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Question about wording on a PF cert  
 

 
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Posted 11/10/2017   1:33 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this topic Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Message
I just tried calling the PF, but apparently all the experts left early today, so I cannot get an answer from them until Monday, so me being the impatient S.O.B. that I am, I'm looking for other opinions while I wait.

Looking through a cross section of PF certs for a given stamp on cover over many years, I see differences in wording and am not sure whether there is significance or simply differences in style:

"It Is A Genuine Usage"

vs.

"It Is A Genuine PHILATELIC USAGE."

The use of the word "philatelic" in the second example, implies to me that the determination is that it is not a normal/commercial cover, but rather one that was "created" to fit the usage scenario, and presumably is worth less than a commercial cover would be worth.

What I don't understand is why there are certs for the same stamp as first day cover usages but don't get the same "philatelic usage" descriptor when they clearly are philatelic based upon the images shown.

Consistency. I wants it.
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Posted 11/10/2017   2:44 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add funcitypapa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Why not show the cover(s) in question? You may be reading into the situation too much. Words are important but I am not sure I would equate the addition of the word "philatelic" to the significance of the word "fiscal" when discussing a cancellation. The time period of the cover or covers in question may also define whether "philatelic" is likely to mean anything.
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Posted 11/10/2017   2:45 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add txstamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Doing a search for 'first day philatelic' at pfsearch.org didn't produce any results of the type you are hoping for.

First Day appears to be its own category, as does Philatelic Usage.

I didn't see any combinations of the two on one PFC from my limited search.
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Posted 11/11/2017   10:26 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The exact wording always depends on when the certs were issued. Back when only dealers were the people doing the experizing and writing the certs, brevity was the order of the day. In more recent times the wording has gotten more exact.
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Posted 11/11/2017   10:28 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Since 99.9% of all FDC are philatelic, there does not seem to be a need to specifically state it on all the certs.
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Posted 11/14/2017   09:29 am  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Sorry for being cryptic. It is a cover I am considering purchasing for my fledgling half-cent postage dues on cover collection.

The item in question is PF cert #262276, J88 on cover, deemed a philatelic usage:

http://pfsearch.org/pfsearch/pf_grd...lledfrom=lkp

Clyde Jennings famously offered a $500 bounty for a legitimate commercial usage of J88 on cover. There are conflicting reports as to whether or not he ever obtained one. This cover is about the closest one can get, with the exception of first day covers, which have no legitimate reason for the postage due stamp do be on the cover (at least none that I have ever seen).

I have never seen depicted or offered a usage of J88 on cover within the period of 1959-1963 other than first day covers.

I inquired of the PF as to the meaning/justification of the word "philatelic" in the opinion. Their reply:


Quote:
At the time this cover was mailed, the rate to Canada was 18 for the first ounce. The USPOD disregarded the postage value of the "B" stamp since it's use in international mail was prohibited and that left only 17.5 valid postage on the cover.

Since the letter could not be sent to Canada unless one full rate of postage had been paid, the cover was returned and the J88 was applied, thus signifying that it was a one ounce cover, underpaid by 1/2.

Those who reviewed the cover believed the underpayment was deliberate, in order to obtain a "usage" of the 1/2 due on cover. In fact, the 1/2 stamp was discontinued on April 10, 1963 and remaining stocks were ordered destroyed ("The Half - A Collection," Clyde Jennings, p. 82), so, more than likely, the J88 was provided by the sender and not the post office.


So it is a legitimate rate usage, but one they believe to be manufactured.

A couple of problems with the response though:

1. I don't know what version/edition of Jennings' "The Half - A Collection" the PF is citing, but the version available online from the U.S. Philatelic Classics Society says no such thing. The only thing Jennings states is the following regarding J88:


Quote:
Issued June 19, 1959, discontinued April 10, 1963, since new rate structure did not require half-cent denomination.


He makes no reference to existing stocks being destroyed, unless that was standard USPS practice.

2. Even if Jennings did state that in his exhibit writeup, we need an authoritative first-hand source.

3. I can find no reference in the USPS bulletins from 1962 or 1963 about the half-cent postage due stamp being withdrawn and/or existing stocks being destroyed.

