Alexandria Blue Boy Stamp

08 Aug 2019  Thu

One of America’s most famous philatelic is the Alexandria Blue Boy Stamp. It is a very rare stamp that takes the name from its color.

Alexandria was one of eleven municipalities that produced stamps to afford customers a convenient means of prepaying mail at a time before the United States introduced national postage stamps. Although the use of provisional stamps was officially prohibited, this special provisional stamp was still in use.

The Alexandria provisionals were produced under the auspices of the city's postmaster, Daniel Bryan with the equipment of a newspaper. The provisionals were printed in pairs from a typeset form that produced two not-quite-identical images which are now classified as Type I and Type II. The Blue Boy is one of the four surviving Type I stamps; only three Type II examples are known.

The stamp presents an outer rim of rosettes surrounding a smaller ring of text: "ALEXANDRIA "* POST OFFICE. *"; and, at the stamp’s center, the horizontal word "PAID" with the numeral "5" below it. While Type I have forty rosettes, only thirty-nine appear on Type II—which, moreover, differs from Type I.

A cover franked with a unique blue Alexandria stamp has been auctioned for USD 1.18 million by H.R. Harmer on June 22, 2019.

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