Radviliškis is a town and a rail junction ca. 20 km south-east of Šiauliai. As a location of strategic importance, it was a hotly contested object in both 1915 and 1919. After the German push into Žemaitija and Courland had started on April 27, 1915, Radviliškis was captured by Bayersche Kavallerie-Division on May 1, then given up during a Russian counter-offensive, and finally retaken by Brigade Homeyer on July 22.
During the German withdrawal from the East, Red Army troops reached Radviliškis in mid-January 1919 and, after exploratory raids, were pushed out by Detachement Randow of the Grenzschutz on March 12. Like Šiauliai, Radviliškis too became a base and transit point for various German units moving to or fighting in Latvia. In October and November 1919, this strategic location was controlled by aggressive “bermontininkai” who, on November 21-22 at Radviliškis, were severely defeated by Lithuanian regulars with huge loss of military materiel.
In the czarist period, Radviliškis had a post office (Radzivilishki). During the German period, there was here a stationary Feldpost 172 from December 1916 to December 1918, and, for a very brief period (November 11 to December 26, 1918) a branch (Radziwilischki) of the Postgebiet Ob.-Ost, of which there is absolutely no surviving evidence. Throughout 1919, the postal needs of the various Grenzschutz units and then of Bermondt’s Russo-German troops were catered for by Frw. Feldpost 3072 stationed in Šiauliai.
A mandate to open a Lithuanian post office was issued very early, as from January 15, 1919, to Mečislovas Daugvila but the politico-military situation would have made a start at that time imposible. Another postmaster, Simonas Skudas was appointed as from March 8, 1919. However, the circumstances were still unfavourable and it is not clear when and how the Radviliškis P.O. did eventually open. As from July 4, 1919, Simonas Skudas was transferred to Rietavas and replaced as postmaster by Vladas Žilinskas.
For stamps, it is very likely that Radviliškis had neither any Vilnius nor Kaunas Issues and began with Fourth Berlin, followed by the Sėjėjas Issue etc. In the absence of a postmarker, cancelling was done in manuscript, stating place and date. No other provisional markings have been noted.
A standard calendar-type postmarker was supplied in the first half of 1920, if not earlier.
Known provisional markings:
Cancelling in manuscript:
9 – VI – 19 card to Tilsit Gemany, Berlin IV 30 [colln. Doniela]
18 – VI – 19 card to Tilsit Germany, Berlin IV 30 [colln. Doniela]