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United States Postal History continued...

Western Express Covers continued...
Lot Symbol Lot Description CV or Estimate
101 image

Jones & Russell's Pike's Peak Express Co. Denver City Sep 29 1859 (Thomas JOR-100), excellent strike of express handstamp at upper right of illustrated Woolworths Book Store, Omaha, Nebraska advertising cover depicting the counties of Nebraska Territory, addressed to Washington, New York and franked with 1851 3c Dull red type II (Scott 11A) tied by "Leavenworth City K.T." town marking, Very Fine and choice, the Thomas census records this cover as one of nine covers sent eastbound with these markings, but incorrectly lists the stamp as a 3c 1857

In early 1859 John S. Jones and William H. Russell began their express service to Pike's Peak, Colorado. In May of that same year they purchased the contract for mail transportation from Missouri to Salt Lake City, for which they charged 25c per letter. The firm was not profitable and unable to cover their expenses, and by February of 1860 the route was served by the Central Overland California & Pike's Peak Express (although they continued to use Jones and Russell's markings for several months).

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Get Market Data for [United States 11A]

200

SOLD for $12,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:23 PM
102 image

Prindle's Express From Yreka to Scott & Klamath Rivers (Thomas PRI-100), excellent strike of express handstamp at lower left of 1862 cover with well struck "Yreka Cal Jan 7" cds on envelope addressed to France, red "New York Paid 6 Mar. 1" credit cds, red French transit cds and boxed "PD," ms. "Paid 15," French transit and arrival backstamps, a trivial bit of edge wear as expected, Very Fine and incredibly rare; 1994 Philatelic Foundation certificaternProvenance: Blake M. Myers (R.A. Siegel Sale 882, 2004)

One of six covers for this express company recorded by Thomas, but the only one with a destination outside of the Western United States and certainly the only one to a foreign destination. Charles W. Prindle operated from the Scott and Klamath River mines to Yreka, California, where he connected with Wells, Fargo & Co. This cover entered the US mails at Yreka, where 15c cash paid the rest of the journey to France. As a Transatlantic cover carried from the mines by a small and short-lived company, this cover is a true gem of Western postal history of the utmost rarity and desirability.

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1,000

SOLD for $3,500.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:25 PM
103 image

W.L. Pritchard, Fast Freight Line, Elko to White Pine (Thomas PRT-501), boxed printed frank on 3c Pink on white entire (Scott U58) with printed "Paid Wells, Fargo & Co." frank running vertically at left along with manuscript "W. L. Pritchard," addressed to San Francisco and without any additional markings, entire lightly cleaned and with small sealed cover tears at the top, Very Fine appearance, one of only two covers with this frank recorded by Thomas

Provenance: Marc Haas (Private Transaction)

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100

SOLD for $450.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:26 PM
104 imagePaid Swift & Co. Express (Thomas SWI-001), fancy black shield printed express frank on 3c Red on white Nesbitt entire (Scott U9) addressed to San Francisco, entire with some toning (mostly on the edges) and missing backflap, Fine, Thomas records only six examples of this frank used in this manner, all used to San Francisco (Image 1) (Image 2)

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100

SOLD for $100.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:26 PM
105 image

Publishers’ Paid Stamp W.F. & Co’s Express (Scott 143LP10) blue on white newspaper stamp, tied by oval greenish blue "Wells, Fargo & Co's Express San Diego Cal" handstamp on locally addressed wrapper, the wrapper with horizontal crease at the bottom and some abrasions and tears on the reverse (not uncommon for a wrapper), overall Very Fine (Scott $1,750 for usage on cover or wrapper)

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300

SOLD for $575.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:27 PM
106 imagePaid Wells, Fargo & Co. Over Our California and Coast Routes (Thomas WFE-030a), printed frank at left reading from bottom to top on 3c Green on white entire (U82) with all over M. Wertheimer & Bro. printed corner card in buff, lightly struck oval blue Wells, Fargo San Francisco express handstamp, addressed to San Jose, cleanly opened at left, Very Fine (Image 1) (Image 2)

