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United States/Stamps : William Piper's Hair

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earwaves
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Well, at least I got to have a haircut in the Penny Lane barber shop.
11 Feb 2021
11:30:37am
To most of us, the one visible difference between the William T. Piper C129 airmail issue of 1991 and the C132 of 1993 is that his hair touches or doesn't touch the stamp's frame.

Mystic's product page for C132 explains, "The 1991 William T. Piper stamp was reissued in 1993 without prior announcement. It was first noticed by a collector in Salt Lake City, Utah, who noticed the plate number 'S1111' was different than (sic) the previous issue’s 'A111.' The reissue was printed by Stamp Venturers, the successor to American Bank Note Company. Minor differences mark the reissue, such as an 11.2 perforation, as opposed to the perf 11 of the first issue. There were also differences in gum, paper, and other markings."

I don't happen to be a collector who gets into such tiny varieties. Even the hair thing isn't that interesting to me, but my album does have two spots for those two stamps.

I just want to know to know why that particular stamp had to be reissued. Did USPS run out of 40-centers?
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DavidG
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APS member since 2004
11 Feb 2021
07:56:40pm
re: William Piper's Hair

Earwaves:

I was living in Texas 1994-5. In 1993-1995, the domestic letter rate was 29-cents. In January 1995 it was increased to 32-cents. In the same rate era, the 1993-1995 letter rate to Canada was 40-cents. In January 1995 the rate ewent to 46-cents.

The 40-cent Piper stamps was the stamp sold at most United States Post Offices for a letter to Canada 1993-1995.

David
Ottawa, Canada.

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"President, The Society for Costa Rica Collectors"
earwaves
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Well, at least I got to have a haircut in the Penny Lane barber shop.
16 Feb 2021
09:07:50am
re: William Piper's Hair

David,

Both C129 and C132 were 40-cent air mail stamps. Are you saying that they probably did run out of 40-centers or that they were used as non-air mail stamps?

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DavidG
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APS member since 2004
16 Feb 2021
11:57:03am
re: William Piper's Hair

Hi Earwaves:

I confirmed the rates in the book "U.S. International Postal Rates. 1872-1996" by Anthony S. Wawrukiewicz & Henry W. Beecher.

There was a big demand for a 40-cent air mail stamp in the 1990s.

The first printing of the 40-cent Piper Air Mail stamp (USA Scott C129) was issued in 1991. It was issued to pay the First Class Air Mail rate to Canada of 40-cents for a letter up to one ounce. That rate was in effect from 3 FEB 1991 to 8 JUL 1995. On 9 JUL 1995, the rate was increased to 46-cents.


The second printing of the 40-cent Piper Air Mail stamp (USA Scott C132) was issued in 1993. Clearly, the demand for the 40-cent stamp out-stripped available stocks and the need for more stamps resulted in such an issue. That is not the only rate that stamp paid.

On 9 JUL 1995, the Air Mail Post Card rate to Canada was increased from 30-cents to 40-cents.

On 9 JUL 1995, the First Class Air Mail rate to Mexico was increased from 35-cents to 40-cents, for a letter up to one half-ounce.

On 11 JUL 1995, the International First Class Air Mail rate was increased from 50-cents to 60 cents for a letter up to one ounce. Each additional half-ounce was 40-cents, paid by the Piper stamp.

I hope that helps.

Cheers!

David
Ottawa, Canada

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"President, The Society for Costa Rica Collectors"
earwaves
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Well, at least I got to have a haircut in the Penny Lane barber shop.
18 Feb 2021
09:58:14am
re: William Piper's Hair

Thank you very much, David! You made good sense out of the many ways denominations are used.

I feel bad that we didn't stop in Ottawa on our 2018 New England/Canada trip. After almost four weeks on the road, we were ready for our own bed. Next time, if the pandemic ever goes away, we're hoping for another visit, maybe a more northern route, via Highway 17.

Joe

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Harvey
I think, therefore I am - I think!
18 Feb 2021
11:15:04am
re: William Piper's Hair

Hi Joe
Nice to know there's another Joe out there!
Joe

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Bobstamp
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23 Feb 2021
03:12:00pm
re: William Piper's Hair

The Piper Cub played a brief but important role in my life. In 1948 or perhaps 1949, when I was five or six years old and before my family moved to New Mexico from New York State, my father arranged for my sister, Helen, and me to have an ride in a Piper Cub owned by our next door neighbour, Bill Simpson, who had been a fighter pilot in the Second World War. I’ve loved flying ever since. Here’s a photo of Helen and me and Mr. Simpson just before takeoff:

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Of course, when I found this FDC I had to have it:

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I expect that the artist who created the cachet didn't appreciate having the corner cropped out of it.

Not until I read this thread did I realize that there was a variety of the original stamp. I'll have to keep an eye open for the variety.

Max Stanley, a Northrop test pilot, is quoted as saying, “The Piper Cub is the safest airplane in the world. It can just barely kill you.” Funny, but dark, for me: you may recall that when I was 19, in 1962, I was the passenger in a U.S. Forest Service T-34B Mentor bird-dog plane that crashed on a heavily forested mountainside in New Mexico. One of the smokejumpers who volunteered to jump to the crash site to attempt a rescue was Kirk Samsel. In 1963, he and the other smokejumper, Dick Tracy (seriously!) were given cash awards for heroism at a ceremony where Vice President Lyndon Johnson was the keynote speaker. Kirk was killed in 1994 when his Piper Cub flew crashed into “upsloping terrain” in Montana. (Dick Tracy died of cancer in 2006.)

Bob



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