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Promoted item:CHILE1841 prephilatelic postmark VALPARAISO ULTRAMAR in red on folded cover

CHILE1841 prephilatelic postmark VALPARAISO ULTRAMAR in red on folded cover

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  • 23d 5h 3m
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  • Chile
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  • US $350.00
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  • Quantity 1Available
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About Latin America Stamp

Latin America can prove a fertile hunting ground for philatelists. A young boy found the single rarest stamp ever printed in British Guinea. He discovered the stamp in 1873. Even back then, this one-of-a-kind stamp was worth a lot of money--today it would be worth millions of dollars. Latin American postal institutions have always been somewhat leery of outside interference. During the 1890s, a rapscallion by the name of Nicholas F. Seebeck stole from Latin American postal coffers by cleverly turning the law on its head. Seebeck and his affiliate company won the right to print stamps for a number of Latin American countries. His intent was to create intentional rarities so as to attract the attention of investors and well-to-do philatelists.Every year, Seebeck would force these Latin American countries to change their stamp printings, and he kept the overprints for himself to sell at a huge markup. Seebeck never gave any profit back to the poor countries from which he pilfered.A diligent collector can discover some astounding late 19th-century Latin American stamps. Consider Bolivia's green condor stamp. This Latin America stamp, which was originally only five cents, now sells for over a thousand dollars in mint condition. Venezuela also produced some interesting stamps featuring birds in 1889 at Coro La Vela. Early 20th-century Venezuela produced some stamps in coordination with the United States Department of Agriculture, including a stamp of a violet which now retails for approximately $15. Don't be discouraged if you find 19th-century and early 20th-century Latin American stamps in less than perfect condition--you can still sell to eager collectors and historians.