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100

SOLD for $210.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:28 PM
107 imagePaid Wells, Fargo & Co. Over Our California and Coast Routes (GÇ£AGÇ¥ of GÇ£PaidGÇ¥ connected at the bottom), printed frank on 3c Pink on white entire (Scott U58) uprated with 1869 3c Ultramarine (Scott 114), originated in British Columbia and is franked with British Columbia 1869 5c on 3p Bright red perf 14 (Scott 9; tied by blue -½35-+ oval grid of Victoria) to pay for the exit postage, blue straightline -½For Great Britain and Ireland-+ hand stamp at left, directed -½per California-+ indicating Victoria to San Francisco routing, from there it went out of the mails via Union Pacific Railroad to NY City where it was posted to London where it received a faint London "Paid" arrival cancel and an ms. received notation, entire with a couple of light vertical bends and missing portion of backflap, tiny piece out at top right just into indicia, Fine use, pictured on page 155 of Gerald E. Wellburn's The Stamps & Postal History of Vancouver Island & British Columbia (Image 1) (Image 2)

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500

SOLD for $4,500.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:29 PM
108 image

Zack's Express Paid (Thomas ZAC-002), wonderful strike of the blue illustrated frank with messenger on skis at upper left of front mounted on an unused 3c Pink on buff entire (Scott U59), addressed to "Mr. Kleckner, Port Wine" (California.), front was opened irregularly at right into the indicia, Extremely Fine marking, Thomas census records three examples of this frank all on covers to the same address, pictured in Jesse L. Coburn's Letters of Gold (page 228)

Provenance: Edwards Collection (Christie's Robson Lowe, 1991)

An article by Floyd Risvold and James Blaine in the February 2007 Chronicle (Vol. 59, No.1) expertly details the history of Granville Zachariah's "snow-shoe express," which was first advertised on the last day of 1864. Regarding the design of this cover, they explain that "the central design for the frank, illustrating a mail carrier on skis, is apparently derived from a picture of John A. 'Snowshoe' Thompson that appeared in Hutchings' California Magazine in 1857." They speculate that this particular frank was prepared for the winter of 1865-66.

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Get Market Data for [United States Collection]

250

SOLD for $2,800.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:32 PM
109 image

Pony Express Apr. 3 San Francisco “Running Pony,” handstamp cancels 10c Green on white paste-up entire (Scott U17) with printed "Paid. Central Overland Pony Express Company" frank and dark blue "Saint Joseph Mo Apr 13 1860" postmark, reverse with large oval "The Central Overland California & Pike's Peak Express Company Apr 13 St. Joseph, MO." handstamp and addressed to "Hon. Milton S. Latham, U. S. Senate, Washington," cover with minor toning but in otherwise good condition for a paste-up, Fine, listed as E2 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske census

Provenance: Hall Collection (R.A. Siegel Sale 830, 2000)

Thurston Twigg-Smith (R.A. Siegel Sale 979, 2009)

This cover was carried on the first eastbound trip of the Pony Express and is the finer of the two known covers carried on this first day of eastbound service (one cover is known from the first day of westbound service). The service, which lasted only a short time but has remained ingrained in the imagination of every subsequent generation of Americans, promised to deliver mail from California to St. Joseph, Missouri in less than ten days, greatly expediting communication in the days before the transcontinental railroad. Service simultaneously began in both San Francisco and St. Joseph on April 3, 1860. The April 4 edition of the Daily Alta California carried the following description of the momentous event:

"The first 'Pony Express' started yesterday afternoon, from the office of the Alta Telegraph Company, on Montgomery street. The saddle bags were duly lettered 'Overland Pony Express,' and the horse, (a wiry little animal), was dressed with miniature flags. He proceeded just before four o'clock, to the Sacramento boat, and was loudly cheered by the crowd as he started. We had forgotten to say that the rider's name was James Randall--an old hand at this business--and evidently quite at home as a rider, though he did get up on the wrong side of his excitement. The express matter amounted to eighty-five letters, which at $5 per letter gave a total receipt of $425. In nine days the news by this express is expected to be in New York."

