This market just keeps on going up...

The Stamp Man

The Stamp Man

2019-02-15 11:31:46

Every item is unique and tells a story

Today, I would like to open your eyes to an exciting area of collecting…

The area of cover collecting.

When I say cover collecting, I don’t mean first day souvenir covers. These are produced specifically to be bought by collectors.

I am referring to historical covers originally sent through the mail. These represent the history of postage.

Postal history encompasses a wide range of subjects, including the development of postal systems, postal routes, postmarks and important historical episodes.

Postal history collecting is an intellectual pursuit. Collectors of postal history are usually passionate about their area of specialism and become immersed in deep levels of study.

From my experience, this has been an area of growing interest in recent years.

Postal history collecting provides a different dimension to collecting stamps with a much wider range of areas to specialise in. 

Postal history collectors are different from stamp collectors…

Why the Market Keeps on Rising

Stamp collectors tend to have a bit of a straightjacketed mindset.

They know what stamps they are interested in buying and are willing to pay up to a certain cost. When a stamp they are after goes beyond their pre-determined level, they tend to let it go.

Postal history collectors don’t think this way…

They are far more likely to leave discretionary bids with auctioneers.

If they see something they want to own, they decide they are having it and are willing to pay whatever the market dictates. This, of course, will depend on the competition to buy the same item on the day.

This mindset has led to the market for postal history and rare covers rising steadily over the years, without unpredictable swings in value.

The material inevitably becomes more valuable as the number of collectors chasing such material rises.

Right now, there are more big-money collectors of postal history than I can remember.

This is no surprise really…

A lot of very wealthy people have retired in recent years or will soon retire.

The new breed of collectors in the market tend to be very sophisticated and also very competitive.

When a rising number of successful and wealthy people are chasing a very small pool of high quality rare items, the price can only really go one way.

It is for these reasons I rarely get my hands on any high quality postal history.

And that is why I am excited today about what I have available for you.

The Postal History Collection

The thing about postal history is every item is unique and tells a story.

The collection includes eight unique pieces of postal history.

Despite the strong market competition for such covers, you will see that the asking prices are very reasonable.

It is a fascinating collection

I could not replicate this collection – ever!

And… I can sell it only once.


Great Britain 1902 Boer War Mail. Very fine 1d pink postal stationery envelope uprated with an additional 2d, 2½d, 3d, 6d, 9d and 1s green & carmine from the 1887-1900 "Jubilee" issue. All beautifully tied by crisp upright Army Post Office/Roonstad circular date stamps for JU.5.1902.

The date stamp of July 5, 1902 was five days after hostilities had officially ceased. The letter is addressed to the Grand Hotel, Kroonstad and obviously of a philatelic nature. An extremely beautiful and unusual franking and a fantastic philatelic display piece. SG201/14. 

PRICE: £1,950 ($2,578)


Aden 1937 (1 APR) registered 'J. Stephen' cover, SG10/12, from ADEN CAMP to Isle of Man. Bearing Dhow 2r, 5r, 10r, tied with individual very fine strikes of circular date stamps on first day of issue, with blue/white registration label at lower left. The 2r with trivial soiling from cancel but most attractive and scarce. 

Excellent value for such an important stamp cover, being sent on the very first day Aden became a British Crown Colony. 

PRICE: £850 ($1,124)


Australia British Commonwealth Occupation Force (Japan) - 1945 (2 SEPT) cover to Devon franked with Australia 1937-49 3d brown tied by violet-black 'TOKYO (BA)Y JAPAN' circular date stamp. 

Minor toning to perforations hardly detracts. This letter was probably posted aboard one of the Australian ships in harbour to receive the surrender from the Japanese.

Despite the important historical context of this stamp cover, the price I have put on it is very reasonable. It is difficult to value and could potentially sell for much more at auction.

PRICE: £135 ($178)


Great Britain 1929 P.U.C. £1 black, SG438. Very attractive, stunning quality and scarce used on cover example to Paris on May 31st 1929. Posted overseas cover used within the month of issue of this, one of Britain’s most famous stamps, thus desirable.      

PRICE: £1,550 ($2,059)


Great Britain 1841 1d Red brown Plate 46. Very fine pre-paid entire addressed to Ballymoney as indicated by a red manuscript "1" alongside a Green "PAID AT/ COLERAINE" handstamp. This has then had a 1d red, with good to huge four margins lettered SD, affixed with red sealing wax over the top of the original handstamp and beautifully tied by a crisp Coleraine "149" numeral.

Back-stamped at Coleraine for NO.19.1844. A very attractive and unusual cover with interesting postal combinations. 

PRICE: £495 ($654)


Sudan 1935 (26 JA) group of three registered covers from Khartoum - the Capital and largest city in Sudan - to England, together bearing Gordon short set of 8 to 20p, tied by fine to very fine strikes of registered oval date stamps. Each with registration label on face (consecutive numbers), and with Khartoum, Shellal-Halfa T.P.O. and Richmond, Surrey backstamps. Scarce and most attractive. Cover. SG 59/66 

PRICE: £150 ($198)


Tristan Da Cunha 1918 cover to Guildford, carried on board the 'Southern Sea' which arrived at the island on 13 November 1918.

Cancelled with a very fine strike of type I cachet in violet, franked at 1d rate by a horizontal pair of Great Britain 1912-24 ½d green, tied on arrival by two strikes of 'F.S. 62 / LONDON' circular date stamps dated '27 JA 19'.

Exceptional quality for a Type I cover, and rare thus. (SGC1). 

An ex Stanley Gibbons stock item.

A fascinating piece of postal history sent from the remote South Atlantic island of Tristan Da Cunha two days after World War I ended. It arrived at its final destination in England over two months later on 27th January, 1919.

PRICE: £4,000 ($5,288)


Zanzibar 1891 (AU 10) cover FRONT to 'Basil Wood Walker, London', franked by India 1882-90 4a 6p yellow-green, tied by very fine strike of type Z5 'ZANZIBAR' squared circle.

Apart from the addressee, several clues indicate that this item emanates from Uganda: a recipient's docket 'dated up to July 30', a blue crayon '1' under the stamp, and a part violet forwarding cover. An intriguing piece of postal history. SG Z70

PRICE: £150 ($198)


A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity

The postal history collection has a total value of £9,280 ($12,267). When it comes to postal history, value is hard to judge.

There are a lot of collectors pursuing the same kind of thing. They realise they may only get one chance in their lifetime to buy items they pursue.

Because of that, the potential resale value of this postal history collection could be considerably more than the value I have placed on it.

The postal history market benefits from being a true collector-based market. There is no material investor activity for postal history.

You are the first to hear about this collection.

If you would like to acquire the postal history collection all you need to do is reply to this email and let me know.

Alternatively, you can call us today on +44(0)1534 639998.

This is a great opportunity to own a fascinating collection in a very strongly contested part of the market.

Kind regards


Mike Hall

CEO, Just Collecting

PS. Robson Lowe, a professional philatelist, stamp dealer and auctioneer made the first organised study of the subject of postal history in the 1930s. He described philatelists as “students of science” but postal historians as“students of humanity”.

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