EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS MAY WELL BE THE FINEST MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 50-CENT TRANS-MISSISSIPPI ISSUE IN EXISTENCE. THIS REMARKABLE STAMP IS GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E. -- THIS IS THE HIGHEST GRADE ON RECORD AND ONLY THIS STAMP HAS ACHIEVED IT.
The design of the 50c Trans-Mississippi is based on a drawing by Frederic Remington titled Gold Bug, which was published in 1897 in New York as part of a series of drawings. It depicts a single prospector in a barren landscape, hammer in one hand and a gold prospecting pan in the other, with his dog and two pack mules. The design was originally considered for the $2.00 (an essay is known) but it was ultimately used for the 50c.
The 50c Trans-Mississippi is extremely scarce in well-centered condition. It also seems that fewer 50c stamps exist in Mint N.H. condition, relative to the dollar values of the set. The combination of Extremely Fine centering and Mint N.H. condition is exponentially rarer.
With 2009 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $57,500.00). This is the highest grade awarded, and this is the only stamp to achieve it.