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Printings of the 2/6d Green and Carmine Queen Victoria Keyplate Stamp of Lagos - 1887-1901 Part Two

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In today's post I will finish detailing the last 11 printings of this high value definitive stamp from the third and fourth states of the plate.

Group 3: Printings 10-17 From the Third State of the Plate - 1894 to 1899

As stated many times in other posts, the third state of the plate is characterized by a lack of detail in the hair at the back of the head, especially the hair above the diagonal ribbon. There is also merging of the top three to five hairlines at the top of the head.

Tenth Printing


The head plate colour of this printing is close to Gibbons'd grey green, but is both brighter and contains more blue. It is also similar to Gibbons's dull blue green, but is deeper. So I would call this the deep dull blue green. The duty plate colour is closest to Gibbons deep carmine.

I have three sound mint examples, one severely faded example without gum and one damaged specimen overprint as shown above, and three postally used examples as shown below. I assigned the faded examp…

Printings of the 2/6d Green and Carmine Queen Victoria Keyplate Stamp of Lagos - 1887-1901 Part One

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Today's post will look at the first of the three high value stamps from this issue. According to Ince, the total number of stamps printed and sent to the colony between March 31, 1887 and August 19, 1901 was 28,260 stamps, of which 18,060 were sent back to London in 1905 and destroyed. This leaves a mere 10,200 stamps that were sold and either used for postage, or preserved in mint condition. If we assume a survival rate in all grades of 10%, which is likely very generous, given that this is a West African crown colony, and not England or Canada, or some other country with a temperate climate and a population that is accustomed to preservation, then there are probably no more than 1,000 stamps in existence now - both mint and used.

A denomination of this size would have seen little postal use, being used only for registered letters that had a high insurance value, larger parcels or bulk mailing receipts. This was a revenue issue as well, since it was inscribed "postage and r…

Printings of the 1/- Green and Black Queen Victoria Keyplate Stamp of Lagos 1887-1903 Part Two

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This weeks post continues my discussion of the printings of the one shilling green and black surface printed stamp of Lagos with the printings made from the third, fourth and fifth states of plate 1, as well as the printings from plate 2. As best I can judge, these would have been sent to the colony starting in about February or March of 1894. The plate 1 printings would appear to have run up to about 1901, when plate 2 replaced plate 1. According to Gibbons, plate 2 does not come into play until 1902, and Ince suggests that there was only one printing, but I have seen three different shades of the green, which leads me to think that there may have been as many as three printings made from this plate.

Group 3: Printings 16-22 From the Third State of Plate 1 - Feb/March 1894 to The End of 1899

As stated in all the previous posts which discuss the printings of the other denominations, the third state of the plate is characterized by two things:


Merging together of the top 3-5 hairlines a…