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Jenny Invert - American Philatelic Society

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iAThe legendary upside-down airplane stamp.It is the first United States airmail stamp. It isthe <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>. It is the upside-down airplanestamp. It is Scott #C3a. It is the 1918 24cent airmail stamp with an inverted center.It is called several names, but without a doubt,it is the most famous U.S. stamp ever. It is astamp that many collectors dream about.This is one of only 100 in existence.Position 65 owned by t 11e APRLThe sheet of 100 stamps was purchased by Mr. W. T. Robeyat a Post Office in Washington DC.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>On May 6, Congress set the rate for airmailpostage at 24¢ and authorized theUnited States Post Office to print stampsto be ready for sale a few days before theofficial inaugural flight on May 15, 1918.100 out of two millionThough planes were new and many people had not actually seen any of the new fangledaeroplanes, the War Department and Post Office were both interested in knowing how airservice could increase communications. It was the same drive for speed and efficiencythat drove the Pony Express, the R.P.O.s, the telegraph, telephone and would later spurthe e-mail.The U.S. Army Air Corp would bring the plane and pilot. The Post Office would bringthe mail and the Bureau of Engraving and Printing would provide the country's first airmails stamps. With less than two weeks to go, there was no time to lose and production ofthe stamps immediately went into high gear. Perhaps it was the sense of national purposeof a country involved in its first modem world war, advanced planning or cutting a fewcomers, but the U.S.'s first airmail stamps officially went on sale on May 13. Then no orieknew that out of some two million stamps there were I 00 gems.RobeyWilliam T. Robey was a stamp collector living in Washington, DC. He had a job as astockbroker's clerk and on his lunch hour he went to the post office on New York Avenuenear 13th Street to buy some of the newly released airmail stamps. An astute stamp collectorimmediately noticed the major error. lmperforate stamps and upside-down designshave a way of leaping out from the bottoms of cardboard boxes, and Robey's heartstopped when he saw the sheet that the counter clerk put down on the counter for him tolook at. Instead of buying a couple of stamps, Robey bought the whole sheet.Robey told a few friends about the stamps and then went to work, but someone in his officewent right over to the P.O. on New York Avenue to buy more of those upside-downairplane stamps. A few hours later postal inspectors were asking Robey to sell the sheetback to them, but he refused. When the inspectors threatened to confiscate the sheet,Robey went home and hid the sheet of <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies under his mattress. He knew thatofficial pressure would increase, so he contacted some dealers and sold the sheet ofstamps as soon as possible.


Layout of <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> SheetShown below is a mockup of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> sheet including the numbers thatwere written lightly on the back of each stamp by Eugene Klein, the dealer sellingthe <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> sheet on Col. Green's behalf.10·-··20III51- ---I I I26 I 27 I 28 I___ t ___ J ___29_l __ _I I I35 36 37 38 39I I I I-.. -. ·-· ·-. ·-.. ~- -.. ---·--• I '41 42 I 43 44 I 45 46 I 47 48 i 5061I I II I I I I52 I 53 54 I 55 56 I 57 I 58 I 59 I 60I I I I I I71.- .- .. ..- ...- .. _____ __,,..-.--..-..-··-..62 ~ 63 ~ 64 ~ 65 I t 67 ~ 68 ~ 69 ~ 70--- - ,-.. , .. - . . - · 1-.. ,---,-- ..72 I 73 I 7 4 77 I 78 f r' 80I I ~ I !··- ·-· ·-· -··81 82 87 88 9091 92 97 98IILegend~ l 11 Red number are premium stamps Thins, hinged, or missing gum...__..... ...__ .....--1j 65 ' Displayed in this exhibitCreased or damage to surface------------·l__........_ , j Stamp whereabouts unknown____ ... _______ j....-~! 2 ! Owned by a public institution~-'Read below and in the next column some interesting stories about the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>stamps.


