Lot 1544, Great Britain 1938 “Mails for India” group of 36 airmail covers, sold for C$1,053

Lot 1544, Great Britain 1938 "Mails for India" group of 36 airmail covers, sold for C$1,053Lot 1544 Great Britain FEB.20.1938 Group of 36 “Mails for India” Air Mail Covers, all sent at the 1½d rate. Includes two each of the following destinations: Burma, Ceylon, Palestine, Sarawak, Seychelles, Malaya, Egypt, Brunei, Bahrain, Singapore, North Borneo, Aden, Tibet, Labuan, Muscat, Dubai, Trans Jordan and India. All sent by A. Phillips, Air Mail Specialist of Newport GB, all with the same cachet in red, black, blue or green. Many also have return to sender handstamps, etc. Overall very fine, see online scans.. From the The Leon Victor Pont Collection of Early India, New Zealand and Worldwide Pioneer Flight Covers. Estimate $500, sold for C$900.00 plus 17% buyer’s premium.

Welcome to Sale 27

Once again, we are pleased to offer a varied and interesting sale, with tempting philatelic material for all collecting interests and budgets.

Highlights of Canada and British North America include a lovely mint Newfoundland collection, featuring an exceptional selection of fresh and very fine items, offered as individual lots. New Brunswick is also well represented with many plate proofs, including a rare full sheet of the storied Connell issue.

Small Queen enthusiasts will find well over 50,000 stamps on offer, from accumulations to specialized studies and postmark collections. We also offer a lovely and advanced collection of choice, used OHMS perforated Officials, offered primarily as single lots. High quality single stamps also abound.

Postal History continues to be strong, with over 500 lots on offer. We are pleased to feature the exceptional New Brunswick collection of George MacManus, as well as the eagerly-anticipated follow-up to the Ted Kerzner Canadian squared circle postmarks, a lovely collection of Canadian mail to and from France, over 40 lots of Canadian military postal history, and much more. We also offer a quality selection of postmarks, including many fancy cancels.

Worldwide stamps are presented in both single lots and county collections, with many highlights from seldom-offered countries and an array of specialized material. Of particular note is an advanced collection of Tibet, featuring many rarities and unusual items, as well as a further installment of the popular British Commonwealth perforated SPECIMEN stamps of the 1930s.

Sparks Auctions is always proud to offer a number of clean and useful postage lots. Many of these are “ready to use”, having already been sorted by denomination and are presented with complete inventories, saving the successful bidders many hours of organizing.

We also continue to offer an industry-leading selection of images online, with this sale having more than 4,000 individual high resolution scans. These images, including many of larger lots and collections, can easily be viewed at stampauctionnetwork.com. As always, Sparks Auctions will offer live internet bidding through the Stamp Auction Network platform, allowing collectors from around the world to enjoy the benefits of live-bidding during the sale.

We at Sparks Auctions take pride in our meticulous approach to philately, from our in-depth descriptions and careful lotting to our emphasis on high-resolution, detailed images. I would personally welcome the opportunity to discuss with you how Sparks Auctions can assist in the sale of your philatelic material.

Enjoy the sale!

Stéphane Cloutier
Director of Lotting & Consignments

The Ken Kershaw Collection Of Nepal & Tibet

As a schoolboy Ken Kershaw was able to demonstrate an encyclopedic knowledge of all British flora. His scholarship and phenomenal memory served him well in his academic career. Field trips around the world, and especially in the Arctic, led to his publications on lichens which have set a scholarly gold standard.

After early retirement his natural curiosity and training in study and classification served him well as an entrepreneur and later as a restaurateur.

Sparks Auction #10 - Kershaw CollectionA return to his boyhood hobby has resulted in about a dozen research books, notably the five volume study of Canada’s Three Penny Beaver. Ken is intrigued by difficult philatelic problems. He enjoys the challenge of first identifying and then confirming a plating study. Nepal and Tibet introduced the problem of confirming printing flaws as constant, progressive, or non-constant. To do this he obtained as many large blocks and sheets from as many settings as was practical. Although Ken is still working with the pashupati issues the time has come to move on to other pursuits.


