Sale 1289 — 2023 Rarities of the World
Sale Date — Tuesday, 27 June, 2023
Category — 1851-56 Issue
VERY FINE. ONE OF FIVE RECORDED PROOFS OF THE ONE-CENT 1851 ISSUE DIE, OF WHICH TWO ARE IN BLUE (THIS IS THE FINER). THIS DIE WITH THE CANCELLATION DOT IN OVAL WAS PROBABLY USED DURING THE PRODUCTION PHASE OF THE 1875 REPRINT AND DISTRIBUTED CIRCA 1910.
This die impression shows the so-called cancellation dot in the oval at left, which was applied to the die in 1860 and reproduced on all subjects in Plates 11 and 12. It also shows two small dots below "C" of "Cents" and a strong horizontal layout line at upper left, which are not found on Plates 1 through 12, but are found on the 1875 Reprint plate. Neinken opined that this impression and the few others like it were pulled from a die prepared for the 1875 Reprint (see Neinken, page 19).
The only other example of this die proof in Blue has a manuscript "X" across the design. There are three in Black. One was offered in our sale of the Eubanks collection (Sale 1242, lot 1). The others were offered in our Wagshal sale (Sale 994, lot 602) and in our 2015 sale of Essays and Proofs (Sale 1113, lot 2093). On one of the Black proofs there is further evidence of provenance, a pencil note on back "From J. E. Ralph. [signed] J. M. Bartels". J. E. Ralph of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing is known to have distributed die proofs in 1910.
Ex Dr. Chase, Emerson, Finkelburg, Liberman, Wagshal, Merlin and Eubanks. Scott value $5,000.00
EXTREMELY FINE APPEARANCE. POSITION 7R1E--THE SEVENTH STAMP IN THE RIGHT PANE OF PLATE ONE EARLY--IS THE ONLY ONE OF THE 1,000 POSITIONS USED TO PRINT IMPERFORATE ONE-CENT STAMPS THAT SHOWS THE COMPLETE DESIGN (TYPE I).
The 1c 1851 Franklin, a workhorse postage stamp from 1851 through 1861, was printed from 200-subject steel plates numbered 1 through 12 (Plate 6 was never used, and Plate 1 exists in Early and Late states). Only Plates 1 through 4 were used to print stamps that were issued imperforate. The original 1c 1851 die design has an elaborate ornamental border on all four sides. Several factors affected the designs entered on the plates, which in turn produced variations in the printed stamps. Stanley B. Ashbrook developed the system used to classify design types, based on the premise that Type I should be a printed version that comes closest to the original die design. The completeness of the ornamentation at top and bottom is a requirement for Type I. For imperforate stamps, Ashbrook found only one position among the 1,000 subjects that met this requirement--Position 7R1E--which is why Scott 5, a Type I imperforate stamp, is so rare. Type Ib, Scott 5A, has slightly less ornamentation and was also printed from Plate 1 Early (imperforate only).
The census compiled by Jerome S. Wagshal, available at https://siegelauctions.com/census/us/scott/5 , contains at least 98 unduplicated records of Scott 5. There are probably no more than ten examples existing outside of the Wagshal census population. Therefore, the 1c 1851 Type I is the rarest of all United States stamps issued regularly prior to the 1868 Grills.
This stamp was long ago part of an on-cover strip of three of Positions 6-8R1E (Harmer Rooke & Co. sale, 4/28/1965). Sometime after the 1965 Harmer Rooke auction it was removed from the cover and separated from the two Type Ib stamps. It appeared as this single in the 1973 Siegel sale of the Dr. Drew B. Meilstrup collection (Sale 431, lot 29).
Wagshal census no. 5-CAN-009. Ex Dr. Meilstrup and Amon G. Carter (Sale 636, lot 20). With 2011 P.F. certificate
FINE APPEARANCE. A RARE PAIR FROM THE TOP ROW OF PLATE ONE EARLY, CONTAINING TYPE Ib AND TYPE II.
