Specimen overprints

Both of the Hospital Charity stamps were overprinted Specimen in italic serif font 12 mm wide (type 22). The 1d (1/-) stamp was overprinted in red while the 2½d (2/6) was overprinted in black. This overprint was only used on the Victorian Charity stamps for distribution to the U.P.U. members.

The nature of the target group ensured that examples are now scarce - especially in multiples. The largest multiples are:

1d Spec

Strips of three of each denomination overprinted Specimen.

Rod Perry September 1993 Lot 1031.
Charles Leski July 2002, Lot 345.

Similar strips sold at Millennium, June 2011 Lot 449 (lower margins not as wide) as did a pair of singles (lot 448).
2½d Spec

The only recorded variety of the overprint is recorded on the 2½d. It is a double overprint of which one is an albino overprint. Only one Specimen is visible from the front but on the reverse side the double printing can be seen clearly.
(Rodney Perry April 1998 Lot 1035 and Prestige Philately January 2004 Lot 614).

Cancelled to Order.

Stamps were made available to collectors at reduced price by being Cancelled to Order with a Melbourne date stamp with a two line date. One stamp with a CTO of the First Day of Issue (22 October) is known while most stamps had a Melbourne datestamp of Nov. 16 / 97.

The popularity of this issue with collectors resulted in very few of these CTO stamps being prepared. There is no record of how many were prepared but there are probably less than 20 presently known. Multiples are uncommon.


1d strip 4

CTO strip of four - largest recorded CTO multiple.
Melbourne 16 November 1897.

Rod Perry September 1993;
Millennium Auctions June 2011 Lot 492.

1d strip 3 CTO

Marginal strips of 3 with CTO cancellation of Melbourne 16 November 1897.

Millennium Auctions October 2002, lot 273.

2½ strip 3 CTO
CTO pairs

Pairs with CTO cancellation at Melbourne of
16 November 1897.

Millennium Auctions
June 2011 Lot 491.

A CTO pair on separate pieces is also known with date of 9 June 1903 (Status Auctions October 2011 Lot 1735; February 2012, Lot 1670).


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