A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzabar

A is for Aden and Z is for Zanzibar... Now what is between? For the world wide classical era philatelist and stamp collector, a country specific philatelic survey is offered by the blog author, Jim Jackson, with two albums: Big Blue, aka Scott International Part 1 (checklists available), and Deep Blue, aka William Steiner's Stamp Album Web PDF pages. In addition, "Bud" offers commentary and a look at his completely filled Big Blue. Interested? So into the Blues...

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Filling Deep Blue: Russia 1866-1934 additions

1866 Scott 25 30k carmine & green
"Coat of Arms"
Into the Deep Blue
If you are like me with my Russia collection, you have many of the stamps, but still have holes. Another Russia feeder album will not do as I already have most of the stamps - the cost of the feeder album may not pencil out and may not provide the stamps I need anyway.. What to do? So I turned to the APS stamp store, and started to fill some of the spaces! I like the APS stamp store, as the sellers (all APS members) tend to be more knowledgeable ( and dare I say ethical?) compared to the 'Bay, and one can return the stamps if misdescribed.

So what have I added to my Russia Deep Blue (Steiner pages) collection?

This post will show the newly acquired  1866-1934 stamps, and the next post will continue with 1934+ and into the back-of-the-book categories.

I should mention that Russian stamps can be tricky identification-wise, but my original post on Russia (with the BB checklist) shows many of the differences. If not, I will highlight the differences among stamp issues here.

1866-1934 Russia additions
100 Kopecks = 1 Ruble
1866 Scott 22 5k black & lilac "Coat of Arms"
Scott 22a 5k black & gray"Coat of Arms'
The 5k black & gray (Scott 22a) is newly acquired. CV is higher ($30+) compared to the Scott 22 5k black & lilac ($2).

Be aware that the 1866-70 issue has horizontally laid paper, and Wmk 168 (Wavy Lines). Check my original post for examples.

1866 Scott 24 20k blue & orange "Coat of Arms"
The 1866 20k (CV $15) and 30k (CV $30 - shown in post header) were added. The major numbers for the issue (six stamps) is now complete.

1883 Scott 38 70k brown & orange 
"Imperial Eagle & Post Horns"
The 1883-88 issue (eight stamps) is now filled with the addition of the 70k brown & orange (CV $9).

Be aware that this issue shows the post horns without the thunderbolts.

1889 Scott 54 7r black & yellow
"With Thunderbolts Across Post Horns"
For 1889 and later the Russian Empire stamps add a thunderbolt to the post horns. (See the original post for a close-up example.)

This rather heavily cancelled 7r black & yellow (CV $10+) was added.

1913 Scott 103 3r dark violet "Romanov Castle"
For the Tercentenary of the founding of the Romanov dynasty, a seventeen stamp issue was released in 1913. This 3r dark violet (CV $10+) shows the Romanov Castle.

1913 Scott 104 5r black brown "Nicholas II"
Nicholas II was featured on the highest denomination for the 1913 issue (CV $10+). This Romanov Tsar cousin of the British George V would not go gently into that good night as we all know from history.

1915 Scott 109 10r carmine lake, yellow & gray 
1915 Scott 109b 10r rose red, yellow & gray
Types of 1906 Issue
In 1915, a "1906 Type Issue" was released with the 10r denomination found in carmine lake, yellow, & gray (Major Number Scott 109), and, newly acquired by me, a minor number Scott 109b rose red, yellow & gray. The 109b was issued in sheets of 25, while the 109 was in sheets of 50.

There was also an 10r color error stamp (Scott 109c) that is in carmine, yellow & gray blue (CV $2,700). !!

1922 Scott 214 27r rose & black
"Marking 5th Anniversary of October Revolution"
For the 5th anniversary of the October Revolution, a five stamp typographic issue was released.  Although not CV expensive ($5+ for unused), I added this 27r rose & black. Note there are minor number examples on Pelure paper (CV $60-$200) that exist.

I should mention that Scott has a note that the currency of 1922 was valued at 10,000 times that of the preceding years.

1923 Scott 249 7r rose & pink
"Symbolical of the Exhibition"
For the 1st Agriculture and Craftsmanship Exhibition, Moscow in 1923, an eight stamp lithographic issue was released. I picked up this stamp (CV $5) to complete the set. 

1923 Scott 258 50k dark brown "Peasant"
Lithographed; Unwmk; Imperforated
In theme with the "Worker-Peasant" revolution, rough and crude designs featuring "Workers-Peasants" began showing up in 1922. I added this stamp (CV $2+).

1924 Scott 264 40k slate gray "Soldier"
Lithographed; Perf 14 1/2 X 15
Picked up the lithographic 40k slate gray "Soldier"(CV $4). Can you tell the difference between the typographic specimens? See the original post.

