EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS IS ONE OF THE FINEST EXAMPLES OF THE PERFORATED 12-CENT 1857 ISSUE FROM PLATE 3, AND IS GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E. -- THE HIGHEST AWARDED AND THE ONLY EXAMPLE TO ACHIEVE THIS GRADE.
The most recent scholarship regarding the Toppan, Carpenter, Casilear & Co. plates used to print the 12c 1851-57 Issue is clearly articulated by James A. Allen in "The 1851 Imperforate (Scott U.S. #17): Plating Updated and Additional New Findings" (The 1851 Issue of United States Stamps: a Sesquicentennial Retrospective, U.S. Philatelic Classics Society). Traditionally, the 12c plates are identified as Plate 1 (from which all imperforate and some perforated stamps were printed), Plate 2 (evidently never used) and Plate 3 (which produced stamps that were only regularly issued with perforations). It is highly probable that Plate "3" was the first one made in 1851, but it was put aside and not used until 1859.
Plate 3 stamps (Scott 36B) are characterized primarily by uneven or broken outer framelines of the design. The subjects on Plate 1, which produced Scott Nos. 17 and 36, have even framelines that were extensively recut. Plate 3 stamps with the centering and wide margins evident in this example are very scarce.
Ex Drucker and "Natalee Grace". With 1982 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (Superb 98; SMQ $6,750.00). This is the highest grade awarded and it is equaled by no others
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 12-CENT 1860 ISSUE FROM PLATE 3, WITH BLUE AND RED CANCELS AND GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 BY THE PHILATELIC FOUNDATION.
With 2014 P.F. certificate (XF-Superb 95). By way of comparison, P.S.E. has graded only one used stamp higher (at 98, offered in our "Natalee Grace" sale).
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).
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 1859 12-CENT FROM PLATE 3 GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 BY P.S.E.
Ex Bowman. With 1997 P.F. and 2008 P.S.E. certificates (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $2,000.00). Only one has graded higher (at 98, offered in our Natalee Grace sale)