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Canadian Stamp Auctions

Stamp Market Commentary

Commentary No. 94 - 17 April, 2007

Where are These Rare Stamps?
Classics That Haven’t Appeared at Auction
in over 10 Years

We have noticed that there are a number of early Canadian stamps that have not been offered at auction for some time. Collectors who are chasing these stamps and their varieties must find it very frustrating. When they get a chance, as we have seen in some other recent auctions, it seems that nothing will stop them and the bidding can get very interesting.

A look through our pricing records reveals a number of early classics that have not come to auction. Details of the some of the ones that have not sold in the last 10 years are shown below:

No Sales in the past 10 years:

Scott 4b
3d red – bisect on cover
Last sold on April 28, 1996 by Robert A. Siegel, New York

Unitrade 4iv
3d mint orange red on thin paper
Last sold on October 29, 1988 by Charles G. Firby

Scott 5c
6d slate grey – bisect on cover
Last sold on November 13, 1991 by Charles G. Firby

Scott 8b
½d rose, mint on vertically ribbed paper
Last sold on June 24, 1998 by R.Maresch & Son

Scott 10a
6d reddish purple – bisect on cover
Last sold on April 23, 1996 by Robert A. Siegel, New York

Unitrade 11i
½d lilac rose used

Last sold on April 28, 1999 by Charles G. Firby

Unitrade 12v
3d red with stitch watermark
We have no record of a copy sold at auction

Unitrade 13i
6d brown violet with stitch watermark
Last sold on May 12, 1991 By Saskatoon Stamp Centre

Scott 16a
10¢ chocolate brown – bisect on cover
Last sold on October 8, 1992 by R. Maresch & Son

Scott 17d
10¢ red lilac – bisect on cover
Last sold on March 19, 1993 by Christie’s, New York


Some recent sales:

The following are some examples of stamps that had not sold for many years but which were recently offered at auction:

Unitrade 4x
Matthew Bennett Intl.- February 21, 2007
3d mint block with stitch watermark.
Estimate $10,000 US, realized $17,400.
No previous record of a sale of a mint copy.

Scott 47var
Charles G. Firby – October 21, 2006
50¢ Small Queen, used, with stitch watermark.
Estimate $850, realized $539.
No previous a record of the sale of this variety.

Unitrade 107bi
R. Maresch & Son – February 28, 2007
2¢ Admiral Booklet with pyamid guidelines.
Catalogue $4,200, realized $3,250.
A copy was last sold in 1999 for $625.

Scott 243a
Charles G. Firby - March 9, 2007
20¢ imperforate plate block.
Estimate $1,000, realized $2,106.
A copy was last sold in 1997 for $675.


Over the past two years, many new record prices have been realized at auction. It would seem that there are serious bidders out there looking for the above type of rare varieties. Collectors who have copies of these rare items may find this a very good time to offer them at auction. Because of their scarcity, the results could be nicely surprising on the upside.

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©2007, Canadian Stamp Auctions Ltd., Montréal, Québec, Canada