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Forgeries of the First Issues of Wurttemberg (Click on images for a larger picture)
From an early period the postal service of Württemberg was, with some interruptions, in the hands of the princely House of Thurn and Taxis, but by an agreement dated March 22nd 1851 the Government of Württemberg liberated itself by purchasing the postal privileges from July 1st of that year for the sum of 1,300,000 florins (about $525,000) (which is about $12 million in today’s money).
It then proceeded to form its own administration and to join the German-Austrian Postal Union, established by the convention of April 6th 1850. As one of the provisions of this convention required the adoption of postage stamps, preparations were immediately made for providing them.
The London Philatelist for August 1893, points out that “differences in the position of the period after ‘Postverein’ may be found in all values except the 18kr. There are three types in all. In Type I the period is between the second and third points of the zigzag lines of the border; in type II it is exactly over the second point; and in type III it is exactly above the third point. All three types are found on the 3 kreuzer, types I and II are found in the 1, 6 and 9 kreuzer, while the 18kr is known only with the first type.”
1851. Figure of value in square, standing on its tip.
1 Kreuzer black/buff, light/ buff, straw-yellow.
3 Kreuzer black/ yellow, dark/yellow.
6 Kreuzer black /green, blue-green.
9 Kreuzer black/pale rose.
18 Kreuzer black/lilac, dull violet.
Size of stamp picture: 22 : 22:14 to 22 4/5 : 23 2/5 mm.
1. 2 dots above the u
2. The two “r’s” in “Wurttemberg” in the upper inscription band have no spur.
3. The right ornament of the two ornaments to the right and left of the upper tip of the square, is somewhat higher than the left.
4. The final dot of the “g” in “Wurttemberg” is very near to the upper part of this letter. And is diamond shaped.
5. & 6. Dots are square shaped.
7. The upper spur of the “k” in “Freimarke” is very long.
8. In the 1 Kreuzer value the second background line of the center piece in the third square is interrupted.
9. Thirty-two tips of the zigzag lines in the side label may be counted.
10. The serif of the “1” is long and curved.
11. Note the position of the dot in the 2nd square from the left. Different for other values.
Forgeries of the 1 Kr
Genuine left and forgery right with areas of concern
“W” touching upper frame. Round dot instead of a square one
Thick lines in all corner designs. Corner branch & grapes reversed
Narrow section of squares. The serif of the “1” is not curved.
A decent forgery that sold on eBay in 2016 for $75 with several bidders.
The first sign of forgery should have been the guide lines around
No dot after Freimarke or 1850
The serif on the 1 curves the wrong way.
“It may be noted that occasionally one or both of the full stops are wanting after the ‘v’ or the ‘6’ in the inscription in the right tablet of the 3 kreuzer, and there is a difference in the position of the stop after the word ‘Postverein’ in the left tablet. The first of these is probably due to imperfections in the molds from which the electrotypes were made, while the second points to the making of new plates.”
Forgeries of the 3 Kr
Forgeries of the 6 Kr
Left genuine, right forgery
This is a fairly good forgery, possibly a Sperati
1. Odd shaped ‘t”
2. Letters not aligned
3. Dot in triangle
4. “F” touches the frame line
5. Frame lime is wandering and not a single unit
Forgeries of the 9 Kr
1. The ornament on the right of the upper tip of the central square is smaller than the ornament to the left of the tip.
2. In the upper part of the “8” there are 9 visible hatch lines, the last one (10th) at the top is usually faded. ,
3. The lower part of the “8” has eleven shading lines.
4. In the lower inscription label , the upper end line of the ornament, consisting of grapes, is broken.
5. The end of the lower runner carries on into the main stem.
6 . The period behind ” Freimarke” & “Wurttemburg” is diamond-shaped.
7 . At the top of the “k” in ” Freimarke” there is a long spur.
8. The zigzag lines in the side labels have thirty-two tips.
9. The up-stroke of the figure 1 is long and curved.
The horizontal lines surrounding the value are 25 in number.
Forgeries of the 18 Kr
It appears that this issue got the most attention from the forgers
Both of these the serif on the “1” is too short and not curved
Letters like the “b” and the “F” touch the frame
On the left, the bottom left ornament is too far from the frame line
The small lettering on the right one is blotchy
Left Fournier forgery, small letters wander and the large ones are too narrow and do not match the original at all
Right, Sperati forgery, with a few tell tale errors.
Many broken lines inside the “8”
The frame on the right has an irregular area
There is a notch in the bottom right frame
The top left corner frame has a break
There are also many other forgeries that are the wrong color and very crude.
‘* CANNSTATT 15 JUN 99 * in a single circle
‘OKT 13 10-11 V M.NECKAR F’ part of a circular cancel
‘STUTTGART 21 NOV 11-12 1861’ in a double circle
‘KIRCHHEIM 9 OKT 13’ part of a circular cancel
‘TUTTGART Nr1 17 KT 3’ part of a circular cancel
‘NIJAGST’ part of a circular cancel
‘TUTTLINGEN 2 APR 1867 3 N 6’ circular cancel (two rings outside and one inner circle)
‘STUTTGART 12 4 (1) ‘ in a single circle
‘STUTTGART 2 MAR 18??’ circular cancel (two rings outside and one inner circle)
‘STUTTGART 24 NOV. 1868 3 N 6’ circular cancel (two rings outside and one inner circle)
‘STUTT POST JU’ part of a fan cancel
The catalog value of genuine unused stamps is much higher than used ones.
Aside from the forgeries which are generally distinguishable, the reprints pose the biggest issue to collectors.
There are three types of reprints:
Official Sept. 1864, smooth paper; thin gumming;
Official 1865, 1 Kr smooth paper, 3-9 Kr Rough paper. Without gum
Official 1865, numerous, various color paper. Gummed and ungummed paper. 102 different known. As these reprints were printed singly, the margins are much wider than in the previous reprints.
The center piece of the reprints is that of the original.
The frame lines were produced anew along with the inscriptions by a single die. This is where you can note the differences.
Characteristics of reprints
The two “r’s” in “Wurttemberg” have a small spur.
The “b” in “Wurttemberg” is shorter than in the original.
The distance of the ending dot of the “g” in “Wurttemberg,” from the top of that letter, is slightly bigger than in the original.
The spur of the “k” in “Freimarke” is short.
The grape-like ornament at the bottom right does not contact the frame line.
The period after “Freimarke” is round.
The zigzag lines on the sides have twenty-nine tips.
The distance of the “W” of “Wurttemberg” from the frame line is 1.5 mm. (in the original 1 mm.)
The Serrane Guide to Stamp Forgeries
H. Bynof-Smith: Forged Postage Stamps of Europe and Colonieis
Album Weeds – How to Detect Forged Stamps, R.B. Earée: 3rd Edition
650 falsche stempel und Prufzeichen BDph
German Philatelic Society Reference Manual of Forgeries
Fritz Billig: Großes Handbuch der Fälschungen, WÜRTTEMBERG 1935
Distinguishing Characteristics of Classic Stamps: Old German States, Hermann Schloss
Germany States Vol 3, Muller, 1933
The Forged Stamps of All Countries, Dorn, J.
Altdeutschland spezial-katalog und handbuch, Grobe 1963
Handbuch der Postfreimarkenkunde Altdeutsche Staaten, Krötzsch
Altdeutschland – Württemberg/ Allgemein: 1952
Handbuch Der Neudrucke , Paul Ohrt, 1938.
Handbok för filatelister Sigurd Tullberg.
Étude sur les Faux Timbres d’Europe, A. de Haene
Handbuch der Wurttemberg-philatelie : kreuzerzeit 1851-1875