1925 Scott 303 10r indigo "Lenin"
Wmk 170 "Greek Border and Rosettes"
The "A66" design "Lenin" was first introduced in 1925 for Scott 302-303.. CV for the 10r indigo is $10. The design was used for two more issues (Scott 407-408; 621-622).

1925 Scott 328 7k deep blue
"Prof. Aleksandr Popov (1859-1905), Radio Pioneer
I was missing the 7k value for the two stamp set of 1925. Rather heavily cancelled, but here it is (CV $1).

1927 Scott 399 70k gray green "Worker"
The typographic 1927-28 fifteen stamp issue was missing the 70k gray green. Now I have it (CV $2).

1930 Scott 437 3r yellow green & black brown
"Lenin Hydroelectric Station on Volkhov River"
The two stamp issue of 1930 has a CV of $10+ apiece. I needed the 3r yellow green & black brown.

1931 Scott 452 3k red "Battleship Potemkin"
For the 25th anniversary of the Revolution of 1905, a three stamp issue was produced, both perforated and imperforate. The imperforate examples have a much higher CV ($10+-$20+ unused) then their perforate brethren (CV <$1-$1+).

1933 Scott 523 40k carmine
"Worker, Peasant, and Soldier dipping Flags in salute"
In 1933, there was a five stamp issue commemorating the execution of 26 commissars at Baku. CV is $2-$10.

1934 Scott 532 15k red
"Victor Pavlovich Nogin"; Portrait Type of 1933 
Would you believe this 1934 issue stamp is CV $30+? Compared to the U.S. commemoratives of the 1930s, the Soviet ones are pricey during this era.  

Deep Blue
1923 Issue - Scott 246-49
Deep Blue (Steiner) provides a space for all the major Scott numbers. That is good news and bad news. Good news- one has a space available for new acquisitions. Bad news- the empty spaces one has are obvious. ;-)

1934 Scott 531 10k ultramarine
"Yakov M. Sverdlov"; Portrait Type of 1933
Out of the Blue
OK, some of the holes are filled. Next up: 1934+ issues and BOB!

Comments appreciated!

Friday, November 8, 2019

Libya - Bud's Big Blue

Some of the Relocated
Bud's Big Blue
Bud's Observations
Libya (Big Blue spells it Libia, as in Italian and on the stamps) presents a challenge to collectors. Stamps are expensive and often scarce. To make matters worse, there’s a problem with Italian stamp dealers, as mentioned in my comments for Bud’s Big Blue Italy. Dealers in the US commonly sell Libia stamps at a small fraction of catalog value, if/when they have them.

Nevertheless, here are the filled BB Libia pages. I was lucky enough to buy a nearly complete feeder album for Libia, otherwise I would still have many open spaces, especially for back-of-the-book issues. Also, I benefitted from knowing a few friendly dealers.

The 1969 BB adds spaces for Libia that earlier editions don’t have, and also relocates some stamps that were formerly placed in the Tripolitania section. The editors of earlier BB editions apparently thought, if “Tripoli” was inscribed on a stamp, it should go under the Tripolitania heading. Later they decided otherwise. The misplaced (see some above) were shifted to Libia for the 1969 edition and, moreover, an additional 33 stamps were given spaces for Libia and Tripolitania combined, a total of 322 spaces. In BB editions of the 1940s, Libia and Tripolitania had only 289; even earlier, still fewer. Therefore, the earlier editions make less than satisfactory feeder albums even when they are mostly complete.

For some reason Libian stamps issued before 1932 are more often found cancelled, while after that date they’re usually mint. I suspect that, following World War II and with the coming of the United Kingdom of Libya in 1951, many of the unused but obsolete 1930s stamps found their way into the hands of Italian dealers.  

Census: 201 in BB spaces, eight tip-ins, nine on supplement page.

Jim's Observations
Big Blue '69, has nine pages for Libya, and has 69 spaces for regular, 60 spaces for semi-postal, 3 spaces for semi-postal special delivery, 6 spaces for special delivery, 6 spaces for parcel post, 14 spaces for postage due, and 37 spaces for air post. Total = 195. Coverage is 73%!!

• BB continues to provide way more coverage for the Italian colonies than they do for most any other country. Was Scott paid off by Italian dealers? ;-)  Every semi-postal stamp issued by Libya is included in BB!

• Expensive stamps in abundance- 32 stamps are $10-$24 CV, and 11 more stamps are >$35! And the more expensive stamps are very expensive- $80,$80,$105,$105,$105,$125,$125!

• Be aware that the 1921-31 choices include wmk "Crown" vs unwatermarked major numbers. Also, minor numbers with perforation 11 are eligible.

* I'm no longer doing a formal comparison of spaces between the '69 BB edition and the 1940s BB editions ("Kinds of Blue"), as I did for earlier blog posts. But the large difference for Libya between the '43 edition and the much greater coverage in the '69 BB edition merits notice. 

Libya Blog Post & BB Checklist

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Comments appreciated!