Proofs and Specimens of Liberia 1860 - 1960

This page contains a loose collection of essays, proofs and specimens of Liberian stamps issued through 1960. About the terminology: essays either show stamp designs that were never used or designs that were used but altered for the final stamp; proofs, whether taken from the whole plate or directly from the single die, always show the final design or parts of it – but often in a different “trial” color and printed on different paper, e.g. cardboard – however, they can also have gum and be perforated like a normal stamp; specimens are the finished stamps as issued, but with overprint to indicate they are meant for distribution to postal authorities or sent as examples to the Universal Postal Union. From this it should be clear that the “Waterlow specimens” of the first pictorial issue printed in trial colors are really proofs.
While usually being produced for demonstration purposes only – the one thing essays, proofs and specimens have in common is that none of them are valid for postage – it is probable that at least some of the material on this page was created for the collectors market, just like quite a few of the so called “error stamps” are not really the result of an accident. And sometimes it can be impossible to correctly categorize an item. A gummed, perforated stamp showing the frame only: is it a proof, an honest mistake, or just a philatelic swindle?

  • First Pictorials 1892-1905

    • die proofs

      • 37_die_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 39_die_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 43_die_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_die_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
    • trial color proofs 1892

      engraved by Waterlow & Sons, Ltd., England on paper thick paper watermarked "Rosette", perforated 15,imperforate.

      • 33_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 35_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 36_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 37_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 39_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 41_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 43_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 46_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 47_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 49_proof
        1892, Sep. 1
    • Waterlow specimens 1892

      engraved by Waterlow & Sons, Ltd., England on paper paper watermarked "Rosette".

      • 33_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 34_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 35_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 36_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 37_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 39_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 41_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 43_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 46_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 47_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_waterlow_no_punch
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 49_waterlow
        1892, Sep. 1
    • Waterlow specimens 1892 without overprint

      • 33_waterlow_no_ovpt
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 34_waterlow_no_ovpt
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 46_waterlow_no_ovpt
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_waterlow_no_ovpt
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 49_waterlow_no_ovpt
        1892, Sep. 1
    • Waterlow specimens 1892 dollar sheetlets

      • 47_waterlow_sheet
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_waterlow_sheet
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 49_waterlow_sheet
        1892, Sep. 1
    • Waterlow specimens 1894

      • 52_waterlow_color_trial_ochre_black
        1894
      • 52_waterlow_color_trial_green_brown
        1894
      • 52_waterlow_color_trial_red_green
        1894
      • O26_waterlow
        1894
    • specimens 1892

      • 33_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 34_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 35_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 36_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 37_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 39_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 41_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 43_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 46_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 47_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 48_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
      • 49_specimen
        1892, Sep. 1
    • specimens 1896

      • 38_specimen
        1896
      • 40_specimen
        1896
      • 42_specimen
        1896
      • 44_specimen
        1896
      • 45_specimen
        1896
    • specimens 1897

      • 54a_specimen
        1897
      • 57_specimen
        1897
      • 60_specimen
        1897
      • 63_specimen
        1897
    • specimens 1900

      • 55_specimen
        1900
      • 58_specimen
        1900
      • 61_specimen
        1900
    • surcharges 1903

      • 96_proof
        1903