$62k for 3-penny stamp
A rare New Zealand stamp with an auction estimate of $50,000 went under the hammer for $62,000 in Wellington at the weekend.
At the same auction, an envelope bearing three postmarked New Zealand ‘‘penny claret’’ stamps from 1907 sold for $84,000, which was $4000 above its pre-sale estimate.
They were among 1987 lots of stamps, coins, medals and banknotes, varying in age, origin, condition and rarity, for sale in what was the largest auction of its type held in New Zealand, attracting hundreds of bidders worldwide.
An Auckland buyer took away the $62,000 stamp, a mintcondition three-penny HMS Vanguard stamp, one of only seven known examples.
It was printed in 1949 for the scheduled visit of King George VI. However, because of the king’s ill health, the visit was cancelled and the stamps were ordered to be destroyed. One sheet was ‘‘liberated’’ before it could be burnt in the furnace.
Auctioneer John Mowbray, of Mowbray Collectables in Otaki, said there was also keen interest in a Victorian ‘‘penny black’’ and ‘‘two-penny blue’’ British line engraved stamps, selling for up to $35,000 each.
There was also strong interest in the coins, banknotes and medals. Highlights included a gold medal marking the death of Sir Winston Churchill in 1965, which was bought for almost $7500. The top New Zealand coin was a 1935 Waitangi Crown, bought for just over $6500. A gold coin of the Iceni tribe of Queen Boadicea reached $5850.
The top New Zealand banknote, a 1940s Hanna £50 note, sold for just over $4000.
Mowbray said work had already begun for the next auction, in March.