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Help With Fancy Cancels! Boston, Groton, Ann Arbor.

 
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Posted 02/13/2020   5:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add 3193zd to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I have 3 covers with cancels I can't identify from the fancy cancel book. Any help with them would be great!





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Michael Darabaris

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Posted 02/13/2020   5:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add stallzer to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
1st and 3rd look like ordinary cork cancels and the 2nd is just a Boston Mass oval cancel.
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Valued Member
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Posted 02/14/2020   02:21 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add 3193zd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I was tryin go compare them to the book of fancy cancels and they didn't match up.
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Michael Darabaris
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Posted 02/14/2020   09:03 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add wtcrowe to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
May I ask which book of fancy cancels you are using? There are a number of books to look at, but most cover a specific time period. Perhaps the book that you are using covers an earlier time period. While the Cole book goes to 1894 according to its cover, the coverage of the Small Banknote time period is not as comprehensive as the earlier portion of the work. The Boston cancel would not be considered a fancy cancel. It can be found in the Blake and Davis work on Boston cancels. The Ann Arbor segmented cork is probably not listed any where, but you can find a range cancels for that time period in Willard's work on the 2 Red Brown of 1883.
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Posted 02/14/2020   09:11 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add John Becker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I agree with Stallzer's reply. Not every cancel is "fancy". Sorry, but these aren't. There would be minimal expectation of these being listed anywhere, except the Boston cancel as noted above.
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Posted 02/14/2020   09:40 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add 3193zd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks Guys the Cole book you mentioned is what I was referring to. Cancels are not my collecting interest but I thought I would try to learn a little to be a little more knowledgable on the topic. Looks like I need to study up!
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Michael Darabaris
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1980 Posts
Posted 02/14/2020   6:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
"Fancy" is whatever people want to mean it to be. For what is in the relatively small number of references, a better word might be "nonstandard". In my opinion, all 3 fit the fancy/nonstandard definition, though it's not clear what the first one is supposed to be.

There is also very little work done generally in identifying fancy/nonstandard cancels, so there are many thousands still unidentified and/or unrecorded.

The Cole book includes many of the oval cancels used during the banknote period that a lot of collectors would not necessarily call fancy. These are under his grouping, 3rd and 4th class mail; the 1c rate on your second cover is just that. Your Boston oval is fairly common. The only thing that I think you want is a date range, which can be estimated by the stamp(s) used without any specific dated matches in the references. It's the best that can done at the moment.

And that is the big problem with fancy/nonstandard cancels. Collected on stamps, you're not going to have a dated cancel with it most times. Most covers of the banknote period and earlier will not have anything datable -- cancel, docketing or contents. And there will always be somebody telling you that docketing can be faked and contents can be switched or added.

Further, I suspect that many of the illustrations provided in Cole, Herst/Sampson, etc. are best approximations and may even be composites of several versions or states of the same cancels. These cancels do also wear over time and so get distorted and lose pieces. Your Ann Arbor cancel might be in that later state. Meanwhile we have eBay sellers that happily identify something close to a listed cancel but that is impossible to be the same. Cancels do not "grow" extra parts except perhaps by overinking.

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