"CHAMPION PRIZE ENVELOPE LINCOLN & DAVIS IN 5 ROUNDS", five envelopes with cartoon designs comprising the original "5 Rounds" prize fight between U.S. President Abraham Lincoln and C.S.A. President Jefferson Davis, in black on white, imprints at bottom left "Published by J. H. TINGLEY 152-1/2 Fulton St. N. Y." and at bottom right "Entered according to Act of Congress in the Year 1861 by T. S. Peirce in the Clerks Office of the Southern District of New York", all five from one correspondence to John E. Miller in Oxford, New York, with "Princeton N.J." circular datestamp (Rounds 1, 3-5) and "Hamilton N.Y." circular datestamp (Round 2), each with 3¢ Rose (65) tied by grid or datestamp, and two additional envelopes with variation of 5th Round "The Champion Belt" design with new caption "ARMY ENVELOPE OR THE UNION WE FIGHT FOR", one in red on white with "Port Royal S.C. Apr. 19" circular datestamp and "Due 3" straightline handstamp, and other in red on buff with "Georgetown D.C. Feb. 11" circular datestamp tying 3¢ Rose (65)
Very Fine overall condition; covers with some minor edgewear, 1st Round with small nicks from opening, not seriously affecting appearance, some hinge residue on backs, and the red on buff envelope slightly reduced.
Although unused sets of the famous Lincoln-Davis Prize Fight envelopes are offered with some frequency, there are very few used examples of any of these designs. George Walcott, the pioneering collector of Civil War Patriotics whose collection was sold in 1935, owned the 2nd through 5th Rounds and the red on white "Champion Belt" design (lots 164-168 in Walcott sale--all five offered here), but evidently he was missing the 1st Round and the red on buff "Champion Belt" variation. Katherine Matthies acquired all five of Walcott's covers and added the 1st Round to complete the set. The Matthies set was acquired by Blake Myers, and when his collection of Union Patriotics was sold by Christie's Robson Lowe (3/12-13/1991), the six Lincoln-Davis Prize Fight covers sold to Janos Gabriel, who added the "Champion Belt" red on buff cover. All seven were sold to William H. Gross in Siegel Sale 784 (lot 2126).
2nd-5th Rounds and "Champion Belt" red on white, ex George Walcott; the Walcott set plus 1st Round, ex Katherine Matthies, Blake Myers and Janos Gabriel; additional "Champion Belt" red on buff, ex Gabriel.
3¢ Rose (65), tied by extremely bold "Alexandria Va. Nov. 2 '64" double-circle datestamp and target cancel on overall hand-colored lithographed Magnus Patriotic cover depicting the Patterson Park General Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, an elaborate "bird's eye" view of the compound including buildings, soldiers and a horse-drawn cart, the sender apparently experienced difficulty deciding where to place the address--starting with a few letters at the top and stopping, discreetly completing the address at left and then again on the back
Very Fine; stamp with single pulled perf at right.
This is an enormously rare Magnus hospital design. It was one of the highlights of the Civil War Patriotic covers in the Kantor collection of Sanitary Fairs sold through the Siegel firm (Sale 766A).
Ex Marjorie and Alvin R. Kantor, and illustrated in their book, Sanitary Fairs: A Philatelic and Historical Study of Civil War Benevolences (fig. 220).