Milton Latham (1827-1882) was an American politician, who served as the sixth Governor of California and as a U.S. Representative and U.S. Senator. Latham holds the distinction of having the shortest governorship in California history, lasting for five days from January 9 to 14, 1860. During his inaugural speech as governor, he proposed increasing U.S. Mail links from the Eastern United States to California to help facilitate commerce and personal links.

Only two letters (from the 85 reportedly carried on the first eastbound trip of the Pony Express) are known to survive today. The other, addressed to A.A. Low & Brothers in New York City, does not have as strong a strike of the April 3 "Running Pony" in black as the cover offered here, and we are confident in calling this the finer of the two. In terms of American history, it is difficult to imagine a more significant cover than one carried on the first trip of the Pony Express. Although the majority of Americans alive in 1860 never used the service (nor could they have afforded to had they desired), the legend and legacy of the Pony Express have grown so much over the years that nowadays simply the words "Pony Express" are synonymous with the mythology of the Wild West. This is one of the rare covers that transcends mere philatelic significance; it is the story of America manifesting itself in a humble sheet of paper.

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Get Market Data for [United States Pony Express]

100,000

SOLD for $250,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:36 PM
110 image

"The Central Overland California & Pike's Peak Express Company May 18 San Francisco, Cal.," dark blue oval handstamp and blue "Saint Joseph Mo. Jun 2 1860" town marking cancel 10c Green on buff entire (Scott U18) addressed to Boston Mass., ms "Pony Express" at top left and black "Pony Express, St. Joseph Jun 1" oval handstamp with "Running Pony"at bottom left, bold well-struck markings on a Very Fine cover, listed as E5 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske censusrnThe First Rate Period (April 3 to August 14, 1860) was the most expensive for the Pony Express, with letters being charged the rate of $5.00 per half-ounce (equivalent to over $150 in 2019). Relatively few covers survive from these earliest trips; according to the FKW census there are only seven covers from the First Rate Period with the SF-COCPP marking in blue. This is the earliest known usage of this particular marking, along with two other covers carried on the same May 18 trip (E5-E7). The black St. Joseph Running Pony (SJ-RP) is only known on five eastbound covers during the First Rate Period (here used as an arrival stamp). The 1860 Boston Directory lists Edward F. Wood as a shoe manufacturer working at 62 Pearl Street and living in Roxbury.

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Get Market Data for [United States Pony Express]

1,000

SOLD for $70,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:38 PM
111 image

"Pony Express Dec 26 San Francisco," Blue "Running Pony," handstamp cancels 1859 10c Green type V (Scott 35) on cover addressed to "Mr. Churchill Crittenden, Madison Indiana," green double circle "Saint Joseph Mo Jan 12" town marking at top center and matching "Pony Express, The Central Overland California & Pike's Peak Express Company Jan 10 St. Joseph, Mo." backstamp, Very Fine and choice, a showpiece cover; 1991 Philatelic Foundation certificate, listed as E49 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske census

The Second Rate Period (August 15, 1860 to April 13, 1861) reduced the rates for letters weighing between one-quarter and one-half ounce to $2.50. Only 7 eastbound covers are recorded in the FKW census with a green SJ-COCPP/PE handstamp, all on the reverse and all from a one-month span between December 19, 1860 and January 20, 1860. 13 covers, all from the early months of 1861, have this style of St. Joseph cancellation in green.