Type Ib was produced only as an imperforate stamp. Six positions on Plate 1 Early furnished stamps qualifying as Type Ib -- Positions 3-6R and 8-9R -- distinguished by the complete design at top and nearly complete design at bottom. When first entered on the plate, these six positions (as well as 7R1E) had the complete design at top and bottom. However, unlike 7R, small portions of the bottoms were ironed out when the entries were made below them.
Only three positions from the top row of the right pane furnish Type II stamps, which are noticeably more complete at top. There are only two possible places that will yield combination pairs -- Positions 2-3R1E and 9-10R1E.
With 2013 P.S.A.G. certificate as a strip of three. Scott value $12,000.00 as a combination pair.
EXTREMELY FINE. A RARE SOUND EXAMPLE OF THE 1851 ONE-CENT TYPE 1a IMPERFORATE ISSUE. ESPECIALLY DESIRABLE WITH THE BOTTOM SHEET MARGIN.
The extremely rare Type Ia, showing the full design at bottom, was furnished only by 18 of the 200 subjects on Plate 4 (the remaining two bottom-row positions were sub-type Ic). Many have the bottom sheet margins trimmed, affecting the design and obscuring the type characteristics. The example offered here, with wide bottom and right interpane margins, is a true condition rarity.
With 1986 and 1991 P.F. certificates.
VERY FINE USED EXAMPLE OF THE ONE-CENT 1851 TYPE Ic FROM THE BOTTOM ROW.
Positions 91R and 96R on Plate 4 come from F Reliefs in the bottom row and have the full plume at bottom left and partly complete plume at right (a sub-type of Type Ia). These two are the most desirable examples of Type Ic. Other Type Ic positions on the plate are less distinct. Neinken states that Position 91R4, offered here, yields the best example of the rare Type Ic.
With 1989 P.F. certificate.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB UNUSED SHEET-MARGIN EXAMPLE OF THE 1851 ONE-CENT TYPE II, GRADED GEM 100 BY P.S.E.
As the gaps between positions visible on this remarkable single demonstrate, the spacing between stamps left very little room for separation. Most examples have margins either just clear or touching, or into the design. The relative paucity of multiples in sound condition also contributes to its scarcity with such large margins.
With 2023 P.S.E. certificate (POG, Gem 100; SMQ $18,000.00 for original gum and $2,750.00 for no gum). Only one unused stamp grades higher. Scott value as original gum.
FRESH AND VERY FINE ORIGINAL-GUM EXAMPLE OF THE 1851 ONE-CENT IMPERFORATE TYPE III, WITH CLEAR AND DISTINCT BREAKS IN THE OUTER LINES AT TOP AND BOTTOM. A VERY DIFFICULT CLASSIC ISSUE TO OBTAIN WITH ORIGINAL GUM AND IN SOUND CONDITION.
Type III is defined by breaks in the outer lines at both top and bottom. Many Type III stamps have breaks that were created or enlarged by plate wear. Since the wear occurred over a period of time, a majority of stamps of this type (both unused and used) have small breaks in at least one line. This is the exception.
Ex Cipolla and Eubanks, and from our 1990 Rarities sale. With 1976 and 2021 P.F. certificates.
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE IMPERFORATE 1851 ONE-CENT TYPE IIIa. A DIFFICULT STAMP TO FIND IN SOUND CONDITION WITH SUCH LARGE MARGINS.
This 9th row position is listed in Neinken as a Type IIIa, and it does have the required break in the top outer line, but the line is much more complete than usually seen on Plate 4 positions other than the Type II’s in the top row.
Ex Neinken, Wagshal and Middendorf. With 2010 and 2020 P.F. certificates
VERY FINE. A RARE ORIGINAL-GUM EXAMPLE OF THE 1851 3-CENT ORANGE BROWN TYPE I -- MUCH RARER IN ORIGINAL-GUM CONDITION THAN THE TYPE II SCOTT 10A.
