EXTREMELY FINE GEM. THIS IS EASILY THE FINEST 6-CENT 1869 PICTORIAL BEARING THE HIOGO, JAPAN U.S. POST OFFICE CANCEL.
The 6c 1869 Pictorial is rarely found with the Hiogo, Japan U.S. Post Office cancel. 6c paid the interconsular rate, which is far less frequently encountered than the 10c rate to the United States. We have offered only five unduplicated examples of the 6c with a Hiogo cancel since keeping computerized records. All were either off-center, faulty or both. This superb stamp stands far above any other we have encountered.
Ex Zoellner and Rose. With 1991 P.F. certificate
EXTREMELY FINE USE OF THE 10-CENT 1869 PICTORIAL ON A LETTER TO FRANCE, PREPAID FOR THE 10-CENT DIRECT RATE BUT SENT BY BRITISH OPEN MAIL.
The 1857 U.S.-French postal treaty expired on Dec. 31, 1869, making it difficult to fully prepay postage between the two countries, and impossible to fully prepay postage to France with U.S. stamps alone (with the exception of the unannounced Phantom Rate from New York via British mails). This cover was prepaid for the 10c direct rate to France (with French postage due), but was sent by British Open Mail, which required only 4c.
Ex Caspary -- the $210 realization in the 1956 Caspary sale caused Ashbrook to muse about what factors could have driven up the price to such an extraordinary level (Special Service, page 561, photo 277) and "European Connoisseur"
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A BEAUTIFUL USED EXAMPLE OF THE 12-CENT 1869 PICTORIAL, GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E.
With 2010 P.S.E. certificate (Superb 98; SMQ $2,250.00). Only one stamp grades higher
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 15-CENT TYPE I 1869 PICTORIAL ISSUE, GRADED SUPERB 98 BY P.S.E.
In his book on the 1869 Pictorial Issue, Jonathan Rose noted that essays were made for both the Type I and Type II designs prior to the time the stamps were issued. The stamps were fed through the press twice -- first for the vignette and then for the frame. The challenge for the printers was to properly align the vignette when printing the frame. Apparently, the addition of the diamond marker at top center of the Type II design made it easier to accomplish this task. It also made any misalignment less noticeable. Type II stamps appeared within days of the EDU for Type I and are much more common.
With 2003 P.F. and 2009 P.S.E. certificates (Superb 98; SMQ $12,000.00). This is the only Scott 118 at this grade with just two graded higher (both 98J and both more heavily cancelled).
VERY FINE AND CHOICE. A RARE EXAMPLE OF THE 15-CENT TYPE I 1869 PICTORIAL CANCELLED IN ULTRAMARINE.
A Power Search review failed to find another Scott 118 cancelled in ultramarine. This would make an excellent mate to the stamp offered in lot 311, which is the only 15c Type II we have encountered with an ultramarine cancel.
With 2008 P.S.E., 2009 and 2014 P.F. certificates. This cancel color is unlisted.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE 15-CENT TYPE II 1869 PICTORIAL ISSUE WITH WIDE MARGINS, AN UNOBTRUSIVE CANCEL AND FRESH COLOR. EASILY ONE OF THE FINEST WE HAVE EVER ENCOUNTERED.
Ex "Natalee Grace". With 2002 and 2019 P.F. and 2012 P.S.E. certificates -- the 2012 certificate at one time stated "XF 90", but the certificate was replaced with one without the grade, probably because giving this magnificent stamp a 90 grade is insulting