Sale 1122 — The Hanover Collection of Superb-Quality U.S. Stamps-Part One
Sale Date — Thursday, 7 April, 2016
Category — 1893 Columbian Issue (Scott 230-245)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 4-CENT COLUMBIAN ISSUE.
With 2010 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $2,500.00). Only four have graded higher.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 5-CENT COLUMBIAN ISSUE.
Ex Gorham. With 1996 and 2006 P.F. certificates (Superb 98)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A GORGEOUS MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 8-CENT COLUMBIAN.
Ex Gorham. With 2010 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $5,250.00). Only three grade higher.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 15-CENT COLUMBIAN, WHICH IS GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E.
Along with the 10c value, this is among the couple most difficult of the non-dollar value Columbians to find in superb Mint N.H. condition.
With 2008 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $11,500.00). Only one has graded higher (at 98J) and only five others share this grade.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS IS WITHOUT QUESTION ONE OF THE FINEST MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLES OF THE $1.00 COLUMBIAN, WHICH DEPICTS THE FAMOUS SCENE OF QUEEN ISABELLA PLEDGING HER JEWELS. THIS STAMP IS GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 XQ BY THE PHILATELIC FOUNDATION.
According to Brookman, only 55,050 copies of the $1.00 Columbian were issued. It was sold out before all of the other dollar-values, probably because it was the most affordable of the dollar-value stamps. Speculation soon drove the price to $5.00 but it soon fell again, to about $1.50.
The theme of the stamp, Isabella pledging her jewels to finance Columbus's voyage, is known to most fifth-grade students who study the voyage of Columbus. However, the offer was never accepted, as financing was found elsewhere.
With 2011 P.F. certificate (XF-Superb 95 XQ). The "XQ" is a term used by the Philatelic Foundation to denote stamps of "Extraordinary Quality". None are graded equal or higher at the P.F., and P.S.E. also has not graded any higher (3 equal).
VERY FINE AND CHOICE MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE $2.00 COLUMBIAN ISSUE.
With 2005 and 2011 P.F. certificates (VF-XF 85)
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A MAGNIFICENT MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE $4.00 COLUMBIAN ISSUE. THIS IS ARGUABLY THE FINEST EXAMPLE IN EXISTENCE. A SUPERB STAMP IN EVERY RESPECT -- COLOR, IMPRESSION, FRESHNESS OF PAPER AND GUM AND CENTERING.
The P.S.E. Population Report lists ten Mint N.H. $4.00 Columbian stamps above the grade of 85 (nine No. 244 and one No. 244a) in grades of XF 90 (four) or XF-Superb 95 (five, one is 244a). Although this stamp did not attain a 95 grade, in our opinion it is a peer of, if not better than, the higher-graded examples. We justify our opinion with three reasons: first, its beautifully-preserved intense color is the desirable rich Crimson Lake shade; second, the paper and gum are fresh and bright, without any of the toning that often affects the Crimson Lake stamps (No. 244a is characteristically brighter); and, third, the "C C" plate selvage is unique to this example, which adds a dimension of rarity and significance lacking in the other 90 and 95 stamps.
This $4.00 Columbian is legendary among knowledgeable collectors and dealers, and its appearance in the marketplace has always established a new benchmark value for the issue. For the collector attempting to assemble the finest set of Mint Never-Hinged Columbian stamps in existence, the $4.00 is a major obstacle to completion. This extraordinary example will become the keystone to perfection.
Ex "Scarsdale". With 2000 P.F. certificate. With 1991, 1998 and 2004 P.S.E. certificates (XF 90; SMQ $16,000.00).
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. ONLY THREE MINT NEVER-HINGED $5.00 COLUMBIAN STAMPS HAVE BEEN CERTIFIED IN GRADES OF 90 OR 95 BY PROFESSIONAL STAMP EXPERTS, AND WE REGARD THIS EXAMPLE AS AN EQUAL AMONG THEM.
The P.S.E. Population Report lists three Mint N.H. examples of the $5.00 Columbian: one XF 90 and two XF-Superb 95. We know of three other Mint N.H. stamps that might achieve comparable grades when certified, but none have been certified in the past ten years.
Comparing this stamp with the two previously graded XF-Superb 95, we have difficulty reconciling why this stamp did not achieve a 95 grade. Its margins are wide and balanced, the perforations are fully formed, and the shade and paper are extraordinarily fresh. While microscopic measurements might show a very slight difference between the left and right margins, we still feel strongly that this stamp meets all criteria for XF-Superb 95.
Ex "Scarsdale". With 1992 and 2000 P.F. certificates. With 2004 P.S.E. certificate (XF 90; SMQ $30,000.00)