Strong demand for 2¢ carmine rose George Washington type I stamp
Stamp Market Tips by Henry Gitner and Rick Miller
In 1914-16, the United States Post Office Department issued Washington-Franklin rotary press coil stamps with designs that measure 19½-to-20 millimeters by 22mm.
The horizontal coil stamps were printed on paper watermarked single-line “U S P S” and perforated gauge 10 vertically. The 2¢ George Washington stamps produced were carmine rose type I (Scott 453), red type II (454) and carmine type III (455).
The 2¢ carmine rose George Washington type I stamp (Scott 453) was issued July 3, 1914, and the earliest documented use was Sept. 26, 1914.
This stamp is in strong demand in all grades and in mint, never-hinged condition; unused, hinged condition; and used condition.
The Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers values the stamp in very fine grade and mint, never-hinged condition at $300; in unused, hinged condition at $140; and in used condition at $45. Examples in very fine grade are an excellent buy at 80 percent to 90 percent of Scott catalog value.
When identifying this stamp, once you have determined that it was printed by rotary press on watermarked paper, the challenge is differentiating between type I and the far more common type II stamp (Scott 454).
The Scott U.S. Specialized catalog gives details of and pictures the types, but it does not give the easiest way to tell them apart. There is a line slightly longer than 1mm extending from a lock of hair to below the ear. The white line is clear on type I but not on type II.
Also, the type II stamp almost always has an orange vermilion cast to the color, while the type I stamp never does.
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