3¢ Rose (65), carefully affixed beside window of Leeds & Franklin lattice window patent envelope and tied by blue "Balto. Paid" double-circle cancel, matching "Baltimore Md. Jul. 15" circular datestamp, U.S. Sanitary Commission corner card and addressed to O. C. Bullard (Special Relief Agent of U.S. Sanitary Commission) at Philadelphia, enclosure on Sanitary Commission letterhead mentions New York draft riots of 1863, Extremely Fine, probably the finest example extant of this rare patent envelope which beautifully preserves the window lattice of the Leeds & Franklin envelope, while this is a positive for the collector, it demonstrates the sender's misunderstanding of the purpose of the envelope, which was to have the stamp and dated postmark become affixed to the enclosed letter when the letter was removed (see the following lot for an example where this occurred), ex J. S. Rich, Perry and Kantor (fig. 20 in their book)
3¢ Rose (65), affixed as intended over the window of Leeds & Franklin lattice window patent envelope and tied by blue "PAID" straightline handstamp, matching "Baltimore Md. Jul. 23" (1863) circular datestamp, with U.S. Sanitary Commission corner card, addressed to O. C. Bullard (Special Relief Agent of U.S. Sanitary Commission) at Philadelphia, enclosure on Sanitary Commission letterhead dated July 23, 1863, which bears the entire stamp and "Paid" marking, small tear above window and stamp with single pulled perf (the result of opening), still Very Fine, the purpose of the envelope, which was to have the stamp and dated postmark become affixed to the enclosed letter when the letter was removed, was apparently learned by the sender between mailings of this cover and the one in the previous lot, ex J. S. Rich, Perry and Kantor (fig. 20 in their book)
3¢ Rose (65), tied by circle of wedges cancel with "New-York Feb. 3, 1864" duplex double-circle datestamp on "Metropolitan Fair for the U.S. Sanitary Commission" corner card illustrated cover, depicting a wounded soldier on a stretcher with Sanitary Commission nurses in attendance, Williams imprint, addressed to Matteawan, New York, printed notice on back recommending express companies to ship donations, left stamp with small corner crease, Extremely Fine, scarce design, ex Kantor and illustrated in their book (fig. 95)
3¢ Rose (65), tied by 4-point Star in Circle fancy cancel, "New-York Feb. 27, 1864" duplex double-circle datestamp on "Metropolitan Fair for the U.S. Sanitary Commission, Receiving Depot, 2 Great Jones Street New York" corner card illustrated cover, depicting a wounded soldier on a stretcher with Sanitary Commission nurses in attendance, Williams imprint, printed notice on back recommending express companies to ship donations, addressed to Patent Office in Washington D.C., stamp with clipped perfs at bottom, Very Fine example of this scarce design, ex Kantor and illustrated in their book (fig. 96)
3¢ Rose (65), tied by grid cancel with "Philadelphia Pa. Feb. 26, 1863" circular datestamp on overall lithographed Citizen's Volunteer Hospital cover, wonderful design in purple with panel depicting hospital building flying an American flag, soldiers, mounted rider and civilians, Duval & Son Ltd. imprint, addressed to Wilmington, Delaware, backflap mostly missing, Extremely Fine and beautiful example of this rare hospital design, the Citizens Volunteer Hospital was situated opposite the Philadelphia, Wilmington, & Baltimore Railroad depot at the corner of Broad Street and Washington Avenue in Philadelphia, the hospital provided critical care to the most seriously wounded Civil War soldiers before their reassignment to other hospitals, it was operated until August 11, 1865, this cover wonderfully conveys the scope of its activity and appearance, ex Kantor and illustrated in their book (fig. 262)
3¢ Rose (65), tied by grid cancel and "Philadelphia Pa. Jan. 10, 1864" circular datestamp on overall Union Volunteer Refreshment Saloon and Hospital illustrated cover to Roxbury, Massachusetts, exceptional design in purple depicting view of building, soldiers and civilians, immaculate condition, Extremely Fine, a superb Civil War illustrated design and one of the finest examples extant, the Union Volunteer and Refreshment Saloon was a privately funded way station, where troops traveling to and from the war could find a home-cooked meal, a place to rest and wash up, and could write a letter--tables were provided with writing materials and letters were sent without charge, the hospital provided care primarily for the wounded and sick who were on their way back to their families, ex Kantor and illustrated in their book (fig. 259)
3¢ Rose (65), cancelled by dotted cork cancel with "Philadelphia Pa. Aug. 25, 1861" octagonal datestamp on Cooper Shop Volunteer Refreshment Saloon Patriotic cover, design depicts a red and blue 34-star flag with imprint, addressed to Lynn, Massachusetts, with matching flag letterhead original enclosure, stamp with small tear at left, Extremely Fine appearing and very rare Patriotic soldier relief design, a marvelous exhibition pair, ex Kantor and illustrated in their book (fig. 254)
Soldier's Head, Waterbury, Connecticut (Rohloff E-3), one complete strike and second part strike on horizontal strip of three of 3¢ Rose (65), straight edge at right, matching "Waterbury Con. Feb. 2, 1866" double-circle datestamp, manuscript "Erin Go Bragh" cartoon voice bubble, few perf separations sensibly reinforced, Extremely Fine strike of this Waterbury fancy cancel, ex Emerson, Dr. Jackson, Eno and Mitchell, with 1986 P.F. certificate