12¢ Black, Plate 3 (36B), horizontal strip of seven, second and third stamps from left show double framelines, remarkably choice centering, used with two singles of 3¢ Dull Red, Type III (26) and tied by "Philadelphia Pa. Jul. 9"(1860) circular datestamps on buff cover to Paris, France, red "Philadelphia Pa. Paid 1860 Jul. 9" exchange office circular datestamp also ties strip, French arrival datestamp (July 23), receiving backstamp, light vertical file fold barely affects strip (mostly between stamps), left stamp perfs slightly affected from placement at edge of cover, missing part of backflap and a few minor cover flaws, Very Fine, this is one of the largest multiples of the 1859 12¢ issue from Plate 3 recorded, a wonderfully rare franking paying the six-times 15¢ rate to France, ex Grunin, Kapiloff and "Sevenoaks", illustrated in Brookman Vol. I (p. 248) and Rose, The First United States Perforated Stamps--The 1857 Issue (p. 67)
12¢ Black, Plate 3 (36B), block of four, original gum, three stamps with hinge remnants, bottom right stamp lightly hinged, intense shade and impression, well-balanced margins for this difficult issue
Siegel Auction Galleries, 2005 Rarities of the World, 6/3/2005, Sale 895, lot 113, to William H. Gross
The Philatelic Foundation (1998)
Very Fine and choice; perf separations and pencil "Superb" on back of one stamp
SCOTT CATALOGUE VALUE (2019)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 12-CENT 1860 ISSUE FROM PLATE 3, GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 BY P.S.E.
Ex Merlin. With 2011 P.S.E. certificate (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $2,000.00). Only one has graded higher (at 98, offered in our "Natalee Grace" sale).
VERY FINE. THIS IS THE ONLY EXAMPLE OF A PATRIOTIC COVER TO INDIA THAT WE HAVE EVER ENCOUNTERED. IT IS ADDRESSED TO THOMAS MELVILLE, THE YOUNGEST BROTHER OF FAMED AUTHOR HERMAN MELVILLE, WHO WAS CAPTAIN OF THE METEOR.
An interesting article at https://www.southcoasttoday.com/special/20160218/moby-dick-author-melville-had-whaling-ties-to-westport describes the beginning of the voyage of the Meteor to India. It notes "Brother Herman made at least one trip with Thomas on Meteor, sailing from Boston to San Francisco on his brother’s ship from May to August of 1860. Herman went home on another ship, while Thomas sailed Meteor to the Philippines, China and Calcutta, where it was sold; he got back to Boston in January of 1862 to look for another captaincy." This cover, which arrived in August 1861, would have been sent to Thomas on this last journey.
Our Power Search and extensive library do not contain another Patriotic cover sent to India. For some reason, the use of Patriotics was primarily confined to destinations in Europe. Destinations beyond Europe, such as India, China, Australia and other exotic locations, were primarily confined to communicating with either business, missionary or military activities, and so almost no mail was sent espousing political views.
Ex Ishikawa. With 1993 P.F. certificate