H.R. Harmer auction April 12-14 offers stamps, postal history, more

Mar 22, 2021, 12 PM
The April 12-14 H.R. Harmer auction includes United States stamps with desirable centering, such as this 1913 10¢ Discovery of San Francisco Bay stamp from the Panama-Pacific Exposition issue boasting a mathematically perfect grade of 100.

By Michael Baadke

The April 12-14 H.R. Harmer auction in New York City comprises two sales: part 1 of the Bedford collection of United States and Canada, and a general sale of U.S. and worldwide stamps, covers and collections.

These descriptions, however, don’t entirely capture the broad range of material.

Along with stamps in singles and blocks, for example, the auction also offers more than 100 lots of U.S. proofs and essays, including a handsome 1894 $5 dark green John Marshall plate proof block of four on card (Scott 263P4), described as very fine and choice.

Specialized collections of surcharged postal stationery, precanceled postal cards and star cancels offer many dozens of intriguing lots for the collector to peruse.

A pleasant surprise in the selection of U.S. postal history is some 16 lots of the sought-after Karl Lewis hand-illustrated covers. The first-day cover lots include cacheted FDCs from Dorothy Knapp, Beazell and others.

Many of the U.S. stamps in this sale are certified with top grades that reflect outstanding centering. One example is a 10¢ orange Discovery of San Francisco Bay stamp from the 1913 Panama-Pacific Exposition issue (Scott 400A). H.R. Harmer describes the stamp as having a deep rich color and prooflike impression, full never-hinged original gum and mathematically perfect centering that reflects in a grade 100 2015 certificate from Philatelic Stamp Authentication and Grading.

The value of a grade 98 mint example in the Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers is listed at $4,000. This stamp, with its even higher 100 grade, is offered with a starting price of $2,500 in the auction.

The sale includes more than 400 lots of Canada and provinces plus 17 Canada revenue lots.

The Canada stamp selection begins with a handful of classic proofs and extends from imperforate classic stamps to the back of the book, with additional proofs sprinkled in throughout.

Illustrated lot descriptions from this auction can be found online, with online bidding options available.

Information is also available from H.R. Harmer, 45 Rockefeller Plaza, Suite 2607, New York, NY 10111.

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