4. Even if it was withdrawn, it remained valid up to 1986 when all postage due stamps were withdrawn.


I realize I'm splitting hairs here, but the determination that it is a philatelic usage is extremely subjective, IMO.

Regardless, for the purposes of my collection I think I would much greatly prefer this cover to a first day cover. It becomes a question of what a reasonable market value is for a cover like this. The asking price isn't insane, but it's not exactly cheap either.

The only other examples of J88 on cover at the PF are the following:

1. Horizontal pair on first day cover. No rate-related reason for the dues to be there (no markings at any rate). Not one I would ever want anyway. I prefer either solo usages of half cent dues, or combination usages paying fractional-cent rates. Even numbered multiples paying full cent rates are by far the most common usages out there and really don't fit the reason for the stamp's existence, IMO.

http://pfsearch.org/pfsearch/pf_grd...lledfrom=lkp

2. Single on first day cover. Again, no legitimate reason for the stamp to be on the cover.

http://pfsearch.org/pfsearch/pf_grd...lledfrom=lkp


That's it. The 2 FDCs and the cover I'm considering buying. That's the entire population at the PF (of the certs made available online). I don't find any in the APEX cert archive, none at Siegel archive, or at SAN.

File under "beggars can't be choosers" and pony up?... I suppose if a "real" usage ever comes along, I can always sell this one...

It just would be nice to have a J88 usage to go along with the J68, J69, and J79 covers I have.
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Edited by revenuecollector - 11/14/2017 09:34 am
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Posted 11/14/2017   4:41 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The stamp was discontinued in 1963. There is no reason to think that a main PO in a fairly major city like Minneapolis would still have them 18 years later, especially since they already had a collectable catalog value. There is also no other reason for the specific postage involved, which includes a 2 1/2 cent from 1959 and a 4 cent from 1965; clearly more current postage would have been available to a non philatelic user. Only a collector could have done this.
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Posted 11/14/2017   5:15 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
So if you were a completist or exhibitor, what would you do? This cover is contrived, and FDCs are by definition contrived, especially the two I link to above. Which route would you take, or would you be content just leave that usage blank?

Perhaps I'm splitting hairs, but what I don't like about the FDCs is that there aren't even any postal markings indicating that a postage due stamp was warranted. That makes no difference on a postage stamp usage, but for a postage due, special delivery, certified, or registered mail usage, I would want the relevant markings and evidence of a legitimate usage, contrived or not.
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Posted 11/14/2017   5:21 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I would take this one IF I could get it at a reasonable number. Reasonable to me is pretty low, to you it is probably somewhat higher.
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Posted 11/14/2017   5:26 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
That's just it... given this is simply a diversionary collecting interest for me, my thresholds as to what is "reasonable" is a lot lower than what it would be for a main interest acquisition.

I'm torn. Sigh.
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Posted 11/14/2017   5:45 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Jenny2U to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
You'll possibly never see another. And once it's gone, it's gone. I have few regrets about what I've purchased but many more about what I didn't.
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Posted 11/14/2017   6:20 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add jaxom100 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I went to the main post office in downtown St. Louis, MO in 1986 when the postage dues went off sale. They brought out their entire stock to me and there were no 1/2c dues available. I bought sheets from 1c to 50c complete and plate blocks of the higher ones. I still own the sheet set.

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Posted 11/14/2017   6:45 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add hy-brasil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I'd pass. If there isn't a single usage that meets your criteria then that's it. The B stamp usage to Canada is a contrived cover to start with, with stamps from 3 different issue periods; not my cup of tea, and that's besides the way out-of-date Due use.

Focus. I think you're trying to force arbitrary criteria on collecting the 1/2c-ers. You really want a c.1963 or earlier item, with a correct fractional-type rate piece that's short paid. That would be something oddball like a small box. Where would 1/2c short paid come in on a single-rate first class cover except on something so obviously philatelic? I'd take a fragment/stamps on piece if that's what it came down to. The item in question would be pretty hard to find and has apparently been impossible to date.
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