Notes from the Past

1851, 3, Rarest Cover

The rarest 3 1851 cover that has come to my attention bears a pair of the imperforate 3 stamps tied to the upper left corner of the envelope from San Francisco to New Bedford, Mass.  It was formerly in the great Worthington collection, and when the collection was sold at auction in December, 1917, this cover brought $6,100.  Today it reposes in the collection of A. H. Caspary, of New York, and he has good reason to be proud of it.

The letter was originally used from Honolulu, and at San Francisco the pair of 3 stamps was added to pay the overland postage to the east.  It seems the pair was placed in the upper left corner of the envelope because there was no room on the right side.  Some one down in the Hawaiian Islands had prepaid the postage to the States with a 2 and 5 Missionary, and Mr. Caspary always felt these Hawaiian stamps added some material interest to the cover.  As a matter of fact Mr. Worthington thought so, too, when he owned it.  

- George B. Sloane
Sloane's Column
Stamps
October 14, 1935

Posted September 29, 1999

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