Prices and Values of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> StampsShown below to the left is a blowup of the actual <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> prices for thefirst two and a half months of sales. The larger graph shows Scott's Catalogueprices for both singles and blocks of <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies.______ S_c_ott Catalog Values of <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies• Block of 4· • Single$BOOK$700K.,.!!ClcCi)-0CDu·cCl.Cl:§~rn$700$600$500$400$300$200$1000J!$300K~$200K$100KScott's Catalogue values are retail values based on dealer retail price lists, publicauction results, published prices in advertising and individual solicitation of retailprices from dealer, collectors and specialty organizations.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Legend and JokeNineteen Straight­Edged <strong>Invert</strong>ed JenniesStuck Together inan Envelope!They had to be soakedapart.All nineteen of the straight-edgestamps from the top and right side ofthe <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> sheet were kept inColonel Green's possession. Duringhis lifetime, Green sold only the moredesirable perforated varieties.In 1942, six years after his death,Green's stamps were sent to auction.At that time, an envelope of stuck togetherstraight-edge <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennieswere discovered. In order to preservethe stamps, the auctioneer, WalterScott, soaked off all the gum on thestraight-edge inverts.There was a popular story at the timethat Colonel Green had brought hisstraight-edges to a club meeting whereit was his intention to burn them infront of witnesses so none of thestamps could be re-perfed at a latertime and passed off as fully perforatedexamples. Fortunately, the membershiptalked him out of this drasticmove. Like other tales, some startedby Colonel Green himself, this storycannot be authenticated.A joke of the period from Mekeel 'sWeekly Stamp News, June 29, 1918written by A.N. Reggie.The following conversation was overheardin the office of a Boston dealer:Customer - "Say, I would like to ownone of the inverted aeroplanestamps."Dealer - "I can sell you one."Customer - "Can't afford to buy itnow."Dealer - "I'll sell you one on margin."Customer (seriously) - "No, I want itwell centered."


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Edward GreenReportedly Robey got $15,000 fromKlein, who then turned around and soldthe sheet for $20,000 to Colonel EdwardGreen, a New York stamp dealer and sonof Hetty Green, who was the legendary"Witch of Wall Street."In Green's hands in New York the sheetof <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies within weeks blossomedinto the Taj Mahal of stamps, theFort Knox of collecting, the Mona Lisaof timbromanie, and the Holy Grail of philately. Green broke up the sheet and soldsingle stamps and blocks of four to his friends. The sheet of 100 <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennieswas actually a pane of 100 stamps cut from a full press run sheet of 400. Robey'sstamps were the lower left-hand pane of the press sheet and was cut from the fullsheet with a straight edge. That meant that a certain amount of stamps didn't haveperforations all around, but instead had straight-edge cuts as they were on the outeredges.The sheet was laid out 10 stamps wide and 10 stamps top-to-bottom. Nine stampshad straight-edge tops, and nine had straight-edges on their right-hand side. Onestamp, from the upper right-hand comer, had no perfs on top or on the right-handside. That leaves just 81 fully perforated stamps. Today, each stamp of the original100 is known by its plate position, e.g. #86 or #21, and the fate of each is watchedclosely. See layout graphic of the sheet in the next column.<strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> FactsGreen sold the first ten stamps for $250 each and then raised the price to $350. Soonhis price was at $650. Green did not sell the straight-edge stamps and put these in asafe where over a period of time, they became stuck together.Seven of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies have been reported destroyed or lost in one way or anotherover the years and many more have been the victim of improper handling andstorage. Also, hinges have damaged the gum and caused thins. Some have creasesand others are toned showing that they have been in contact with acidic paper forlong periods of time.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Legends and AnecdotesStolen from Stamp ShowIn 1936, Ethel B. Steward (later McCoy) purchased the block~~"'II········· ···· · of <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies. For nearly 20 years, Ethel exhibited herblock of <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies. In Sept. 1955, at the request of the<strong>American</strong> <strong>Philatelic</strong> <strong>Society</strong> officials, Ethel lent them herblock. As always, Ethel's block drew an appreciative audience.At the opening of the third day of the show, it was noticed that Ethel's album pagewas blank. The burglar had cut a piece of rope that bound together two displayframes. Then slid the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> frame back from the covered glass and removedthe block.On July 18, 1958, an <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> showed up for sale. The FBI identified the stampas the "real McCoy" position 75. The FBI was powerless to act since the stamp wasvalued at $3,000 and the federal law on the interstate movement of stolen propertydid not apply unless the item was worth at least $5,000. In 1977, the stamp was sentto the <strong>Philatelic</strong> Foundation for certification of its authenticity. The purchaser waswilling to pay $16,000 for the stamp. Because of the rise in price, the FBI could nowact.In Jan. 1980, Ethel McCoy, now 85years old, in poor health, assigned allher rights, title and interest in her stolenblock to the <strong>American</strong> <strong>Philatelic</strong>Research Library (APRL) in StateCollege, PA. On Jan. 30, 1981, thecourt awarded the stamp to the APRL.The stamp was then placed in the Sept.25, 1981 sale. With the proceeds theAPRL created an endowment fundwhose income would help support thelibrary's operations.On Nov. 19, 1982, pos1t1on 65 wasidentified when a collector made anoffer to donate the stamp to the APRL.The collector stated having purchasedthe stamp previous to 1974. The stampin this exhibit is position 65. The tworemaining stamps, positions 66 and76, have not surfaced as of 2004.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Legends and Anecdotes~ Keepsake for~ EternityAt one time Colonel Green had possessionof all 100 <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies. Atsome point, he created a locket for hiswife, Mabel Harlow Green. Both an<strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> and a mint <strong>Jenny</strong> wereplaced back-to-back and sealed insidetransparent glass with a gold rim. Thislocket did not surface until June 1950,when George B. Sloane was asked toappraise a philatelic item held in aManhattan bank. The item belonged toMabel Green who died in April 1949.The locket was offered at Siegel Auctionsin their May 2002 Rarity Salebut no bids were accepted. It was latersold privately.~ World War II~ WoundedOn Sept. 24, 1940, during the Battle ofBritain, German Luthwaffe bombersraided central London and fires arose.The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> owned by JohnCrichton-Stuart, was stored at theChancery Lane Safe Depository. Afterthe bombing, three feet of water stoodin the Chancery Lane storage room,immersing the albums. When the roomwas finally entered a month later, theinverted <strong>Jenny</strong> had lost its gum butwas otherwise unharmed.


