FINE. A RARE POSTALLY-USED CHINA 2-CENT SMALL NUMERAL RED REVENUE ON COVER.
On February 20, 1897, a new national postal service was inaugurated. Prior to this, an order was made with a printer in Japan for the new stamps. Unfortunately, the printer was unable to supply the stamps in time for the inauguration. Prior to this in 1896, 650,000 Red Revenues had been ordered for a new proposed taxation. Quickly abandoned due to public outcry, these stamps lay dormant in Shanghai. They were quickly pressed into service with new overprints for postal use.