1857 US Postage Stamps

1861 "August or First Design" 5¢
#57 (reclassifed as #67-E9e)

Scotts 57
5¢ - Brown
Perf. 12 - Scott #67-E9e - 1861
Only 35 examples exist, only one of which is used


(with 4 margins around the design)
Used: $45,000
No postmark with gum (MH): $9,500
Full perfect gum, no postmark, no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH): $12,000


Date of Issue : This stamp was not issued, it was produced as a sample for the Post Office Department. It probably reached collectors via postal officials. It is considered to be an essay.

Plate : Created from plate #3 with 200 subjects for the purpose of submission to the Post Office Department. The issued stamp (#67 and #76) was created from a new plate which has a subtle design difference from #57 (see below).

Printer: National Bank Note Company

Watermark: None

Quantity Issued: 200, of which 35 examples survive

Color: Brown

Identifying the stamp

Scotts 62a

The little leaf like ornaments at the corners are absent in the August issue. They were probably added to give the stamp a more squarish appearance.

The paper of the premieres gravures is very thin hard and extremely brittle. The stamps are easily cracked unless handled very carefully. The paper is also quite transparent and much of the designs may be seen from the backs of the stamps.

The gum is very dark brown sometimes staining the paper.

The colors are very dark and rich and the ink heavily applied occasionally giving a blurred appearance though as a rule the impressions are very fine and clear.

The Essay's and Proofs


Premier Gravure plate essay on india

47 P2

Unapproved design


1857 US Postage Stamps