US Stamps

Confederate States 1861 Jefferson notably scarce in unused, used condition

Sep 13, 2023, 8 AM
Sound four-margin examples of the Confederate States 1861 5¢ Jefferson Davis stamp (Scott 1) in unused, original gum condition and in used condition are surprisingly scarce and in demand.

Stamp Market Tips by Henry Gitner and Rick Miller

The Confederate States of America comprised the states of South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee and North Carolina and existed from Feb. 8, 1861, to May 9, 1865.

During its lifetime, the Confederacy produced 14 major-number listed stamps. Of those, the 1¢ orange John C. Calhoun stamp was never issued. Confederate States stamps are avidly collected by many general U.S. collectors as well as collectors who specialize in Confederate States stamps.

The Confederate States issued a 5¢ green President Jefferson Davis stamp (Scott 1) about October 1861. The lithographed stamps were printed from four stones identified as A, B, 1 and 2. Stamps from the various stones can be identified by shades of color and distinctive marks.

The major-number listed stamp is green; bright green and dull green varieties are noted and valued. There are also minor-number varieties in light green (Scott 1a) and dark green (1b).

The Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers values the 5¢ green Jefferson Davis stamp (Scott 1) in unused, original gum condition at $300 and in used condition at $175. Sound four-margin examples of this stamp in unused, original gum condition and in used condition are surprisingly scarce. The poor-quality paper used for printing these stamps resulted in many small faults. Examples without faults are well worth full Scott catalog value or more.

The Scott U.S. Specialized catalog values the stamp used on various types of covers with values varying from $300 for a typical on-cover use up to $2,500 for an example used on a patriotic cover. Demand is very strong for on-cover examples, but buyers are cautioned to examine the stamps very carefully. Many on-cover examples have faults such as tears or creases that are not readily apparent. Such faults reduce the cover’s value.

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