Sale 1027 — The Natalee Grace Collection of Used U.S. Stamps, Part Two: 1869 to Pan-American Issues
Sale Date — Wednesday, 19 September, 2012
Category — 1894 Unwatermarked Bureau Issue (Scott 246-263)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS IS WITHOUT QUESTION ONE OF THE FINEST USED EXAMPLES OF THE 1894 $5.00 UNWATERMARKED BUREAU ISSUE IN EXISTENCE. THIS IS THE MOST DIFFICULT DENOMINATION TO OBTAIN IN SUCH SUPERB CONDITION. THIS MAY ALSO BE THE EARLIEST DOCUMENTED USE OF THIS ISSUE.
Brookman notes "The $5 is the scarcest stamp in the 1894 series as the total issue of the stamp consisted of 6,251 stamps. It is probable that more of these stamps might have been sold were it not for the fact that speculators were dumping $5 Columbians at a discount to face because the rise they had anticipated had failed to materialize." Very few were used. A review of Power Search and P.S.E'.s Population Report found very few used and centered copies of this issue.
The cancellation on this issue reads "10-5 1895". The last digit of the yeardate is slightly smudged, but using computer enhancement we are able to discern the ball at the curve of the "5". Also, the shape of the top could not be any other number. This stamp was listed by Alan Berkun as a potential EDU pending his examination of the item. The date listed in Scott Catalogue as the EDU is July 6, 1896. Considering that this stamp was issued in December 1894, it is our opinion that this should be the new earliest documented use. No covers are known.
With 1999 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (XF 90 Jumbo; SMQ $6,300.00 as 90, $17,900.00 as 95). Only one has graded higher to date and this is the only example to achieve this grade. Catalogue pricing also does not take into consideration the date.