... To Err or Not to Err ...

A strange thing happened when I got my Wave-5 shipment of Cancellation Pages – another version of Page 0607 showed up. We now have two Pages with the same number (0607) but with different Page Production info on each but the Page Servicing aspect applied to both Pages (stamp and cancellation) are the same.

In the Cancellation-Page community there seems to be a difference of opinion in what to call these two Pages – names like error Page, standard Page, first Page, or even called a completely different Page for the Page shipped in Wave 2. The Wave 5 Page could be called: revised Page, reissued Page, corrected Page, replacement Page, Page 0607, etc. We even have disagreement if this Page should have been issued in the first place!

Lady Liberty and U.S. Flag was first released on 9 January, coil issued in 10K format (1 design) on a liner. On 8 February (Page in question), the USPS assigned an FDOI to the same stamp design as released in January, but from a coil issued in 3K format (1 design) on a liner! When these two stamps are removed from their respective liners, the stamp designs are identical, with no detectable face differences. Thus Scott assigned the same Scott number - 3980 - to the Lady Liberty singles.

Controversy is an area I just love – or should I say - trying to solve controversies is a mess I love to get entangled into. This controversy entails developing criteria and applying these criteria to the stamps under controversy. Most collectors wouldn’t loose a night’s sleep over such trivia – but for me - this keeps me focused on my collection and adds a little interest to a rather mundane hobby.

In September 2006, the USPS sent to subscribers of Cancellation Pages a letter alerting us that:

“In shipment two, you received (0607) Lady Liberty and U.S. Flag, Coil of 3,000 (1 design). The page contained errors in both the printer information and text. A corrected page will be shipped in a later shipment.”

I believe that in the interest of the USPS, the USPS wanted us to throw away the first Page sent in Wave 2 (which contained errors in both the printer information and text) and replace it with the corrected Page they sent us in Wave 5. Easily said in their world; not practical in the collecting arena.

I know collectors all too well – we keep everything and consider some things dear to us, which is in reality worthless junk. And as such, we have two Pages, the first one that needs to be addressed further and this is where a standard set of criteria comes in handy. As hinted above, I have elected to break Cancellation Pages into two groups:

Page Production and Page Servicing


Page Production

I consider the most important area (major) to my collection of Pages to be Page Production itself with the Page Servicing aspect to be of secondary import (minor). As such, I think we should use capital letters for describing Page variations (watermarks; colors; printing such as technical and commentary text; numbers; etc) and small letters in describing Page servicing differences (stamps, stamp errors, stamp positioning, cancellation anomalies, etc). Any sub-group within these should use small letters. First let’s look into what these two areas consider:

First, are these two different Pages? Should these two Pages be assigned different Page numbers? – 0607A and 0607. Looking at them from a watermark paper perspective – YES.

Wave 2 Page ........... WATERMARKS ............ Wave 5 Page

Looking at these two Pages from a content point of view – they are quite different in that the Pages describe two different stamps – one produced by SSP and the other by AVR. … and I know, an SAD SSP stamp was never released on 8 February; in fact, it was never ever produced! But that really doesn’t matter? – since we are looking to see if these Pages deserve to be called different Pages – like the $1 Eugene O’Neill Page of 1973, two different Pages with the same Stamp Servicing applied. The O’Neill Page should never have been called an error Page as delineated in the USPS catalog … but just a different Page, 73-01A.

Wave 2 Page ............. TECHNICAL DATA ............. Wave 5 Page

I believe these are two different Pages; and the first Page that was replaced by a second Page should be called Page 0607A and the replacement Page 0607.

Wave 2 Page ............. TECHNICAL DATA ............. Wave 3 Page

The above definitely gives evidence that the tech data for the first 0607 Page really was intended for another stamp, 0613 (Wave 3 Page) to be released later on another date (8 March), in 3K rolls, and, but not given in write-up, W/A gummed paper vice on self-adhesive (SAD) format.

However there is a glitch in the Page ointment! The first Page did indeed contain an error where as the $1 O’Neill Page did not. Shown below is the error I’m talking about …

Wave 2 Page: the top line left off the words: … the United States by the people of …

Wave 5 corrected Page: this line was inserted to read correctly.

Thus, I believe our first Page that we received in Wave 2 is both a different Page and an error Page.

Thus I’m labeling this Page 0607AE!

and maybe there also was a Page servicing error in using the Page in the first place ... an 0607AEe ... oh my no!

Concerning the replacement Page, it is just ole 0607 and nothing needs to be said further about it since it corrected the text and technical data with proper Page Servicing.


Page Servicing

Page Servicing anomalies involve the servicing done to the finished Page:

Stamps themselves; stamp placement; cancellation; and
all those oddities that servicing people can do to a Page.

Applying this criteria to the $1 O’Neill – since the only difference between the two pages were directly related to the Page itself and nothing associated to the servicing – we should use capital letters to discern it from the correct Page - it should be called 73-01A and not 73-01E. There was no error on the Page but it did reference a stamp that was not produced and the USPS used the new Page for filling orders for the stamp that was released. Maybe this is a servicing error – and if so, it could be called 73-01Ae.

For the Spirit of ’76 stamp trio, the number assigned to the Page with the cancellation error should use a small e and not a capitol E; that is, the cancellation Page should be referred to as 76-01e.

And what did I mean earlier – a standard first Page – how can this be when it’s the first Page released with nothing to revise or compare it to! or maybe the second Page is the standard Page and the first Page is the non-standard Page? Maybe the second Page isn’t that simple either. Thus I hope what I’ve written above makes sense and doesn’t get us into convoluted thought as given in this paragraph. If the USPS would have caught the error in the first place and just sent us the replacement Page, we would not have known what went on behind the scene and just called it Page 0607!