Churchill Jones Crittenden, son of Alexander P. Crittenden (famously murdered by his mistress Laura Fair in 1870), was born in May of 1840. At the time this cover was sent by his father, Churchill was attending Hobart College in Madison, Indiana. Two years later Churchill and his brother James Love would go against his father's wishes and enlist in the Confederate Army. The scenario was straight out of the words of Abraham Lincoln: "A house divided against itself cannot stand." In October of 1864 Churchill Crittenden was captured by Union troops and executed by firing squad.

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Get Market Data for [United States Pony Express]

2,000

SOLD for $55,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:40 PM
112 image

"Pony Express Sacramento Feb 14," blue oval handstamps at top left and at bottom left of 10c Green on buff entire (Scott U16) cancelled with blue double circle Saint Joseph town marking, addressed to William N. Sage in Rochester NY, manuscript "By Pony Express" at top left and lightly written pencil "Paid $2.50" to the left of the indicia, entire slightly soiled and with a few trivial edge flaws, Fine overall, listed as E57 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske censusrnThe FKW census only records 20 covers with this handstamp (SAC-PE), all on eastbound mail and all but one in blue. It was used on mail originating in Sacramento or at Wells, Fargo & Co. offices other than San Francisco. This is the second-earliest recorded use of this handstamp in blue and the third-earliest use overall.rnWilliam Nathan Sage (1819-1890) lived in Rochester for nearly his entire life. A graduate of Brown University, he entered the book publishing industry with his brother Nelson Sage. Over the years he variously served as Monroe County Clerk and secretary and treasurer of the Board of Trustees of the University of Rochester, in addition to organizing the Sage Deposit Company and founding the Monroe County Savings Bank. In his obituary he was described as "one of Rochester's foremost citizens."

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Get Market Data for [United States Pony Express]

1,000

SOLD for $4,250.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:41 PM
113 image

Wells, Fargo & Co. Pony Express, 143L1, 1861 $2.00 Red, tied by blue double oval Wells, Fargo Marysville Jun 20 handstamp over red Wells, Fargo printed frank on 10c Green on white entire (Scott U17) addressed to Foxcroft Me., additional Wells, Fargo printed frank over green Freeman & Co's frank, cover with blue "Pony Express Sacramento Jun 23" transit mark and green "St. Joseph Mo. Jul 4" town marking, large double circle blue "Wells, Fargo & Co. Sacramento Jun 25" backstamp, stamp just clear to ample margins, envelope neatly opened at right, Very Fine, listed as E104 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske census (Scott $12,500 for proper use on U17)

Provenance: William L. Moody (H.R. Harmer Sale 621, 1950)

The Third Rate Period (April 17, 1861 to June 29, 1861) was the first time Wells, Fargo & Co. was involved with the Pony Express. Reduced rates of $2 for a half-ounce were in place for only two and a half months for eastbound mail before further reduction by the US government. Adhesive stamps, printed in San Francisco by Britton & Co., were used for the first time during this period. Also for the first time, mail could be deposited at any Wells, Fargo & Co. office in California for conveyance via Pony Express. This is one of only three covers in the FKW census to have originated in Marysville.

Around late-1859, Wells, Fargo & Co. purchased the remains of Freeman & Co.'s Express. A number of unused franked 10c envelopes were later overprinted by Wells, Fargo & Co. for their own use. The FKW census records only eight such covers, and of these eight only four covers bear $2 Red Ponies used during the Third Rate Period (E97, E104, E106, E107). Foxcroft, Maine, where this cover was sent, was initially conveyed to Bowdoin College in 1796 when the region was still a part of Massachusetts. It was incorporated in 1812; by 1859 the township had a population of just 1,045.

