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2019 Rarities of the World continued...

Carriers, Local Posts and Independent Mails
Lot Sym. Lot Description  
2115 c ImageNorthern Liberties News Rooms, Sub Post Office. Type I circular mark impressed at left on March 30, 1836 folded letter to Reading Pa., red "Phila. 31 Mar." in octagonal frame, matching "Paid" in octagon handstamp, skillfully reinforced along folds and minor cosmetic improvements along edges

VERY FINE. ONE OF 12-14 RECORDED EXAMPLES OF THE NORTHERN LIBERTIES NEWS ROOMS MARKING, WHICH WAS APPLIED TO MAIL HANDLED BY THE SUB POST OFFICE OPERATED BY ANDREW McMAKIN.

Prior to 1854, the Northern Liberties area (north of Vine Street) was outside Philadelphia's city limits. Carriers were used to transport mail between outlying areas and the main post office in Philadelphia. The term Sub Post Office refers to a location where letters could be deposited for delivery to the main post office. The Northern Liberties News Rooms, which advertised its services as early as 1833, established a Sub Post Office in 1835. The proprietor at this time was Andrew McMakin. A news item appearing in the October 10, 1835, edition of the Philadelphia Saturday Courier states: "The enterprising, attentive and indefatigable proprietor of that popular establishment, the Northern Liberties Free Admission News Room, has found the business of his Sub Post Office so much on the increase, as to induce him to prepare a new and appropriate stamp, which we perceive is now imprinted upon all letters deposited at his office." (from research by Elliott Perry and J. William Middendorf). Later advertisements link the Sub Post Office in Northern Liberties with the main Philadelphia post office, which reinforces its status as an authorized drop point for mail.

Debate among postal historians (Perry, Hahn et al) has focused on when the distinctive marking (Type I or II) was applied to letters. Some have argued that it is a press-printed impression applied to lettersheets prior to use and is, therefore, a carrier stamp. In support of the press-printed argument is the consistent orientation of the marking at the left side and at the same degree relative to the paper upon which it is impressed; it would be impossible to apply a hand-held striking device so consistently. Arguing against this press-printed theory are those who cite the effects of folds on the markings and impressions thru the paper, physical evidence that proves the marking was applied after the lettersheet had been folded. Our opinion is that the markings were applied after the letter was folded and given to the Sub Post Office, but that a mechanical device -- similar to a corporate seal -- was used to make the impression. Each letter, when inserted into the device along the guides, would receive the impression in the same relative position and orientation, not unlike a three-hole paper-punch device commonly used today.

In summary, historical evidence supports the status of the Northern Liberties News Rooms Sub Post Office as an official carrier drop point for mail to the main Philadelphia post office. However, physical evidence refutes the claim that these lettersheets were sold to patrons as stamped stationery to indicate prepayment of the carrier fee; the marking is better classified as an elaborate and mechanically-applied indication of letter handling.

Calvet M. Hahn recorded between 12 and 14 examples of Type I (some duplication of items is possible).

Ex Dr. LeBow. With 2007 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States Northern Liberties ]

E. $ 5,000-7,500


Will close during Public Auction
2116 c ImageHonour's City Post, Charleston S.C., 2c Black on Bluish Pelure (4LB5). Full even margins, red crayon "X" cancel, used on blue folded cover to Philadelphia Pa., red "Charleston S.C. Jun. 15/10" integral-rate circular datestamp, file folds clear of stamp, receipt docketing with 1850 year date

VERY FINE. AN OUTSTANDING ON-COVER EXAMPLE OF THE RARE HONOUR'S CITY POST STAMP ON BLUISH PELURE PAPER.

The "Honour's/City Post/2 Cents" typeset stamps were the first of the small rectangular issues after the oval first issue. They are found on yellow and bluish pelure paper. Both are extremely rare. The Lyons census (The Penny Post, October 2007) lists ten 4LB5 covers.

Ex Caspary, Middendorf and Geisler. With 2008 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 4LB5 ]

$ 3,500.00


Will close during Public Auction
2117 c ImageKingman's City Post, Charleston S.C., 2c Black on Bluish (4LB14). Large margins all around, tied by manuscript cancel, used with 3c Dull Red, Ty. III (26), tied by "Charleston S.C. Mar. 5" circular datestamp on small cover to Abbeville S.C.

