Tomorrow, Siegel Auctions will be offering the latest selection from the extraordinary Scarsdale Collection.
The first Scarsdale auction was held in April 2006, and the last (Part Five) was held in October 2007 and the series of sales continues with a magnificent offering of United States Revenue stamps.
Those portions of the Scarsdale Collection achieved renown for the extraordinary quality of each stamp chosen by the collector known as 'Scarsdale'.
Indeed the $1.28m realisation at the time Stamp Market Quarterly editor, William A. Litle, to ponder:
"Was the Scarsdale price of $120,750 [for Scott 594] an anomaly, along with the $92,000 price for the $2.00 Columbian and the $57,000 for the C15, or are all of these results simply the correct values for this new era?"
The Revenue stamps presented currently maintain the same exceptionally high degree of quality, while also reaching a remarkably advanced level of completion.
Indeed Siegel believes that this could be the first Revenue stamp sale in history in which the grading terms 'Extremely Fine' or 'Extremely Fine Gem' are used for 40% of the lots, and 'Very Fine' or 'Very Fine and choice' are used for another 45% of the lots.
Knowledgeable Revenue stamp collectors appreciate the difficulty of locating sound high-grade examples of stamps that frequently received rough treatment from their application and use.
Scarsdale achieved such a high degree of quality representation by constantly upgrading his collection. Whenever a superior example became available, Scarsdale bought it to replace the stamp he owned.
The collector was aided in his quest for completion and quality by two professionals: Alan E. Cohen and long-time revenue specialist/dealer, Richard Friedberg. Their efforts on Scarsdale's behalf—locating rarities, examining stamps and providing market insight—helped to create this truly outstanding Revenue collection.
In one place Scarsdale has gathered many of the finest examples of the rarest stamps in United States philately. Some of the highlights include:
A $60 Brown revenue stamp, blue handstamped from Series 1940 overprinted 'Silver Tax'. With large even margins and brilliant colour this $60.00 Brown 1940 Series Silver tax is one of the rarest of all silver tax stamps. Only nine examples are recorded - all are used. It is expected to achieve $23,000.
Then there is a $500.00 Red Orange, Green & Black, Second Issue, 'Large Persian Rug' (R133). With wonderful bright colours, detailed impressions and a neat July 9, 1872 manuscript cancel, this is a rare sound and well-centred example of is one of the most colourful and elaborately engraved stamps in all of philately. It is listed at $16,000.
The piece de resistance however is a unique example of the $5,000.00 'Series 1944' stock transfer overprint issue, used on its original document is a remarkable artifact and regarded as the most important stock transfer issue in existence.
It is being offered at auction for the first time, and was not known to exist until this document was discovered. It is expected to sell for $70,000 in Siegel's New York sale.