Express Company 005: Adams Express Company
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Express Company 005: Adams Express Company
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Examples of the cancels, when available, are posted.
Richard Fullerton documented two street railroad companies in Michigan that used printed cancels. The examples of these cancels are rare if not unique, and the style of the cancels are exactly the same and likely produced by the same printer even though the railroads were located in two distant cities: Saginaw and Detroit.
Saginaw and Detroit. These cities are also something of a mystery. There were Union Street Railways in multiple cities in the United States at the time of these cancels. And there is only passing evidence that I've found so far of a Detroit and Wyandotte company. Fullerton provides no history of these railways in his manual, and only provides the cities as an identifying location for the railways. Are these the right cities for these railways? And is Detroit and Wyandotte the proper name for the cancel initials? Any proof that anybody might have to confirm these identities would be helpful. For now I will go with these locations and names, but I would like to know Mr. Fullerton's sources and proof.
SR005: The Detroit & Wyandotte Street Railway Company
I have found little information available on this streetcar line. When many of the Detroit street railroads were folded into a single organization in 1900, histories of Detroit street railways say little about the Detroit and Wyandotte. We will keep looking.
Further, the use of printed cancels by these street railway firms in Michigan is a quirky event, as no other street railways in the US appeared to have used printed cancels. Why are there so few remaining of these cancels too? Any evidence of genuine use of these cancels is sought. Please let us know if you have seen or have any at email@example.com.
Type 1: Three lines of fancy type caps and lower case letters. "D. & W." 17mm long. "St. R'y Co." 21.5mm long. Date "7 -- 7 -- 1900" 22mm long. Caps 2.75mm high. Printed in Blue ink.
2ct Carmine Rose a. Date 7-7-1900 (2) HH
SR010: The Union Street Railway Company
Street railways had been a way of life in East Saginaw and Saginaw City since 1863. At that time the cars were pulled by horses and traveled over strap rails with wooden stringers. "Little Jake" Seligman, who owned the old East Saginaw City Street Railway, created a corporation which he called the Union Street Railway. In 1889 "Little Jake" converted his street cars to electric power. The city council drafted new ordinances and licensed the new electric railway. In the fall of 1890, the Bartlett Illuminating Company signed a contract to provide power for the new venture. As sparks flew from the rails, some residents refused to ride the "fire spitting devil." In 1895 the antiquated Saginaw City Street Railway sold its property and franchise because it couldn't afford to convert to the new electric cars. In 1900 the Saginaw-Bay City Railway Company was formed by the consolidation of the Saginaw Valley Traction Company and the Bay City Traction and Electric Company. from Riverside Park & Saginaw Valley Traction Company, by Anna Mae Maday, Manager, Eddy Historical & Genealogy Collection of Hoyt Public Library in Saginaw, Michigan, September 2000.
Type 1: Three lines of fancy type caps and lower case letters. "Union" 11.75mm long. "St. R'y Co." 21.5mm long. Date "5 -- 1 -- 99." 17mm long. Caps 2.75mm high. Printed in blue ink.
2ct Carmine Rose a. Date 5-1-99 (1) roulette
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
To date we've viewed a ticket from Philadelphia to Bremen via the American Line S/S Pennland; a ticket sent to us by JW Palmer for a trip from Jacksonville, FL to Nassau, Bahamas via the Florida East Coast Steamship Co. steamer Lincoln; and a ticket from New York to Bremen via the North German Lloyd Steamship Company steamer Luitpold, one of four tickets sent to us by Bob Patetta.
Two of Bob's four tickets, like JW Palmer's submission, are from the Florida East Coast Steamship Company. In fact they are both datelined: NY Dec 22/99, exactly like Palmer's ticket!
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Saturday, October 23, 2010
They nonetheless serve to show interesting usage of the 25-cent and 10-cent battleship revenues respectively paying the 5-cent per $100 in face value tax rate.
JW Palmer scan
JW Palmer scan
JW Palmer photo
Friday, October 22, 2010
The most common of all of the St.Louis Provisionals are the Meyer Brothers stamps printed in black ink. Bob Hohertz provides more background and images of all of the Meyer Brothers stamps here.
