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NEVIS LEADERS OF THE WORLD AUTOMOBILES AND TRAINS PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS

The Cars and Trains Progressive Color Proof Stamps for Nevis Produced by the Format International Security Printers

A Specialized Study of the Varieties and Quantities Produced

Would YOU store YOUR specialized stamps this way?

Example of how the Police Evidence Stock was Stored
Marquee for Golowe's Reference Site on the Format International Security Printers

Information on this series is changing as more information is being discovered. This page and associated pages will be updated as more information is made available. Arguments are welcome if you have the evidence to back it up!

In 1983 Nevis joined other commonwealth countries in the production and issuance of the Leaders of the World (LOW) Automobile and Locomotive series of stamps. Between 1983 and 1986 Nevis issued 6 sets of the Automobile series and 6 sets of the Locomotives series. This page will link to images of the existing Progressive Color Proof panes with enlarged images of the pairs in all stages so that collectors and dealers can define which progressive color proof belongs to which series and value.

As shown on the specialized pages the standard practices of the printer in most cases was to produce 3,000 sets of progressive color proofs for each value of a given series. For many series of the countries involved the progressives have either been lost or possibly never saved by the printer. One must understand that each value that was produced required 120 panes of 25 pairs (300 panes of 10 pairs of the later issues on the Saint Vincent Dependencies side) multiplied by the seven stages. That is a lot of panes! In other words 840 panes of 25 or 2100 panes of 10 just for one value!

Here is an image of the panes for just one value of Saint Lucia's 1985 Butterflies.
Stack of One Value of Progressive Color Proofs Produced by the Format International Security Printers

It measures around 9 inches by 13 inches by around 7 inches tall and weighs around 8 to 9 pounds! Now imagine storing around 500 of these somewhere. That would just be for the LOW Automobiles and Locomotives series! With the numbers of stamps produced you would need a warehouse of immense proportions to store just the progressives if the printers were so inclined to keep every value of every issue. Then think of adding imperforates, specimens, varieties on and on. Of course it was never done. Varieties and such were selectively saved. In many cases only a few press sheets were saved representing only a couple values of a given series. In many cases....nothing was saved. This is one of the many reasons that some series do not exist as progressives and why others may only have four of the eight values that exist as such and so forth.
Because of the difficulty of storing them many have been damaged over the years. Many have colors that were completely destroyed. Because of the stigma and misrepresentation by certain out of date "experts" and dealers who have placed upon them terms such as "wallpaper" and "junk" these rarities have been abused and mishandled over the years to the point of total destruction for many issues.

For the Nevis LOW Cars and Trains progressives only a couple of the series that were saved were held in the police evidence stock taken in the raids against the printing company to be used against the owners and associated companies in the trials against them which ended up with not guilty verdicts on all charges. Sadly, the police are not stamp collectors and these varieties were literally thrown in police evidence bags, thrown into crates and stored under atrocious conditions until 2008 when they were released. All during the years having rumors spread by certain unknowing "experts" and dealers saying huge quantities of the issues would flood the market and devalue present day stocks of the issues. Not knowing nor realizing that what had in fact been confiscated under the impression of being "errors" was in fact only progressives, imperforates and specimen overprinted stamps which are not errors at all!

Looking at the quantities as a whole...yes millions. When looking at what was really there, proof that not one single issue was ever produced in the millions! A couple of these "experts" had a look at the crates in storage and with a quick glance assumed that the stamps were normal issues and imperforates. Probably the finals on top as was usually the case in the stacks. Without digging deeper they did not realize they were the progressives and such thus the rumors of "millions" of the LOW issues were in there. That stigma has remained in the minds of many collectors and dealers and needs to be changed. The vague references in the major catalogs need to be changed or ignored because they do not define correctly what exists. One of many reasons I have created these specialized pages.

On the Saint Vincent/Nevis side of the police evidence most of the progressive color proof packs for the Leaders of the World Automobiles and Locomotives series were in two crates. The two crates were purchased in auction soon after their release in 2008 by a stamp seller on eBay under the user names of CityCollectibles and StampsInternational2010. From what was told to me by sources I will not name and I cannot verify it that the crates were "sold for peanuts!". The crates with Saint Lucia, Tuvalu and other unknown countries (I am thinking probably British Virgin Islands for one) did not sell at that time and were returned to the original owner, Mr. Jonathan Feigenbaum, son of the late Clive Feigenbaum.

Some time in 2011 under the user name of CityCollectibles the buyer began sales of the progressive color proof panes on eBay. Because of the random way in which the British Metropolitan police just threw the packs into the evidence bags and into the crates the seller CC found it to be too difficult and time consuming to reunite the different color proofs to their perspective values. Instead they took a number of random packs and took one pane from each creating lots of 25 to 100 panes and gave them a price range of $25-60.00 for each lot! The lots sold like hotcakes!

To those "experts" and certain dealers who run private forums and such that want to call this material "wallpaper" and "junk" and state emphatically "nobody buys this junk!", according to the sales on eBay of which all of it is now sold and gone....perhaps you should rethink your status!

