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Sale 1188 — United States Stamp Treasures: The William H. Gross Collection

Sale Date — Wednesday, 3 October, 2018

Category — 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert

Lot
Symbol
Photo/Description
Cat./Est. Value
Realized
86°
c
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 86, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, The only recorded intact cover with the 10¢ 1869 Pictorial and French stamps used together in a mixed franking during the post-treaty period--one of the most outstanding 1869 Pictorial Issue covers extant

DESCRIPTION

10¢ Yellow (116), intense shade, perfs in at top, tied by circle of wedges cancel, used in combination with France 1867-68 20c Blue and 40c Orange, Napoleon III (33, 35a), both French stamps tied by a single strike of Anchor in Diamond of Dots cancel, 20c also tied by red “Etats- Unis Paq. Fr. H. No. 1 5 Fevr. 70” (February 5, 1870) French Ligne H octagonal datestamp and matching framed “P.P.” (Paid to Port) handstamp--the French stamps and markings were applied on the ship in New York harbor--on blue folded cover to Bordeaux, France, red “New York Feb. 5” circular datestamp, “H. Astie & Co. New-York Feb. 4, 1870” blue oval datestamp applied by sender--this was carried on the Compagnie Générale Transatlantique line’s Péreire, which departed New York on February 5, 1870 (the date of the New York and Ligne H postmarks) and arrived at Brest on February 16 and Le Havre the next day--three backstamps including Paris and Paris-to-Bordeaux railway (both February 17) and Bordeaux (February 18), back panel docketed with February 4 correspondence date

PROVENANCE

* Dr. Joseph Schatzkés

* Edgar Kuphal (“A European’s Large Gold Collection of The 1869 Pictorial Issue”), Siegel Auction Galleries, 12/13/1999, Sale 819, lot 2251, to William H. Gross

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Michael Laurence, United States Ten-Cent 1869 Covers: A Postal Historical Survey, fig. 14-5, p. 170

CONDITION NOTES

* Very Fine; trivial small sealed tear in cover at right, file fold at bottom clear of stamps

* Roger Calves handstamp at lower right

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/86.pdf

E. 50,000-75,000
42,500
87°
ogbl
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 87, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, The finest known block of the 15¢ Type I 1869 Pictorial Issue--acclaimed in the 1956 Caspary sale to be “one of the most outstanding 1869 items known”

DESCRIPTION

15¢ Brown & Blue, Type I (118), horizontal block of six, original gum, each stamp superbly centered, bright colors and fresh paper

PROVENANCE

* Henry J. Duveen (listed in Phillips’s November 1922 book; sold privately to Hind through Phillips)

* Arthur Hind, Phillips-Kennett sale, 11/20-24/1933, lot 386, to Colson for Caspary

* Alfred H. Caspary, H. R. Harmer sale, 11/19-21/1956, lot 388, to Weills for Phillips--featured as “A magnificent block and a great showpiece. One of the most outstanding 1869 items known”

* Benjamin D. Phillips (collection sold privately to Weills, 1968)

* Stephen D. Bechtel, Sr. (collection sold privately in 1993; block sold privately to Zoellner)

* Robert Zoellner, Siegel Auction Galleries, 10/8-10/1998, Sale 804, lot 288, to William H. Gross

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Lester G. Brookman, United States Postage Stamps of the 19th Century, Vol. II, p. 174

* Jonathan W. Rose, United States Postage Stamps of 1869, p. 108

* World Stamp Show 2016 Court of Honor (Gross)

CONDITION NOTES

* Extremely Fine; top left stamp has a few tiny thin specks in grill (one has pinpoint break)

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/87.pdf

E. 75,000-100,000
150,000
Back to Top
88°
c
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 88, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, The only cover with this combination of 1869 Pictorial Issues in private hands--an extraordinarily beautiful and rare cover from the famous Portchester find

DESCRIPTION

24¢ Green & Violet (120), rich colors, centered to upper right, used with horizontal pair of 10¢ Yellow (116), well-centered, intense shade, tied by circle of wedges cancels, mostly clear “New-York Apr. 5” (1870) circular datestamp on bright white cover to Lima, Peru, sender’s notation “Photograph” at lower left, red “24” credit handstamp, large red crayon “2”--carried on the Pacific Mail Steamship Co. steamer Alaska, departing New York on April 5, 1870--blue Lima receiving backstamp