Read more about this company and these stamps at Bob Hohertz' site.
The following text originally appeared in the
2008 Scott US Specialized Catalog
Special Feature, pp 597-599.
The St. Louis Provisionals
A Tribute to Charles A. Nast
by Hermann Ivester
The Spanish-American War tax act was signed into law by President William McKinley on June 13, 1898. It was enacted to “provide ways and means to meet war expenditures, and for other purposes.” It increased certain existing taxes and imposed new ones. One of the new taxes was a tax on a wide variety of products falling under the broad category of “medicinal proprietary articles and preparations.” Manufacturers were required to affix a tax stamp to each such article offered for sale. The tax rates were based on the selling price of their products as follows:
Selling Price Tax
5 cents or less 1/8 cent
More than 5 cents to 10 cents 1/4 cent
More than 10 cents to 15 cents 3/8 cent
More than 15 cents up to 25 cents 5/8 cent
For each additional 25 cents or fraction thereof 5/8 cent
These rates were less than those imposed on proprietary articles under the Civil War Revenue Act of 1862, passed to finance the Civil War, that were repealed in 1883. The new taxes became effective July 1, 1898, and the Internal Revenue Department was unable to supply the huge quantities of stamps needed. Among the devices used to meet this emergency was that of Dr. Kilmer & Company of Binghamton, New York, who in frustration resorted to overprinting 1c, 2c, and 3c postage stamps. The amount paid for the postage stamps used exceeded the amount of the taxes owed. The Kilmer company was rewarded for its efforts by having at least one shipment of its famous “Swamp Root” medicine bearing the stamps seized, and the company was subjected to the threat of prosecution.
Medicine manufacturers in St. Louis (plus one in Macon, Georgia) avoided such difficulties by striking a deal with the local collector of internal revenue. The agreement allowed them to print their own stamps for temporary use and to pay their taxes by sworn returns until the government-issued stamps were available. These stamps are commonly referred to as the St. Louis Provisionals.
The St. Louis Provisionals eventually became known to revenue stamp collectors, who began to seek them out. The most determined effort was made by Charles A. Nast** of Denver, a collector, columnist for Mekeel’s Weekly Stamp News, chronicler of new revenue stamps, and one of the great philatelists of all time. It is Nast to whom we are indebted for most of the knowledge we now have of these provisionals. Through the medium of his regular column in Mekeel’s, Nast became the focal point for all discoveries during 1903-1905. Upon learning of each newly discovered provisional, he wrote the drug company seeking information as the company’s use of the provisionals and examples of the stamps. When he was unable to obtain to obtain satisfactory answers to his questions, he called upon a friend, W. A. Sisson, who lived in St. Louis, to visit the company. In the case of ten values of the Meyer Brothers Drug Co., new Scott Nos. RS351-361, it was Sisson who obtained the stamps during his personal visit. In response to Nast’s first letter, the manager had, incorrectly, stated that all remainders had been destroyed. The ones we have today certainly would have been destroyed had it not been for Nast’s diligent efforts to learn all about these stamps.
Nast also looked forward to the day that the St. Louis Provisionals would be properly catalogued, although he despaired of their being listed in the standard Scott catalog. In his column in the August 8, 1903, issue of Mekeel’s he noted “there can be little doubt as to their being veritable provisional revenue stamps, having every requisite to entitle them to admission under this head to our albums – I will not say catalogue, as so many good things are now missing in that ‘good book,’ which will only find their proper niches when we…publish our own catalogue.” And Nast did, indeed, edit “A New And Complete Catalogue Of The Revenues Of The United States, Embracing All Documentary And Proprietary Stamps…And A List Of All Known Varieties Of Provisional...Stamps Of The Spanish-American War Period,” published by George J. Carter, circa 1907. Included in this Catalogue are new Scott Nos. RS320-321, RS335, RS350-355, RS357-RS361, RS379 (a reserved number because the existence of this stamp has never been confirmed), RS381 and RS385-387. Ironically, the Dr. Kilmer provisionals, whose use the government deemed unlawful, have been listed in the Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers since 1957 but were not included in Nast’s catalogue. Alas, a later issue of Nast’s catalogue never appeared. Although several subsequent listings of the stamps have appeared in philatelic periodicals, Nast’s beloved St. Louis Provisionals were banished from a current catalog for more than 100 years – until now. With the accompanying listing in the 2008 Scott U.S. Specialized Catalogue it can be said that Charles Nast’s vision has finally become reality.
