Sale 1224 — 2020 Rarities of the World
Sale Date — Tuesday-Wednesday, 30 June-1 July, 2020
Category — 1894-98 Bureau Issues
EXTREMELY FINE. A SPECTACULAR AND EXTREMELY RARE COMPLETE SET OF BLOCKS OF THE IMPERFORATE 1895 WATERMARKED BUREAU ISSUE.
In Brookman Volume III, pages 128-129, a complete account of the origin of the 1895 Imperforates is quoted from a column by George B. Sloane. We provide excerpts: "At the time they appeared, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing had, but a short time previously, taken over the stamp printing contract from the American Bank Note Co. and were unfamiliar with and inexperienced in quantity production of postage stamps. Gilbert E. Jones, one of the owners of the New York Times, had rendered the Bureau invaluable technical advice and assistance in the organization of their facilities, and the Bureau desired to reward him in some way for his services. Mr. Jones was well-known collector, interested only in stamps in imperforate pairs, and when the subject was broached he suggested that, while he desired no recompense, if the Bureau could give him an imperforate pair or block of each of the stamps then in current use, for his collection, he would feel more than amply repaid."
Sloane then explains that the Bureau was restricted from presenting him with stamps from stock, but did allow him to buy regular perforated stamps on sale at the post office and exchange them for imperforates. Although the Scott Catalogue at first did not recognize the imperforates as regularly-issued stamps, from 1916 they inserted a statement "All denominations of this issue exist imperforate but they were not regularly issued in that condition".
EXTREMELY FINE MINT NEVER-HINGED PART IMPRINT EXAMPLE OF THE 1895 $2.00 WATERMARKED BUREAU ISSUE. A BEAUTIFUL STAMP AND EXCEEDINGLY DIFFICULT TO FIND IN THIS HIGH GRADE.
With 2019 P.F. certificate (XF 90). By way of comparison, the P.S.E. Population Report for Scott 277 lists only three Mint N.H. in grades of XF 90 or higher (one 90, two 95). We have offered two of those three stamps and neither has a part imprint
EXTREMELY FINE. A BEAUTIFUL AND INCREDIBLY RARE MINT NEVER-HINGED IMPRINT AND PLATE NUMBER STRIP OF THE $2.00 1895 WATERMARKED BUREAU ISSUE.
This issue was printed from only one printing plate -- Plate 84. This is the only Mint N.H. imprint and plate no. strip we have offered since keeping computerized records more than 25 years ago. Lewis Kaufman records only five full plate blocks of this issue and all are hinged (the last we offered realized $160,000 hammer in our 2009 sale of the "MLG" collection). This is a rare opportunity to combine the desirable attributes of a scarce position piece with Mint N.H. gum.
With 2019 P.S.E. certificate. Unpriced in Scott as Mint N.H.. Scott value for three Mint N.H. singles, which does not convey the rarity of this piece
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A STUNNING MINT NEVER-HINGED EXAMPLE OF THE 1898 5-CENT BUREAU ISSUE, GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E.
With 2019 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $4,250.00). Only one grades higher (at 98J) and only five others share this grade