A US philatelic auction is to feature the 1858 5c Jefferson stamp as its highest-valued lot on January 12, as part of a three-day auction at the OrcoExpo in Anaheim, California.
The brick-red stamp will highlight the second day's proceedings with an estimate of $40,000. The catalogue value for this rarity is $80,000.
The stamp originates from America's 1857-1861 classics issue, which were the first printed in the nation to feature perforations. Although originally issued in 1857, the 5c stamp saw its colour changed from a dark red-brown to brick red in 1858, with 135,000 examples printed.
Of these 135,000, there are just six sound examples known to exist today.
At the time of issue, the stamp would have seen its greatest usage as prepayment for the 5c open mail rate. It was also used to make up the value of greater rates, making single usages on cover an exceedingly rare find.
The stamp at auction is in fine to very fine condition and will be offered with a 2009 PF certificate that attests to this. It boasts a large part of its original gum, though the removal of a hinge has caused buckling in the paper at the top.
Also featuring is the 1901 Pan-American invert, which will be sold with a $25,000 estimate. The example offered is one of the highest graded examples in existence.
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