Skips in numbers [in the Scott listings] are to allow for new discoveries of previously unknown denominations or types, previously unknown users, and denominations listed in previous lists that were not in the auctions of the Gaudio Collection in 1982 (John W. Kaufman Auction 85, June 5, 1982) or the Joyce Collection in 1991 (Daniel F. Kelleher, Inc. 589th Sale, June 4-6, 1991) and are presently unknown. For example, No. RS325, the Fairchild Chemical Laboratory Company stamp, came to light after the Joyce sale, and No. RS349, the 5 cent green Meyer Brothers, a previously unknown denomination in green, showed up in State Revenue Society Auction 16 in 2000. Fairchild was a previously unknown user. With the appearance of this listing, additional stamps will almost certainly be reported. The specific numbers reserved are the following:
RS322: 2 ½ cent Antikamnia, black on yellow. Lot 1049 in the Gaudio sale was described as “2 ½ c black on yellowish.” It was purchased by Joyce. However, it was not included in the Joyce sale, which must be presumed from the fact that the two 2 ½ cent Antikamnia stamps in the sale were not pictured and were described as black but with no indication that the paper was other than white. The stamp listed in the Gaudio sale may have been on toned paper rather than yellow paper. In Nast’s column in the August 8, 1903, Mekeel’s, he reprinted a letter from the Antikamnia company indicating that the 1/8 cent stamps were printed on yellow paper “to distinguish them form the 2 ½ cent provisionals which were printed on white paper,” so it is highly improbable that the 2 ½ cent was printed on yellow paper.
RS226: 2 ½ cent Lambert, black on white. Nast referred to a letter from the Lambert company indicating it used a total of 6,500 of these stamps, all printed in black on white, in his column in the August 8, 1903 Mekeel’s. In his listing of these stamps in the 1908 United States Revenue Society Year Book, Nast also listed the stamp as black on white, and did not list the red on white. Joyce listed both types in the May 1956 The American Revenuer, but he dropped the black on white listing in his list in the December 1970 Scott’s Monthly Stamp Journal. The black-on-white listings are clearly erroneous, as the black on white is presently unknown, and the red on white is common relative to most of the other St. Louis Provisionals, a fact consistent with the large number of 6,500 cited by Nast.
RS341, RS342, RS344, RS346, RS347, and RS348 1/4 cent, 1/8 cent, 1 cent, 2 cent, 3 cent, 4 cent, Meyer Brothers, green. The fact that the printing in black contained all of these denominations indicates that the earlier printings in green may have also. The 5 cent green was not publicly known prior to 2000, so the possibility of further discoveries still exists.
RS356 1 ¼ cent Meyer Brothers, black. The company used this denomination in green, so it could also exist in black.
RS362 No Value, Meyer Brothers, black. Joyce listed a no-value black stamp in the February 1950 American Revenuer but not in the May 1956 American Revenuer nor in the December 1970 Scott’s Monthly Stamp Journal.
RS373 and RS374 1 ¼ cent and 1 7/8 cent Phenique. These were listed by Nast in the 1908 US Revenue Society Year Book, and by Joyce in the February 1950 and May 1956 issues of The American Revenuer. Joyce referred to them in the December 1970 Scott’s Monthly Stamp Journal as having been listed by Nast. They probably do exist.
RS379 and RS380 ¼ cent and 1 ¼ cent Prickly Ash Bitters. In his Mekeel’s column of march 25, 1905, Nast quoted a letter from the Prickly Ash Bitters Co. indicated it used a 1 ¼ cent stamp. In his listing in the 1908 US Revenue Society Yearbook that updated the known stamps as listed in his catalog, Nast listed a ¼ cent stamp and described it as being on “very rough paper, same as Meyer Bros’ Drug Co. used.” He may have presumed this because that is how he described the paper of the 11 ¼ cent Meyer Brothers stamp, and the Prickly Ash Bitters Co. acknowledged in a letter that the same printing company produced both their stamps and the Meyer Brothers stamps. Joyce stated that he did not know of either denomination of Prickly Ash Bitters in the December 1970 Scott’s Monthly Stamp Journal.
