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Sale 1211 — The William H. Gross Collection: United States Postal History

Sale Date — Tuesday-Wednesday, 29-30 October, 2019

Category — 20th Century Issues

Cat./Est. Value
Sale Number 1211, Lot Number 560, 20th Century Issues, A rare example of the 1¢ Rotary Perf 11, Scott 594, on a postcard--only three postcards and two covers are recorded for this rotary coil waste issue

1¢ Green, Rotary, Perf 11 (594), tied by "Grand Cent. Sta. N.Y., Oct. 17 11-AM 1924" slogan machine cancel on multicolored postcard showing the Vanderbilt Hotel, to Owensville, Indiana, stamp centered to top right

Fine--an extremely rare example of Scott 594 on a postcard. Our census contains only three postcards and two covers with this issue, which is one of the rarest of all 20th century non-error U.S. postage stamps.

The 1¢ Green, Scott 594, is waste from a horizontal rotary printing used to make coils. At the beginning or end of a coil-stamp print run from the 170-subject rotary plates, some leading or trailing paper was produced that was too short for rolling into 500-stamp rolls. In 1919 the Bureau devised a plan to salvage this waste by perforating and cutting the sheets into panes. They were put through the 11-gauge flat-plate perforator in use at the time, giving the sheets full perforations on all sides. In 1923 coil waste from the new 1¢ and 2¢ rotary production was turned into stamps later classified as Scott 578-579 and 594-595. These were the last of the coil-waste issues. The existence of Scott 594 was not reported until four months after the final sheets were delivered, and the 1¢ Rotary Perf 11 was soon recognized as one of the rarest United States stamps.

There are today approximately 100 confirmed examples of Scott 594. The first major find of this stamp was made in 1934 by Ernest E. Fairbanks, who retrieved nine pairs (18 stamps, one or two damaged) on nine separate covers that were returned by the post office years earlier from a bulk mailing. All were postmarked at New York City on October 4, 1924. The nine Fairbanks covers were cut down into pieces, and today there are perhaps five or six of these pieces intact. Our census of Scott 594 used is available at


no. 594-COV-03. With 1980 P.F. certificate. Scott value on "cover" is $18,000.00.

E. 7,500-10,000
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