World’s Most Expensive Stamps (Part I)

The Penny Black – Issued in the United Kingdom in ‘40, the Penny Black was the first stamp in the world, which is why this stamp is so valuable. Although not the most valuable or rarest collector’s item, they set the path for the future of British postage stamps. The Penny Black has a picture of Queen Victoria II and does not show the country of origin, as is custom today. Even though there are plenty of Penny Blacks for sale, an unused one can get a lucky owner around €3,000, making it a very popular with collectors.

Inverted Swan – The Inverted Swan is one of the most unique and famous stamps in the world, not because of its gracefulness, but rather because it was one of the first invert errors in the world. The Inverted Swan was given in Perth, Australia in 1855 when a complex process of producing these stamps through lithography was followed. However, contrary to belief, it is really the frame that is inverted rather than the swan. This famous stamp was last sold in ‘83 for €35,500.

Red Mercury – The Red Mercury stamp is very valuable due to its rarity. Rather than a postage stamp, the Red Mercury was for mailing newspapers. These stamps have an image of the Roman god and were printed in red, yellow, and blue based on a number of newspapers in the bundle. However, the Red Mercury was short lived and was soon replaced, which is why a small number of copies have survived and why they hold such a true value of €37,000.

Hawaiian Missionaries – In spite of the cheap blue paper that the Hawaiian Missionaries stamp was printed on, these are among the most valuable and rarest stamps of all time, now worth around €39,000. The Hawaiian Missionaries were the first stamps to be made in Hawaii.