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The Printings of the 4d Lilac and Black Queen Victoria Keyplate Stamp of Lagos - Part Seven

Over the past six weeks I have attempted to sort all of the 4d lilac and black Queen Victoria keyplate stamps into the various printings that were made between March 1887 and August 1901. In all, I identified 64 different groups of stamps, which was 3 more than the absolute maximum number of printings that could have made if one printing was made and dispatched every quarter.

The postage rates were such in the colony throughout the period that the 4d value would have been in high demand the entire time, for one reason or another. Thus it is curious that out of 258,540 stamps 107,880 would remain unsold at the beginning of 1905. The only plausible explanation for this is that sometime after 1900, the procedure that the Crown Agents followed for supplying stamps to the colony was altered, to send a much larger quantity of stamps less frequently to the colony rather than having many, many small printings every quarter. This would appear to be borne out by what actually did happen with t…

The Printings of the 4d Lilac and Black Queen Victoria Keyplate Stamp of Lagos - Part Six

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In the last five posts I have identified up to 56 potential printings of the 4d lilac and black Queen Victoria Keyplate stamp. At this point what I have identified as printings 32 through 39 needs to be checked against the other printings 1-31 that I had already identified to ensure that they are not actually part of those printings. Secondly, they need to be compared to the surcharged stamps that I was not yet able to identify as to printing to see if they match any of those. Finally, I need to check the remaining unidentified surcharged stamps against printings 40-56 to see if they match any of those. Once all this is done, I can conclude that any remaining surcharged stamps that have not yet been assigned to printings represent completely separate printings. The first shipments of this stamp were sent to Lagos in March 1887, while the last were sent in August 1901. There are 15 full years in that period if you count both 1887 and 1901, and stamps were sent on a quarterly basis. Th…