On 10th July, Cherrystone Philatelic Auctioneers sold one of the two known black coloured 15¢ postage stamps featuring Abraham Lincoln with a Z grill issued in 1867, for $1.4 million, setting a new record price for a single US stamp. It was a part of a 220-lot New Amsterdam collection put together over a period of 50 years. The same stamp was sold for $1,610,000 in 1975 and William H. Gross owns the second example. The most expensive bid for a single US stamp until now was made on 15th November 2018 when Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries sold a mint never-hinged position 49 24¢ Jenny Invert airmail error stamp issued in 1918, for $1,593,000.
Another interesting offering from the New Amsterdam collection was a 3¢ rose coloured stamp featuring George Washington issued in 1867 with B grill. Only four known examples exist today and the offered stamp was sold for $661,250. All the four known examples were used on a cover that was sent from Mason to Darmstadt. The original cover was also offered, showing the marks where the four stamps were stuck.
A 10¢ green coloured stamp featuring George Washington issued in 1867 with Z grill was auctioned for $1,150,000. A pair of two vertical coil-2¢ carmine coloured stamps featuring George Washington issued in 1908 with original gum in unused condition was offered at an opening bid of $300,000 against a listed market value of $450,000 and was eventually sold for $805,000. Only four such pairs are known to collectors today. The same bidder had also bought a 30¢ orange coloured stamp featuring Benjamin Franklin issued in 1867 with A grill for $172,500. All the three rare grilled stamps bought by the bidder had a total value of $3,421,250 and were transported in a high-security car.
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Image Courtesy: Cherrystone Philatelic Auctioneers