Did You Know?: One of Rarest Postage Stamps Comes from Mt. Lebanon

Did you know….?

One of the rarest and most unique postage stamps in the world comes from Mt. Lebanon?
Known as the Postmaster Provisional 1861 stamp, it was created to use locally during the initial outbreak of the Civil War before official government stamps were issued. Very few Louisiana cities issued provisional stamps, and most came from New Orleans.

First sold at auction in Paris in 1925, the stamp has since changed hands through several collectors. It has been displayed numerous times as one of the Aristocrats of Philately (fancy word for stamp collecting).

It is the only known postage stamp which features a incorrect mirror image! The imprinting block was created by hand and made while facing the carver from his perspective. However, when the block was flipped to imprint onto paper, the image imprints backwards. Rather than re-make the block, the stamps were issued and history was made.

Once fetching $385,000 during a heated bidding war, it remains in a private collection and recently sold for $240,000.

The picture below is the only known survivor.


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