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Sale 29

The Steve Berlin Collection of Karl Lewis Covers


First Day Covers
 
 
Lot Photo Description
Lot 2128

1937 (Nov. 1), 1st Showa Series, ½s purple Ship (J.S.C.A. 221. Scott 257), Horizontal strip of four placed below Lewis' standard "A FIRST DAY COVER FROM JAPAN." handstamp, tied by two clear Yokohama Scenic Datestamp strikes dated 12.11.1, on path-and-torii, mountains behind, ship cachet. Blue "To US" handstamp at far right. Reverse bears a blue handstamped ") N (" at top center, an 18s Airmail tied by "Yokohama/1.11.27/Nippon" foreign mail comb cancel, plus "15" typed at lower left. Opened at right, with top left showing a few wrinkles and a small tear, none of which affects the stamps, cachet design or other markings., Nearly Very Fine and a scarce cover, with only five known.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,000.
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Lot 2129

1937 (Dec. 11), 1st Showa Series, 1s fawn Harvesting (J.S.C.A. 222. Scott 258), On cachet identical to the previous Lot—and to the same client! (This cover is imaged in JP 72:2 on page 77.) Horizontal pair placed at top center and tied by 12.12.11 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp, with blue "To US" handstamp at left above torii. Reverse bears blue handstamped ") N (", an 18s Airmail sealing the flap and tied by 11.12.37 Yokohama foreign mail comb, with typed "15" at lower left. JP notes eight known covers. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,000.
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Lot 2130

1937 (Dec. 11), 1st Showa Series, 1s fawn Harvesting (J.S.C.A. 222. Scott 258), Bearing his straightline First Day Cover handstamp, this example is on a "Yokohama./Japan."-inscribed cover with a cachet depicting the Ii Naosuke Statue in the city's Kamon-yama Park—the only such cachet we've seen. The vertical pair of 1s stamps is placed at right and tied by a crisp 12.12.11 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp, with a bright blue "To US" handstamp at left below the inscription. Blue handstamped ") N (" on reverse, along with 18s Airmail tied by same-date Yokohama foreign mail comb and typed "15" in lower left corner. Opened neatly at bottom, with stiffener enclosed. A 7mm tear at right is of no consequence. A lovely example of Lewis' use of a "left-over" cachet. Eight First Day Covers for this issue are known. Very Fine despite the tear.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$1,500.
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Lot 2131

1937 (Dec. 11), 1st Showa Series, 1s fawn Harvesting (J.S.C.A. 222. Scott 258), A beautiful cover, on an envelope bearing the cachet used for Nogeyama Park, Yokohama (see Lot 2034 above, and JP 72:2, p. 77, where this cover is illustrated). Vertical pair at center right, tied by clear Yokohama Scenic Datestamp with blue "To US" handstamp at far right. Reverse bears blue ") N (" handstamp, with flap sealed by 10s Nagoya Castle and 8s Mt. Fuji & Deer definitives, tied by single Yokohama foreign mail 11.12.37 comb. An attempt at opening the cover was made along the left side of the flap, resulting in the 10s stamp being torn. Still desirable, with a flawless face. Eight covers known., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Unsold
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Lot 2132

1937 (May 10), 1st Showa Series, 2s crimson General Nogi (J.S.C.A. 223. Scott 259), Horizontal strip of three, paying the 6s unsealed letter rate, tied by both a Yokohama 12.5.10 Scenic Datestamp and 10.5.37 foreign mail comb, as noted in JP 72:2, pp. 78-79. The cover bears a common cachet type of building and tree on land in foreground with Mt. Fuji in distance, handstamped (not pre-printed, as JP states) with Lewis' standard "A FIRST DAY COVER FROM JAPAN." straightline. Blue "To US" handstamp at lower right. Reverse is blank, save for "12" typed at absolute lower left. Never sealed. JP notes 10 covers are known., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,200.
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Lot 2133

