Auction recap: Only known Hastings, B.C. cancel sells for $5,500

There’s big money in the Western Canadian philatelic market.

This according to the results of yesterday’s auction hosted by the Vancouver-based All Nations Stamp and Coin, which had the honour of selling the only known cover featuring a Hastings, B.C. cancellation.

Auctioneer and All Nations owner Brian Grant Duff said Lot 93 included two Hastings, B.C. cancels made at Hastings Post Office (known as the Burrard Inlet Post Office until 1897) on a cover sent in 1899. The cover sits on page 37 of famed philatelist Gerald Wellburn’s Historic Vancouver album. The lot also includes a photograph, newspaper clipping and notes transcribed by Wellburn.

“When we first previewed the Wellburn collection, the 1899 Hastings cover was the one the knowledgeable collectors paused at and said, ‘This is a good cover,’ or, ‘I’ve never seen one of these.’ If it was not for collectors like Gerald Wellburn, there would not be any of this material around,” said Duff. “He simply sourced and saved it over a lifetime, and was working on the Burrard Inlet collection, that we are calling Historic Vancouver, up until his death.”

On July 2, in All Nations Stamp and Coin Auction #1066, Lot 93 realized an astounding $5,500 as nine bidders fought for ownership of this rare piece of postal history.

“The material is historically fascinating and appeals to collectors and historians.  The unique (first) Hastings, B.C. cover opened at $1,800 and rose to $5,500, selling to an absentee bidder, who outlasted a phone bidder,” he said, adding the previous record result for a “post-colonial cover with a scarce B.C. cancel” was $2,500. “The only sad thing is that only one person can own this cover at a time.”

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