VERY FINE EXAMPLE OF THIS RARE 1851 ISSUE ESSAY DESIGN PRODUCED BY THE FIRM OF RAWDON, WRIGHT, HATCH & EDSON.
Rawdon, Wright, Hatch & Edson, the firm that printed the 1847 Issue, competed for and lost the contract for the new 1851 Issue to Toppan, Carpenter, Casilear & Co. There are several similarities between this design and the 1847 Issue, the most obvious the "US" and "Post Office" labels at top. The central engraving is from a circa 1832 stock die by Cyrus Durand. This design was most likely originally proposed for the 3c newspaper rate during the 1847 period and was reused for RWH&E's submission for the 1851 Issue. According to a 2015 newsletter from James E. Lee, which offered a similar example, "this impression was probably pulled in 1858 after Rawdon merged with American Bank Note Co. By that time the die had rusted as shown by the proof."
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