This is the finished design for Scott 742.
The three cent stamp from the National Parks series was the workhorse of the series, meeting as it did the prevailing first class rate. There are eight different plates used in regular production and one which was used for trial production at the 1934 APS Convention in Atlantic City, NJ.
The source of the design was a photograph provided by the National Parks Service through the Department of the Interior. Here is that photo:
The design for this photo was used to produce only one model, the essay for which is shown here. There is a second essay, which is incomplete, showing the tablet blank and on the left side of the stamp. It is a black and white photographic essay and not in my collection (yet...
As mentioned in the posting for Scott 740, the black outline is from the album page these are still attached to. The production page and page with both essays are next. The finished design is already loaded earlier in this post.
One of the key items in a collection of this material is the large die proofs. Not all denominations are known to have a large die proof and the following is believed to be the only one in collector's hands.
Several of the issues have imperforate between errors. Here's an example of the three cent imperforate between error:
As I explained with the two cent Grand Canyon issue, and mentioned earlier, there were eight different plates used to print this stamp and plate blocks are top, top with "F" registration and bottom. While these eight plates produced 94,894,466 stamps and an additional seven imperforate sheets, Plate Number 21332 was not part of the regular production process. This is not recognized in the Durland Plate Number catalog, though, as it has the same base price as the other plate blocks of this issue.
All eight of those plates went to press. According to the exhibit notes to the three cent issues created by an unknown collector, one of the plates became defective and Plate number 21332 created.
Several (unknown quantity) sheets were produced for study by the BEP while at the APS Convention in Atlantic City, NJ in 1934. A few of these plate blocks managed to get into collector hands and the remainder of the stamps and sheets were destroyed. I have only ever seen this one example of Plate Block 21332. If anyone else has one, I would love to hear about and see a scan!
Here are some First Day Covers for the issue. The first is a Parsons cachet which has been hand tinted.
Next is the Clara H. Fawcett FDC, again, hand tinted.
The last I'll give you today is the A. A. Heller photo cachet on this FDC.
I have mentioned this was the workhorse of the series, so it wouldn't be right to end without an example of that use. The following is a naval cover, using the three cent stamp. This would considered a "late" use since it was used in 1940. Interesting cover!
Next time, I'll bring you the information on Scott 743, the four cent issue of the National Parks Series.