e The~cw York Public Library~ Stolen While on~ Public DisplayOn Feb. 16, 1925, Benjamin Miller, anavid stamp collector, gave his entirecollection of U.S. postage stamps tothe New York Public Library. Miller'sintent was to have it "exhibited to thepublic for the purpose of instructionand pleasure." Miller continued to addrare items to the library collection untilhis death three years later.Keeping with Miller's wishes, parts ofhis collection were prominently displayedon the first floor of the libraryin an oak display cabinet. But on May9, 1977, a burglar removed the transparentplastic covers from the recessedcabinets taking 153 items includingthe <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>.In 1978, this stamp appeared with atop straight edge and was misidentifiedas position 9, the only straightedge position whose whereabouts wasunknown. (See locket for story of position9.) When the stamp went forauction on May 5, 1979, Clifford C.Cole Jr. and Calvert M Hahn, longtime students of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>,concluded using image position andcorner perforations that the stamp wasnot position 9.The <strong>Invert</strong>ed JenniesInstitutionally OwnedIt was not until 1982 when Daniel M.Bagby photographically attempted torecreate the original sheet, that thestamp was identified beyond questionto be position 18. The stamp was thensecured by the FBI and returned to theNYPL on July 8, 1986 with 80 otherstolen stamps.The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> is currently not ondisplay at the New York Public Library.Plans are being made to digitalizedall of Miller's collection so thateveryone will have the pleasure of seeinghis rare stamps.The Franklin Institutetei} By AppointmentUpon Harry L. Jefferys'death in 1948, his stamp collectionwas donated to the Franklin Institutein Philadelphia. The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>was on display for the public to see formany years exposing it to harmfulsunlight. The stamp, now somewhatfaded, is in storage and can be seen byappointment only.


