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::: CANCELS - Miscellaneous :::

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Adv lot 29 #4

A famous cover (courtesy of Siegel Auction Galleries, Advertiser Lot No. 29, Sale 769) bearing three 13 Scott No. 3 stamps and postmarked February 20 (1852). The stamps are canceled with the red misc?(sponge) mark. There is debate over what material was inked to make this mark. Some say it was a piece of a sponge, others say a piece of sugar cane. Are there any other guesses?

Three marks are included here, but if one reviews the Missionary census in Volume 1 of the Siegel catalogue for Advertiser Collection, the list could easily grow. I expect other cancels will come to light to be added to this section.

Davey included the star cancels in his category entitled "Various Circular Devices" within the Circles section of his listing and made no mention of misc?(sponge). I removed the star cancels from the Circles (my "Rings") section because they are unlike the target cancels that make up the rest of the Section.

1.

misc?(sponge)
Rarity 1RR
Red

Scott 3

Davey unlisted
Shaffer 2-80

Usage: Honolulu, early 1852. Twelve strikes are known, all on Scott No. 3 [except the piece of a cover bearing a combination of Scott Nos. 1 and 3 is canceled with this cancel so it appears incidentally once on a Scott No. 1].
Shaffer: "looks like a sponge. always red, seen only on Missionaries. Known Feb. 20, 1852."

This mark defies description. Some people think it was made with a sponge, others contend a dry piece of sugar cane made the mark, still others reject both theories. From the cover illustration above, it is hard to agree with the sugar cane theory because there is no consistent shape as one would expect if a hard object were being used.

2.

misc17(star in cogwheel)
Rarity 1RRRR
Black

STAR
2-182 Shaffer rendering

Davey rendering

Davey 142
Shaffer 2-182

Usage: This cancel is attributed to the San Francisco Foreign Mail Department; usage in the 1870s.
Davey: "Star of solid color, in hollow cogwheel, 17mm., black. Very rare."
Shaffer: "I have one which is 19-20mm. on 6-cent green, 1870's." About ten examples are known to exist.

3.

misc20(circled star)
Scarcity 4
Purple, blue, black

2-181 circled star

Davey 141
Shaffer 2-181

Usage: Koloa, late-1880's to mid-1890's.
Davey: "Colorless star in solid circle, surrounded by separate outer circle, 19mm. Blue, black, purple, on most issues to 1894. Fairly common. A rough forgery of this marking was among the Rudoloph Thomas counterfeits; the genuine are clear, from a metal stamp."

I find these cancels most often on Scott No. 43 and sometimes on Scott No. 75. Rudolph "Greasy Dick" Thomas, a notorious forger of many cancellations, died in 1941, so he was a familiar name to Davey. I have not seen his forgery of this cancel. The measurement I get on the genuine cancel is roughly 20mm. Also, I have seen only purple and blue strikes.

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