Auctions

Matthew Healey

How much a long off-the-grid Jenny Invert sold for at Hindman auction

March 03, 2017 11:52 AM

  • Another U.S. 1918 24¢ Jenny Invert, the position 79 stamp that had been hidden away for decades, sold for $299,000 during a Leslie Hindman Feb. 15 sale in Chicago.
  • The Hindman auction also featured a block of four of the 4¢ inverted-center error of the 1901 Pan-American issue whose previous whereabouts were not specified. The block, with minor faults, sold for $126,500.

Auction Roundup — By Matthew Healey, New York Correspondent

In addition to the one sold by Robert A. Siegel Auction Galleries as part of the Don David Price collection, another Jenny Invert error made recent headlines when it resurfaced after almost a century in hiding. Its story was told on the front page of Linn’s issue of Jan. 23.

Position 79 from the original sheet had not been seen by the philatelic community since Klein’s dispersal of the sheet.

Certified genuine by the Philatelic Foundation in New York, it was offered, along with other stamps, by Leslie Hindman, an art and jewelry auctioneer in Chicago, on behalf of a family in whose possession it had lain for decades. 

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Its reappearance allowed stamp collectors to fill in one of the last missing squares on the “bingo sheet” of 100 Jenny Invert stamps, most — but not all — of which are accounted for.

Bizarrely, the stamp shows the impression of a paper clip on the back, marking another sad entry in the list of ways careless owners have abused their Inverted Jennies over the years — abuse that includes water damage, hinge thinning, and getting sucked up in a vacuum cleaner. 

Otherwise attractive, position 79 sold for $299,000, including the buyer’s commission charged by Hindman, which is 25 percent on the first $100,000 and 20 percent thereafter.

The sale also featured a block of four of the 4¢ inverted-center error of the 1901 Pan-American issue (Scott 296a) whose previous whereabouts were not specified. With a PF certificate noting it is genuine with minor faults, the block went for $126,500.