In my recovery of Format material I was lucky enough to catch on to the sales of the Saint Vincent side of the police evidence stock. I began purchasing one of each of the random lots and thus have accomplished reuniting at least one set of each value that was in the stock for Saint Vincent and the dependencies. There are certain series (many of the automobiles series)that were not in the stock. Either they do not exist or were never taken in the raids. Certain series again only four of the six or eight values were in the stock.

I note here that now many of the panes are being cut and sold as individual stamp sets. Because of the random way they have been dispersed all over the world many sets will never be fully recovered and thus we now have a new rarity factor. Owning a full set of panes will be an extreme rarity in the not so far future! In the beginning 3,000 sets were produced. Now the number of complete sets for many of the values may be cut in half or even more!

Many collectors and dealers are having a difficult time defining certain stages of the color proofs. The yellow stage in many cases is difficult to define as some are very hard to see clearly. Other stages because there are no inscriptions to define them.

I have created tables for the sets below and give the Scott Catalog numbers, Stanley Gibbons numbers (when possible) and the number of the pane. The links will take you to a page showing each progressive color proof pane and a closeup image of each pair in each stage.

For the yellow stage of the progressives I have imaged a modified embossed image to clarify them. You can do the same thing by scanning and then using an image editor to create an embossed view of it. The embossing modification highlights parts of the image that cannot be seen clearly thus giving you a clearer image of what stamp the proof is for.

Hopefully the pages will help collectors and dealers organize and present their progressive color proofs with more ease.

If there is no table either I have not completed the series yet or they do not exist. This is an ongoing project and will take some time to complete. For what is there at this time.....

Enjoy the show!

It appears at this time that the Stampdile network retained very little of the automobiles and locomotives progressive color proofs for Nevis, unlike with Bequia in which a majority of them were retained. They do have more in regards to the different automobile series for Nevis though. It is with some certainty that the Nevis progressives from the police evidence stock are indeed reprints. However at this time I theorize that they were being reprinted because no older versions of the progressives were retained for the Nevis issues as is evident on the Stampdile website. The reprinting was halted in 1988 and thus I believe that the series that were in the Saint Vincent/Nevis holding may be the only progressive color proof sets (aside from the uncut press sheets which are extremely rare) left in existence!

1st Series Railway Locomotives issued November 10, 1983

All eight of the 1st series trains progressive color proof sets were confiscated by the British Metropolitan Police for the trials against the printer and associated companies. They were retained until 2008 upon with their release they were auctioned off in bulk. They were sold on eBay in random bulk lots of 30-100 panes mixed with different series along with series from Saint Vincent Grenadines, Union Island and Bequia in the year 2012 and sold out. They are now scattered across the world and many will never be reunited. Therefore the full intact pane sets are fast becoming exceedingly rare.

Noting an interesting developement with three of the values. When the 1st series trains 7-stage color proofs for Nevis were sold on eBay three of the values were missing several colors in the pane sets. In scanning the Stampdile network I have discovered that the missing colors are being sold there individually. I note that all the other colors for these three values are not available on the Stampdile Network. This same circumstance has happened with certain values of trains for Saint Lucia.
I will show the details on the individual pages linked below.

All the values exist in the five and six stage form from press sheets. They were not in either of the police evidence holdings. The only way to easily define the difference is by the larger selvage proving they came from the press sheets.
The only other way is by the color differences. The originals have deeper and darker coloring than the reprints. Four of the values exist in the five stage form where the yellow and black are both on one proof. The other four values exist in the six stage form where the all colors stage is missing. The only way to define them is if you have both printings. In theory you should be able to define the same color variations on the perforated issues as well. The five and six stage sets can be considered quite rare as very few of the press sheets were saved.

1983 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (1st series) Stamps
VIEW THE NEVIS 1983 1ST SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 5-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

VIEW THE NEVIS 1983 1ST SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 6-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

1ST SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 7-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF PAGES
THE 55c VALUE 1945 County of Oxford County Class 4-6-0
THE $1.00 VALUE 1960 Evening Star Class 9F 2-10-0
THE $1.00 VALUE 1934 Stanier Class 5 4-6-0
THE $1.00 VALUE 1924 Pendennis Castle Castle Class 4-6-0
THE $1.00 VALUE 1946 Winston Churchill Battle of Britain Class 4-6-2
THE $1.00 VALUE 1938 Mallard A4 Class 4-6-2
THE $1.00 VALUE 1951 Britannia Britannia Class 4-6-2
THE $1.00 VALUE 1927 King George V King Class 4-6-0

1st Series Automobiles issued July 25, 1984

1984 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (1st series) Stamps

2nd Series Automobiles issued October 23, 1984

1984 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (2nd series) Stamps

2nd Series Railway Locomotives issued October 29, 1984

It appears at this time that no 7-stage reprints exist for the 2nd series. The five stage sets can be considered quite rare as very few of the press sheets were saved.

