Lagos SG#6 6d Deep Green, Queen Victoria, 1874-1876 Perf. 12.5 Crown CC Watermarked Issue, 1st Printing, A Very Fine Mint OG Example
A very well centered and very fine mint OG example of the 6d deep green Queen Victoria De La Rue Keyplate stamp from the 1874-1876 Perf. 12.5 Crown CC issue. According to J.F Ince in his definitive work, there were a total of 22,620 stamps issued across 7 different printings between May 12, 1874 and May 13, 1875. This example is from the first printing from May 12, 1874, of which 2,040 stamps were printed. Vertical wove paper showing no clear mesh and watermarked crown CC.
Stanley Gibbons values a VF-75 mint OG example of the more common seventh printing example at 150 pounds = $300. The first and second printings are three times as scarce as the seventh printing and thus should be worth a significant premium. This example does have some minor natural gum wrinkles on the back and a small black spot above the "P" of postage, which reduce the grade somewhat, but not below VF.
I have written a blog post which explains the differences between the printings, which you can access here.
The stamp offered here grades VF-78 as follows:
Paper freshness: 5/5
Impression: 4/5 (some minor surface rubbing at lower left)
Absence of visible paper flaws: 0/5 (small black spot above P of Postage and minor gum wrinkles)