Rapp auction offers stamp and postal history classics, 1948 Gandhi Official

May 3, 2021, 6 AM
An 1845 2½-rappen Basel Dove stamp (Switzerland Scott 3L1) affixed to a cotton market report from Liverpool and mailed as a local letter. The circular red Basel postmark is dated March 31, 1848. This unusual cover will be offered during the Nov. 15-16 Rap

By Michael Baadke

The Rapp auction firm in Wil, Switzerland, will conduct its next philatelic public auction Nov. 15-16.

The offerings include classic and 20th-century Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Europe and worldwide material, along with complete collections, large lots and much more.

A featured item from this sale is a cotton market report from Liverpool franked with the 1845 2½-rappen tricolor Basel Dove stamp (Switzerland Scott 3L1) and mailed as a local letter in 1848.

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The Rapp auction description makes note of the stamp’s bright fresh colors and the prominent relief of the embossed dove.

It is tied to the document with a circular red Basel postmark dated March 31, 1848, according to the 1985 certificate from Swiss expert Emil Rellstab, the one-time president of the International Association of Philatelic Experts.

The typographed and embossed Basel Dove stamp is listed with an on-cover value of $300,000 in the Scott Classic Specialized Catalogue of Stamps and Covers 1840-1940. The 1848 cover in the Rapp auction carries an estimate in Swiss francs of 15,000fr to 20,000fr; or roughly $15,150 to $20,220.

The Rapp auction also includes three unused examples of the 1935 10-centime on 15c deep green and light green Disarmament Conference airmail stamp with inverted surcharge (Switzerland Scott C20a), including one mint stamp with attached margin selvage at right.

The unused inverted surcharge error is valued at $6,500 in the Scott Classic Specialized catalog; the Rapp estimate is 1,500fr to 2,000fr ($1,515 to $2,020) for the margin example, and 600fr to 800fr ($606 to $808) for the other two individual stamps.

Among the worldwide stamp offerings is a world-famous rarity from India, the 10-rupee rose brown and brown Gandhi stamp with “SERVICE” overprint (Scott O112D).

Only 100 examples of the stamps are known to be authentically overprinted with the “SERVICE” designation for Official use, and very few of those made their way to private owners.

The Scott catalog cautions that overprint forgeries are known. The stamp in this sale is accompanied by a 1968 Alberto Diena certificate and is listed by Rapp with an estimate of 10,000fr to 20,000fr ($10,110 to $20,220).

The nearly 500-page Rapp auction catalog can be viewed online, and online bidding options are explained in the English-language section of the catalog introduction.

For additional information, contact Peter Rapp AG International Auctions, Toggenburgerstrasse 139, Box 276, CH-9500 Wil, Switzerland.