EXTREMELY FINE GEM. ONLY THREE MINT NEVER-HINGED $5.00 COLUMBIAN STAMPS HAVE BEEN CERTIFIED IN GRADES OF 90 OR 95 BY PROFESSIONAL STAMP EXPERTS, AND WE REGARD THIS EXAMPLE AS AN EQUAL AMONG THEM.
The P.S.E. Population Report lists three Mint N.H. examples of the $5.00 Columbian: one XF 90 and two XF-Superb 95. We know of three other Mint N.H. stamps that might achieve comparable grades when certified, but none have been certified in the past ten years.
Comparing this stamp with the two previously graded XF-Superb 95, we have difficulty reconciling why this stamp did not achieve a 95 grade. Its margins are wide and balanced, the perforations are fully formed, and the shade and paper are extraordinarily fresh. While microscopic measurements might show a very slight difference between the left and right margins, we still feel strongly that this stamp meets all criteria for XF-Superb 95.
Ex "Scarsdale". With 1992 and 2000 P.F. certificates. With 2004 P.S.E. certificate (XF 90; SMQ $30,000.00)