1860 first issues

I'm finally finding the time to look more carefully at the first issues (1860-1880) that I have (a few dozen)

I'm not expert enough to be able to identify genuine but at least I can try to identify the obvious forgeries!

I'm using Cockrill Booklet 4 (although many of his comments are that helpful in identifying a forgery); the notes on this website and a scan that someone posed on another website of Serrane's highlighted difference /www.stampboards.com/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=7381

Two questions that someone may be able to help with

1. Gum
Do the forgeries typically have gum on the reverse?
Or did the forgers not bother and simply print the stamps?

2. Postmarks
I seem to remember reading somewhere that "Monrovia" was the preferred postmark of forgers (often mis-spelled)
Does this mean that a stamp with another postmark (eg Robersport or Buchanan) is more likely to be genuine?




  • edited October 2015
    In my own collection...

    1. none of the forgeries of the first issue have gum, so I guess that's the rule rather than the exception.
    Anyone with a gummed forgery?

    2. all the readable postmarks are faked Monrovia town cancels, sometimes misspelled "MONROWA" (e.g. Spiro) and even "MONPOWA" (Mercier). I'd say any other town means the stamp is genuine.

    Feel free to post a stamp here in the forum for identification, but the scan should have a resolution of 600 dpi.

  • edited November 2015

  • Here is a # 17 with the perfs moved to the right. I got this stamp about 40 years ago. Does anyone have another one like this ? Thanks…AlbertScan 453
  • Albert

    I have this strip of 5
    I assume they're (probably) genuine as I can't imagine a forger going to the trouble of mis-perforating a forgery
  • mikwizzy

    Looks like my stamp  might have come from that strip. How long have you had that strip ?
  • Albert
    not sure - at least 5 years I guess but no more than 10 years
  • Started looking at these again with the advantage that  I now have some marked as Fournier forgeries (which I hope are "genuine" forgeries!)

    Am I right in thinking that according to Cockrill any postmarks for this issue would NOT have a date stamp - ie if the cancel has a date stamp is must be a forgery?

    If so do we know which forger did this?

  • Not sure about the 186x issues, but the 1880 issue definitely exists with dated postmarks: I have genuine copies with CP5 and CP12 in my collection, and I have seen CP6 and CP10.
  • Manfred

    I should have read Cockrill more carefully - the comment applies specifically to the 186x issues
    He doesn't mention the 1880
  • I posted this time last year asking about forgeries and gum on these issues

    I have a 24c (I think 1864 as it has a single frame line)

    I'm pretty sure it's a forgery (according to Cockrill) but it also has partial gum

  • Is it a Fournier forgery?
  • edited October 2016

    not sure
    According to Cockrill Fournier forgeries 
    - the chin line is not connected to the hair
    - the right lower stroke of the R in Liberia is flat and doesn't project below the level of the other letters
    - the E has 3 even length strokes

  • Mik,

    forget about the chin line and the rest. If a 24c stamp looks genuine otherwise, the only criterion that really works is if there is a gap between the leg and the shading of the sea, described in Cockrill's booklet no. 4 on page 19 under g). There is no gap on your stamp, ergo it's genuine. BTW, all Fournier forgeries are smaller than the originals. I have uploaded an image showing the genuine stamp and the facsimile side by side, this should help (I didn't post it here because it would be too small to see the details).

  • Manfred


    Back to check them all again!

  • edited October 2016
    This is not mentioned anywhere, but the 6c and 12c facsimiles also have their own characteristic flaws - a small white spot in the mesh (not at the same position, though):
    I have never seen a genuine stamp with these flaws, but all Fournier forgeries have them, with or without outer frame, including the corresponding 1880 stamps. Perhaps Fournier even made this on purpose to help him recognize his own work?
  • Manfred
    thanks - very helpful
    I've been using Cockrill but that gets very complicated sometimes! 
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