EXTREMELY FINE. AN EXCEEDINGLY RARE TIED EXAMPLE OF THE SCARCE KINGMAN'S CARRIER STAMP USED ON COVER WITH THE 3-CENT 1857 ISSUE.

Eliab J. Kingman was Dr. John H. Honour's brother-in-law and served as the first assistant in Honour's Penny Post from its inception in 1849. It is reported that sometime in 1851, Kingman received his own appointment as a government carrier and divided the city's routes with Dr. Honour. According to the Faber account (Pat Paragraphs, 1981 Reprint, pp. 247-248), Kingman retired in March 1858 and was replaced by Joseph G. Martin, a relative to the Honour family through marriage. The Scott listings for the two Kingman's stamps are out of chronological sequence. The four-line type, 4LB15, preceded the three-line type, 4LB14, by at least three or four years. The format of 4LB14 matches the stamps printed for Martin, Steinmeyer and Beckman in 1858, 1859 and 1860, and it is probable that the same setting was used with the names changed as required. Kingman is reported to have retired in March 1858; based on dated examples, the 4LB14 stamp was probably issued in mid-1856 and not used after March 1858. Genuine covers are found in this time period.

Ex Meyersburg and Geisler. With 1999 and 2008 P.F. certificates. (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 4LB14 ]

$ 6,000.00


Will close during Public Auction
2118 c ImageU.S.P.O., Philadelphia Pa., 1c Blue (7LB12). Ample to large margins, extraordinary dark shade and intense impression, tied by red star cancel, "Downington Pa." dateless circle handstamp on folded letter datelined "Downington Novr. 11th 1852" to local Philadelphia attorney at 98-1/4 South 4th Street, manuscript "Paid", Extremely Fine, this stamp is rarely found tied on cover, the use from Downington is believed to be unique, ex Gibson and Kuphal, with 2007 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 7LB12 ]

E. $ 1,500-2,000


Will close during Public Auction
2119 c ImageAmerican Letter Mail Co., (5c) Blue on Gray (5L3). Position 13, ample margins to mostly clear at right, tied by manuscript "DB" cancel on June 7, 1845 folded letter from Philadelphia to New York, red "Forwarded By American Mail Co. No. 101 Chestnut St. Philada." in circle with matching "Paid" straightline handstamp

EXTREMELY FINE. ONE OF TWO TIED EXAMPLES AMONG THE TWELVE RECORDED COVERS BEARING THE RARE BLUE EAGLE STAMP OF AMERICAN LETTER MAIL COMPANY.

This use of the rare Blue Eagle stamp probably occurred soon before the independent mail firms were effectively abolished by the government. On July 1, 1845, the postage rate for distances under 300 miles was reduced to 5c per half-ounce. By the same Act of Congress, Federal law prohibited the carrying of letters by private companies between cities where the Post Office Department offered inter-city mail service. American Letter Mail Company, which had aroused popular support for cheaper domestic postage, was a catalyst for the 1845 legislation. However, it could no longer sustain its fight with the government over mail routes and closed on June 30, 1845.

The Large Eagle stamp in Blue is recorded on covers dated from August 1844 through June 1845, with about half of the reported covers addressed to Hopkins & Weston in New York. The Blue and Black color scheme for the American Letter Mail Co. Large Eagle stamps, which lack a denomination (unlike their predecessor issue, the Small Eagle), may have been modeled upon Great Britain's 1840 Penny Black and Two-Pence Blue. The Blue stamp was used for the single rate, but its original purpose might have been to pay a double rate.

Ex Perry, Schwartz and "Gordon N. John". With 2004 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 5L3 ]

E. $ 3,000-4,000


Will close during Public Auction
2120 c ImageD. O. Blood & Co., Philadelphia Pa., (3c) Black on Grayish, "D.O.B. & Cos." Initials (15L4). Full to large margins, tied by blue "Philadelphia Pa. Sep. 22" circular datestamp with matching "5" in double-circle handstamp on folded cover to New York City street address, receipt docketing confirms 1845 year date

EXTREMELY FINE. ONE OF THE FINEST TIED EXAMPLES OF THE RARE BLOOD'S FIRST STRIDING MESSENGER ISSUE WITH MANUSCRIPT CONTROL MARK.

