When the German troops moved into Žemaitija and Courland on April 27, 1915, within a few days Seda (Siady) was inspected by reco cavalrymen of 6th Cav. Div. (6. Kavallerie-Division). Later the township became the administrative seat of the district of Siady. However, no post office was established there within the civilian Postgebiet Ob.-Ost system.
When the German army retreated from Russia at the end of 1918, advance units of the 39th Regiment of so-called International Division of the Red Army came to Seda on January 25, 1919, this being also the limit of their advance westwards. To some extent their aims were soon frustrated by small paramilitary Lithuanian groups (“partizanai”) organised by Gen. Povilas Plechavičius, and in February they were pushed back by the more professional German volunteers of the Eiserne Division and 1. Garde-Reserve-Division as they advanced on to Šiauliai and, eventually, Riga. However, with a change in the politico-military situation and the formation of so-called Westarmee or Zapadnaja Armija in the second half of 1919, Seda could not quite escape the clashes that developed beween the “bermontininkai” (commanded by Virgolich / Wirgolitsch and based in Šiauliai) and Lithuanian units, be they regular or paramilitary. By December 10, 1919, foreign troops had left Seda altogether.
The first postmaster (įgaliotinis) appointed for Seda was Saliamonas Bagdanavičius, his mandate starting January 25, 1919. Overall situation being very unsettled, it is not clear when the Seda post office did in fact open properly. Moreover, as of March 16, S. Bagdanavičius was transferred as postmaster to Kretinga and was replaced by Aleksis Krimonosovas.
The first Lithuanian stamps available at Seda were values of Second Vilnius Issue, Second and Third Kaunas Issues, followed by Fourth Berlin etc. Having no formal postmarker, Seda cancelled stamps by remarkably neat handwritten indication of place and date. Early MS cancellations seem to be all done in red ink but later violet ink was used as well.
For mail addressed abroad, some MS cancellations show the Russian place-name “Siady” which was also the spelling adopted by German administration. Standard calendar-type postmarker was provided in 1920.
In 1919, registered mail was marked by fastidiously hand-drawn oblong boxes which imitated registration labels. For foreign mail the inscription usually read “Siady”. Most, if not all, of the imitation labels were also done in red ink.
Known provisional markings:
MS two-liner “Seda” and date:
7 / IV 19 letter to Pikeliai, Vilnius II 10, Kaunas II 20, red ink [colln. Doniela]
11 / IV / 19 cover to Germany, Vilnius II 50 [colln. Bubnys]
28 – 4 – 19 letter to Kaunas, Berlin IV 30, red ink [reported Norton]
11 – 5 – 19 receipt on cut-out from Tirkšliai, red ink [colln. Doniela]
12 – 5 – 19 pair Kaunas III 15 sk., red ink [colln. Doniela]
16 – V – 19 single Berlin IV 15, red ink [colln. Liesis]
? – 9 – 19 letter to Riga, Berlin IV 10 x3, red ink [colln. Bubnys]
12-10-19 single Berlin IV 15, red ink [colln. Brazdeikis]
12-10-19 single Berlin IV 1A, red ink [colln. Wilson]
Date unclear, letter to Riga, Berlin IV 20 x3, red ink [colln. Bubnys]
Various dates, Berlin IV various values, red, violet [several collns]
MS two-liner “Siady” and date:
11 – 8 – 19 reg. letter to Denmark, Berlin IV 1a, 20 [colln. ?]
Hand-drawn imitation R-label inscribed “Siady”:
89 9 – 7 – 19 reg. letter [reported Fugalevičius]
201 11 – 8 -19 reg. letter to Denmark, Berlin IV 1a, 20 [colln. ?]
329 3 – 9 – 19 reg. letter to Germany, Berlin IV 40 x3 [colln. ?]
671 10 – 10 – 19 reg. letter to Switzerland, Berlin IV 30 x4, red ink [colln. Liesis]