1984 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (2nd series) Stamps

VIEW THE NEVIS 1984 2ND SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 5-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

3rd Series Automobiles issued February 20, 1985

1985 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (3rd series) Stamps

3rd Series Railway Locomotives issued April 26, 1985

The 7-stage reprints do exist but were not found in the Saint Vincent/Nevis holding. As explained on the Nevis LOW cars and trains varieties page at present I found only the 1851 Comet set available on the market at a steep price.
At present the location of the rest of the progressive proofs is unknown for the 3rd series locomotives. According to the list of requested reprinting shown on the introductory page at which time according to printing standards the progressive color proof panes were produced the 3rd series progressives were created around September 16, 1988.
Whether or not the packets of panes were retained and are being held possibly by the mentioned seller of the Comet set or some other entity is unknown. In other cases, this is the case with other stamps and series made by the Format Printers where the dealer tries to keep the quantity of their stock unknown due to the fact that it would devalue it. As I have said before the retail value of the reprinted sets should be around $5.00 for each set of 7 color proofs. Not $40.00. Definitely not $150.00. Therefore, unless substantial evidence is given that the packs are indeed lost or destroyed and only a few survived, which is basically very hard to prove, the value, I am afraid, must remain at my valuation in regards to all 7-stage sets. This also entails the later sets because, the standard 3,000 sets were printed.

For the 6-stage sets, few appear to have been retained. Rarely offered and being taken from press sheets of which very few were saved. In some cases only one or two sheets were saved thus the possiblility of only 50 individual sets being made and of those....how many still exist? I again state, unless you have both six and seven stage sets to compare side by side you cannot positively identify the rarer 6-stage sets because they could simply be a 7-stage set with the all colors proof removed. If they have large selvage, that will prove it.

1985 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (3rd series) Stamps

VIEW THE NEVIS 1985 3RD SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 6-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

4th Series Railway Locomotives issued July 26, 1985

At present the location of the progressive proofs is unknown for the 4th series locomotives. According to the list of requested reprinting shown on the introductory page at which time according to printing standards the progressive color proof panes were produced the 4th series progressives were created around December 16, 1988.
At the time of writing this there is no evidence of uncut press sheets of the progressives surviving. If there are, they are extremely rare if not unique. Single sets and such with large selvage proving they came from the press sheets should command higher prices.

1985 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (4th series) Stamps

4th Series Automobiles issued October 4, 1985

At present the location of the progressive proofs is unknown for the 4th series automobiles. According to the list of requested reprinting shown on the introductory page at which time according to printing standards the progressive color proof panes were produced the 4th series progressives were created around October 21, 1988.
At the time of writing this there is no evidence of uncut press sheets of the progressives surviving. If there are, they are extremely rare if not unique. Single sets and such with large selvage proving they came from the press sheets should command higher prices.

1985 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (4th series) Stamps

5th Series Railway Locomotives issued January 30, 1986

At present I have found the progressive color proofs only in the six stage form. They are from the press sheets and thus are very rare. At present the only evidence that this series was reprinted is the availability of imperforate sets, specimen overprinted sets and missing color errors.
Should anyone have any evidence of the existence of 7-stage sets, please feel free to contact me on it.
1986 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (5th series) Stamps

VIEW THE NEVIS 1986 5TH SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 6-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

5th Series Automobiles issued January 30, 1986

At present the location of the progressive proofs is unknown for the 5th series automobiles. According to the list of requested reprinting shown on the introductory page at which time according to printing standards the progressive color proof panes were produced the 5th series progressives were created around December 16, 1988.
At the time of writing this there is no evidence of uncut press sheets of the progressives surviving. If there are, they are extremely rare if not unique. Single sets and such with large selvage proving they came from the press sheets should command higher prices.

1986 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (5th series) Stamps

6th Series Automobiles issued August 15, 1986

1986 Nevis Leaders of the World, Automobiles (6th series) Stamps

6th Series Railway Locomotives issued October 1, 1986

At present I have found the four high values only in the six stage form of progressive color proofs. They are from the press sheets and thus are very rare.
According to the list of requested reprinting shown on the introductory page at which time according to printing standards the progressive color proof panes were produced the 6th series progressives were created around October 21, 1988.
At the time of writing this there is no evidence of uncut press sheets of the progressives surviving. If there are, they are extremely rare if not unique. Single sets and such with large selvage proving they came from the press sheets should command higher prices.

I have found the four low values in the 7-stage form of progressive color proofs. Due to the transition of producing 7-stage sets for all LOW cars and trains sets as the standard and the fact of there rarely being offerings on the market for them, they could be cut from press sheets of which very few were saved making them very rare also. Again, it must be stressed that without large selvage the suspicion of them being from the panes is great and you should not pay a large sum for them.
1986 Nevis Leaders of the World, Locomotives (6th series) Stamps

VIEW THE NEVIS 1986 6TH SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 6-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

VIEW THE NEVIS 1986 6TH SERIES LOCOMOTIVES 7-STAGE PROGRESSIVE COLOR PROOF STAMPS HERE

This concludes the study of the progressive color proofs produced for the Leaders of the World Automobiles and Locomotives series issued by Nevis. I hope that this clarifies them for everyone who enjoys the collecting of these beautiful works of art.

Your friend and fellow collector and researcher,
JLowe

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