1939 (Dec. 11), 1st Showa Series, 3s green Hydroelectric Plant (J.S.C.A. 224. Scott 260), A beautifully rendered ship cachet depicting a seaside hut with Mt. Fuji rising in the background (perhaps by the same artist who produced the cachet used for the 5s block of four First Day Cover (see Lot 2136 below)). Left margin horizontal pair (several bottom perforations separated and neatly realigned) tied by 14.12.11 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp, with blue "To US" handstamp at left. The additional 14s postage (a Kasuga Shrine, Nara, definitive) is found on reverse sealing the flap, similarly tied. Blue handstamped ") N (" at top center as usual, but with Lewis' penciled note "Will write Dec 23" immediately below. Typed "1 5" at lower left. JP notes six known examples., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,400.
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Lot 2134

1937 (Aug. 1), 1st Showa Series, 4s dark green Admiral Togo (J.S.C.A. 225. Scott 261), A block of four and single, tied by two Yokohama 12.8.1 Scenic Datestamps on a cachet showing a seascape with Mt. Fuji and sun in the background and an anchor at lower left—though this example, unlike those illustrated in JP 72:2, p. 81, has numerous birds on the wing. The pre-printed cover bears a fading-to-black "To US" handstamp as usual, with the backflap sealed by near-circular kan handstamp in blue. Typed ") O (" at top with (curiously, given Lewis and Battle's long history) a manuscript "Open this" immediately below. Duly opened, with resultant rough edges along the flap seams, but no real damage. Eleven examples known according to JP., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,200.
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Lot 2135

1939 (Dec. 21), 1st Showa Series, 5s dark ultramarine Taisho Pond & Mt. Hodaka (J.S.C.A. 226. Scott 262), A horizontal strip of four, tied by two strikes of 14.12.21 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp, with blue "To US" handstamp at far right. JP 72:2 at page 82 describes this cachet as "a variation of the scene depicted on the stamp", though it is the exact cachet used for the Mt. Niigata, Formosa, cover above (see Lot 2076) but with that inscription replaced by Lewis' First Day Cover handstamp. Handstamped blue ") N (" and vertical single-framed oval kan on reverse. Small bit of rust stains from a paperclip at left hardly detract from this lovely cover, of which nine are known., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,600.
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Lot 2136

1939 (Dec. 21), 1st Showa Series, 5s dark ultramarine Taisho Pond & Mt. Hodaka (J.S.C.A. 226. Scott 262), A block of four of the stamp, tied by a single strike of the Yokohama Scenic Datestamp to a cover depicting Mt. Fuji with a sprig of cherry blossoms. Blue "To US" handstamp at center. Reverse with typed ") O (" at top center and "15" at lower left, with flap sealed by horizontal oval genkan handstamp. Bottom left corner slightly nibbed. JP notes nine copies known. One of our favorite cachets, magnificent in its simplicity., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,200.
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Lot 2137

1939 (June 1), 1st Showa Series, 6s orange Eulanbi Lighthouse (J.S.C.A. 227. Scott 263), A crisp and clean cover, bearing a horizontal pair tied by a single strike of a Yokohama Scenic Datestamp. The cachet is based on the stamp design and depicts the lighthouse (known either as Eulanbi or Garambi) and its fortifications atop its peak. Blue "To US" handstamp at lower right. Additional 8s Mt. Fuji & Deer seals the flap and is tied by 1.6.39 Yokohama foreign mail comb cancel. Blue ") N (" handstamped top center of the flap. JP states ten copies are known., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$2,200.
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Lot 2138

1939 (Oct. 16), 1st Showa Series, 7s deep green Diamond Mountains (J.S.C.A. 228. Scott 264), A horizontal strip of three slightly overpaying the international rate, tied by two Yokohama 14.10.16 Scenic Datestamp strikes. The all-over cachet is roughly based on the stamp design. Blue "To US" handstamp at far right. Reverse with typed "15" at lower left, and blue handstamped ") N (" and vertical oval kan on flap, which has been neatly opened. A pretty cover, of which seven are known., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 1,600 - 2,000.
Realized HK$3,000.
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Lot 2139