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Get Market Data for [United States 143L1]

3,000

SOLD for $21,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:42 PM
114 image

Wells, Fargo & Co. Pony Express, 143L3, 1861 $1.00 Red, tied by blue double oval "Pony Express Sacramento Sep 1" handstamp over red Wells, Fargo printed frank on 10c Green on buff entire (Scott U33) addressed to "Robert E Dietz" in New York City, "St. Joseph Mo. Sep 14" town marking cancels the entire, stamp ample to wide margins, choice Very Fine; 1959 Philatelic Foundation certificate, listed as E153 in the Frajola-Kramer-Walske census (Scott $12,500 for proper use on U33)

The Fourth Rate Period (July 1 to October 26, 1861) saw the United States government further reduce the Pony Express rate to $1 per half-ounce. To meet the new rates, stamps were printed in red ($1.00), green ($2.00), and black ($4.00). Pony Express service came to an end almost immediately after the completion of the transcontinental telegraph, which all but elimiated any need for the company. In just over 570 days the Pony Express had carried an estimated 35,000 pieces of mail, but its cultural importance is much greater than even the sum of all of those letters.

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Get Market Data for [United States 143L3]

3,000

SOLD for $15,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:43 PM
115 image

Wells, Fargo & Co. Virginia City Pony Express, 143L8, 1862-64 “25 cts ¼ Oz” Blue, tied by light strike of blue oval "Wells, Fargo & Co. Express Aurora" handstamp on 3c Pink on buff entire (Scott U35) which is cancelled with an additional strike of the Aurora marking, printed Wells, Fargo & Co. frank at top center, addressed to Mrs. Clara C. Crittenden, San Francisco, stamp clear to wide margins including portion of adjacent stamp to the right, Very Fine and choice; 1981 Philatelic Foundation certificate (Scott for franking on a U35 is $4,500)

Following the termination of the transcontinental Pony Express in October of 1861, Wells, Fargo & Co. set up the similarly-named Virginia City Pony Express in August 1862. A limited service operating only between Virginia City, Nevada Territory and San Francisco, the high-speed pony riders helped to cut transit time nearly in half. According to Richard Frajola, "Mail was carried by a pony rider from Virginia City to Placerville where it was put on a train for Sacramento. At Sacramento the mail was placed on a steamboat for conveyance down the Sacramento River and across San Francisco Bay to San Francisco." The initial rate of 10c per half-ounce was served by a 10c brown stamp. When rates were raised to 25c per half-ounce in 1863 a blue stamp meeting that rate was then issued; the following year a 25c red stamp replaced the blue.

This cover is a part of the exceptionally important Crittenden correspondence between Alexander Parker Crittenden and his wife Clara Churchill Jones. Richard Frajola first offered 30 covers from the Crittenden corresponsence, received intact, in October 1981 (Frajola Sale 2). His catalogue, along with an article by Thomas J. Alexander in the Chronicle (Vol. 33, No. 3), provide everything one could possibly want to know about this wonderful correspondence, which Frajola calls "one of the finest correspondences I have ever handled in terms of both historical content and postal history interest." For a non-philatelic telling of A.P. Crittenden's murder at the hands of his mistress and the sensationalized trial that followed, we recommend Kenneth Lamott's Who Killed Mr. Crittenden?: Being a True Account of the Notorious Murder That Stunned San Francisco.

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Get Market Data for [United States 143L8]

1,000

SOLD for $5,750.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:45 PM
116 image

Wells, Fargo & Co. Virginia City Pony Express, 143L8, 1862-64 "25 cts ¼ Oz” Blue, tied by well struck blue "Wells, Fargo & Co. Express Virginia City N.T." handstamp on 3c Pink entire (Scott U34) with matching strike of Wells, Fargo & Co. handstamp, addressed to "Thos. P Madden" in San Francisco, ms. docketing on back indicates item received "6 July 63," stamp margins to just cutting, entire opened at right and some trivial corner bends, Very Fine and attractive; 1965 Philatelic Foundation certificate (Scott $4,750 for franking on a U34)

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Get Market Data for [United States 143L8]

1,500

SOLD for $3,250.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:46 PM
117 image

