VERY FINE. AN IMMACULATE TIED EXAMPLE OF THE RARE "W. H. LAW" METROPOLITAN POST OFFICE STAMP, OF WHICH ONLY SEVEN COVERS ARE RECORDED.
The Metropolitan Post Office (a private post despite the name) is believed to have been established just prior to January 1854 by Lemuel Williams, whose abbreviated name "L. Williams" and 162 Ninth Street address appear on the first octagonal stamp (108L1). Curiously, Williams is never identified with the Metropolitan Post Office nor any mail operation in the city directories. The 1854-55 and 1855-56 directories list William H. Laws as proprietor of the "Post Office" at 13 Bible House, which was located across from Williams' address. The 1856-59 directories list Laws at the same address, but the name "Metropolitan Post Office" is used. In 1859 Laws is listed with the business "Books", which suggests the end of his involvement with the post. A trade directory links Williams and Laws in a partnership at 162 Ninth Street. (Reference: Patton book, p. 228, and Perry correspondence).
Although undated, it is our opinion that this cover could not have been mailed any earlier than 1856, based on the use of the "Metropolitan P.O." and "Paid/W. H. Laws" markings, as well as the worn impression of the 108L3 stamp. We record a total of seven covers with 108L3 (updated from our Golden sale), including six local usages with identical markings.
Ex Chapman, Caspary, Judd and Golden. With 2000 P.F. certificate specifically noting the missing "Pro" variety. Scott Retail $4,000.00
FINE APPEARANCE. ONE OF SEVEN RECORDED COVERS WITH THE MOODY'S PENNY DISPATCH STAMP. A DESIRABLE AND COLORFUL LOCAL POST USAGE.
What little is known about Moody's Penny Dispatch comes from original research by Dr. Clarence Hennan and Henry E. Abt, with additional information provided by Elliott Perry. Abt's series on Chicago locals was published in the American Philatelist (June 1957-January 1958), and the discovery of the "Henny Dispatch" error with a plating analysis was published by Scott R. Trepel in Chronicle 164 (November 1994). City directories point to Robert J. Moody as the proprietor. Gager's directory for 1856-57 lists Moody at 30 Dearborn, at the corner of Lake Street. Dated examples establish a brief period of operation from September 1856 through January 1857.
A total of 19 stamps are recorded, including a strip of 3 and 16 singles on and off cover. Our records contain seven Moody's Penny Dispatch covers with stamps: 1) 110L1 Ty. Ic with Comma, Pos. 4, repaired, Nov. 15, 1856 datestamp, tied with 3c 1851 on cover to Deerfield Mass., ex Hennan, Golden; 2) 110L1 Ty. Ic with Comma, Pos. 7, Nov. 14, 1856 Chicago datestamp, tied with three 1c 1851's on cover to Middletown R.I., ex Caspary, Siegel Sale 773; 3) 110L1b Ty. III "Henny Dispatch" error, Pos. 8, Sep. 18, 1856 datestamp, tied with 3c 1851 on cover to Voluntown Conn., ex Rohloff, Siegel Sale 773; 4) 110L1 Ty. Ic with Comma, Pos. 4, Sep. 29, 1856 datestamp, tied with 3c 1851 on cover to Dover N.H., ex Brown, Knapp, Hall, (Siegel Sale 830, lot 724); 5) reported 110L1 uncancelled on Oct. 9, 1856 cover, ex J. W. Kline, Abt article, no further details; 6) 110L1 Ty. Ic with Comma, Pos. 4, blue Moody's datestamp, not tied, with 3c 1851 tied by Chicago Jan. 5 (1857) datestamp ("1856" receipt docketing in error), the cover offered here; and 7) 110L1 Ty. Ic, Pos. 7, Nov. 4, 1846 datestamp, tied with 3c 1851 on cover to Neillsburg Pa., Siegel Sale 888, lot 223.
Ex Hunter, Worthington, Hennan and Golden. With 1999 P.F. certificate stating the stamps are genuinely used on the cover which is incorrectly docketed "1856" instead of 1857. Scott Retail $16,000.00
FINE. AN EXCEEDINGLY RARE COMBINATION OF THE WILEY ONE CENT DESPATCH STAMP AND 10-CENT 1855 ISSUE FOR THE TRANS-CONTINENTAL RATE.
With copy of 1979 P.F. certificate
FINE. ONE OF FOUR RECORDED COVERS BEARING THE PINKNEY'S EXPRESS POST STAMP -- THIS IS THE ONLY TIED EXAMPLE.
The only clue to the location of this post is the discovery cover, ex Ferrary, which contains a letter datelined "Fourth Ave., 94 -- opposite 11th St.", which Elliott Perry discusses in detail in Pat Paragraphs (reprint, pp. 473-474). The other recorded covers provide no further clues, except that the dates range from July to November 1851. Perry located a few Pinkney's (or Pinckney's) in the city directories, but found no evidence linking any of them to the post.
Our records contain four covers with 115L1, which may represent all or most of the known examples: 1) Jul. 9, 1851 folded letter to Boston with corner sheet margin single, uncancelled, "New-York 5 Cts. Jul. 10" due datestamp, ex Ferrary, Boker; 2) "New-York 5 Cts. Oct. 5" (1851 docketing) due datestamp, 115L1 cut to shape, tied by pen on cover to Suffield Conn., ex Golden and Kuphal, the cover offered here; 3) Nov. 3, 1851 folded letter to Mary S. Purdy, Sing Sing N.Y., same correspondence as No. 4 listed here, 115L1 cut square, uncancelled, red "New-York Paid 3 Cts. Nov. 4" datestamp, ex Caspary, Lilly, Hall (Siegel Sale 830, lot 736, realized $8,500 hammer); and 4) cut to circular shape, uncancelled, on folded cover to Robert H. Purdy, Sing Sing N.Y., same correspondence as No. 3 listed here, "New-York 5 Cts. Oct. 4" (1851) due datestamp, ex Brown, Hall (Siegel Sale 830, lot 737, realized $3,250 hammer). A fifth cover exists with a remnant of the Pinkney's 115L1 stamp, addressed to Andrew Van Bergan, Tully N.Y., with "New-York 5 Cts. Aug. 28" (1851) due datestamp (appreciation to Stephen Gronowski for this citation). The two covers from the Purdy correspondence have a third mate, the White's Branch Express cover, ex Caspary and Middendorf, which is dated Apr. 30, 1852.
Ex Golden and Kuphal. With 1999 P.F. certificate. Scott Retail $4,500.00