The Hunt for Great Postmarks

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Introduction

There seems to be a recent upsurge in interests in North Borneo postmarks, especially the rare, less commonly seen ones. The three pictures below are quite testimonial to this. All were listed in ebay from a Dutch seller, and actually ended today, 25 April 2010. Lot [1] reached a whooping winning bid of $765.51, while lot [2] and [3] managed to get more than $200 in hammer prices. All won by a single bidder, although with stiff competitions and attracted more than 10 enthusiastic bidders. 

Lot 1

In lot [1], let's have a look at the most obvious postmarks i.e. the ones on the $5, $10 and $2 stamps. The purple $5 stamp is the 1889 version, tied with Kudat circular date stamp (cds) right at the centre, dated 29 MR 1892. This is the second earliest postmark from Kudat. From 1886 - 1894, it is usually strucked in black ink and later from 1894 - 1895 in blue, before black ink being used again from 1895 - 1900. The the green $2 stamps bear essentially the same postmark, dated 17 SP 1892. The postmark in $10 shows the year in 2 digits compared to the $5 and $2.

[1]

The first and second rows consist of semipostal stamps overprinted with the carmine Maltese cross and black inscription of "Red cross two cents", produced in 1916 and 1918 respectively. A proportion of these stamps was sold by the National Philatelic War Fund in aid of the Society of British Red Cross and the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. This was to fund the wounded or for the soldier's widow and orphans, following the World War I, where Great Britain declared war on Germany in August 4, 1914. The stamps sold by the National Philatelic War Fund are usually mint, whereas the ones retained by the North Borneo company are either in mint condition or used postally. The postally used stamps with this overprint are particularly rare especially from towns other than Sandakan (the capital city from 1883 - 1946). In the picture above, at least 2 stamps bear a clear Kudat postmark on the overprinted stamps, while the rest show vague cds from the same town.

Interestingly, the lot also includes some of the earliest North Borneo stamps, largely bearing the Kudat postmark as well. This is to be expected because Kudat was the capital city of North Borneo from 1881 - 1883, before being moved to Sandakan.

Lot 2


[2]

Stamps in this lot are largely tied with Sandakan postmark, the unique circular dated mark within a rectangular box as well as Tawao cds. The Tawao postmark is quite difficult to find but the Sandakan postmark is relatively common.  The green-black 18 cents stamp, as Silamstar pointed, was overprinted with the red "20 CENTS" inscription just after 2 months it was produced, therefore postmarks outside of Sandakan are considered very rare. Please look at his Kudat postmark on the 18 cents stamp here. The two 18 cents stamps in this lot bear the Sandakan postmarks. The other postmarks in this lot are unclear.

Lot 3


[3]

This lot consists of mostly Kudat cds and some Sandakan cds.

My North Borneo Airmail cover 1930

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Description

This is a new addition to my North Borneo collection, a Kudat airmail cover 1930. The cover was sent from Kudat to Sandakan on the 5th June 1930. It arrived Sandakan on the next day, 6 June 1930 with an arrival postmark on the reverse (not shown). The cover is franked with 13 pictorial stamps of 1925-1928 issue (Perf. 12½) from 1cent to 25 cents. These are tied with the airmail postmarks (5.2 cm x 2.2 cm). The top left corner of the cover is inscribed "Per Air Mail", with the Kudat cicular postmark below it. More on North Borneo airmail postmark and covers here. More on North Borneo RAF Airmail 1930.

Seaboat S1478

Trengganu's $100 stamp

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This is Trengganu's (now called Terengganu) highest denomination stamp - $100 used both for postage and revenue purposes. It is unimaginable though, what kind of postage would cost $100 in 1921-1941. The stamp depicts Trengganu's Sultan Sulaiman Badrul Alam Shah (1920-1942). In Stanley Gibbons catalogue, this is SG47 and values at £6000 for mint stamp. In reality though, as always the case, the general market price is usually lower than that, and with this particular stamp, the hammer price is €3250, sold recently by a Spanish seller in an auction in March 22, 2010. Overall the stamp is beautifully preserved, well centered, with defect-free perforations. This is probably the "All-China-is-Red" of Trengganu, due to the fact that it is red and the most expensive of all Trengganu's stamps.

Cartoon

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Keep Your Stamps in a Safe Place!