More than ten years ago, the Scott Catalogue began to differentiate between the 1851 Imperforate 3c types, based on the presence or lack of recut inner lines. The lack of recut inner lines means the stamp is Type I, Scott 10 or 11. The presence of recut inner lines means the stamp is Type II, Scott 10A and 11A. Type I comes from only two plates -- 1E and 1i, while Type II comes from five plates. The Scott values are not drastically different -- with Type I being slightly higher -- but the vast majority of the original gum examples we have sold in the past 30 years were Type II. This sound lightly hinged Type I is very desirable.
With 2002 and 2012 P.F. certificates
VERY FINE. A FIRST-WEEK USE AND THE EARLIEST RECORDED EXAMPLE OF THE 3-CENT 1851 STAMP ON A TRANSATLANTIC COVER. PROBABLY A UNIQUE 1851 ORANGE BROWN FRANKING FOR THE 24-CENT TREATY RATE.
Described in Chronicle 30 (p. 5) as follows: "Aside from having what is thought to be the largest known multiple from plate 1(e), this gorgeous cover almost certainly is the earliest known with [3c 1851] to Europe.". Illustrated in original Simpson book (p. 157). Ex Piller and "Sevenoaks".
VERY FINE APPEARANCE. ONE OF 33 RECORDED EXAMPLES FROM THE "SAMPLE A" SHEET WITH THE HADLEY 11-GAUGE CHICAGO PERFORATIONS.
This stamp is from the top right position of the Chase block of 21 pictured in his book on p. 176. A total of 33 "Sample A" Chicago Perf stamps are recorded, including a block of nine, two blocks of six and a block of four. There are four contiguous stamps from the Chase piece that have not been accounted for and may or may not still exist as a block. The examples from the "Sample A" sheet are the only known unused 3c stamps with Chicago perforations. There are no known unused examples with the gauge 12-1/2 perforations.
Ex Wagshal and Przybyl. With 1975 P.F. certificate
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB SHEET-MARGIN USED EXAMPLE OF THE 5-CENT 1856 ISSUE.
Ex Mayer. With 2007 P.S.E. certificate (XF-Superb 95 Jumbo; SMQ $3,250.00).
VERY FINE AND CHOICE VERTICAL STRIP OF THREE OF THE 5-CENT 1856 ISSUE.
Ex Eubanks. With 1990 and 2021 P.F. certificates
VERY FINE. THIS IS THE ONLY RECORDED USE OF THE IMPERFORATE 5-CENT 1856 ISSUE FROM MOBILE, ALABAMA -- IN FACT, IT IS THE ONLY USE OF ANY 5-CENT 1856-60 STAMP FROM MOBILE.
This was carried on the Cunarder Niagara, departing Boston Dec. 3, 1856 and arriving Liverpool Dec. 15. The French due marking indicates it was treated as carried by an American packet rather than British packet. This is the only recorded use of the 5c 1856 from Mobile. In fact, there are no uses of the 5c perforated stamps (Scott 27-30A) from Mobile either.
Ex Moody and Mayer. Illustrated in Frajola and Mayer book on p. 26.
VERY FINE. THE ONLY RECORDED ON-COVER EXAMPLE OF THE 5-CENT 1856 ISSUE WITH IMPRINT.
The 5c stamp was issued in 1856, five years after the 1c, 3c and 12c values and one year after the 10c were issued. It was typically used to pay the 5c shore-to-ship rate for mail sent overseas and also in multiples for the 10c transcontinental or 15c U.S.-French treaty rates.
The plate used to print the 5c 1856 imperforate and its Type I perforated counterparts has never been fully reconstructed, due to the lack of multiples or significant plating marks. However, 5c stamps with imprints or corner sheet margins can be reliably plated. We record only thirteen copies with part of the imprint, with this the only example we are aware of on cover (the strip of four pictured in the Hill book has been removed from its cover). The famed Mayer collection had imprint singles but none on cover.
VERY FINE. A RARE AND DESIRABLE LARGE DIE PROOF OF THE 10-CENT 1855 ISSUE IN THE ISSUED COLOR.
