Sale 1248 — The Magnolia Collection of U.S. Mail in China and Japan: Part 1

Sale Date — Thursday, 16 December, 2021

Category — Mail to China

Lot
Symbol
Photo/Description
Cat./Est. Value
Realized
2013
c
Sale 1248, Lot 2013, Mail to China12c Black, Plate 1 (36). Horizontal strip of three, some perfs scissors-separated causing straight edges, used with horizontal pair of 1c Blue, Type II (20), Plate 2, tied by "Washington D.C. Oct. ?" (1858) circular datestamps on cover to Engineer Richard C. Potts on board the U.S.S. Powhatan in Hong Kong, China, "Boston Br. Pkt. Oct. 20" circular datestamp on back, red "Boston 15" dateless credit handstamp also ties strip--carried on Cunarder Canada, departing Boston October 20, 1858, arriving Liverpool October 31--red framed "AACHEN 2/11 FRANCO" transit datestamp (November 2) ties stamps, lightly struck Alexandria transit backstamp, "Hong-Kong 20 DE 1858" receiving backstamp, pencil "1/" one-shilling debit marking, purple manuscript "f31/4" silbergroschen rate, docketed "Rec'd at Whampoa Decr. 26th/58" and "Prussian Closed Mail" at left, cover torn and repaired at top and affecting top flap, stamps unaffected, slightly reduced at right

FINE APPEARANCE. AN EXCEEDINGLY RARE 38-CENT RATE FRANKING FOR PRUSSIAN CLOSED MAIL SERVICE TO HONG KONG. THIS WAS RECEIVED AT WHAMPOA, CHINA, DURING THE SECOND OPIUM WAR, IN WHICH UNITED STATES NAVAL FORCES ASSISTED IN ATTACKING CHINESE FORTIFICATIONS WITHOUT A FORMAL DECLARATION OF WAR.

In August 1855 the U.S.S. Powhatan assisted the H.M.S. Rattler in a successful attack against Chinese pirates off Kowloon. The U.S.-Japan Treaty of Amity and Commerce was signed on the Powhatan on July 29, 1858, about five months before this cover reached Engineer Potts at Whampoa (Huangpo), near Hong Kong.

This cover was received in Hong Kong during the hiatus in the Second Opium War. The Treaties of Tientsin were signed in June 1858, but not fully ratified by the Chinese government. One year later, in June 1859, hostilities resumed with the British naval attack on the Taku Forts.

E. 4,000-5,000
4,000