Meyer Brothers, Nos. RS351-355, RS357-361 The Meyer Brothers stamps printed in black were undoubtedly prepared for use, although none has ever been found in used condition. Apparently the regular stamps became available before many, or perhaps any, were used. In his January 14, 1905 column in Mekeel’s, Nast described how these unused stamps were unearthed by a company clerk after days of searching by the clerk and Nast’s friend, W. A. Sisson. Nast wrote that “no doubt these were all used, but only for a very short time.” Nast further observed that “having been authorized by the government under and by an observance of the proper regulations of the Internal Revenue Dept. the must be classed as provisional proprietaries of the ’98 series.
The other question about these stamps is why 1 cent, 2 cent, 3 cent, 4 cent, 5 cent, and 11 ¼ cent denominations were printed, since no single item would require that amount of tax. The 1 cent and higher values could well have been for packages of multiples of lower priced articles. A package of four 10 cent items would have required a tax of 1 cent, eight items a tax of 2 cents, 12 items a tax of 3 cents, 16 items a tax of 4 cents, 20 items a tax of 5 cents, and 45 items and tax of 11 ¼ cents. It is known that the 11 ¼ cent in green, No. RS350b was used, and Nast’s correspondent who sent him the stamp recalled getting off a package, not a bottle, while employed in a drug store. The 5 cent stamp in green is also known in used condition. Shipping multiple articles in packages requiring only one stamp would have saved time and effort of applying a stamp to each article, although that is how government-issue stamps were to be used. Nevertheless, the denominations do have a plausible explanation.
Phenique Chemical Company, Nos. RS370-371, RS375-377 These stamps were printed on yellow paper, type a, and on buff or brown paper, type b. The three type a stamps known on yellow paper are uncanceled, and the four type b stamps known on buff paper are all canceled with a round date stamp of August 5, 1898. This date was unquestionably after the regular issue stamps became available, as a letter from Meyer Brothers printed in Nast’s February 25, 1905 column states that Meyer Brothers used provisionals from July 1 to July 21, 1898. A letter from Prickly Ash Bitters Co. printed in Nast’s March 25, 1905 column also confirms usage of its provisionals until July 21,1898. From these facts it is fair to infer that the stamps on yellow paper were used and that the stamps from a later printing on buff paper with the August 5, 1898, datestamps are remainders canceled after their use was suspended by the regular issue stamps.
Only one known example is known for many of the St. Louis Provisionals. Except for Nos. RS351-RS355 and RS357-361, most of the others are rare. From my own unscientific tracking of the appearance of these stamps on the market for more than 25 years I am aware of only the following numbers of the rarer stamps:
One known: RS325, RS330, RS340a, RS345c, RS349a, RS350b, RS370b, RS371a, RS372b, RS375a, RS376b, RS377b, RS385, RS387, RS395
Two known: RS343b and RS386
Three known: RS372a and RS381
Five known: RS390
Additional examples of some and perhaps all of these undoubtedly exist, but they will always be rare. In particular, a letter from the Prickly Ash Bitters Co. to Nast indicated that 4.062 examples of RS381 were used, so more than three stamps should have survived.
Finally, there are six different variations of the wording on the stamps. The text [and examples] of each are shown below, with the variations underlined.
Hermann Ivester is a lawyer in Little Rock, Ark. He began collecting stamps at the age of 7 or 8. He soon became interested in revenue stamps and was a confirmed revenuer when he joined the American Revenue Association in 1955 at the age of 13. He acquired his first St. Louis Provisional at the age of 16 and has been intrigued by them ever since. His collecting interests include all aspects of United States and United States-related revenue stamps. It is requested that discoveries of new varieties or additional examples of the rarer St. Louis Provisionals be reported to the Scott editor and to Mr. Ivester.
