VOSTOK-1

The flight of Yuri Alexeevich Gagarin on April 12, 1961 is probably the most vivid and complex subject in Soviet/Russian astrophilately. Thousands of stamps and covers have been dedicated to the First in space all over the world. There is even a special term in Russian – Philatelic Gagariniana – collecting Gagarin related philatelic material. I will not write anything on the topic – there are books and many articles by respectable collectors and researches that cover the subject thoroughly. By default I do not collect varieties of paper or stamps but possibly colors of cancellations. A lot stuff is missing due to loose focus - dealing with other topics, but I am adding covers to all areas including this one. I do not pretend on any full or partial coverage and not willing to build any exhibit, just showing what I have…

Moscow
Moscow

Mezhkniga cover with official black cancellation

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Moscow
Moscow

Mezhkniga cover with official black cancellation

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Moscow
Moscow

MGOK (Moscow City Collector Society) cover with official red cancellation

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Leningrad
Leningrad

serviced cover with special postmarks

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Vinnitsa
Vinnitsa
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Vinnitsa
Vinnitsa
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Stanislav
Stanislav
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar
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Kaliningrad
Kaliningrad
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Frunze
Frunze
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Kiev
Kiev
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Kiev
Kiev

"serviced" postcard with forged cancellations

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Kiev
Kiev

"serviced" postcard with forged cancellations

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Chelyabinsk
Chelyabinsk
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1961

1962

1963

Moscow
Moscow

MGOK (Moscow City Collector Society) with official cancellation

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Leningrad
Leningrad

serviced cover with special postmarks

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Kiev
Kiev
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Kiev
Kiev
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Riga
Riga
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Karaganda
Karaganda
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Chelyabinsk
Chelyabinsk
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Sverdlovsk
Sverdlovsk
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Perm
Perm
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar
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Dneprodzerzhinsk
Dneprodzerzhinsk
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Stanislav
Stanislav
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Tambov
Tambov
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Tomsk
Tomsk
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Vinnitsa
Vinnitsa
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar

souvenir sheet

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Kiev
Kiev

Young Collector Club

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Kiev
Kiev

Young Collector Club

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Kuibyshev
Kuibyshev
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Shauliai
Shauliai
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Nikolaev
Nikolaev
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Kaliningrad
Kaliningrad
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Simferopol
Simferopol
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Simferopol
Simferopol
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Khabarovsk
Khabarovsk
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Magadan
Magadan

2nd anniversary of Gagarin flight

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Liepaja
Liepaja

2nd anniversary of Gagarin flight

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Poltava
Poltava

2nd anniversary of Gagarin flight

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Magadan
Magadan

3rd anniversary of Gagarin flight

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Gagarin 1y postcard.jpg

1971 - 10th anniversary of 1st space flight

Moscow
Moscow
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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Kaluga
Kaluga
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Star City
Star City
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official souvenir sheet
official souvenir sheet
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Praha-Moscow-Baikonur flight
Praha-Moscow-Baikonur flight

I believe this is just a nice astrophilatelic souvenir

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1976 - 15th anniversary of 1st space flight

Khmelnitsky
Khmelnitsky

club cover

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Khmelnitsky
Khmelnitsky

club cover

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Moscow
Moscow

FDOI

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Moscow
Moscow
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town

souvenir sheet for the philatelic exhibition

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1981 - 20th anniversary of 1st space flight

There is an interesting story behind Vinnitsa pictorial machine cancellation for 20th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin flight. Boris Vainer, known soviet collector and dealer who lived in Vinnitsa, prepared a special cancellation and arranged it to be used in the post office machine to postmark the covers. Many covers received this “private machine cancellation” and as a result there was an outburst and succeeding trial for interfering soviet postal system. Vainer was not jailed but his life got much complicated and in early 90s he left to Israel. Boris Vainer was also known for collecting postal cancellation devices and used them to create backdated “rarities” like 4.10.1957 Sputnik covers.

Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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Star City
Star City
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Kaluga
Kaluga
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Vinnitsa
Vinnitsa
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Vinnitsa
Vinnitsa

private machine cancellation

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Khmelnitsky
Khmelnitsky
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card issued for 20th anniversary of Gagarin flight stamp and cancellation are not related

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this cover issued in 1982 - 25the anniversary of Gagarin graduation from Orenburg military flying school stamp and cancellation are not related

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1984 - 50th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin

Moscow
Moscow
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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1986 - 25th anniversary of 1st space flight

Baikonur
Baikonur
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Kaluga
Kaluga
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Moscow
Moscow
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Moscow
Moscow

25th anniversary special cancellation

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Baikonur
Baikonur
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Star City
Star City
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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combo cover for 25th anniversary of Gagarin and Glenn flights cancelled in Baikonur and Cape Canaveral

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55th anniversary Gagarin town

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1991 - 30th anniversary of 1st space flight

Moscow
Moscow
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Baikonur
Baikonur

To Stars-91 philex cover

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Moscow
Moscow
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Kaliningrad
Kaliningrad
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Kirov
Kirov

Tsiolkovsky museum cancellations and cachet

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Kirov
Kirov

Tsiolkovsky museum cancellations and cachet

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Chisinau, Moldova
Chisinau, Moldova

Gagarin postcard issued as an attachment to the “Kodry - Moldova Literature” journal, serviced to Moldova capital – Chisinau in 1992.

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1996 - 35th anniversary of 1st space flight

Kaluga
Kaluga
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Kapustin Yar
Kapustin Yar
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Kaluga
Kaluga

Cosmonautics Day

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Baikonur
Baikonur
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Kirov
Kirov

Tsiolkovsky museum

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Star City
Star City
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Moscow
Moscow
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Murmansk
Murmansk
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Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan
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Ulyanovsk
Ulyanovsk
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60th anniversary
60th anniversary

Ulyanovsk club cover

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2001 - 40th anniversary of 1st space flight

Star City
Star City
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Severomorsk
Severomorsk

G&G cachet

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Saint-Petersburg
Saint-Petersburg
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Severomorsk
Severomorsk
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Severomorsk
Severomorsk

reverse

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Moscow
Moscow
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Baikonur
Baikonur
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Moscow
Moscow

Federation of Cosmonautics cover

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Gagarin town
Gagarin town

G&G cachet

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Korolev
Korolev
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town

45th anniversary

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Kaluga
Kaluga
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2004 - 70th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin

Soyuz TMA-3
Soyuz TMA-3

postmarked aboard ISS on March 9, 2004 and signed by Soyuz TMA-3 commander - Alexander Kaleri

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Baikonur
Baikonur
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Moscow
Moscow
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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Star City
Star City
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Orenburg
Orenburg
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Orenburg
Orenburg
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2008 - Pskov
2008 - Pskov

40th anniversary of Gagarin death

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2009 - 75th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin

Orenburg
Orenburg
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Safonovo
Safonovo
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Moscow
Moscow
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Moscow
Moscow
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Pskov
Pskov

postmark is not relevant

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2011 - 50th anniversary of 1st space flight

ISS board postmark
ISS board postmark

used in Baikonur for private collectors cancellations private design cover signed by the Russian crew of Soyuz TMA-21 "Yuri Gagarin" - Aleksandr Samokutyaev and Andrey Borisenko

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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Kaluga
Kaluga

commemorative cinderella

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Kaluga
Kaluga
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Kaluga
Kaluga

official card with overprint

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Korzunovo
Korzunovo
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Korzunovo
Korzunovo
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Saint-Petersburg
Saint-Petersburg
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Murmansk
Murmansk

Space Week on Lenin ice-breaker

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Murmansk
Murmansk

Space Week on Lenin ice-breaker

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Saint-Petersburg
Saint-Petersburg
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Safonovo
Safonovo
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Mirny, Antarctics
Mirny, Antarctics
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Star City
Star City
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Safonovo
Safonovo
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Barneo station, North Pole
Barneo station, North Pole
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Klushino
Klushino
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Novosibirsk
Novosibirsk
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Barneo station, North Pole
Barneo station, North Pole
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Engels
Engels
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town
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Saratov
Saratov
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Zhelezhnogorsk
Zhelezhnogorsk

Reshetnev design bureau special cancellation

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Baikonur
Baikonur
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Novosibirsk Philatelic Society cachet on the backside of the card

