EXTREMELY FINE GEM. AN EXCEEDINGLY RARE SOUND FOUR-MARGIN EXAMPLE OF THE ONE-CENT 1851 TYPE I, POSITION 7R1E, WHICH IS THE ONLY ONE OF THE 1,000 POSITIONS USED TO PRINT IMPERFORATE ONE-CENT STAMPS THAT SHOWS THE COMPLETE DESIGN. THIS IS WITHOUT QUESTION ONE OF THE FINEST IN EXISTENCE, AND IT IS ONE OF TWO GRADED XF 90 JUMBO BY P.S.E. -- THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED.
The published census compiled by Jerome S. Wagshal (available at our website at https://siegelauctions.com/census/us/scott/5 ) contains at least 98 unduplicated records of Scott 5. There are probably no more than ten examples existing outside of the Wagshal census population. Therefore, the 1c 1851 Type I is the rarest of all United States stamps regularly issued prior to the 1868 Grills.
Because of the significance attached to the outer portions of the 1c 1851 design, rare types that have been carefully cut apart, so as not to impinge on any part of the design, are extremely desirable. The narrow spacing between stamps in the sheet and the users' indifference to the outlying ornamentation during separation are factors that contributed to the great rarity of four-margin copies. The example offered here comes from a strip of three, Positions 6-8R1E, that was removed from a cover. Examples of Position 7R1E (Scott 5) with large side and bottom margins, where there was very little space between it and the adjoining stamps, are true rarities. In fact, using the census data, it is clear that this stamp is among the two or three finest sound off-cover examples known. The ex-Newbury strip on cover and the ex-Vogel single on cover are among the finest examples of Position 7R1E on cover.
Wagshal Census No. 5-COV-82. Ex Jacobs, Krug and Dr. Kapiloff as part of a strip on cover. With 2008 P.S.E. certificate (XF 90 Jumbo; SMQ $525,000.00). This is the highest grade awarded and one other shares it (cancelled in red, ex Merlin). Scott Retail is $65,000.00 and the Scott Catalogue notes "Values for No. 5 are for examples with margins touching or cutting slightly into the design, or for examples with four margins and minor faults. Very few examples with the design untouched exist, and these sell for much more than the values shown."