1869 US Postage Stamps

1869 15¢ - #118

Christopher Columbus
15¢ - Brown and blue - Type I
200,000 - Grill -  Scott #118 - 1869


Used: $50-$250
No postmark with gum (MH): $1,400-$2,900
Full perfect gum, no postmark, no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH): $8,000-$10,000

Please Note

A certificate from stamp expertisers such as the PSE, would be required if
interested in selling this grill with both undisturbed gum and no postmark

15¢ - Brown and blue - Type I
only 24 examples exist 
No Grill -  Scott #118a - 1869

How to tell the difference
between #118 and #119

This is a difficult issue because it tends to have heavier cancels that,
together with the darker colors, can obscure the defining attributes. In addition, the
position of the blue vignette is often shifted enough to do the same. I have deliberately
chosen examples that readily show the attributes. You may not be so lucky with your stamp.

On the #119 (Type II), there is a small diamond in the center of the vignette frame (red arrow),
right under the “T” in “POSTAGE”. On the #118 Type I) there is no diamond (green arrow).

Note also the dark brown outline around the vignette which also defines the diamond
shape on the #119 (purple arrow). There is no such frame line on the #118 (orange arrow).

Shown above - #118

Shown above - #119


Vignette Essay


Vignette Essay


Source painting for design
American neoclassicist painter John Vanderlyn (1775-1852)
was commissioned by Congress in June 1836 to paint the
Landing of Columbus for the Capitol Rotunda. It was
installed in the Rotunda by early January 1847.

The American Bank Note Company's engraving of the Landing of Columbus
(used in the vignette)

1869 US Postage Stamps