The Nansen passport, The secret lives of diplomatic couriers

11. Is vintage passport collecting legal? What are the regulations and considerations collectors should know when acquiring historical passports?

First, it's important to stress that each country has its own laws when it comes to passports. Collecting old vintage passports for historical or educational reasons is safe and legal, or at least tolerated. More details on the legal aspects are here...

Does this article spark your curiosity about passport collecting and the history of passports? With this valuable information, you have a good basis to start your own passport collection.

Question? Contact me...