1938 (Nov. 1), 1st Showa Series, 10s lake Yomeimon, Nikko (J.S.C.A. 230. Scott 266), A difficult Lewis First Day, as only five are known, this being one of two known using this cachet of a stand of palms before an ocean with the sun on the horizon (though the cachet is also used, e.g., on Puka Puka (Danger Island) covers; see Lot 2214 below). The richly hued horizontal pair of stamps, placed top center, offers sharp contrast to the softer shades of the cachet design, and is tied by a single Yokohama 1.11.38 foreign mail comb, with the usual blue "To US" handstamp placed at far right. (What appears to be discoloration at the center of the cover is actually the sun's rays, slightly obscured by the airbrushed blue of the sky.) The reverse shows only a blue handstamped ") N (" and typed "15" at lower left., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,600 - 3,000.
Realized HK$3,000.
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Lot 2140

1939 (Dec. 1), 1st Showa Series, 12s indigo Experimental Airplane (J.S.C.A. 231. Scott 267), On one of two cachet designs used, this being a generic torii before Mt. Fuji with sun behind, to which the airplane has been added. The single stamp is tied by a Yokohama 14.12.1 Scenic Datestamp, as is the 8s make-up postage on reverse. Blue "To US" handstamp as usual. Reverse additionally shows a manuscript "N" in blue between typed parentheses (Lewis apparently changed his mind), though the cover was opened at right (and slightly reduced) anyway. Running up along the left-hand side of the reverse (along the cut) is a penciled note by Lewis, "Recd your letter. All o.k./KL." Insert is the sheet of paper that made up the back side of a Lewis postcard, with his "Karl Lewis/[sake gourd]/Yokohama" logo doubled. Only seven examples are known. Very Fine but for the opening.
Estimate HK$ 1,400 - 1,800.
Realized HK$2,200.
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Lot 2141

1938 (Feb. 11), 1st Showa Series, 14s rose lake & pale rose Kasuga Shrine, Nara (J.S.C.A. 232. Scott 268), A single placed top center and tied by "Yokohama/11.2.38/Nippon" foreign mail comb cancel, with blue "To US" handstamp placed at right so as not to detract from the cachet, depicting a riverside snow-covered building with waterwheel, with a mountain rising in the distance. Blue ") N (" handstamped on reverse, with backflap sealed by 4s Admiral Togo and 2s New Year stamp (Scott #237), both tied by 13.2.11 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp. "15" typed at lower left. The envelope was opened along the flap, amazingly with the two stamps being lifted cleanly and without damage. Seven examples known. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Realized HK$1,800.
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Lot 2142

1938 (Feb. 11), 1st Showa Series, 14s rose lake & pale rose Kasuga Shrine, Nara (J.S.C.A. 232. Scott 268), On generic cachet design showing a hut on a knoll overlooking Mt. Fuji, with birds but no sun. Single copy of stamp at top center, tied by neat Yokohama 11.2.38 foreign mail comb, with blue "To US" handstamp at right. Additional postage across flap on reverse (1s Harvesting and 5s Tazawa) tied by single 13.2.11 Yokohama Scenic Datestamp strike. "½" typed at upper left, with blue handstamped ") N (" top center, on reverse. Heavy card stiffener. JP notes seven First Day Covers are known. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Unsold
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Lot 2143

1938 (Feb. 11), 1st Showa Series, 14s rose lake & pale rose Kasuga Shrine, Nara (J.S.C.A. 232. Scott 268), Tied by foreign mail 11.2.38 Yokohama comb at upper right, with blue "To US" handstamp at center, on ship cachet of torii in front of building, with Mt. Fuji, sun and birds in distance. (See JP 72:2, p. 89, where this cover is imaged.) Reverse bears 2s Nogi and 4s Togo to make up the 20s rate, tied by Yokohama Scenic Datestamp. Manuscript ") O (" plus typed "15" at lower left. Neatly opened at right; no enclosure. Slight discoloration on reverse only, not affecting stamps. Seven recorded examples. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Unsold
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Lot 2144

