1860 cover to Queen Victoria offered in private treaty sale

A historic cover addressed to “Victoria Queen, Great Britain” and mailed from the United States in 1860 is now being offered in a private treaty sale for $38,000 US (about $52,000 Cdn.).

The sale is managed by the U.K.-based Spink & Son firm on behalf of noteworthy collecting couple Edward and Joanne Dauer, who acquired the 160-year-old cover in 1993 during Christie’s sale of the Ryohei Ishikawa Collection.

It’s franked with eight U.S. stamps from the 1857-61 issue, including two one-cent “Type V” stamps; two three-cent “Type II” stamps; and two singles plus a pair of 10-cent “Type V” stamps—a “wonderful three-colour franking,” according to Spink.

In 1860, Queen Victoria was represented by Albert Edward, the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII), in a royal tour of Canada.

“The Queen herself remained in the United Kingdom to attend to domestic affairs, this being a long voyage,” according to Spink.

Edward arrived in St. John’s, Nfld., on July 24 before visiting New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, the Province of Canada (present-day Ontario and Québec) and the United States.

The cover was mailed from Concord, N.H., on Aug. 27, and it’s possible its contents detailed the Prince of Wales’ 1860 visit, which set the tone and format for future royal visits.

“It is possible that the contents, no longer present, reported details of the Prince of Wales’ progress to the Queen,” according to auctioneers, who describe the cover as an “exceptional combination of history and philatelic rarity.”

For more information about the cover, visit spink.com/private-treaty/stamps.


The Dauers were two of the founders of Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami Beach, Fla., and Edward previously served as president of Florida Medical Services. The father of six was also on the Florida State Board of Medicine for 11 years, two of which were served as chairman.

The Dauers’ many collections have ranged from currency to vintage cars and postage stamps, including a British North America collection sold by Spink in 2014.

In 2018, the couple sold what was described as “the most complete and most valuable collection of Canadian banknotes ever assembled” to an international collector for an undisclosed seven-figure amount.

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