1874 US postal stationary to auction with $23,000 minimum bid

An 1874 US postal stationary 2c brown on cream is to feature in a sale at Cherrystone Auctions on March 18 with a minimum bid of $23,000.

The lot is one of three surviving cut squares, the only known remnants of the issue, and is considered the finest example.

US postal stationary 1874
The US began producing pre-paid stationary in 1873

The US postal service began producing the stationary, which features a pre-paid stamp, in 1873 - making this one of the earliest specimens.

A US 1861 24c violet in unused condition with the original gum carries a minimum bid of $18,000.

1861 Washington 24c
The stamp was produced after the outbreak of the American civil war

The stamp dates to the outbreak of the American civil war and was issued soon after the recall of the previous issue.

These examples were only issued in the north, resulting in a number of creative solutions to postage payment in the southern US until the Confederate government was able to create its own set of stamps.

It features strong margins and centring and is in exceptional condition given its extraordinary rarity.

Bidding on a 1979 inverted $1 Rush Lamp, better known as the CIA Invert, will open at $13,500.

Only 95 examples of the stamp, the first major US invert since the 1962 Dag Hammarskjold, are known to exist.

They were purchased by a member of the CIA who teamed up with colleagues to buy the entire pane after realising their value as collectibles.

Attempts by the US government to recover the stamps resulted in job losses and threats to members of the consortium in one of the more dramatic episodes of philatelic history.

A comparable example made $15,000 at Cherrystone in 2012.

We have a range of rare stamps available.

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