The 1893 Columbians
8¢ - Magenta, dark magenta or light magenta
No postmark with gum (MH): $9-$27
Full perfect gum, no postmark, no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH): $35-$100
The stamp was issued on March 1st 1893. Note that this was
issued three months after the rest of the Columbian series.
This was issued as it was planned to have an 8¢ rate
for registered letters. It is the first 8¢ stamp issued
by the Post Office.
Two panes of 100 (a pane is shown above) made one sheet
The American Bank Note Company, thereafter, with one exception of
the Overun stamps of 1943 all stamps have since been printed by
the Bureau of Engraving
Paid the 8¢ registry fee so therefore quite common,
you will see a lot of registry target cancels on this issue.
A Columbian 8¢ on a registered cover to Belgium
What you should look for
As with all the values of this issue, look for Columbian Expo cancels,
they increase the value of the stamp or cover. Any stamp is more desirable
with a clean cancel, preferably a town cancel, heavy cancels can detract from
the value. As this value was used for the registered mail rate expect to see
a lot of target cancels when looking for a copy.
The target cancel used for registered mail
A Columbian 8¢ tied to a Columbian Exhibtion Cover
The Inspiration for the Design
The design is a reproduction of Francisco Jover y Casanova’s painting
“The Affectionate Reception of Columbus by Ferdinand and Isabella”,
now located at Valladolid University, Valladolid, Spain.
Francisco Jover y Casanova’s
"The Affectionate Reception of Columbus by Ferdinand and Isabella"
Varieties to look for
The only variety known are examples from one sheet that was printed on both sides.
Occasionally postmarks from states that had tiny amounts of mail
in this year can add to the value. This is particularly true of
Alaska and the Territories. For a list of the number of stamps
issued by each state in the year ending 30th June 1894 click here.
The Essay's and Proofs
Columbian large die proof die sunk on 110x101mm card
Small Die Proof
Plate Proof on thin white card
A map of the Columbian Exposition, 1893