Worldwide stamps, covers, collections in Sparks auction
By Michael Baadke
The first sale of 2021 for Sparks Auctions of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, includes stamps of Canada and the world, proofs, postal history, hundreds of worldwide collections and more.
The auction comprising nearly 1,700 lots will take place Jan. 27-29.
Much of the material originates from Canada and its provinces, but the sale also presents British Commonwealth and worldwide stamps and covers.
A large number of Karl Lewis handpainted covers from the Japanese Empire, Pacific entities, ship covers and more are also included.
One of the earliest lots in the sale is a rare unused example of Canada’s 1851 imperforate 3-penny orange red Beaver stamp on laid paper (Scott 1a).
The stamp has no gum, but Sparks makes note of “four large and even margins and clear laid lines,” while also mentioning a “tiny corner crease at lower right.” The stamp was formerly in the collections of Dale-Lichtenstein and Daniel Cantor.
“Of the roughly 18 unused 3d Beavers on laid paper believed to remain, fewer than a small handful exist with four large margins such as this one, as most are cut into, etc.,” Sparks stated. “A lovely example of Canada’s first stamp.”
The stamp is accompanied by a 2016 Greene Foundation authentication certificate.
The auction firm cites the 2020 Unitrade Specialized Catalogue of Canadian Stamps value of $60,000 (Canadian) for this stamp (approximately U.S. $47,055 in mid-December). The Scott Classic Specialized Catalogue of Stamps and Covers 1840-1940 similarly values the stamp at U.S. $45,000.
Sparks has a reserve value of $18,000 Canadian (U.S. $14,120) in the lot description. All sales in the auction are transacted in Canadian dollars.
Among the many striking modern Canadian stamp varieties in this sale is a mint never-hinged full pane of four of the 2003 $5 Moose stamp with the engraved colors omitted (Scott 1693a). The resulting error showing a lithographed vignette with no central figure is known as the “Missing Moose.”
An earlier lot in the auction offers a mint corner single of the same “Missing Moose” error.
The sale’s Monday morning session consists of worldwide postal history and includes dozens of Karl Lewis illustrated covers as individual lots, as well as one lot of more than 100 covers handpainted by Lewis.
Many of these covers are from the 1930s and show distinctive and colorful allover cachets franked with multiple stamps tied by scenic pictorial cancels, including first-day covers and many international mailings to the United States.
With COVID-19 health guidelines in place, this Sparks auction is being held without floor bidding. Live bidding is possible through Stamp Auction Network, and other bidding options are available by mail, fax, phone or email.
Visit the Sparks website for additional information, including an illustrated and downloadable auction catalog, or contact Sparks Auctions, 1770 Woodward Drive, Suite 101, Ottawa, ON K2C 0P8, Canada.
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