EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THE FINEST OF THE SIX RECORDED COVERS BEARING THE BATON ROUGE 2-CENT PROVISIONAL STAMP. AN OUTSTANDING 2-CENT CONFEDERATE PROVISIONAL RARITY AND ONE OF THE GEMS OF THE SHARRER COLLECTION.
Of Scott No. 11X1 we record three unused, five used off cover or on piece, and five used on covers, for a total of 13 stamps. Of Scott No. 11X1a (“McCcrmick” error) we record three examples, including one unused stamp, one used off cover, and one used on cover. The cover offered here was described in the 1956 Caspary sale catalogue as “undoubtedly the finest in existence,” an opinion still supported by the record.
This particular 2c stamp is one of two known Baton Rouge provisionals (any denomination) with the Maltese Cross border showing a wider gap between the fifth and sixth ornaments at bottom (Calhoun Type D); every other recorded stamp shows the enlarged gap between the sixth and seventh ornaments at bottom. This stamp’s distinctive ornament arrangement is found at the top of Position 5 of the 5c setting and at the top of two examples of the 2c stamp. Most likely, the setting was altered between printings, and the top and bottom rows of ornaments were transposed.
Accompanied by a March 23, 1895, notarized statement from J. P. Behrnes (the addressee) attesting to the source and genuineness of the cover. Ex Caspary, Lightner, Lilly, Kilbourne and Gross. With 2009 P.F. certificate