EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A STUNNING MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 1915 2-CENT PALE CARMINE RED PERF 11 ON SINGLE-LINE WATERMARKED PAPER, SCOTT 461. THIS WAS THE FIRST ISSUE TO BE PERFORATED 11, AND ONLY A LIMITED QUANTITY WAS PRODUCED. THIS MARVELOUS EXAMPLE IS GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E., WHICH IS THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED.
The Bureau switched from 12-gauge to 10-gauge perforations to address criticism that the stamps separated too easily. However, the Perf 10 stamps had the opposite effect, often causing users to tear their stamps. Facing public criticism, Third Assistant Postmaster General Dockery experimented with this Perf 11 issue. In June 1915 90,000 stamps with the trial perforation were issued and deemed satisfactory. However, due to the frugality of wartime conditions the Bureau did not change to the new Perf 11 wheels until all of the old Perf 10 wheels had worn out. The change was not started until almost two years later. By this time the Bureau was using unwatermarked paper -- this is the only perf 11 stamp printed on single-line watermarked paper.
With 2015 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $6,000.00). This is the highest grade awarded and only one other shares this grade. This is also the first time we have offered this grade in one of our auctions.