PROVENANCE

* Siegel Auction Galleries, 5/29/1974, Sale 452, lot 567, to Grunin

* Louis Grunin (cover collection sold privately, 1979-80)

* Siegel Auction Galleries, 9/7/1984, Sale 637, lot 842, to Dr. LeBow

* Dr. Robert LeBow, Siegel Auction Galleries, 9/26/1994, Sale 761, lot 762, to Mandel for Kuphal

* Edgar Kuphal (“A European’s Large Gold Collection of The 1869 Pictorial Issue”), Siegel Auction Galleries, 12/13/1999, Sale 819, lot 2323, to William H. Gross

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Michael Laurence, United States Ten-Cent 1869 Covers: A Postal Historical Survey, fig. 7-11, p. 89

CONDITION NOTES

* Extremely Fine; tiny opening tear at bottom right corner

* “R.H.W. Co.” backstamp (Weill)

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/88.pdf

E. 20,000-30,000
52,500
Back to Top
89°
bl
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 89, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, The unique block of the 24¢ 1869 Pictorial Inverted Center error--widely acclaimed the most important item in United States philately, and eloquently described by the stamp expert Fred Melville in 1938 as “one of the most wonderful of all the surprising survivals”

DESCRIPTION

24¢ Green & Violet, Center Inverted (120b), block of four, beautifully centered, rich colors and sharp clear impressions clearly showing the inverted vignettes, segmented cork cancels of New York City

PROVENANCE

* Discovered in Liverpool merchant’s correspondence files, circa 1888, by the so-called “Upside Down Man” (sold to a vest-pocket dealer)

* Thomas Ridpath (bought from dealer for £5, circa 1888; sold or consigned to Henry Collin, Scott Stamp and Coin Co., mid-1888)

* William Thorne (bought from Scott Stamp and Coin Co., 1888, for $200; collection sold privately to New England Stamp Co., 1902)

* William H. Crocker (bought privately from New England Stamp Co.), Harmer, Rooke & Co., 11/23-25/1938, lot 285, to Y. Souren

* Esmond Bradley Martin, Sr. (bought from and sold privately to Souren)

* Leslie White (bought privately from Souren; collection sold privately to the Weills, circa 1949)

* Benjamin D. Phillips (bought privately from Weills, October 1949, for $24,000; collection sold privately to Weills, 1968)

* Ryohei Ishikawa (bought privately from Weills, circa 1977), Christie’s Robson Lowe sale, 9/28-29/1993, lot 746, to Siegel Auction Galleries

* Steven Walske (bought privately from Siegel, 1997), Bennett sale, 5/2/2003, lot 1341 (later sold privately to Hagendorf/Columbian; resold privately to William H. Gross)

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Lester G. Brookman, United States Postage Stamps of the 19th Century, Vol. II, p. 182

* Michael Laurence, “The 24¢ 1869 Invert Block,” Chronicle 85, Feb. 1975

* Donna O’Keefe, Linn’s Philatelic Gems II, pp. 151-152

* L. N. Williams, Encyclopaedia of Rare and Famous Stamps, Vol. I, p. 318

* Scott R. Trepel, “The Ishikawa 1869s,” Chronicle 162, May 1994

* Stamp Exhibition, Eden Musée, New York City, March 1889 (Thorne)

* London Philatelic Exhibition 1897, held at the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, Great Britain (Thorne)

* ANPHILEX 1971 “Aristocrats of Philately” (Weill)

* INTERPHIL 1976 “Aristocrats of Philately” (Weill)

* ANPHILEX 1996 “Aristocrats of Philately” (Siegel Auction Galleries)

* Collectors Club of New York “Aristocrats of United States Philately” exhibit, December 2000 (Gross)

* World Stamp Show 2016 Court of Honor (Gross)

CONDITION NOTES

* Very Fine; one stamp has tiny thin speck and small margin scuff

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/89.pdf

E. 750,000-1,000,000
625,000
Back to Top
90°
c
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 90, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, This colorful 1869 Pictorial Issue cover is one of only three known to Japan with the 30¢ Eagle-and-Shield bicolored stamp--in this case an error in the New York foreign-mail office resulted in a longer trip, despite extra postage paid for the faster route via Marseilles, France

