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Show & Tell (Jan-Jun 2011)

Week of June 20, 2011

Queen Victoria 12d black - one of the Colony of Canada's first 3 stamps printed on laid paper by Rawdon, Wright, Hatch, and Edson (forerunner of the American Bank Note Company) in 1851 on laid paper.

Canada's first adventure into stamps was a series of 3 stamps to pay the new rates established by the Post Office Law of 1851. ( down ! not up )

3d - paying the new rate for ½ oz anywhere within the Colony
6d - paying the double weight and letters to the USA
12d - paying the double weight to USA, no other specific rate

Due to the high value of the stamp and the poor adhesive qualities of the laid paper, it was not in much demand and depending of the source you read - approximately only 1450 were issued to the public. The balance of the printing 49,000 plus was withdrawn by the government and destroyed in 1857. How many of the 1450 are still in existence is unknown, but no wonder it has catalogue values in excess of $100,000 with the last sale of a mint, never hinged (only one in existence ) selling for over $500,000.

A more affordable alternative is the Plate Proof pictured here. This is the 3Piii with the vertical SPECIMEN printed in green

There are 4 plate proofs listed in Unitrade
3P - Black - CV $5000
3Pi - Vertical SPECIMEN in carmine - CV $2500
3Pii - Diagonal SPECIMEN in carmine - CV $5000
3Piii - Vertical SPECIMEN in green - CV $6500

Week of June 13, 2011

1948 KGVI Royal Silver Wedding Anniversary - Omnibus issue - April 28, 1948 The British Commonwealth would issue a set of 2 stamps to commemorate the 25th wedding anniversary of King George VI and his wife Queen Elizabeth. One lower value stamp would represent the regular letter rate and the other would represent a large value. Typically the colony would select the amounts and they would be in the currency of the country. The larger value was typically 10 shillings, $5.00 or the most sought after 1 Pound. The original design of the British stamps were printed in photogravure by Harrison & Sons. The 2 1/2d were printing in sheets of 20 rows x6 ( 147,500,000 ) and the 1 Pound sheets of 4 rows x 5 ( 419,628 )

Nova Scotia 1851 1 shilling Pence issue 1851

The cold/dull violet colour were the first printings issued in 1851 Scotts #7 along with the 1p, 3p and 6p stamps. In 1857 the colour changed to a reddish violet and Scotts has a different number #6. This stamp has a Vincent Graves Greene Foundation, stating its genuine and describing some minor faults.

Week of May 2, 2011

Week of April 18, 2011

15 April is Jackie Robinson Day in baseball in USA. It was 64 years ago, on April 15, 1947, that Jack Roosevelt "Jackie" Robinson (31 Jan 1919 ~24 October 1972) became the first black Major League Baseball player of the modern era. Robinson broke the baseball colour line when he debuted with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. As the first black man to play in the major leagues since the 1880s, he was instrumental in bringing an end to racial segregation in professional baseball, which had relegated black players to the Negro Leagues for six decades.

Robinson was also known for his pursuits outside the baseball diamond. He was the first black television analyst in Major League Baseball, and the first black vice-president of a major American corporation. In the 1960s, he helped establish the Freedom National Bank, an African-American-owned financial institution based in Harlem, New York. In recognition of his achievements on and off the field, Robinson was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Congressional Gold Medal. (RT)

Week of April 12, 2011

50th anniversary of the first human into space

Yuri Alekseyevich Gagarin was a Soviet pilot and cosmonaut. He was the first human to journey into outer space when his Vostock spacecraft completed an orbit of the Earth on 12 April 1961. Gagarin became an international celebrity, and was awarded many medals and honours, including Hero of the Soviet Union. Vostok 1 marked his only spaceflight, but he served as backup to the Soyuz 1 mission, which ended in a fatal crash. Gagarin later became deputy training director of the Cosmonaut Training Centre outside Moscow, which was later named after him. Gagarin died when a training jet he was piloting crashed in 1968. (fa)

Week of March 28, 2011

Antique Fire Engine - Scotts #1048a

On June 16, 1993, Chile issued a souvenir sheet with a pair of 100 peso stamps showing antique fire engines. The stamp on the left depicts a steam pumper manufactured by the Waterous Engine Works Company Limited of Brantford Ontario. Waterous was established in Brantford in 1844 and was a builder of engines, boilers and sawmill equipment. They began building fire engines in the 1880's.

The plant was later moved to St. Paul, Minnesota where a fire engine plant was built. Today the American plant is still a preferred supplier of pumps for several assemblers of fire fighting apparatus. Incidentally, the name Waterous is misspelled "Watterous" on the stamp and souvenir sheet.

Week of March 21, 2011

An historical cover postmarked Rimini 17 March 1861, franked with 5 cent. green, showing King Victor Emanuel II of Savoy, paying the domestic rate to deliver a letter.

Why 17 March 1861? - (did they have St. Patty's day back then)

Italy may be a country that's full of history, but Italy as a country is quite young. Unification of most of the various states only happened in 1861, after a series of wars to gain independence from foreign rule, and it would take another decade before the Italy as we know it today really took shape. Still, 1861 is the year recognized as the beginning of an independent and unified Italy, when the first Italian Parliament was assembled in Turin on 17 March 1861 and the first King of Italy, Victor Emanuel II of Savoy, was declared - which is why 2011 is going to be such a big celebration in Italy.

Week of March 13,2011

Newfoundland 1933 Scotts #C18

Balbo Flight $4.50 Overprint

The regular 75c airmail stamp ( Scotts C17 ) was overprinted with type settings of 4 at a time. Each position carries slight flaws that can be used to distinguish legitimate overprints. Collectors are warned that many forgeries of this Overprint had been made, be sure of your source when acquiring one.

This stamp was issued in connection with General Italo Balbo's squadron of 24 Italian Seaplanes return flight from Chicago ( Century of Progress Worlds Fair ) to Rome in 1933. Gen. Balbo had insisted that covers could be flown, but he wanted a fee of $4.00 to carry each one – hence the very high price in 1933.

Approximately 1150 covers were flown on the return flight with the balance of the stamps were sold off by the Newfoundland Post Office.