Lot 239: Encased Postage, Three Cents Joseph L. Bates with FANCYGOODS as One Word

Early American

December 10, 2016, 9:00 AM PST
Rancho Santa Fe, CA, US
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Description: Encased Postage Stamps
Unique Three Cents "Joseph L. Bates" with "FANCYGOODS" as One Word
EP-37a, HB-51, S-27, Reed-BA03FG. Three Cents. JOSEPH L. BATES. "FANCYGOODS" as One Word. Choice Extremely Fine.
Rated as (UNIQUE - The Only Example Known) according to Fred Reed. Although there are only dashes in place of values in all grades... to quote a line or two from 1989 Bowers & Hodder "The Standard Catalogue":

"The Bates encasements are among the rarest in the series. Only the 1 denomination and the 3 variety with FANCY GOODS spelled as Two Words are really collectable. The 3 variety with FANCYGOODS spelled as One Word has not been sold publicly in nearly a century..." It continues and concludes, "There is presently no complete collection of Bates' encasements."

This unique example was discovered as part of a consignment to a Robert Siegel stamp auction in 2008 (no insert tag). In that sale it was cataloged as follows: "Joseph L. Bates, Boston, 3c Rose, "FANCYGOODS" One Word (Scott EP27). Strong stamp color and mica essentially intact, minor wrinkles, Extremely Fine and very rare, very few of the 3c Bates are known (in either variety)."

All in all, this cataloger agrees with their attribution and grade of Extremely Fine. It is indeed quite choice, having excellent overall eye appeal. The stamp is a fresh, bright bold red and extremely clean being near perfectly centered. It is under crystal clear, unbroken mica that shows only slight traces of circulation, as does the glossy chestnut case. It is totally defect free having no bumps or detractions and sharp, distinct crisp legends to the reverse side. This is an absolutely authentic example and of the highest possible rarity. Unique and the Finest Known.
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