**Charles A. Nast lived from 1857 to 1931 in Cincinnati, Ohio and Denver Colorado. He worked as a reporter and photographer. Charles A. Nast was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, in September 1857 to parents of German origin. He arrived in Denver, Colorado, in 1875. He initially worked as a reporter for the Denver Tribune and covered the Black Hills Gold Rush where he fought with Captain Jack Crawford and Wild Bill Hickock with the Sioux. Later, he worked as a photograph retoucher for A.E. Rinchart. By 1920 he owned his own photography studio. He married Catherine and they had six children. Nast died in 1931 in Denver.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Examples of the cancels, when available, are posted.
RR100: The Sioux City and Pacific Railroad
From the historical information at the back of the Fullerton Catalog: Chartered August 1, 1864. Road opened March 1 1868 to California Junction, Iowa; and to Fremont, Nebr. February 11 1869. Operated the FE&MVRR (RR045) since 1871 upon completion of its first 51 miles of rail. Came under C&NW (RR055) control in 1884 and operated under its own name until 1901 when it was completely absorbed into the C&NW.
The SC&PRR operated within the states of Iowa and Nebraska, and was built to connect Sioux City to the Union Pacific at Fremont, Nebraska. As stated above, the line became a part of the Chicago and North Western in 1880s. It is now a main line of the Union Pacific. The "Blair Subdivison" of what is now the Unions Pacific was part of the old SC&PRR line and was also once part of the FE&MVRR.
Fullerton lists two types, on only the 1ct denomination. An unlisted and no year date cancel is included below:
Type 1: Two lines of plain type all caps 3 1/2mm high. RR initials 23mm long. A line of 16 dashes 22mm long and 6.5mm below. Date 1899 is 2mm high, 6mm long and 8mm below RR initials. Figure 1 of date is serifed.
1ct Pale Blue a. Normal (1) Roulette
Type 2: Same as above except that date 1900 is 7mm long and 8.5mm below RR initials. Figure 1 of date is not serifed.
1ct Pale Blue a. Normal (2) HH
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Again, for more details about how all of these three New York State stamp issues were used, I invite readers to Michael Mahler's series of articles on the American Revenue Association's website. The specific article about the Tax on Investment stamps may be found here.
TAX EXEMPT FOR TWO YEARS
Boxed 50-cent Battleship Stamp Cancel:
C.C.C. & ST. L. RY. Co.
Michael Mahler scan
As Mahler notes in his definitive article, the New York Tax on Investment actually was simply a renewal of the Secured Debt tax, albeit with new increased tax rates and a new set of stamps. Because the new stamps weren't immediately available the old Secured Debt stamps were used for several months. The "carryover" usage of the Secured Debt stamps is illustrated on the C.C.C. & St. L. Railway bond shown below.
It was originally issued on November 1, 1899 and then properly taxed 50-cents with an R171 Battleship revenue. On September 18, 1917 when the owner decided to register it with the State of New York and pay the then current Tax on Investment fee of $10 for five years, a $10 Secured Debt stamp from the 1911 issue was used to pay the fee.Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago, & St. Louis Railway
$1,000, 4% Gold Bond Issued November 1, 1899
with $10 Secured Debt Stamp Paying Later 1917 Tax on Investment 5-Year Rate
Boxed 50-cent Battleship Stamp Cancel:
C.C.C. & ST. L. RY. Co.
Boxed $10 Secured Debt Stamp Cancel:
TAX EXEMPT FOR FIVE YEARS
Monday, October 18, 2010
Starting on the two-cent X designs, RN X6 is fairly simple. There are many different shades of the two-cent imprints, but only three are listed, two under X6: yellow and pale olive.
Unlike the Civil War imprints, some X’s do appear to be pure yellow. Which ones may depend on the eye of the beholder. To me, the imprint on this ornate check is a good example. In the area of imprinted revenues, any murky color that cannot be readily identified is classified as “olive.”
This check is the only one currently considered to have an imprint colored “pale olive.” I have seen an one on a check of another user that could be classified as such as well. There was no regulation specifying imprint colors, so anything could be used providing it did not interfere with the function of the document.
Two-cent imprint trial color proofs are known in brown, green and black at least, though none of these colors were used in practice.