Sparks #10 Tibet Nepal

Especially in the case of Nepal, the native laid paper has characteristic inclusions and lack of uniformity such that there may be no stamp in existence that merits the most exacting quality standards of some collectors. We have tried to describe all faults which occurred after manufacture as well as the grossest of the faults during manufacture of this paper. A grade of very fine was used when it occurred to us that a particular sheet or block had better than normal overall appearance.

Nepal is organized by denomination. Tibet is organized by Scott number. We refer to tete-beche stamps as inverts, a term which is more commonly used in the literature of the “Himals.”

Ken’s unpublished five-volume study THE HALF ANNA ISSUES OF NEPAL consists of more than twelve hundred pages of careful documentation of the Nepal issues. These books can be downloaded below and then read on your computer, eReader, or tablet device.

VOLUME I: The settings, definitive flaws, and plating criteria (11MB)
VOLUME II: Plating the flaws in the spandrels and central oval frame (30MB)
VOLUME III: Plating the frame flaws (19MB)
VOLUME IV: Plating the flaws in the central oval (10MB)
VOLUME V: Plating the flaws correlated with the double Khukris (15MB)

Introduction to Auction #10

With each successive auction our consignors offer ever more interesting items to collectors.

In every section of Canada we have stamps which delight. The 77 lots of Large Queens will please collectors of mint, of varieties and especially of two-ring numeral postmarks. Small Queens offers mint multiples, proofs, imperforates, cancels and true old-time accumulations. The overall nice quality of the larger used lots is noteworthy. Later Victoria offers scarce large multiples, delightful proofs and imperforates, as well as top quality singles. Our Admiral section of nearly one hundred lots includes a very strong section of War Tax purchased at the time of issue and now on the market for the first time in nearly 100 years. Numerous better items in the Edward and the two Georges lead us into the wonderful array of a Queen Elizabeth Exhibit Collection of Wildings and Cameos. It will likely be a very long time before many of these come back into circulation. Later Elizabeth issues and back of the book have many interesting and scarce items.

Two of the highlights in the BNA section are the magnificent P.E.I. #2 and the well-centered Columbia airmail. It is fascinating that from different consignors we have a trio of “tens.” Two from B.C. have the numeral 10 of Williams Lake and a few lots later there is a rare numeral 10 rate marking from Nova Scotia.

The British Commonwealth section will help collectors fill holes and includes a group of nice Penny Blacks.

Our highlight in the auction is the Ken Kershaw collection of Nepal and Tibet. We regard both of these areas as being on the cusp of much greater popularity because of the growing strength of the collector markets in both China and India.

Postal History and postmarks continue to offer lots which originate in Exhibit Collections now broken into collector-oriented lots. Conversely, we see other lots which were groups of interesting covers put away over the years with the thought of developing an exhibit. We hope you enjoy this section.

Lots & Collections, thankfully, does not fill as many bookshelves as our previous auction but does include many top quality offerings worthy of inspection.

This auction features the largest number of extra scans we have been able to provide. Fifty lots have ten or more scans; fifteen have twenty or more, and some even have more than fifty scans. They can be seen by section and lot number in our Image Gallery.

PDF Catalogues can be seen on our website now, with print copies expected to be mailed by June 11th to arrive at subscribers early the following week. The auction is now open for bidding on Stamp Auction Network.

Still Time to Consign

We can continue to accept consignments until the end of April 2012 for our Auction #10, expected to take place in June. If you have material that is not too bulky, we would be glad to include it. E-mail us to make arrangements.

We have already received some marvellous France material including tete-beche pairs, and good quality USA. Our offering of rare, well-documented Nepal and Tibet will be sure to attract attention internationally. We welcome your offering as well.