Neinken notes in his book on the 10c stamp that it is likely that design and production of the 10c 1855 was rushed. The new 10c rate went into effect on April 1, 1855, and the new stamps were not placed into use until May. The die proof shows slips of the engraver's tool, and the overall layout is slightly skewed. Power Search lists only three full-size die proofs in Green -- from our 1999 Finkelburg sale (which was die sunk) and from our 2014 Rarities sale. There are also cut-to-shape die proofs in Green but those are far less desirable.
With 2021 P.F. certificate
EXTREMELY FINE GEM. A SUPERB USED EXAMPLE OF THE IMPERFORATE 1855 10-CENT TYPE IV, GRADED XF-SUPERB 95 BY P.S.E.
With 2005 P.S.E. certificate (XF-Superb 95; SMQ $6,750.00). Only four grade higher (two at 95J and two at 98).
VERY FINE. AN EXTREMELY RARE COVER FROM MULTIPLE PERSPECTIVES, INCLUDING THE USE OF A LARGE BLOCK OF THE 10-CENT 1855 IMPERFORATE, THE COMBINATION OF IMPERFORATE AND PERFORATED ISSUES, AND INDIA AS A DESTINATION WITH THE 1851-56 IMPERFORATE ISSUE.
The large 70c franking on this cover to India is vexing, but an accompanying letter from Richard Winter offers a reasonable explanation. Winter speculates that since a 70c rate to the East Indies (which sometimes included India) via Prussian Closed Mail was published in the 1857 PL&R, that may have been the rate the sender intended to pay. An alternative explanation is that since the three left imperforate stamps were wrapped around the back when the cover was mailed, the postmaster perhaps did not notice them and applied a 10c perforated stamp to make up the deficiency for the 39c rate via Marseilles. When the three stamps on the back were discovered they were pen cancelled. In any event the cover was not carried by Prussian Closed Mail, but rather by Cunard steamer and British Mail via Marseilles. It was also not overweight based on the 34c New York credit (New York retained only 5c). As a result this cover is overpaid by a substantial 31c. All of these factors make this a remarkable and likely unique use.
FINE APPEARANCE. AN EXTREMELY RARE 1851-55 ISSUE COVER TO THE ISLAND OF CELEBES.
Ex Potter, "Sevenoaks", Giamporcaro, Hackmey and Gross. From the Magnolia collection. With 1999 P.F. certificate.
FINE APPEARANCE. ONE OF FOUR RECORDED EXAMPLES OF THE 12-CENT 1851 ISSUE WITH THE DESIGN PRINTED ON BOTH SIDES. THIS IS ALSO ONE OF ONLY TWO SHOWING A CLEAR POSITIVE PORTRAIT OF THE WASHINGTON VIGNETTE ON THE REVERSE. ONE OF THE GREAT RARITIES OF THE 1851 ISSUE.
Engraved stamps printed on both sides usually have a poor impression on one side and a second, complete impression on the other. They probably occurred when a sheet was printed without proper moistening, which prevented the paper from picking up the ink in the recessed lines of the engraved plate. The variety is known on the three denominations issued in 1851--1c, 3c and 12c--but not on the imperforate stamps issued in 1855 (10c) and 1856 (5c).
Reports have varied as to how many copies of the 12c 1851 printed on both sides are known. Brookman reported that he knew of four. We have only been able to locate three complete stamps, plus a bisected stamp, which cannot be verified as a bisect since it is not on a cover. Therefore our census records four, or more accurately three and a half examples of this rarity. It is not known unused. Our census of Scott 17c can be found at: https://siegelauctions.com/census/us/scott/17c . This stamp is one of two, along with census no. CAN-01, which show a clear portion of Washington's face on the reverse. The third complete stamp, census no. CAN-03 has a faint Washington portrait. The bisect, census no. CAN-04, does not include Washington's face.
Siegel census no. 17c-CAN-02. Ex Worthington, Stephen D. Brown, Ishikawa and Eubanks, and from our 1971 Rarities sale. With clear 1993 P.F. certificate. Scott value $35,000.00