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United States/Covers & Postmarks : New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

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51Studebaker
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18 Jul 2017
02:30:09pm
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New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels database is now published with over 5000 cancels currently listed. Additional new cancels will be added over time; if anyone has a cancel they would like to add to this community project please either contact me or simply post high resolution image in this thread.

http://www.stampsmarter.com/features/FancyCancels_Home.html

If anyone has any feedback, suggestions for improvement, or would like to become an administrator for this database please let me know.
Don
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keesindy
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19 Jul 2017
12:03:42am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Don, thanks for sharing! This should be very helpful. I've bookmarked The Cole book online and have Salkind's book, but there are many gaps remaining to be filled. I hope this database will encourage contributions that will fill some of those gaps. The digital aspect of this new tool should certainly make identification easier.

The intro page suggests sending scans of unlisted cancels. I assume that is a request for a scan of the stamp or cut square and that someone with experience will do the sketches or tracings of the cancels. Can you or someone clarify and expand on what exactly works best in terms of submittals?

Thanks!

Tom

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51Studebaker
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19 Jul 2017
03:21:00am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Hi Tom,
Thank you for the kind words, helps my wife and I keep up the motivation! (We have over 150 man hours in this project, many thanks to her for her love, devotion, and endless support.)

Yes, submissions can be in any format and I will do the tracings.

These cancels often evolved over time and some evolved pretty quickly. So when seeing if the cancel is already in the database keep in mind that your cancel might be an earlier or later 'version' of one of the existing ones. (And of course a cancel might also be a partial strike.)
Don

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keesindy
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20 Jul 2017
12:46:20am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Another question, Don. I've got a geometric cancel design from the 1890s that I've posted here and elsewhere in recent years. The design was too large for the stamps on which it was used (Scott US 219 and 220). No one else who has seen my copies can identify it. So the source remains unknown as far as I know. Would you want to do a partial tracing in a case like this or wait and hope that someone finds a complete copy on cover someday?

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51Studebaker
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20 Jul 2017
06:05:23am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Good Day Tom,
Please send me (or post) the trace and/or the original scan and we will get it listed. As time passes perhaps other examples will come to light or better minds than ours will raise our knowledge level. That’s the beauty of an online community database.
Don

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AntoniusRa
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21 Jul 2017
06:04:31pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Don, Nice piece of information for your site. I have a copy of the book and find it good fun trying to sort out the cancels. Below is a banknote that is what many think the holy grail of banknote fancy cancels. However, it is not in my copy of the book nor do I see it in all of the pages that you have up on your site. I cannot remember where it originated but I think there is someone here that does.
It also seems that my book has many more cancels than you show. My book is in storage and it would take a lot of time going thru it for ones you do not show but perhaps one day I can. As I remember, the person who gave me the book said it was the personal copy of Amos Enos (?) who was one of the authors.
The cancel was made specifically to frame the banknotes. The stamp is cut in at bottom right and cancel is shifted to the right as well but should be easily reconstructed.
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vinman
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21 Jul 2017
06:24:17pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Hi Mitchell,
I remember having this discussion before. It's the Pottsville, PA keyhole cancel. I am still searching for a copy. The last time I saw one up for auction I was the under bidder at $700.00.

Vince

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51Studebaker
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21 Jul 2017
08:11:07pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Hi Mitchell,
We are still uploading cancels, should be done in the next week or so. Thank you for the pretty keyhole, I will try to get it traced and loaded in the next few days.
Don

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musicman
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21 Jul 2017
10:11:45pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

The Eno & Skinner book on US cancels covering 1845 to 1869 is an excellent source for reference.

I don't have that one, but I do have one called "20TH Century United States Fancy Cancellations" by Loso & Windt (copyright 1952) that is also an excellent resource.

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AntoniusRa
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22 Jul 2017
12:02:24am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Vinman, What value was the cancel on? I assume the $700.00 winning bid was for the cancel and not so much the stamp it was on. Which brings up the debated question of: does the condition of the stamp matter much when the value is mostly in the cancel? I'd most often rather have a faulty 7 cent banknote than a nice 3,2 or 1 center. I'm rather attached to the stamp but $700 seems high, I'd part with mine for much less than that.

