Monday Morning Brief | Missing Jenny Invert Found

May 4, 2021, 3 AM

Linn's Stamp News managing editor Chad Snee breaks down the recovery of a missing United States 1918 Jenny Invert airmail error stamp from the famed McCoy block. The stamp was stolen in 1955 during the American Philatelic Society's annual convention in Norfolk, Virginia. 

Full video transcript:

Greetings fellow stamp enthusiasts! Welcome to the Monday Morning Brief for May 2.

In mid-April, an electrifying announcement came from the galleries of auction firm Spink USA in New York City: one of the two missing United States 1918 Jenny Invert airmail error stamps from the famed McCoy block of four had been recovered.

The block, named for its owner Ethel McCoy, had been stolen in 1955 during the annual convention of the American Philatelic Society in Norfolk, Virginia. This infamous philatelic crime has never been solved.

We quickly posted a short news story on and followed that with a detailed page-one report in our May 9 issue.

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On April 4, Spink submitted the stamp to the Philatelic Foundation for authentication. Following a methodical two-week analysis, the Foundation confirmed that the stamp was from the bottom-right position in the McCoy block, which is position 76 from the original pane of 100 stamps picturing the Curtiss Jenny biplane upside down.

This leaves only the top-right Jenny Invert from the McCoy block, position 66, unaccounted for.

“Upon close examination,” the Foundation said, “position 76 was found to have been reperforated at its left side to remove traces of a vertical red guide line that had originally appeared on the tips of its perforations.”

Once legal issues are taken care of, the stamp will be returned to the American Philatelic Research Library, which is considered to be the stamp’s owner.

Finally and as a reminder, World Stamp Show-New York 2016 will open its doors at the Javits Center in New York City in just under four weeks. Hundreds of dealers, dozens of societies, thousands of pages of exhibits, and more await you. This incredible philatelic spectacle is not to be missed. Members of the Linn’s and Scott catalog editorial staffs will be at the show, and we encourage you to stop by booth number 951 and say hello. We look forward to meeting you.

For Linn’s Stamp News and the Scott catalogs, I’m Chad Snee. Have a great week enjoying our wonderful hobby. Cheers!