DESCRIPTION

30¢ Ultramarine & Carmine (121), perfectly centered, wide margins, rich colors and proof-like impression, used with 12¢ Green (117), tied by segmented cork cancels on folded letter datelined “New York 3rd Decem 1869” from Weston & Wolf with duplicate of November 24 letter, addressed to Charles Thorel & Company in Yokohama, Japan, blurry red New York December 4 datestamp on back, sender’s ship and route directive “p City of Brussels & via Marseilles”--carried on the Inman Line’s City of Brussels, which broke the speed record on this trip, leaving New York on December 4, 1869, and arriving with its mail at Liverpool on December 13--the New York foreign-mail office incorrectly applied a “26” cents credit instead of 32¢ for faster service via Marseilles (which was paid for with 42¢ postage), red “London Paid” transit datestamp (December 13) and black two-line handstamp “INSUFFY.STAMPED/VIA MARSEILLES”, applied in London because of the incorrect credit (despite correct prepayment), red “1d” handstamp for British Colonial rate--carried on Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Co. steamers from Southampton to Alexandria (Egypt), then overland to Suez, and from there to Hong Kong via Galle (Ceylon), “Hong Kong C FE 12 70” transit datestamp on back (61 days, indicating a longer trip), the last leg from Hong Kong to Shanghai was made on another P&O steamer, blue “Yokohama A FE 22 70” receiving datestamp on back

PROVENANCE

* Henry C. Gibson, Sr., Philip H. Ward, Jr., sale, 6/14-15/1944, lot 493

* Ryohei Ishikawa, Sotheby Parke Bernet sale, 7/7/1981, Sale 58, lot 120

* Jonathan W. Rose, Siegel Auction Galleries, 9/27/1997, Sale 794, lot 632, to William H. Gross

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Scott R. Trepel, “More High-Denomination 1869 Covers from the Thorel and Gomez Correspondences,” Chronicle 246, May 2017, fig. 3

CONDITION NOTES

* Extremely Fine

* Gibson sale backstamp

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/90.pdf

E. 50,000-75,000
90,000
Back to Top
91°
c
Sale Number 1188, Lot Number 91, 1869 Pictorial Issue, including the Unique Block of the 24c Invert, A colorful and extremely rare combination of the 10¢ 1869 Pictorial and 3¢ 1868 Grilled stamps on a cover from the American Postal Agency in Shanghai, China, which crossed the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, and the continental United States, to reach its destination in Ireland

DESCRIPTION

10¢ Yellow (116), perfectly centered, bright shade and vivid color, used with pair of 3¢ Red, F. Grill (94), well-centered, few nibbed perfs, tied by three bold strikes of circle of wedges cancel and U.S. Postal Agency in Shanghai “P.O.D. U.S. Con. Genl. Shanghai Sep. 12” (1871) circular datestamp on cover to Dublin, Ireland, magenta “San Francisco Cal. Oct. 17 Paid” transit datestamp, Dublin receiving backstamp (November 7, 1871)--carried on the Pacific Mail Steamship Co. branch line steamer New York, departing Shanghai on September 12, 1871, and arriving in Yokohama days later; from Yokohama it was carried on the PMSS America, departing September 23, and arriving in San Francisco on October 15; the cover was then sent overland by railroad and reached New York for a steamer to England (ship information cannot be reliably determined)

PROVENANCE

* Edgar Kuphal (“A European’s Large Gold Collection of The 1869 Pictorial Issue”), Siegel Auction Galleries, 12/13/1999, Sale 819, lot 2272, to William H. Gross

CENSUS, LITERATURE AND EXHIBITION REFERENCES

* Michael Laurence, United States Ten-Cent 1869 Covers: A Postal Historical Survey, fig. 22-10, p. 283

CONDITION NOTES

* Extremely Fine

VIEW PDF OF HISTORY AND COMMENTARY at https://siegelauctions.com/2018/1188/91.pdf

E. 10,000-15,000
26,000
Back to Top
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