VERY FINE AND CHOICE. THIS IS WITHOUT QUESTION ONE OF THE FINEST USED EXAMPLES OF THE 4-CENT 1908 IMPERFORATE, SCOTT 314A. ONLY 31 USED SINGLES ARE CONTAINED IN OUR CENSUS.
With the rising popularity of vending and affixing machines, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing received numerous requests from manufactures for supplies of imperforate stamps, which could then be privately perforated to conform to each firm's machine. In May 1908, a supply of 25 sheets (400 stamps per sheet) of the 4c 1902 Issue, without perforations, was delivered to the Schermack Mailing Machine Co. in Detroit. The entire supply was cut into coils with Schermack Type III perforations, designed for the firm's patented affixing machine and delivered to the Winfield Printing Co. for use on mass mailings of advertising material. Approximately 6,000 were used on a mailing for Hamilton Carhartt Manufacturer, and almost all of the 4,000 balance were used on a mailing for Burroughs Adding Machine Co.
Our recently-completed census of Scott 314A incorporates the records of the Philatelic Foundation, the Levi records (which represents over 40 years of auction sales) and our own computerized sales history, and is available at our website at http://www.siegelauctions.com/dynamic/census/314A/314A.pdf . The census reveals a startling fact -- there are only 31 used singles (two on piece), a used strip of three and three covers (one of which bears a strip of three), for a total of 39 used stamps. Our previous assumption was that this number was much higher.
An analysis of our census found nine copies in sound condition with Schermack perforations on both sides. Five of these have poor centering, leaving a population of only four to vie for the title of finest in existence (Census Nos. 01, 11, 12 and 23).
Census No. 314A-CAN-01. Ex Twigg-Smith and Natalee Grace. With 1970 and 2001 P.F. certificates