VERY FINE. THE ONLY RECORDED EXAMPLE OF BROWNE & CO.'S 3-CENT SPECIAL RATE PREPAID BY STAMPS. ONLY ONE OTHER EXAMPLE OF THIS RATE IS RECORDED.
Browne & Co.'s City Post was established in Cincinnati in early 1852, with daily advertisements appearing in the Cincinnati Commercial from April 15 through May 17, 1852 (Perry, Pat Paragraphs reprint, p. 390). In the advertisement, it was stated that "no money or valuable whatever will be transmitted unless booked at the Central Office and paid for in proportion to the risk incurred." (our italics for emphasis). This form of registration for valuable letters provides one basis for the 3c rate shown on the cover offered here. Another basis is the stampless Valentine cover that bears a Browne & Co. "3 CENTS" circular rate marking, which establishes beyond question that a 3c rate existed.
The "City Post" circle that appears on Browne & Co. covers later turns up on mail handled by the official carrier, C. C. Williams. The transfer of this device from Browne & Co. to Williams in late 1854 (see Sale 817, lot 276), as well as the similarity between advertising copy and the stamp designs, creates a logical link between the two posts, one private and the other official.
Ex Knapp, Caspary, Middendorf and Golden. Signed Sloane.
VERY FINE. PROBABLY NO MORE THAN A HALF-DOZEN COVERS EXIST WITH THE HANDSTAMPED OVAL OF BUSH'S BROOKLYN CITY EXPRESS. ONLY TWO OF THE COVERS KNOWN TO US ARE VALENTINES.
See our Golden Sale 817, lot 854 for details of the post. This cover, ex Golden, and the one offered in the following lot are the only Valentines with Bush's handstamp that we record.
VERY FINE. ONE OF TWO RECORDED VALENTINES WITH THE HANDSTAMPED OVAL OF BUSH'S BROOKLYN CITY EXPRESS.
See our Golden Sale 817, lot 854 for details of the post. This cover, ex Golden, and the one offered in the previous lot are the only Valentines with Bush's handstamp that we record.
FRESH AND VERY FINE. ONLY SIX EXAMPLES OF THE CITY EXPRESS POST STAMP ON PINK PAPER ARE RECORDED, INCLUDING FIVE COVERS (NONE CANCELLED).
Robson Lowe attributed the City Express Post to Calvin Tyson and claimed that D. O. Blood bought the business on November 26, 1846. Subsequent research by Steven M. Roth has failed to find the source documentation to substantiate (or refute) Lowe's statements. In fact, little is known about this post, except that it existed from 1844 to 1846 and issued stamps in 1846; this much is known from the surviving covers with handstamped markings and adhesives.
The printed circular announces the opening of a dry goods store in Philadelphia and invites the addressee in New Jersey to "an early call when you next visit the City." The notice is dated January 5, but it was not postmarked until January 8, a three-day delay. The wording makes it clear that the circulars were intended for recipients outside of Philadelphia, and the bulk of them were probably brought to the post office for mailing on January 5 or the day after. This one was probably addressed and sent after the initial mailing, and the City Express Post was used to bring it to the post office. The three-day lapse between the notice date and day of mailing actually lends credence to the use of a local-post stamp for delivery of a circular to the post office, which is a very uncommon usage.
See Siegel Sale 925, lot 1482 for a census of the six recorded stamps. Ex Souren, Gibson, Middendorf and Golden. With 2000 P.F. certificate as described above. Scott value for unused stamp is $10,000.00, for on-cover is $20,000.00
VERY FINE APPEARANCE. THE UNIQUE PHILADELPHIA CITY EXPRESS POST RED ON YELLOW STAMP. ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT LOCAL-POST COVERS IN EXISTENCE AND ONE OF THE WORLD'S RAREST STAMPS.
Although some of the letter is readable on the inside of this cover, there is no date, nor is the Philadelphia datestamp clear enough to determine the month of mailing. Steven M. Roth reported the Type C-62 datestamp as used in 1846-47, which falls into the City Express Post period. As noted in the description for lot 972 in our Golden sale (Sale 817), there are six recorded examples of the Dove stamp in Black on Pink. This Dove stamp in Red on Yellow is unique. It was purchased in the 1957 Caspary sale by Elliott Perry for $2,100 and later sold to Josiah K. Lilly through the Weills of New Orleans (their handstamp is on back). At the Lilly sale held by our firm in 1967, the cover sold for $1,900. It was acquired by Ambassador J. William Middendorf II and sold on his behalf at Christie's Robson Lowe in 1991 for $15,400 (including premium) to David Golden.
Ex Caspary, Perry, Lilly, Middendorf and Golden. With 2002 P.F. certificate not mentioning any stamp faults and stating "It is a genuine usage". Scott value $30,000.00
EXTREMELY FINE. ONE OF SIX RECORDED EXAMPLES OF COOK'S DISPATCH STAMP, OF WHICH ONLY THREE ARE KNOWN USED ON COVER. A MAJOR LOCAL POST RARITY.
