1c-10c Louisiana Purchase, Specimen Ovpts. Ty. E (323S-327S-E).
Complete set affixed to letterhead "Edwin C. Madden, Third Assistant Postmaster General, Post Office Department, Washington, April 16, 1904",
addressed to Allen Cockrell in Washington, states in part, "I take the pleasure in enclosing to you herewith one set of the Commemorative Series, 1904, (Louisiana Purchase) postage stamps...This is the second set to be given away. The first was given to the Daughters of the American Revolution, to enclose in the corner stone of their Memorial Continental Hall...The stamps will not be placed on sale to the public at any post office until April 30th next. Respectfully, Edwin C. Madden. P.S. These stamps are all marked "specimen." No stamps can be given away except as specimen.", the 3c defective with portion of bottom missing, letter toned
A RARE AND HISTORIC SET OF SPECIMENS FOR THE 1904 LOUISIANA PURCHASE ISSUE. THIS IS UNDOUBTEDLY THE EARLIEST SET THAT CAN BE DOCUMENTED -- TWO WEEKS PRIOR TO THE FIRST DAY OF ISSUE.
Allen V. Cockrell was Secretary of the Interstate Commerce Commission and son of Missouri Senator Francis C. Cockrell. The DAR Continental building still stands in Washington. Presumably, the set given to them remains in the corner stone.
Scott Retail as normal set $1,750.00
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