<strong>Jenny</strong> No. 38262 never completed the first airmailflight from Washington, D.C. because ofpilot incompetence and associaled blunders."Those Daring Young Menin Their Flying Machines"The First Airmail Flights.Not Exactly WithoutMultiple Incidents.Six Jennies were ordered from the CurtissFactory to assist in the first airmail flightbetween Washington and New York. They were delivered to Long Island, unassembledin crates, some in very poor quality. The mechanics worked around the clock toprepare the planes for the first epic transfer of mail. Bad engines were encountered,leaks in gas tanks, fuselage wires were broken, safety valves inoperative, some controlwires were either too short or too long.Finally, the planes were located at strategic points along theplanned route for a Northbound and a Southbound flight forMay 15th, 1918. The airmail would eventually be relayed, ponyexpress style, with one stop near Philadelphia. They hoped tobeat the train by two hours. The Southbound route from NewYork was completed with only a few problems, and LieutenantJames Edgerton landed in Washington with 2,457 letters andonly 20 minutes late.lieutenant EdgertonThe Northbound plane, No 38262, like on the stamp, was in trouble right from thevery beginning. Initially, the plane would not start, until it was discovered that the gastank was empty. There was no gas supply available, and it was necessary to siphongas from another plane. Once airborne, the pilot, Lieutenant Boyle, headed in thewrong direction. Hopelessly lost, while trying to land the pilot eventually crashed in afield resting the plane upside down. Can you imagine, an upside down <strong>Jenny</strong>? It wasironic that the same number 38262 is on the <strong>Jenny</strong> stamps.Days later, when the plane was repaired, he tried to fly from Washington again, butbecame disoriented, ran out of gas and crashed, tearing off the wings. <strong>Jenny</strong> No.3 8262 had to be mostly rebuilt, but returned to the airmail service support team of thePost Office in August of 1918.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Legends and AnecdotesInsider JobAn <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> wasreported stolen on Feb. 7, 1959, whileit awaited sale at the Shanahan 'sStamp Auctions, Ltd. in Dublin, Ireland.But the same stamp was listed bythe action house in their May 23 auction.Then on May 9, 1959, while directors,Paul and Inna Singer, held a•huge stamp party, Shanahan was brokeninto and a large number of stampsawaiting auction including the <strong>Invert</strong>ed<strong>Jenny</strong> were stolen. The stamps,which were said to have been worth$1.2M, turned out not to have been insured. On May 23, 1959, the auction house directorsvoted to liquidate the firm.Singer was accused of paying dividends to investors of money from new investors,while faking many of the stamp auction sales that were ostensibly generating theprofits. Meanwhile Singer was transferring more then $2M to his credit in banks inSwitzerland and elsewhere, supposedly for stamp purchases. The jury found himguilty of "fraudulent conversion" of investor money into old investors' profits and asentence of 14 years in prison was stipulated.Singer appealed the verdict and in a second trial was found not guilty on a technicalfailure of the prosecution to prove specific instances of conversion. Singer and hiswife were still on trail for bankruptcy, when he fled the country and has never beenseen agam.In Oct. 1961, authorities recovered $850,000 worth of Shanahan stamps which werein the hands of a Greek man in Geneva. No charges were brought against the man butindications were made that it was the work of an insider.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>Legends and AnecdotesIn theMoviesThe <strong>Invert</strong>ed<strong>Jenny</strong> inspiredmany moviesto be made likefilm thriller Death Under the Lilacsfrom Richard Forrest's Lyon WentworthMystery Series. Also, comedyBrewster s Millions where Brewsteruses an <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> to pay the firstclass rate to mail a postcard. To understandwhy Brewster did it, you willeither have to read George BarrMcCutcheon's novel or see one of fivescreen adaptations ( 1914, 1921, 1935,1945, and 1985).,,.Keeping itCleanWritten in Dec.18, 1989 Linn'sStamp News, an<strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>owner had beenbrowsing through his U.S. hingelessalbum, when the airmail invert musthave slipped out of its mount onto thefloor. Two days later, the owner againlooked through his album and noticedthat the invert was missing. A franticsearch for the stamp discovered it inthe contents of the vacuum's dust bagthat the maid had used to clean theroom. The stamp was severely damaged.The owner's response to the loss,"Thank goodness it's something I canreplace."24c <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> Replica<strong>Invert</strong>edFrameOwing to theprinting methodemployed for theprinting of the<strong>Jenny</strong>, it was the frame that was inverted.It appears that the frame sheetwas misfed before receiving the airplaneprinting. This was also the casewith the earlier errors of the bi-coloredissues. The term "center inverted" hasalways been used and continues to beused.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed JenniesInstitutionally Owned~ Under Motion­~ sensor LightingOn Dec. 23, 1957, Raymond H. WeillCompany donated an <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>to the Smithsonian Museum, in Washington,DC. The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> maybe seen by appointment only. Entry isfree. Please contact the SmithsonianNational Postal Museum to schedule atime (202) 633-5525.1;;1 ;:1 College DisplayIn 1967, Ellen DouglasWilliamson gave her airmail stampcollection of 75 volumes to Coe College.Even though the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>was creased it still drew viewers whenthe college exhibited it. Later the trusteesdecided to sell the stamp on Jan.7, 1977 for $23,000.?Missing?e As of August 2004 ethe whereabouts ofpositions 13, 32, 49, 66, 76, 79, 99 areunknown.Princeto UniversityFormerOwnerIn 1947, theblock was givento Princeton bythe widow of Edgar Palmer. The Universitynever put the block on displayand finally sold it on June 8, 1976 toRaymond H. Weill for $170,000.~ Bureau ProofsOn May 3, 1922, theBureau of Engraving and Printingprinted two die proofs of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed<strong>Jenny</strong> error, in the original colors, forexhibitions and record purposes. Onewas given to the Smithsonian to completethe Post Office Department's exhibitof die proofs. The second wasplaced in the album of die proofs keptas part of the official record by theDivision of Stamps.Later, other proofs were created forworldwide exhibitions. The actualnumber produced is not known.


