Top 5 Items of the Month
Late again… :( After having to cheat last month due to a slow June, July has not disappointed. I start with this unassuming postcard sent from Austria to the UK, and then redirected to Ireland with my favourite stamp! Great! Another mixed country franking to add to my collection! Unfortunately the final price of $450 (£266.64 to me) blew me out of the water. I had thought this might have been a case of two people putting in big bids but not expecting anyone else to care. However, there seemed to be 18 careful bids up to this figure. A closer look revealed it was a printed advertising card from Sigmund Friedl. A quick google search and old faithful Wikipedia showed me the light. It turns out the Sigmund Friedl is one of the most famous philatelists, having sold the Sweden Tre Skilling Banco for a sum of 4000 gulden to the famous collector, Philipp von Ferrary before turning to defrauding collectors in later life. So a very interesting item for the philately historian.
This interesting piece caught my eye, but I wasn’t that excited to pay £55.74 for this 2 1/2d “in combination” with a Spanish 25c, cancelled in Seville. My opinion is that the 25c covered the cost of postage, and the 2 1/2d was fortuitously cancelled at the same time.
This attractive piece has six 1/2d vermilions cancelled by the rubber datestamps of the Army Post Office at Modder Spruit. My second use of Wikipedia in a month reveals that “Modderspruit is a town in Bojanala District Municipality in the North West province of South Africa.” Short and sweet… I’m still learning about Boer War philately, but my gut says it must be scarce, and I’ve never seen this town cancel before. If only it were a complete cover! £44.40 is a good price for a piece though.
And last but not least…I couldn’t let a month go by without a bit of destination mail! New Zealand isn’t the rarest of destinations of course, but as this letter was sent underpaid, the New Zealand post office struck it with a nice “TO PAY / 5d / DOUBLE DEFFICIENT POSTAGE” tax handstamp. Even though it’s a little aged, it sold for £39.