By Michael Baadke
The H.R. Harmer firm has two auctions planned in Costa Mesa, Calif., from Oct. 25-27. Sessions offering United States, British Commonwealth and worldwide stamps, covers and collections will take place each day.
A specialized auction of the Bert Boonstra collection of the 1901 Pan-American Exposition is scheduled for Oct. 26.
Nearly 3,100 lots are offered over the course of the general sale, which opens with a selection of proofs and essays followed by U.S. 19th-century stamps and postal history.
The stamps in the auction include both unused and used. One standout is a used example of the 1860 90¢ blue George Washington (Scott 39).
The Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers notes that the 90¢ stamp is difficult to find with genuine cancels. It is valued at $10,000 in the Scott catalog, with that value listed in italics to identify a stamp that is a challenge to value accurately.
The value of an authentically used stamp is significantly higher than the value of an unused stamp of this issue.
The example in the H.R. Harmer sale, which is ex-John R. Hill, is authenticated with three Philatelic Foundation certificates. H.R. Harmer describes it as having rich bold color and crisp impression, struck with several partial datestamps. The stamp is well centered with large margins and perfs intact, according to the auction description. Bidding opens at $8,000.
The Boonstra collection includes an extensive selection of postal history with advertising covers, mailing cards and more.
Stamps of the 1901 set are also featured used on covers to a large number of unusual destinations.
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A nice find is a multicolor cover of the 2¢ Empire State Express with a Barry machine slogan cancel dated May 1, 1901, the first day of issue.
“There are thought to be only 61 First DayCovers forthis stamp, of which on 13 are thought to be on an exposition cover with an exposition type cancel,” according to H.R. Harmer.
The lots can be viewed online, with online bidding options available.
For additional information, contact H.R. Harmer, 2680 Walnut Ave, Suite AB, Tustin, CA 92780-7052.