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> on1973 Souvenir CardOfficial souvenir sheets were issued in 1973, oneof them depicted the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> on a card tocelebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Aero<strong>Philatelic</strong> Club of London and the internationalairmail exhibition held July 4-7 at Manchester,England, APEX 73. Three rare airmail stampswere depicted including the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>. It iscurious that the name "Curtiss" was misspelled.INTERNATIONAL AIRMAIL EXHIBITIONAPEX 73MANCHESTER. ENGLAND JULY 4-7, 1973This souvenir card 1s issued in compltmem ro rhe 50th anrnvcrsary of rhe AeroPhdarcl1C Club of London. and its Exh1bmon at Manchester APEX 73. Depicted onrhe card is rhe United Srares 24-cem amnail stamp of 1918 showing rhc Cums "<strong>Jenny</strong>"v1gnerre rn verred. On rhe left of rhis stamp 1s rhe rare De Pmcdo Newfoundlandairmail of 1927: and on rhe nghr rhe very rare Honduras airmail surcharge of 1925.Postmaster GeneralTHE COPYING OF THIS PRINT IS RESTRICTED BY TITLE 18 U. S. C. WHICH PROHIBITS THE UNAUTHORIZED REPRODUCTION,IN WHOLE OR IN PART, OF CURRENCY, POSTAGE STAMPS, OR OTHER SECURITIES OF THE UNITED STATES.Souvenir card produced by the United States Postal Service for APEX 73.


The <strong>Jenny</strong> on Souvenir Card1973 marked the 50th anniversary of the <strong>American</strong> Air Mail <strong>Society</strong> and the Bureau ofEngraving and Printing. On September 14-16, they issued a <strong>Jenny</strong> souvenir card forNAPEX '73 in Washington to commemorate the event. The original stamp dies wereused by the Bureau to reproduce a block of four of the normal 24¢ <strong>Jenny</strong>, with theplane in the proper orientation. The denominations and lettering have been removed, asis customary with the Bureau issued souvenir cards.DEPARTMENT OF Tl IE 'fREASURYBUREAU Of ENCRA YING AND PRINTINGW ASHI>-JGTON, lJC.Devoted to the Qirmail theme, this souvenir 1;ard depi1;h reprod11etions of the engraved vignette andframe used in printing the first airmail stamp issued by the United States Government. The central designof the stamp, produced in the 24¢ denomination, pictured the type of ormy airplane which corriod mailon this Nation's first airmoil route established in May 1918. The stomp become widely known as theconsequance of the discovery of one sheet on which the airplane had been printed in the inverted position.Flanking the block on the right is a conception of the airpkine created by the designer of the card.Emblazoned on its side are background tints of replica!> of the three stamps issued in 1923 in connectionwith the inauguration of night flying service ar:rOS$ the r:ountry. Night Aights were odopted in order tomake airmail service more efflcient and to prove that it definitely was a time !.aving proce~s.NAP.EX '73025TH AXNIVERSARY NATIOr--AL P1nLAlhllC EX111Bl110N50TH i\N~IVI:.R~ARY AMLRICA!\. A1R MALL Soc1E1 Yw A5H1~GTO:"J, D.C. Sl:PT.LMBil 14-16ntr C.C>'Yl~C OF THIS Plltff IS ~UTIUcrtD 8\'T f _[ 11 a, s. c. 0 1.'HI Cll rs:m111r5 THL ltUUI HCIULLI> UPROUUCI ION,IN ·~CLE oa IN PAtrr, 0 1 CUPltLNCV, r:;u•;L :ilo\llf'S. 01> OlHrR srcu~·T 5:$ or THt L ,ITCO STATES.Issued by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing for NAPEX '73.(Facsimile)


