Complete Your Childhood Collection With Really Expensive 19th Century 1-Cent Stamp

This is a really old, really expensive stamp.

This is a really old, really expensive stamp.

It’s the Dodo bird of the stamp world, the rarest of the rare, and a collector’s dream. Hopefully, you’ve been saving up your pennies, or billions of them, because this stamp will blow your current collection out of the water when it hits the auction block in New York this summer.

The 1-cent postage stamp from a 19th century British colony in South America is expected to sell for between $10 million and $20 million at Sotheby’s on June 17, the Associated Press reports.

The One-Cent Magenta has a storied past, including breaking the auction record for a single stamp three times. It’s also the only major stamp missing from the British Royal Family’s private Royal Philatelic Collection.

Marked with a three-masted ship printed in black on magenta paper, the stamp is thought to be the only survivor of a small batch commissioned in British Guiana when a shipment of stamps was delayed from London.

The stamp was first owned by a Scottish boy in South America in the late 1870s. The boy sold the stamp to a local collector, who in turn sold it to a dealer in Liverpool. When the man died his collection was bequeathed to the Postmuseum in Berlin. Following World War I, the stamp was auctioned by France for $35,000, setting the first record for a single stamp.

Another auction record was set in 1970 when the stamp was purchased for $280,000 by an investment consortium. In 1980, the stamp was sold to John E. du Pont for $935,000. du Pont’s estate is currently selling the stamp. A portion of the funds from the auction will go to the Eurasian Pacific Wildlife Conservation Foundation.

Rare stamp could bring millions at NYC auction [Boston.com]