The Striding Messenger stamp, issued in 1843 by the Philadelphia Despatch Post and adopted by D. O. Blood & Co., is the first pictorial stamp in the world. It depicts a gargantuan letter carrier -- the "City Despatch Post" bag slung over his shoulder -- stepping over the Merchant's Exchange Building, which housed Philadelphia's post office. The image conveys the private posts' superior speed and reliability.

Illustrated in Chronicle (No. 220, p. 318). Ex German Sale, Brown, Hurd, Hall and Jarrett (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 15L4 ]

E. $ 5,000-7,500


Will close during Public Auction
2121 c ImageBrowne & Co.'s City Post Office, Cincinnati O., 2c Black (29L2). Large margins showing parts of adjoining stamps to barely in at lower right, fine impression, tied by red "Browne & Co. City Post. Paid" circular handstamp, blue "Cincinnati O. 1 Paid May 30" circular datestamp on blue folded cover to local street address

EXTREMELY FINE. A CHOICE EXAMPLE OF THE BROWNE & CO. 2-CENT STAMP ON COVER. VERY SCARCE AND MOST DESIRABLE WITH THE STAMP TIED BY THE COMPANY'S RED HANDSTAMP.

The 1c stamp, 29L1, was designed with the "Brown & Co." spelling error. The correct spelling, Browne (with an "e"), appears on the 2c stamp and the markings used by the post.

Ex Caspary and Judd. With 1997 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 29L2 ]

$ 5,000.00


Will close during Public Auction
2122   ImageBrowne's Easton Despatch, Easton Pa., 2c Black (30L3). Position 10, stitch watermark, full margins to just touching framelines at lower left and middle top, clear strike of "Browne's Despatch Easton Pa. Dec. 29" oval cancel, completely sound

VERY FINE. FEWER THAN SIX BROWNE'S EASTON DESPATCH STAMPS ARE RECORDED IN USED CONDITION, AND THIS IS THE ONLY EXAMPLE RECORDED WITH A HANDSTAMP CANCEL.

The engraved stamp with a portrait of Washington, 30L3, was the subject of a study by Larry Lyons (The Penny Post, April 2006). In his article he reconstructs the original plate layout and documents at least 37 examples, only four of which are cancelled. This is the only example recorded with a handstamp cancel.

Ex Caspary. With 1959 and 2001 P.F. certificates. Scott Retail for used ($1,000.00) is irrelevant as it is based on sales of pen-cancelled copies (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 30L3 ]

E. $ 2,000-3,000


Will close during Public Auction
2123   Image(Greig's) City Despatch Post, New York N.Y., 3c Black on Grayish (40L1). Huge even margins capturing outer framelines on all four sides, lightly cancelled by red "Free" in frame handstamp, Extremely Fine Gem, a truly superb used example of the first stamp issued in the Western Hemisphere, ex Twigg-Smith, with 1988 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 40L1 ]

$ 350.00


Will close during Public Auction
2124 c Image(Greig's) City Despatch Post, New York N.Y., 3c Black on Grayish (40L1). Huge even margins all around, tied by bold strike of red "Free" in frame, matching equally bold "City Despatch Post N.Y. 20 May 4 O'Clock" (1842) Type II double-line circular datestamp on folded letter to N.Y. street address, Extremely Fine Gem stamp tied on an immaculate cover, stunning quality, with 2004 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 40L1 ]

E. $ 1,500-2,000


Will close during Public Auction
2125 c Image(Cole's) City Despatch Post, New York N.Y., 2c Black on Vermilion Glazed, "CC" (40L6). Large to huge margins, slightly oxidized (much less than usual), tied by 4-bar rectangular grid, red "New-York 5 cts. 7 Mar." (1849) integral-rate circular datestamp on folded letter to New Haven Conn., Extremely Fine, the Vermilion "CC" stamp is very scarce on cover and even rarer on "to the mails" covers, ex Hall and Geisler, with 2011 P.F. certificate (Image)

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Get Market Data for [United States 40L6 ]

E. $ 1,500-2,000


Will close during Public Auction

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