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Wednesday 31 March 2010

Forging a Postmark: How Not to Do It

Recently I examined an exhibit collection of Russian "For the Postman" stamps and court covers. I did not like the look of one item. Supposedly, it showed a rare (unique?) example of the 15 kopeck general Fiscal with the red "For the Postman" overprint omitted. But the cancellation looked wrong. The ink was too lacquer-like for a Russian cancellation of the period, as was obvious from the adjoining cancellation on a regular 7 kopeck Imperial adhesive. When I removed the cover from its plastic holder, I needed no more proof: a complete purple impression of the doubtful postmark had transferred to the plastic! The forger's ink had never even dried properly!

It's not always that easy!

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