EXTREMELY FINE GEM WITH THE EXALTED P.S.E. GRADE OF XF-SUPERB 95. THIS IS EASILY ONE OF THE FINEST ORIGINAL-GUM EXAMPLES OF THE 90-CENT 1869 PICTORIAL ISSUE IN EXISTENCE. A MAGNIFICENT STAMP IN EVERY RESPECT.
The 90c 1869 Pictorial is widely admired for its beautiful engraving and dignified portrait of Abraham Lincoln. However, collectors have been frustrated in their efforts to acquire choice examples of this issue. Used 90c stamps are typically heavily cancelled, because the high denomination was cause for postal clerks to thoroughly obliterate any chance for re-use. Naturally, the significant monetary value of 90c in 1869 limited the number of unused stamps that would be saved for future collectors. Therefore, the collector ideals of "well-centered with original gum" and "lightly cancelled" are seldom obtainable in the available supply of 90c 1869's. The stamp offered here, with lightly hinged original gum and choice centering, probably ranks among the top 1% of surviving 90c 1869's in unused state.
Ex Scarsdale. 1997 P.F. certificate no longer accompanies. With 2012 P.S.E. certificate (OGh, XF-Superb 95; SMQ $67,000.00). This is the highest grade awarded to date and only one other shares this grade.