Rare Canada 2¢ Large Queen on laid paper, found in 2013, to be auctioned by Eastern

Apr 29, 2021, 7 AM

The recently discovered third known example of Canada’s 1868 2¢ green Large Queen stamp on laid paper (Scott 32) will be offered at auction by Eastern Auctions Ltd. Oct. 16-18.

The stamp’s discovery was first reported about a year ago after it was purchased in a sales circuit book for a “very modest” cost and submitted to the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation in Toronto, Ontario, for examination.

The foundation’s confirmation that the used stamp was the third genuine example of this great rarity was reported by Linn’s editor Charles Snee on page 1 of the Aug. 19, 2013, issue.

Eastern Auctions explains that the three known examples of this stamp on laid paper were all used at the Hamilton, Ontario, post office around late 1869 or early 1870.

The stamp on offer has a nicely centered Hamilton postmark dated March 16, 1870, and is described by Eastern Auctions as having “deep rich colour, a highly detailed impression and full intact perforations.”

The Greene Foundation produced a report on the stamp’s authentication, noting that the submitted 2¢ stamp has visible laid lines without being in any fluid.

The 10-page analysis concludes: “The submitted Two Cent large queen stamp with the Hamilton, March 16, 1870 date stamp is genuinely printed on horizontal laid paper which is about .0036 in thick. It has two diagonal creases and has an internal tear on the right side.”

Eastern Auctions adds that leading experts consulted by the firm unanimously agree that this example is the finest known.

The report also noted that the submitter found the stamp in 2013 while examining a sales circuit book in the United States.

The stamp is accompanied by the Greene Foundation certificate issued in June and the 10-page analytical report, and offered with a presale estimate in Canadian dollars of $300,000 to $400,000 (roughly equivalent to U.S. $270,000 to $360,000 in late September).

The 2014 Scott Classic Specialized Catalogue of Stamps and Covers 1840-1940 lists a value of $200,000 for Canada Scott 32, presumably based upon a sale from nearly 20 years ago. The value is in italics, meaning that the stamp trades very infrequently in the marketplace, according to Snee.

This stamp is the second example of the 2¢ green Large Queen on laid paper offered at auction this year. The first installment of Ron Brigham’s extensive championship collection of the 1868-97 Large Queen issue included one as well.

The Brigham stamp in that Feb. 22 sale realized a little more than $491,000 in U.S. dollars, setting a new record price for a Canadian stamp.

Though not quite as rare, another Canadian stamp treasure will be offered during the same Eastern Auctions sale.

The 1927 green and yellow 25¢ stamp marking the planned London-to-London flight (London, Ontario, to London, England) is listed as an air post semi-official stamp in the Scott Classic specialized catalog (Scott CLP6). The unused stamp has a catalog value of $50,000, which is also the preauction estimate.

It is one of only 13 known unused single stamps — one example also exists on cover.

The stamp was issued for an attempted 1927 trans-Atlantic flight that ended with the tragic disappearance of the plane and its two pilots, Terrence B. Tully and James Medcalf, who are pictured on the stamp.

Just 100 stamps were printed, and most were franking mail that was lost along with the plane and its crew. The single cover known was not on the flight.

Eastern will feature two specialized collections Oct. 16: the Harvey Poole collection of Canada and British North America, and the Jack Wallace Collection of British Columbia and Vancouver Island.

The large general sale Oct. 17-18 also includes worldwide and British North America, specialized Canada, used multiples, Small Queen postal history from the collection of George Arfken, and revenues, including the Ian McTaggart-Cowan collection of Canadian revenues and wildlife conservation stamps.

The auction will take place in the Victoria Suite on the third floor of the Lord Nelson Hotel and Suites, 1515 South Park Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

For additional information about the auction, to view the lots online or to place Internet bids, visit

Information is also available from Eastern Auctions Ltd., Box 250, Bathurst, New Bruswick, Canada E2A 3Z2.