Wells, Fargo & Co. Virginia City Pony Express, 143L9, 1862-64 “25 cts ¼ Oz” Red, tied by lightly struck blue "Wells, Fargo & Co. Express Silver City Utah" handstamp on 3c Pink on buff entire (Scott U35) with matching strike of Wells, Fargo handstamp, address to D.D. Shattuck, San Francisco, stamp clear to ample margins, right side of the entire including a small portion of the indicia has been replaced to cover irregular opening at right, Very Fine appearance, usage from Silver City Utah is extremely scarce as almost all known examples of this stamp on cover are from Virginia City (Scott for franking on a U35 is $8,000)

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Get Market Data for [United States 143L9]

2,000

SOLD for $2,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:47 PM
Connecticut Postal History
Lot Symbol Lot Description CV or Estimate
118 image

Elephant (Rohloff A-3), superb bold strike ties 1861 3c Rose (Scott 65) on cover addressed to the Saugatuck Manufacturing Co., matching double circle Waterbury Con Apr 20 '66 town marking to the left of the fancy cancel, Very Fine and choice in every respect, an exceptional example of a highly desirable fancy pictorial cancel; signed "OK GE Jackson" on back, Rohloff rarity RRRR (not more than 5 copies known) with the unpublished Crowe census recording just two examples of this spectacular fancy cancel; illustrated in Paul C. Rohloff's The Waterbury Cancellations 1865-1890 (page 15, figure 3)

Provenance: Paul C. Rohloff (Private Transaction)

John R. Boker, Jr. (Private Transaction)

Gordon Eubanks (Private Transaction)

Paul C. Rohloff identified three different elephant cancellations used by Postmaster John W. Hill, the latter two of which (A-2 and A-3) were used in mid-April, 1866. Contemporaneous newspaper accounts show that a circus performed in nearby Hartford around this same time, and presumably it was the circus's presence in Connecticut that inspired Hill's delightful design.

(Image 1)

Get Market Data for [United States 65]

15,000

SOLD for $50,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:57 PM
119 image

Running Chicken (Rohloff A-11), excellent strike ties 1869 3c Ultramarine (Scott 114) on 1870 cover addressed to Henry S. Chase, Washington Conn., matching "Waterbury Ct Feb 21" town marking (manuscript year date) to the left of cancel, cover slightly reduced at left, still Very Fine; Rohloff rarity "RRRR" (not more than 5 copies known) with five examples of this fancy pictorial cancel recorded on cover (two of which have faulty stamps), this being one of the two nicer covers bearing a single 3c 1869 stamp; Philatelic Foundation certificate number 232,747 (not included)

Provenance: Henry Houser (Christie's Robson Lowe, 1990)

Dr. John Robertson (Private Transaction, 1994)

The "Running Chicken" is arguably the most famous of all of Postmaster John W. Hill's Waterbury fancy cancellations, owing in large part to the existence of a cover with three of the 1869 1c stamp and three strikes of the "chicken." There has been well-documented speculation over the years that Hill carved not a chicken, but rather a turkey running away from the Thanksgiving table (due to the cancellation's first appearance at the end of November). Regardless of the bird's true identity, this marvelous and whimsical design is perhaps the greatest embodiment of the spirit of creativity that drove 19th Century postmasters to create fancy cancellations. The "Running Chicken" is only known used between November 29, 1869 and February 21, 1870, making this cover the latest known use.

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7,500

SOLD for $50,000.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:58 PM
120 imageArrowheads and Diamonds (Rohloff B-19), choice strike ties 1873 3c Green (Scott 158) on cover addressed to Thomaston, Connecticut, matching "Waterbury CT Jun 17" town marking at top right of the cover, stamp with a creased corner at top right due to placement, Rohloff rarity "RRR" (not more than 8 examples known), Fine and attractive (Image 1) (Image 2)

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100

SOLD for $110.00
Will close during Public Auction before Jun-22, 09:59 PM

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