The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> on1982 Souvenir CardOnce again, the United States Postal Service produceda souvenir card showing the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>,slightly larger then the original issue. The cardcelebrated the occasion of the National StampCollecting Month in October 1982, which theU.S.P.S. sponsored in cooperation with the Councilof <strong>Philatelic</strong> Organizations. The name"Curtiss" was spelled correctly on this card.NATIONAL STAMP COLLECTING MONTH 1982,P.D1., :-t\l il-'lf.DThe U.S. Postal Service is pleased to Issue thissouvenir card In honor of the second annualobservance of National Stamp Collecting MonthIn October 1982, which Is conducted incooperation with the Council of <strong>Philatelic</strong>Organizations.Stamp collecting engages the mind. The study ofstamps, their thoughtful acquisition and display,the sharing of information about them, andorganizing, attending and participating In stampexhibitions stimulate better understanding ofourselves and the world around us. Becausepeople of every age can find pleasure in theseactivities, stamp collecting is indeed "the hobbyof a lifetime."~,,·~w a~,. ~.~~ ........ ~ ~We have chosen for reproduction on this souvenircard a stamp which has captured the Imaginationof philatelists everywhere. It is the 1918 Curtiss<strong>Jenny</strong> 24-cent Air Mail stamp with an invertedcenter The error occurred during printing when asheet was fed to the press facing in the wrongdirection, resulting In the airplane appearing to flyupside-down. Only one pane of 100 stampsescaped detection and was placed on public sale.The pane was purchased on May 14, 1918 from abranch of the Washington, D.C., post office.?fH#~Wiiiiam F BolgerPostmaster GeneralSouvenir card produced by the United States Postal Service to celebrate the National St.ampCollecting Month in 1982.


All Blocks of 424¢ JnverJed <strong>Jenny</strong> Block of 4 ReplicaFrom May 22 to June 1, 1986, all 6 existing blocks of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies weredisplayed at the great international stamp show, A11ERIPEX '86, held in Chicago. Atthe Weill Company booth were the left arrows [ 41-2,51-2], [ 43-4,53-4], center line[45-6,55-6], [81-2,91-2] and plate number blocks [87-8,97-8], the last three were onloan from their owners; the Princeton block [61-2,71-2] was shown by its owner,dealer Kenneth Wenger. Also, on display or offered for sale by dealers, were twelvesingle <strong>Invert</strong>ed Jennies.This event will never occur again since one block had been separated. The block [ 41-2,51-2] is now a set of horizontal pairs each with their respective selvage and halfarrow. The center guideline is visible on the upper pair (41-2].Reference SourcesAmick, George. The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>: Money, Mystery, Mania. Sidney, Ohio: AmosPress, 1986.Special thanks goes to the following groups for their information for this exhibit:Smithsonian Postal Museum, Siegel Auctions, Franklin Institution, and New YorkPublic Library.Thanks to many Journals and the internet for bits of information too numerous tomention.And thanks to Kristin Patterson and Leonard Holmsten who compiled this work intoseventeen pages for your pleasure.


I0 The :-Jew York l'ublic L1brM\·J;;l Stolen While on~ Public DisplayOn Feb. 16, 1925, Benjamin Miller, anavid stamp collector, gave his entirecollection of U.S. postage stamps tothe New York Public Library. Miller'sintent was to have it "exhibited to thepublic for the purpose of instructionand pleasure." Miller continued to addrare items to the library collection untilhis death three years later.Keeping with Miller's wishes, parts ofhis collection were prominently displayedon the first floor of the libraryin an oak display cabinet. But on May9, 1977, a burglar removed the transparentplastic covers from the recessedcabinets taking 153 items includingthe <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>.In 1978, this stamp appeared with atop straight edge and was misidentifiedas position 9, the only straightedge position whose whereabouts wasunknown. (See locket for story of position9.) When the stamp went forauction on May 5, 1979, Clifford C.Cole Jr. and Calvert M Hahn, longtime students of the <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>,concluded using image position andcomer perforations that the stamp wasnot position 9.The <strong>Invert</strong>ed JenniesInstitutionally OwnedIt was not until 1982 when Daniel M.Bagby photographical1y attempted torecreate the original sheet, that th\!stamp was identified beyond questionto be position 18. The stamp was thensecured by the FBI and returned to theNYPL on July 8, 1986 with 80 otherstolen stamps.The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong> is currently not ondisplay at the New York Public Library.Plans are being made to digitalizedall of Miller's collection so thateveryone will have the pleasure of seeinghis rare stamps.d ,· ,. f ,· c.The Franklin Institute8 By AppointmentUpon Harry L. Jefferys'death in 1948, his stamp collectionwas donated to the Franklin Institutein Philadelphia. The <strong>Invert</strong>ed <strong>Jenny</strong>was on display for the public to see formany years exposing it to harmfulsunlight. The stamp, now somewhatfaded, is in storage and can be seen byappointment only.

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