Postage due stamps overprinted for Puerto Rico in demand
Stamp Market Tips by Henry Gitner and Rick Miller
The Puerto Rican archipelago lies among the Greater Antilles in the northeast Caribbean Sea between the Dominican Republic and the United States Virgin Islands.
Christopher Columbus claimed Puerto Rico for Spain in 1493. It remained a Spanish colony until 1898 when it passed to the United States as a result of the Spanish-American War. Today Puerto Rico remains an unincorporated territory of the United States.
Initially U.S. stamps overprinted “Porto Rico” or “Puerto Rico” were placed in use. In 1900 they were replaced by unoverprinted U.S. postage stamps.
In 1899 U.S. Numeral postage due stamps (U.S. Scott J38, J39 and J42) were overprinted “Porto Rico” in black at a 36-degree angle to the design of the postage stamp. The 1¢ and 2¢ overprinted postage due stamps (Puerto Rico J1-J2) are missing from many U.S. collections and are in demand.
The Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers values the 1¢ stamp at $22.50 in unused hinged condition and $50 in mint never hinged condition. The 2¢ stamp is valued at $20 in unused hinged condition and $45 in mint never-hinged condition.
Both stamps are a good buy in very fine grade at 80 percent to 100 percent of Scott catalog values.
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