Stamp Catalogue

Deutsches Reich

German Empire Shield Stamps of 1872 - 1874

German Postal Specialist

Issue Feb-Mar 2004, Volume LV - No. 2

by Jerry Jensen

This is a wonderful resource for a student of the period. It is a compilation of the early Shield Issues on covers that have appeared in philatelic auctions of the past 11 years.

Featured is a mouthwatering selection of more than 1,000 covers with examples of postmarks, destinations, surcharges and usages. Each example is complete with the auction price realized, the date and the location of the sale. All this is followed by one of the most complete listings of the postal rates of 1872-74 that I have seen - a nine-page reference.
This alone makes the book a must for inclusion in any serious philatelic library. The index is well done, allowing the reader to locate a specific example by usage, individual stamp, town cancel and in many other ways.

A careful reading by the student will bring surprises. For example numerous covers bearing the French addition of the 25-centime tax on letters from Alsace-Lorraine to France up to May 1872 are identified (as on the page shown here). For most collectors, this will be new information. There are far too many examples of unusual and rare postal markings to list them in detail in this review.

I enjoyed this softcover 352-page book and look forward to more from this publisher.
It is an inexpensive reference by today's standards, and is also easy to purchase by credit card from Germany.
It is well worth finding a place for in your personal philatelic library.

Jerry Jensen