Lot# 37 - Erivan Sale 1

  • Lot# : 37 Local and Private Posts

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    Philadelphia Despatch Post, 15L1, 1843 3c Red on bluish, initialed "R & Co.," cut square (only recorded example, all others are cut into an octagonal shape), lightly tied by large numeral red "3" and attached with a wafer on 1843 folded cover/wrapper with red "Philadelphia Pa. Jun 13" postmark, addressed to "Mr. Fredk Fritz, Present," cover with manuscript "Refused" above address, Very Fine; one of only 14 or 15 recorded covers with this stamp and the only one with the stamp cut square (Scott $8,500)

    Provenance: Alfred H. Caspary (H.R. Harmer Sale 1069, 1957)

    John R. Boker, Jr. (Private Transaction)

    A 2013 Penny Post article Dr. Vernon R. Morris, Jr. (Vol. 21, No. 2) records 14 covers with 15L1, all used between February 15 and November 8, 1843 (R.A. Siegel reports 15 covers). The cover offered here is #3 in Morris's census. Following the British "Penny Black" and Greig's City Despatch Post in New York City, the Philadelphia Despatch Post was only the third entity in the world to issue stamps for the prepayment of postage (15L1, 3c red on bluish, and the earlier 15L2, 3c Black), both of which are extremely scarce. To this end, Morris states that "15L1 participated in the advancement of written communication through specialization and innovation of postal service dedicated and restricted solely to local service in one city." The significance of this cover, then, which has not been offered publicly in over 60 years, is considerable. Although primitive in design, the Philadelphia Despatch Post stamps represent an important step in the develpment of the American postal system.

    Start Price : 1,500 USD
    Current Opening : 1,500 USD
    Hammer price : 2,700 USD