30¢ Orange, F. Grill (100), block of twelve--two blocks of six rejoined along center row--with left sheet selvage showing extra grill impressions from roller, original gum, beautiful bright color on fresh white paper, centered slightly to left but overall well-centered for the issue
As block of 12: George H. Worthington, J. C. Morgenthau sale, 8/21-23/1917, lot 393, to Lozier
Joseph T. Lozier (sold privately by Ward)
Wharton Sinkler, Eugene Klein sale, 5/17/1940, Sale 117, lots 129-132
Philip H. Ward, Jr. (estate sold to Weills in 1963)
Benjamin D. Phillips (bought from Weills out of Ward estate, 1964; Phillips collection sold privately to Weills, 1968)
Left margin block: Stephen D. Bechtel, Sr. (collection sold privately in 1993; block sold privately to Zoellner)
Right block: Siegel Auction Galleries, 1981 Rarities of the World, 4/29/1981, Sale 579, lot 145, to Ishikawa
Right block: Ryohei Ishikawa, Christie's Robson Lowe sale, 9/28-29/1993, lot 590, to Zoellner
Block of 12 (rejoined): Robert Zoellner, Siegel Auction Galleries, 10/8-10/1998, Sale 804, lot 262, to William H. Gross
CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES
Philip H. Ward, Jr., "United States Early Unused Blocks 1847-1869," 1960 Congress Book
New York International Philatelic Exhibition 1913 (Worthington)
ANPHILEX 1996 Invited Exhibits (Zoellner)
Left margin block: The Philatelic Foundation (1970)
Fine overall; top row creased and small thins in two stamps at top
SCOTT CATALOGUE VALUE (2019)
$138,000.00 as two blocks and two pairs
HISTORY AND COMMENTARY
Reunited as the Largest Known Multiple
The 30¢ 1861-68 was printed from one plate, Plate 6, which was used for the trial printing in Red Orange (First Color) and for all subsequent printings. In 1868 a supply of sheets was grilled with the F Grill roller (Scott 100), using the machine patented by Charles F. Steel.
Unused blocks of the 30¢ F Grill are extremely rare. In fact, no other intact unused block was found by us after a careful search of auction and certification records. The Philatelic Foundation has certified the left margin block offered here and only one other, the ex-Lilly block of four that was certified as "severed and rejoined."
For the first 100 years of their existence, the two blocks in this multiple were joined together. As a block of twelve, it passed from Worthington to Lozier to Sinkler and then to Ward after the 1940 Klein auction of the Sinkler collection. The Weills bought the Ward estate in 1963 and kept the block intact for their principal client, Benjamin D. Phillips, who acquired it in 1964 along with large parts of the Ward collection.
The Weills bought the entire Phillips collection for $4.07 million in 1968, and divided the block of twelve into two blocks of six. The left sheet-margin block was sold to Stephen D. Bechtel, who had it certified in 1970. At the 1981 Rarities of the World sale, the right block was purchased by Ryohei Ishikawa for his Grand Prix award-winning 1847-69 exhibit. The right block was bought by Robert Zoellner in the 1993 Ishikawa sale--one month before that sale, he had acquired the left sheet-margin block from the Bechtel collection in a private transaction. After 23 years, the two blocks were reunited in his collection and sold as one unit to Mr. Gross in the 1998 Zoellner sale held by our firm.
EXTREMELY FINE. A BEAUTIFUL AND RARE MIXED-ISSUE FRANKING TO INDIA, PAYING THE 36-CENT RATE FOR BRITISH MAIL VIA MARSEILLES. SUPERB IN EVERY RESPECT.
Noted in the Chronicle in an article by William K. Herzog (Vol. 37, No. 2, 1985, pp. 112-119). Ex White and Ishikawa
FINE APPEARANCE. THE 30-CENT F GRILL IS ONE OF THE RAREST USED BLOCKS. ONLY FOUR OR FIVE ARE KNOWN.
All of the other used blocks in our records have faults and are off-center.