Stamp Community Family of Web Sites
Thousands of stamps, consistently graded, competitively priced and hundreds of in-depth blog posts to read
Stamp Community Forum
 
Username:
Password:
Save Password
Forgot your Password?

Welcome Guest! Need help? Got a question? Inherit some stamps?
Our stamp forum is completely free! Register Now!

This New Business College Practice "Stamp" Was Hidden For Over 135 Years!

 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.
Author Previous TopicReplies: 9 / Views: 613Next Topic  
Pillar Of The Community
Learn More...
United States
1662 Posts
Posted 06/19/2021   7:19 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add James Drummond to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
I was recently searching a certain online venue for some stamps, as I pretty much do every single day, and I came across an item that, just maybe, was more than it first appeared.



This is an envelope that was sent from the Northwestern Ohio Commercial College, in Ada, Ohio. Sadly, the elaborate and colorful handwriting on the front is rarely seen anymore these days.

Since I collect college and school stamps and related items, it looked like a perfect fit for my collection. But there was something about it that looked a bit familiar.



This college also produced some envelopes with a pre-printed pseudo "postage" stamp, with a "value" of two cents (probably). These types of imitation stamps are typically quite scarce, and they can sell for hundreds of dollars. The one shown here is dated two years later than the eBay item.

The cover that was being offered was very similar to the one shown just above, but obviously the fonts were different.

But the "N. W. O. C. C." at the top right on both covers didn't seem like just a coincidence.



Here's another type from the same school, after they had changed their name to the Ohio Normal University. This one is also known in a black color.



Anyway, I copied the image from the eBay lot and enlarged it in a photo editing program. Hmmm, was that perhaps the very tippity-top of maybe a "2," just under the "O?"

(Anyone see where I'm going with this yet?)

There was nothing whatsoever in the lot description to indicate that this was anything more than just a somewhat-battered piece of postal history from 1886.

I guess that I'm a bit of a gambler when it comes to stamps sometimes, so I placed a huge snipe bid on the lot.

I then spent several days loading the image over and over and trying to convince myself that there was - or there wasn't - something directly underneath the postage stamp.

Only one other buyer placed a bid, and for just over the modest starting price. That was a relief! I paid for it immediately, and then I spent nearly a week hoping that it didn't get delayed (or lost) by the post office, which unfortunately has been the case recently.

I admit that I was trembling a bit in anticipation when I opened the envelope from the seller.

Fortunately, this commercial college envelope had been opened at the top, presumably by Mr. Finney. I gently pried it open a bit, and put a strong flashlight over the postage stamp while I looked inside.

Well, I'll be dam*ed! There was something there!

The next step was to get the postage stamp off of the envelope. In this case, I was more concerned about (further) damaging the envelope, than I was in harming the stamp.

I used a small, new paint brush, and dipped a drop of cool water one at a time onto the postage stamp, while I gently brushed the water all over the stamp. The rest of the envelope was covered by paper towels, just in case.

Within a few minutes, I was able to remove the stamp, and lo and behold…



A new type altogether!

In summary, with a little bit of experience, and perhaps lots of luck, I transformed what looked like a $15 or so postal history artifact, into a multi-hundred dollar college stamp collectible.

The icing on the cake though, is that, as far as I am aware, this is the only known copy of this particular variety!

And yes, I did celebrate my new discovery quite a bit last night, and I might as well continue tonight! LOL.

Jim
Send note to Staff

Pillar Of The Community
Learn More...
6819 Posts
Posted 06/19/2021   7:32 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
110 Posts
Posted 06/19/2021   7:40 pm  Show Profile Check ericjackson's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add ericjackson to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Wonderful!
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
United States
739 Posts
Posted 06/19/2021   8:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Parcelpostguy to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
As in all such stamp removal cases, you should hinge the removed stamp to the cover again somewhere it does not obscure what is important to you.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
76 Posts
Posted 06/20/2021   2:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Stamp Hunting to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Brilliant Holmes, yet again. I do the same thing. Spot something, purchase and pray I was correct. Usually not this well.

Very nice, I do love the addressing on the envelope though. That was a very skilled calligraphy artist. I agree with you we could use a lot more of that.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
100 Posts
Posted 06/20/2021   4:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add oldboldandbrash to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Huzzah! This was a riveting adventure from start to finish and I learned something along the way. This is really something special! Thank you
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
45 Posts
Posted 06/21/2021   12:12 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add locals4me to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I'll offer a toast to your good fortune and wise eyes!
John Bowman
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Valued Member
United States
260 Posts
Posted 06/22/2021   08:43 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DaveG28 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I had to look it up...This college is now known as Ohio Northern University...in my neck of the woods! An hour's drive south of me...it's near Lima, and I'm in Toledo. I have family that went to school there. A nice find! Thanks for sharing.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
Learn More...
United States
6309 Posts
Posted 06/22/2021   10:21 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add bookbndrbob to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Great story with excellent outcome…and, you have a good photo of the cover before the stamp removal.

Making sure the cover and stamp stay together seems most appropriate.
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
Pillar Of The Community
Learn More...
United States
1662 Posts
Posted 06/22/2021   10:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add James Drummond to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Of course, Bob.

Jim
Send note to Staff  Go to Top of Page
  Previous TopicReplies: 9 / Views: 613Next Topic  
 
To participate in the forum you must log in or register.


Go to Top of Page
Disclaimer: While a tremendous amount of effort goes into ensuring the accuracy of the information contained in this site, Stamp Community assumes no liability for errors. Copyright 2005 - 2021 Stamp Community Family - All rights reserved worldwide. Use of any images or content on this website without prior written permission of Stamp Community or the original lender is strictly prohibited.
Privacy Policy / Terms of Use    Advertise Here
Stamp Community Forum © 2007 - 2021 Stamp Community Forums
It took 0.17 seconds to lick this stamp. Powered By: Snitz Forums 2000 Version 3.4.05