Cook's Dispatch was operated by Isaac Cook in Baltimore very briefly in 1853. In his CCP series on Baltimore (Vol. 50, No. 4), Denwood N. Kelly illustrated the only known contemporary reference to Cook's Dispatch, a notice from the 1853 Matchett's Baltimore Director. Kelly speculated that the proprietor was not the Rev. Isaac Cook listed in city directories, but probably was a son or relative who shared the same name. The Kelly article noted three covers and "one or two stamps". Steven M. Roth's Baltimore census (Chronicle, Feb. 1997) listed three covers (no off-cover stamps). Our records contain six examples of 51L1, including the three covers. Of those, only this cover is addressed within the city limits of Baltimore. It is also the finest of the recorded stamps, with large margins and in sound condition.
Illustrated in Kelly's CCP series. Ex Ferrary, Mason, Souren, Lilly and Golden. Pencil note on inside of backflap "Cook's Dispatch, Guaranteed Genuine, GWM"
VERY FINE. ONE OF SIX RECORDED EXAMPLES OF THE COOK'S DISPATCH 51L1 STAMP.
Only six confirmed copies of the Cook's Dispatch stamp are known, including three on covers. This cover is listed in the Kelly and Roth surveys, but the stamp did not originate.
Illustrated in Kelly CCP series (Vol. 50, No. 4). Ex Needham, Middendorf and Golden. With 1999 P.F. certificate
VERY FINE. AN EARLY AND VERY RARE USE OF CUMMINGS' "LETTER & HEART" STAMP.
Alfred H. Cummings operated Cummings' City Post as early as December 1845 (earliest reported cover) through 1847. Cummings and Robert Wright joined to take over the City Despatch Post Office from Abraham Mead by March 1847.
Ex Golden. Signed Sloane.
EXTREMELY FINE EXAMPLE OF THE CUMMINGS' CITY POST 2-CENT OVAL STAMP, 55L7, OF WHICH ONLY FIVE ARE KNOWN.
Our records contain five examples of 55L7: 1) unused, slight crease and thin spots, ex Richardson, Golden and Kuphal (Sale 925, lot 1498); 2) unused, crease, thins, ex Boker and Golden (Sale 817, lot 1014); 3) repaired, affixed to a cover, ex Middendorf; 4) unused, right sheet margin, horizontal crease, ex Burrus and Hall (Sale 830, lot 600); and 5) faint pre-use crease, affixed to Nov. 1846 folded notice to Rev. D. Terry with locomotive handstamp struck twice, ex Chapman, Caspary, Lilly, Richardson and Golden, the example offered here.
Ex Chapman, Caspary, Lilly, Richardson and Golden. With 1980 and 2001 P.F. certificates, the latter declining opinion on whether the stamp originated (and also not mentioning a pre-use crease). Scott value $8,250.00 as off-cover stamp
EXTREMELY FINE -- AS FRESH AND CHOICE AS ONE COULD HOPE FOR. ONLY FOUR STAMPED COVERS ARE RECORDED WITH THE DAVIS'S PENNY POST STAMP -- OF WHICH TWO ARE VALENTINES FROM DAVIS'S BRIEF PERIOD OF EXISTENCE IN 1856.
Our records of 14 Davis's Penny Post stamps contain four genuine covers: 1) Ty. F, tied by red handstamp on Fountain Hotel corner card cover to Western Hotel, Baltimore, ex Hollowbush, Malcolm, Golden, "D.K." and Geisler (Sale 965, lot 1170); 2) Ty. F, with bottom right corner sheet margins, tied by red handstamp on back of cover to Miss Louise Senss (?), Baltimore, ex Caspary and Boker; 3) Ty. A, with top left sheet corner margins, uncancelled on small Valentine cover to Miss Caroline Lamden, ex Hollowbush and Golden, the cover offered here; and 4) Type unknown, tied by red handstamp, ex Brown (5c 1847 stamp added to cover at the time -- possibly removed now). In addition to the genuine covers, there are other covers to which genuine Davis stamps have been added (all predate the post's existence). The cover census by Steven M. Roth (Chronicle 173) agrees with our data.
Ex Hollowbush and Golden
VERY FINE. THE SECOND LARGEST OF THE THREE LARGE MULTIPLES OF THE EAGLE CITY POST STAMP. A REMARKABLE STRIP, CONTAINING TWO TETE-BECHE PAIRS.
The Eagle City Post sheets comprised two types, arranged in a vertical pair that was repeated throughout the sheet: Type A with 39 points around the border; and Type B with 46 points. The make-up of this strip, including the part stamps at sides, is B-A-A-[A-B]-[A-B]-B-A (brackets around tete-beche pairs). Both types have the misspelling "Chesnut". The earliest 61L2 cover is dated Oct. 1, 1846, with the stamp tied by pen and a small red "Paid" handstamp, signed Perry (Robson Lowe sale, Mar. 1, 1973, lot 1766).
Ex Middendorf and Golden.