Most Expensive North Borneo Stamps in ebay March 2010

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"Most Interesting, Most Expensive March 2010"

This month, the top 4 listings are dominated by collection lots from nystamps. All of the listings from this seller is without any description, just pictures. Unfortunately because of the sheer numbers of listings every week, the accompanying pictures are deleted as soon as the transaction is done. This means we don't have any information as to what the lots consist of. Nevertheless, I included the top 10 most expensive items this month, just to make it more representative. So here goes:

Rank
Picture
Description
Remarks


1



                                                                                             
$572.00

(€415)




Ended 03.03.2010

SG Cat price
?

Seller:

nystamps

USA

18 bids


2



                                                                                
$556.00
(€404)

Ended 13.03.2010

SG Cat price
?
Seller:
nystamps

USA

32 bids


3



$510.00
(€377)


Ended 19.03.10

SG Cat Price (?)
Seller:
nystamps
USA

4 bids


4





$485

(€358)



Ended 18.03.2010

SG Cat Price £

Seller:
nystamps

USA

17 bids







5






$395

(€292)

Eye-catching six colour franking. Sent by registered mail and nicely cancelled by Jesselton, British North Borneo cds strikes. Sender was obviously involved or owned the Dayak village exhibit at the Coney Island fair in New York with its notorious pygmy tatooed warriors and so on. He used an American company envelope , to write to the Secretary of the Canadian National Exhibition, or CNE, in Toronto - an ongoing annual country fair -probably to attempt to interest the Canadian enterprise in buying another artificial Dayak village! Dated January 25, 1910 both with cancels and this interesting Jesselton registration handstamp. Routed via Singapore (two cancels one crossed-out in pencil perhaps because of a dating error?), and London.
Ended 10.03.2010

SG Cat Price
?

 
Seller:
gorfa

Canada

4 bids
6


$391
(€289)

 Ended 11.03.2010

SG Cat Price £

Seller:
nystamps

USA

33 bids
7


£220.00
(€243)

A very interesting Japanese Occupation stamps of North Borneo. The big cover is franked with 15 North Borneo and Brunei stamps (with the overprinted Japanese inscriptions) and tied with neat cancellations. The cover is addressed to Kuching, Sarawak and on top of the address, inscribed "First Day Cover". The arrangement of the stamps around the address in a diamond-like shape is somewhat unorthodox and possibly a deliberate attempt to make the cover look better, although, I would probably prefer the traditional way of affixing stamps on a cover. Nevertheless, the cover is very rare indeed, and I'm sure £220 is definetely a good bargain!

Ended
11.03.10

SG Cat Price £

seller:
bronx0707

Netherlands

4 bids
8




£220.00
(€243)

This is a very interesting censored North Borneo cover. On the front cover, there's an airmail postmark ("via imperial"). On top of the cover is inscribed with the sender's name: "From Dr. and Mrs. Tuxford, Lahad Datu". On the lower left, there is a pencil writing: "Stamps on back". Sent from Lahad Datu, dated 17 April 1940. 

On the reverse shows a boxed censor postmark in black ink inscribed "Passed by 29 Censor North Borneo".   Overall, 16 North Borneo stamps are used, from 1939 issues (1c, 3c, 4c and 6c) ammounting to 60c.
Ended
12.03.10

SG Cat Price
?

Seller:
northumbrian

Scotland

13 bids
9



£210.00
(€237)

Another interesting cover sent by the same sender: "Dr. and Mrs. Tuxford, Lahad Datu". The 1 cent stamps are overprinted with War Tax (1941). On the lower left corner of the cover is postmarked with a triangle mark "Passed for Transmission North Borneo, 29".
Ended
07.03.10



SG Cat Price
?



Seller:
northumbrian



Scotland

15 bids
10

£201.00
(€227)

Another airmail cover with the purple "via imperial" postmark. The cover is sent from Beaufort dated 21 May 1940. Franked with 4 stamps of 15 cents from the 1939 issue, showing a dayak with a shield. The cover is also tied with the North Borneo censor postmark: "Passed by 8 Censor North Borneo" in black ink.
Ended
07.03.10

SG Cat Price
?

Seller:
northumbrian

Scotland

10 bids

The selection criteria for this list include (a) stamps/philatelic items of North Borneo appearing in ebay, (b) must be available internationally and (c) must be on auction format only.

Check out the list in other months:
January 2010     February 2010