EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 12-CENT 1857 ISSUE FROM PLATE 1. A DIFFICULT STAMP TO FIND IN SUCH SUPERB CONDITION.
With 2006 P.S.E. certificates (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $2,750.00). Only three have graded higher to date.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS IS ONE OF THE FINEST EXAMPLES OF THE PERFORATED 12-CENT 1857 ISSUE FROM PLATE 3. THIS STAMP HAS BEEN AWARDED THE GRADE OF SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E. -- THIS IS THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED TO DATE IN ANY CATEGORY, AND THE ONLY EXAMPLE TO ACHIEVE THIS GRADE.
The most recent scholarship regarding the Toppan, Carpenter, Casilear & Co. plates used to print the 12c 1851-57 Issue is clearly articulated by James A. Allen in "The 1851 Imperforate (Scott U.S. #17): Plating Updated and Additional New Findings" (The 1851 Issue of United States Stamps: a Sesquicentennial Retrospective, U.S. Philatelic Classics Society). Traditionally, the 12c plates are identified as Plate 1 (from which all imperforate and some perforated stamps were printed), Plate 2 (evidently never used) and Plate 3 (which produced stamps that were only regularly issued with perforations). It is highly probable that Plate "3" was the first one made in 1851, but it was put aside and not used until 1859.
Plate 3 stamps (Scott 36B) are characterized primarily by uneven or broken outer framelines of the design. The subjects on Plate 1, which produced Scott Nos. 17 and 36, have even framelines that were extensively recut. Plate 3 stamps with the centering and wide margins evident in this example are very scarce.
Ex Drucker. With 1982 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (Superb 98; SMQ $5,500.00). This is the highest grade awarded to date and the only example to achieve this grade.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 24-CENT 1860 ISSUE, WHICH HAS BEEN GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E. -- THIS IS THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED TO DATE. THIS ISSUE IS RARELY ENCOUNTERED WITH SUCH SUPERB CENTERING.
The 24c stamps were not printed and put into use until July 1860 (earliest documented use is July 7). The issue was demonetized thirteen months later. The 24c denomination matched the U.S.-G.B. treaty rate, and the stamp was primarily used on letters to England. These circumstances of a short life and limited use, combined with Toppan Carpenter's typically erratic perforating, are the reasons why superb used examples of the 24c 1860 are so difficult to find.
With 1999 P.F. and 2007 P.S.E. certificates (Superb 98; SMQ $8,500.00). This is the highest grade awarded to date and only three others share this grade.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. EASILY ONE OF THE FINEST USED EXAMPLES OF THE 30-CENT 1860 ISSUE, WITH BRIGHT COLOR, WIDE MARGINS, LONG AND FULL PERFORATIONS AND A CLEAR CANCELLATION. THE 30-CENT IS THE MOST DIFFICULT DENOMINATION OF THE SERIES TO OBTAIN IN SUCH SUPERB CONDITION.
As a detail of the block shown at right demonstrates, the outer projections of the design left little room for perforations. The 30c stamps were not printed and put into use until August 1860 (earliest documented use is August 8). The issue was demonetized twelve months later. The denomination was intended to be used primarily on letters to foreign countries. These circumstances of a short life and limited use, combined with Toppan Carpenter's typically erratic perforating and the narrow space between stamps, are the reasons why superb used examples of the 30c 1860 are so difficult to find.
With 1999 P.F. and 2006 P.S.E. certificates (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $4,750.00).
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB EXAMPLE OF THE SHORT-LIVED 90-CENT 1860 -- THE FIRST UNITED STATES 90-CENT ISSUE -- OF WHICH ONLY FIVE SOUND COPIES CANCELLED IN RED HAVE BEEN CERTIFIED BY THE PHILATELIC FOUNDATION. THIS IS THE FINEST OF THE FIVE.
The 90c stamp was issued in 1860, along with the 24c and 30c values, all of which were needed to prepay high international letter rates established by various postal treaties. The basic 24c and 30c rates to England, France and Germany created a volume of mail franked with those values. However, the 90c saw much more limited use, partly due to the rates in effect, but more because of the American Civil War. When supplies of current postage stamps were declared invalid in the South and ultimately demonetized by the Federal government, the 90c had been in use for only one year. For this reason, genuinely cancelled copies are scarce, and covers bearing the 90c are extremely rare.
Approximately 180 used examples have been certified by The Philatelic Foundation, of which one-quarter are sound. Of these sound examples, only five are cancelled in red, and this stamp is the best-centered and most attractively cancelled.
Ex Dr. Morris and offered to the market for the first time since 1997. With 1988, 1994 and 2009 P.F. certificates. With 2009 P.S.E. certificate (VF-XF 85; SMQ $13,800.00). This appears to us to be a solid XF 90.