Unique letter from Hamburg under hammer!

In July I wrote here about the record price for a rarity stamp of Czechoslovakia, in this September post we will take a look at a rarity from Germany that has just been auctioned at the Heinrich Köhler auction house in Wiesbaden.

This cover is unique because it contains the largest known multiple franking of this stamp with a face value of 9 shillings from 1859. At the same time, it is the highest registered franking of this unperforated issue. The letter from 6 April 1859, travelled from Hamburg via Aachen and Liverpool to New York in the USA, where it arrived 16 days after being sent.

This rare folded letter has been in many famous collections during its existence. The first world famous owner was Baron Rothschild, followed by such illustrious collectors as Alfred Caspary, John Boker Jr. and most recently it was in the collection of Erivan Haub, where it stayed for 34 long years, since Haub bought it in 1988. This entrepreneur is not well known (except in Germany). Let's mention that he was a co-owner of the Tengelmann Gruppe, which he also managed between 1969-2000, and whose portfolio includes stores such as OBI, KIK, NETTO, TEDI, etc.

So how much is the letter currently worth? The starting price was €60,000 and the buyer, who placed his bids over the phone, auctioned it for an amazing €180,000 plus auction commission.

Whatever the crisis in the stock markets, the prices of collectibles continue to follow their own rules, which have been in place for more than 150 years. As this letter confirms - prices are still rising.

#hamburg #tengelmann #erivan #rothschild #obi #kik

Back of the cover


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  • Radek Novák
  • radek.austria@gmail.com
  • +420 608 386 845