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2014 - 80th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin

Baikonur
Baikonur

BaikonurSvyazInform special postmark

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BaikonurSvyazInform
BaikonurSvyazInform
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Klushino
Klushino

Gagarin birthplace village post office cancellation on the private card

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Star City
Star City
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Baikonur
Baikonur

BaikonurSvyazInform special postmark

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Baikonur
Baikonur

BaikonurSvyazInform special postmark

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Star City
Star City
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Pskov
Pskov

club cover

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Gagarin 80y birthday - Engels
Gagarin 80y birthday - Engels
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Gagarin 80y birthday - Kaluga
Gagarin 80y birthday - Kaluga
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Saratov
Saratov

Gagarin joined the club in 1954 and in 1955 performed his first solo flight in Yak-18 airplane. 80th anniversary of Saratov flying school official postmark

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Gagarin monument Houston
Gagarin monument Houston

Gagarin monument

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Houston 2015
Houston 2015
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Lubertsy
Lubertsy

Gagarin college

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Lubertsy
Lubertsy

Gagarin college

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2016 - 55th anniversary of 1st space flight

2016 marked a 55th anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's flight, that triggered a major astrophilately event in Russia. Twelve and a half thousand full sheets of 2009 Gagarin stamps were overprinted (total 125,000 stamps).

Special postmarks were issued for seven cities and towns, Moscow got two. Additional three alternative postmarks were used in Baikonur, Gagarin, Smolensk and on boad ISS. Moscow Planetarium held special cancellation ceremony on April 11. Several types of official cards and covers were issued plus numerous private designs.

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Due to the small amount of available overprinted stamps many covers got only the clean 2009 values instead of the new ones. As far as I know the full sheets were sold only to the members of the Russian Philatelic Society and then appeared on the market for the much higher prices. Some regions did not get the stamps at all, so to get the covers with 55 years of Gagarin flights cancellations over new stamps proved to be a tricky business (at least for me). As usual many fakes appeared, featuring various anomalies like double overprints etc.

Moscow
Moscow

official stamped cachet

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Moscow
Moscow
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Star City
Star City

surprisingly - no official cancellation, just private stamped cachet

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Moscow Planetarium
Moscow Planetarium

A special event was held a day before - Apr 11th, thus many covers did not get official postmarks or overprinted stamps. This is much less than perfect serviced cover, although have a good "cosmonautics" presentation with red Planetarium stamp.

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Moscow
Moscow
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Klushino
Klushino
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Moscow
Moscow

overprinted stamp

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Moscow
Moscow

overprinted stamp

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Moscow
Moscow

overprinted stamp

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Krasnoyarsk
Krasnoyarsk
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Krasnoyarsk
Krasnoyarsk
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Krasnoyarsk
Krasnoyarsk
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Krasnodar
Krasnodar

overprinted stamp on the official card

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Sochi
Sochi
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Gagarin town
Gagarin town

Gagarin town of Smolensk district got alternative solution - it used the postmark issued for 50 years of Gagarin flight that was adopted for 55th anniversary by changing 0 to 5.

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Engels
Engels

official stamped cachet

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Engels
Engels
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Engels
Engels

overprinted stamp

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Kaluga
Kaluga

Kaluga official postcard issue and special postmark. Anyone who applied the postmark in Kaluga post office could get a special official vignette presented below.

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Baikonur
Baikonur

BaikonurSvyazInform issued its own cards and special postmark. Here is a serviced piece with Cosmonautics day cancellation and overprinted stamp.

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Baikonur
Baikonur

another BaikonurSvyazInform serviced card

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Novosibirsk
Novosibirsk
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Cherepovets
Cherepovets

nicely designed private cover with stamped cachet and vignette

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Cherepovets
Cherepovets

another private design

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Gagarin town
Gagarin town

Gagarin readings

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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Star City
Star City
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Krasnoyarsk
Krasnoyarsk

Reshetnev design bureau

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Krasnoyarsk
Krasnoyarsk

Reshetnev design bureau cover backside

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Kirzhach
Kirzhach

place of Gagarin's death

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2021 - 60th anniversary of 1st space flight

Baikonur
Baikonur
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Baikonur
Baikonur
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