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keesindy
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22 Jul 2017
07:27:14am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Don, I was going from memory (a dangerous thing to do these days!) when I said that triangular geometric grid cancel was larger than the #219 and #220 stamps. It's a close call, but some examples are fairly complete.

Rather than copy and past the images of that cancel, I'm experimenting with pasting a link to my SoR thread, "SOTN and other cancels from the Union City, Indiana, hoard." There are multiple examples of that specific cancel in that thread along with a few other cancels you may want to trace.

https://stamporama.com/discboard/disc_main.php?action=20&id=16929#127684

It has been a while since I added any new material to that thread. Maybe doing so would a way for me to bring additional material to your attention for your project? You're free to trace any examples I have (or will) upload to SoR.

Here is the thread where I first posted about this triangular geometric grid cancel.

https://stamporama.com/discboard/disc_main.php?action=20&id=13324#98059

It's unfortunate that so many of my examples are off cover and don't include the post office identity. However, a few of my early 1890s cut square hoard do have post offices identified along with fancy/geometric cancels. You may find one or two examples in this thread that are worth scanning.

https://stamporama.com/discboard/disc_main.php?action=20&id=16659#127677

I'll have to get busy and add more examples to this thread and the first one I included above.

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51Studebaker
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22 Jul 2017
09:21:53am
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Good Day Tom,
Thank you for the links and all the nice Indiana cancel posts/images. Over the coming weeks I will begin tracing and adding many of these cancels. (I have to finish the 15-20 hours remaining before starting in on new material.)

Doing this online, and with a community effort, is by far better than trying to publish a book. In discussions with Bill Weiss about his NY Foreign mail cancels he related the extreme frustration he had after submitting it to the publishers and the next day having many new cancels come across his desk. Book publishing is very costly; publishing new revisions every year or two puts it out of reach to all but the most wealthy people.

I am intentionally using a SQL database foundation for many of these type projects because this is a technology choice which will outlive most of us. It also is platform independent and supports multiple user input and editing.

There are currently several new community databases being developed for other hobbyists. They have recognized the importance in publishing the individual work they have compiled over the years (usually in personal spreadsheets) and the sin of taking this work to the grave with them without sharing it.

If anyone would like to get their work published please message me and we can discuss the details and options.
Don

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vinman
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22 Jul 2017
01:50:32pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Mitch,
Here is the lot description. It is from a Schuyler Rumsey Sale. Part of the value was for the stamp and part for the cancel. Most of my Large Banknote fancy cancel collection is on the lower values, 1-7c. The condition of the stamp still matters especially on the higher value of the stamps, it depends on what faults you can live with. The stamp you show has a great cancel but there is too much damage to the stamp for my personal preference. I would really like to find the cancel on nice clean cover at a reasonable price but that is not going to happen. Happy

Sale 55 Lot 1328 o
Keyhole, of Pottsville, Pa., bold strike on 1870, 24¢ purple, rich color; minute unnoticeable tear at top left, Fine and rare cancel., This is the only recorded strike on the 24¢ value. There is only one recorded cover bearing this cancel dated August 1, 1871.; with 2011 P.F. certificate. Scott No. 153.
Whitfield No. 1116 Estimate $500 - 750.
Realized: $900

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AntoniusRa
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22 Jul 2017
06:13:29pm
re: New 1870-1894 US Fancy Cancels listing on Stamp Smarter

Vinman, Thanks for the info. Curious there is only one known on cover. It woul make me think there are perhaps less than a hundred on single stamps. It to bad such things can never be known.
Sorry to stray off topis but I have been updating my first page of Greece to include a very rare stamp that has a similar type of quandry attached to it. It has inverted control figures on the reverse which makes it one of the rarest Greek stamps (Scott does not even give it a value but just a slash). However, it has a smallest thin that affects the value. The stamp itself only catalogs for $24 with the value being the error.
I talked with someone from Karamitsos and he told me the stamp without the thin would probably open at a thousand dollars or more at auction but with the thin they would open around $300.
This just does not make much sense to me as does the keyhole cancel as the value is in modifier not the stamp.

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