1895 Tientsin to New York cover achieves 24% increase on estimate

An 1895 Tientsin to New York cover led a sale at Zurich Asia in Hong Kong on August 31-September 1 with a final bid of $191,667 - up 24.4% on a $154,000 estimate.

Tientsin Hamilton
The cover is among the first examples of dowager franking in China

It is believed to be the first example of Dowager franking sent via the US post office in China.

The front is adorned with a US 5c brown and 10c green stamped with a "U.S.POSTAL ANENCY/SHANGHAI/5.1.95" cancellation, while the reverse features three Chinese candarins stamps of varying values.

In March last year, a US post office in China cover from 1886 sold for $28,500 at Harmers Auctions in Switzerland.

Other highlights of the sale included two sheets of the hugely popular 1980 Golden Monkey issue, which made $179,623.

The lot was expected to make $141,000, equating to an increase of 27.3%.

Introduced to commemorate the new year, the issue was produced in a run of 5m but has become hugely collectible due to strong demand from the public.

This is partly to do with the design of the stamp, which features a number 8 on a red background - both symbols of luck in China.

We have a fascinating array of rare stamps available, including this unique Hong Kong 1862 96c block of four error.

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