STOCKHOLMIA 2019 Private Treaty Sale

Lot 66


United States, 1938-54, The Presidential Series, A Royal Collection. The Prexies, one of the longest-running US definitive series, are ubiquitous. Every childhood collection starts with them, and a complete set is a de rigueur aim of all budding philatelists.

But this does not make them easy or uninteresting, for the more you look, the more there is to find—exactly because they were everywhere for so long.

Presented exhibition-style in three large binders, the series is arranged in denomination order, with singles (many with shades), plate blocks (of many, if not most, plates used over the years), First Day Covers, varieties and oddities, plus usages (solo, single, and mixed). The collector held out for the best of each, making this a feast for the eye as well as a research project par excellence.

Stamp highlights include a striking 1¢ foldover horizontal strip of 22—the full sheet width plus gutter plus additional column at right; ½¢ and 1½¢ Canal Zone overprint complete panes; 1½¢ St. Louis MO precancels (pairs and a complete pane) showing the part-perforated and imperforate-between varieties; 1½¢ plate block #22880, the second "8" inverted; several items with blind perforations between; #830a, the 30¢ deep blue variety (with copy of Bureau of Engraving and Printing letter describing their analysis of the stamp); all three printings of the $1 (#832, 832c, 832g); part-sheets of $1 (block of 60), $2 (50) and $5 (20 and 56) values cancelled—all but $5 with plate markings in selvage; a $5 used with vignette shifted to lower right; printing varieties, and more.

Covers feature many of the great rarities of Prexie postal history and usage, a number having come from the Stephen L. Suffet Collection (last seen in the 2003 Nutmeg auction), and several of which are illustrated in Roland Rustad's The Prexies.

The usages are as wide-ranging as possible, with Registered, Censored, Airmail, Special Delivery, Certified, Insured, Return Receipt all paid Presidentially—sometimes with two or three rates on a single cover. There are perfins used on cover, parcel tags, a Permit Postage payment form, a couple two-country frankings, even several wartime covers from Alaska and Hawaii to the mainland, which have been censored (apparently Territory status didn't warrant trust). Destinations include the usual Hawaii/Alaska/Europe suspects, but we also find India, Australia, New Zealand and Mauritius among others.

Solo usages abound, including nearly all of the difficult to rare denominations. We note 4½¢ sheet, 7¢, 11¢ (2, including one to Denmark (The Prexies, p. 214), 16¢ (3!), 19¢ (to the IRS), 22¢ (2), $1 (2!!), $2 and $5 (the only known non-philatelic solo usage).

Other interesting covers include a 3¢ on White House invitation from Eleanor Roosevelt with all enclosures; a 3¢ First Day Cover with pre-Eye and both Electric Eye types; 4½¢ sidewise coil strip of six including a line pair, on Esso Touring Service First-Class Mail piece; 4½¢ plate block on Registered cover; 5¢ group of 50 on cover opened for exhibition (The Prexies, p. 174); two 13¢ solos imaged in The Prexies; 15¢ (strip of three plus 5¢) to Germany, Returned, "Service Suspended", with the rarely seen interior notice Form OC-12; a solo inter-island Hawaii 17¢ usage (ex-Suffet); 20¢ multiple (plus three 50¢) on conserved oversized envelope to Athens, returned, with British and Egyptian (?) Censor tapes and handstamps; 22¢ plus pair 24¢ to UNRRA in Canton, China, from 1946; 50¢ solo on Honolulu Advertiser corner card cover, and much, much more.

An absolute must-see, for the stamp enthusiast or the postal historian. Elect to view.

Price: $27,000; £21,175; €22,975; 270,000 SEK; HK$210,600.

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