By Michael Baadke

Cherrystone auction Feb. 23-24 offers worldwide stamps and covers

February 09, 2016 08:00 AM

  • France’s first stamp is featured as a tete-beche pair on this 1850 folded letter. The cover is among the postal history offerings in the Feb. 23-24 Cherrystone public auction in New York City.
  • A Hungarian rarity in the Cherrystone auction, ex-Simon Wiesenthal: the 1925 5,000-korona First Madonna stamp with inverted center.

By Michael Baadke

Cherrystone Philatelic Auctioneers will present a two-day sale at its 57th Street gallery in New York City. The public auction sessions will take place Feb. 23-24, with online bidding available.

The auction offers United States and worldwide stamps and covers, with extensive selections from Russia (including Zemstvo covers), plus Germany and related areas, Great Britain and British Commonwealth, France and colonies, as well as many large lots and collections, and much more.

The France material begins with an 1850 folded letter from Le Bugue to Ste. Croix par Beaumont, franked with the greenish bister color variety of the country’s first issue, the 10-centime Ceres stamp, in a horizontal tete-beche configuration (the left stamp in the attached pair is right side up, and the right stamp is upside-down).

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It is struck with a single grid cancel, and the cover bears a circular departure datestamp reading Aug. 20, 1850. The auction description notes a next-day arrival backstamp. The cover has filing folds and reduced side flaps (well away from the stamps, according to Cherrystone). It is accompanied by a 2012 Roumet certificate.

The cover franked with the greenish bister tete-beche pair is listed as Scott 1f in the 2016 Scott Classic Specialized Catalogue of Stamps and Covers 1840-1940, with a value of $37,500 in italics, to indicate an item that trades infrequently and which might be difficult to value accurately. Cherrystone lists this lot with a minimum bid of $3,750.

The worldwide stamps include some handsome rarities and unusual varieties. An example of Hungary’s 1925 dark green and yellow-green 5,000-korona First Madonna issue with inverted center (Scott 386a), of which fewer than 100 are reported, also is offered in this auction. This example is canceled, and has the additional attraction of once residing in the Simon Wiesenthal collection. It is listed by Cherrystone with a $14,500 minimum bid, against an italicized Scott catalog value of $16,000.

The auction can be viewed online, with full illustrations and descriptions. Details also are available from Cherrystone Auctions, 119 W. 57th St., Suite 316, New York, NY 10019.