1938 (Oct. 11), 1st Showa Series, 25s dark brown & pale brown Horyu Temple, Nara (J.S.C.A. 234. Scott 270), A spectacular all-over cachet design by one of Lewis' master painters, showing two sampans on the water with a hilltop castle overlooking the scene. It seems that a touch of oil (or some other substance) was added to the sun in the design, making the envelope front at that point translucent, so with a light source behind, the sun actually appears to shine. Single, placed upper left, is tied by central "Yokohama/11.10.28/Nippon" foreign mail comb, with bright blue "To US" handstamp at upper right. Typed ") O (" with manuscript "open this" at top of backflap, sealed by a horizontal blue oval genkan handstamp. Opened along flap. Of the 11 recorded Lewis First Day Covers for this issue, only "a pair of covers" utilize this all-over cachet. A true stunner., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 3,200 - 3,600.
Realized HK$5,000.
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Lot 2145

1938 (Oct. 11), 1st Showa Series, 25s dark brown & pale brown Horyu Temple, Nara (J.S.C.A. 234. Scott 270), A bright and cheerful ship cachet, with path leading to building, sun behind Mt. Fuji, and birds (in brown rather than the usual black or blue) in front of the mountain. Single stamp tied by Yokohama 11.10.38 foreign comb, with bright blue "To US" handstamp above summit. Handstamped ") N (" and vertical oval kan in blue on reverse. A pretty cover, of which 11 in total are recorded for this issue., Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Realized HK$2,400.
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Lot 2146

1938 (Oct. 11), 1st Showa Series, 25s dark brown & pale brown Horyu Temple, Nara (J.S.C.A. 234. Scott 270), On a similar ship cachet to the previous Lot, but this showing just a building on a knoll (no path), with steamer, Mt. Fuji and sun, and birds in black. Stamp is centrally placed at top, tied by Yokohama foreign mail comb. Bright blue "To US" handstamp at left as usual. Backflap bears a manuscript "open this" note from Lewis, and is sealed by vertical oval kan handstamp in blue. "18" is typed at lower left twice: once where the typewriter did not advance, and again correctly. Opened neatly at top. According to JP 72:2, pp. 91-92, only 11 covers for this issue are known. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Realized HK$1,800.
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Lot 2147

1938 (Oct. 11), 1st Showa Series, 25s dark brown & pale brown Horyu Temple, Nara (J.S.C.A. 234. Scott 270), On a cover whose cachet is similar to that used on the Admiral Togo First Day Cover (see Lot 2134 above), though here the waves are less well defined and the anchor is larger. Single at top center, tied by foreign comb dated Yokohama 11.10.38. Blue "To US" as usual. Reverse with blue ") N (" handstamp and manuscript "Do not open" below, flap sealed by vertical oval kan handstamp, and "18" typed at lower left. 8mm tear at top center affects neither stamp nor cachet design. One of the 11 recorded examples; imaged in JP 72:2 on page 92., Very Fine despite the tear.
Estimate HK$ 2,200 - 2,600.
Unsold
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Lot 2148

1939 (Apr. 3), 1st Showa Series, 30s peacock blue Miyajima Torii (J.S.C.A. 235. Scott 271), A beautiful First Day Cover, with the cachet matching the issue (the only true match in this sale for this definitives series). Stamp placed at upper right of cachet design and tied by a nice strike of the Yokohama Scenic Datestamp, missing the leading "1" in the year slug, making the issue date appear to be "4.4.3". Bright blue "To US" centered above torii. Typed ") O (" and manuscript "open this" at top center of backflap, which was sealed by vertical oval kan handstamp. Neatly opened along flap. JP 72:2 notes on page 72 that only nine examples are known. Very Fine.
Estimate HK$ 2,400 - 2,800.
Realized HK$3,000.
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