EXTREMELY FINE APPEARANCE. A GORGEOUS USED EXAMPLE OF THE RARE 1868 2-CENT D GRILL.
The 2c D Grill is the rarest of the regular-production 1867-68 Grilled Issues (excluding the 1867 trials and rarest Z Grills), followed in order of scarcity by the 3c Z Grill, the 3c D Grill and the 12c Z Grill.
It is our theory that two grilling machines were used simultaneously, and that one of the machines was converted from the D to E Grill in early 1868, after a small number of 2c sheets were run through the D-equipped machine.
A review using Power Search found very few examples with centering close to the example offered here. If this did not have the tiny corner crease, its selling price would be astronomical.
Ex Hansen (Siegel Sale 963, lot 560). 1991 P.S.E. certificate noting corner crease no longer accompanies. With 2011 P.S.E. certificate as sound (Superb 98; SMQ $85,000.00)
EXTREMELY FINE USED EXAMPLE OF THE 1867 3-CENT D GRILL. A BEAUTIFUL AND FRESH STAMP.
Most of the well-centered copies we have encountered of the 3c D Grill come with heavy cancels. This choice stamp is a notable exception.
With 2002 P.S.E. and 2013 P.S.A.G. certificates (XF 90)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 1868 2-CENT F GRILL, WHICH HAS BEEN GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E. -- THIS IS THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED.
Ex Connoisseur and Dr. Morris. With 1992 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (Superb 98; SMQ $5,500.00). This is the highest grade awarded and only two others share it. This is the first in this grade we have offered in one of our auctions.
EXTREMELY FINE APPEARING EXAMPLE OF THE 1868 5-CENT F GRILL. ESPECIALLY DESIRABLE WITH THE BLUE CANCEL.
This stamp received P.F. certificate no. 307120 describing it as "Genuine, small corner creases at top right" It subsequently received P.F. certificate no. 312426 with the opinion "it is genuine". The photo on the former shows the top right corner perf folded down. Our detailed examination of the stamp shows another very faint pressed-out corner crease in the top right corner.
With 1997 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $8,000.00) as sound. This is the highest grade awarded and only one other shares it, which was offered in our recent Kirke sale.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS MAGNIFICENT STAMP HAS BEEN AWARDED THE ULTIMATE GRADE OF GEM 100 BY P.S.E. THIS USED 1868 15-CENT F GRILL IS UNDENIABLY THE PERFECT STAMP, POSSESSING EVERY QUALITY ONE COULD POSSIBLY HOPE FOR -- CENTERING, IMPRESSION, STRONG GRILL, FULL PERFORATIONS AND A LIGHT CANCEL.
We created Power Search for occasions like this, when superlatives fail to do justice to an extraordinary stamp. To see the centering, margins and cancellations on typical used examples of the 15c Lincoln -- ungrilled or not -- please use our website's Power Search feature to find Scott 77, 91 and 98 (three different searches). You will see that the 15c Lincoln is almost always a stamp of compromise. Great centering and margins, but heavy cancel. Light or colored cancel, but small margins or not quite centered. Great looking, but small faults. Then look at the "name" collections and see which 15c Lincoln stamps were included. No one -- and there are great collector names on this list -- managed to obtain this stamp or one even remotely like it.
When numerical grading started, the 15c Lincoln was on our list of "Try to Find a 100" stamps. We did not believe one existed. When this 15c F Grill was presented to us, we knew it was perfect without even looking at the grade. The Gem 100 grade and a note of praise from master grader Dr. William A. Litle confirmed our gut reaction.
The ungrilled version of this issue was released in 1866, about one year after President Lincoln was assassinated. It is regarded by many to be America's first commemorative issue, memorializing the martyred president as the nation started to heal from the wounds of the Civil War. In 1868 it was issued with two grill types, the E Grill (Scott 91) and F Grill (Scott 98). 15c usually paid the registration fee on domestic mail or the U.S.-French treaty rate. The 15c stamps used on transatlantic mail passed through foreign-mail exchange offices, where clerks were zealous about cancelling high-value stamps. For this reason, the 15c Lincoln usually has a heavy cancel or large cancel over the portrait. This stamp, with its light target cancel, is the rare exception.
With 2012 P.S.E. certificate (Gem 100; unpriced in SMQ above the grade of 98, SMQ $10,500.00 as 98). This is the highest grade awarded to date and the only example to achieve this grade.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THE 1868 24-CENT F GRILL IS RARELY OBTAINABLE IN THIS OUTSTANDING USED CONDITION. THIS STAMP HAS BEEN GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 BY P.S.E., WHICH IS THE HIGHEST GRADE AWARDED. A SUPERB STAMP IN EVERY RESPECT.
The higher-denomination F Grills were produced in limited quantities and are often found either off center or with choppy perforations. The example offered here, with long perforations, superior centering, a clear grill and with a neat cancel, is a true condition rarity.
Ex Dr. Morris. With 1986 and 1994 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $10,500.00). This is the highest grade awarded and only three others share it.