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Sale 92: The Summer Sale

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World War II

Lots 1211-1217

Lot 1211    

1941 (Dec. 6) Lake George N.Y. to Tokyo, Japan missing the Anzac Clipper to Honolulu, cover bearing 50¢ Clipper (C22) and 20¢ Airmail (C29) tied by "Lake George N.Y., Dec 6, 1941" duplexes on air mail cover endorsed "By Trans-Pacific", censor tape at left and "Passed by Censor" circular handstamp, purple "Returned to Sender, Service Suspended" two-line handstamp, sender's note on reverse "Returned on March 18, 1942, Lake George N.Y."; accompanied by original letter in Japanese characters and Customs Declaration parcel card for 6lb 6oz. package with same purple "Returned to Sender, Service Suspended" two-line handstamp, Very Fine.
Estimate    $750 - 1,000.

Realized: $4,250

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Lot 1212    

U.S. Sub. Pearl Harbor Br., Honolulu T.H. Dec 6, 9:30AM, 1941, duplex ties 3¢ defense (901) on cover to Wrentham Mass., endorsed "Mailed from Pearl harbor, December 6. 1941, Save" at left; some tiny tone spots, otherwise Very Fine and scarce use the day prior to Pearl Harbor.
Estimate    $500 - 750.

Realized: $300

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Lot 1213    

Sixth Defense Bat., Fleet Marine Force, Dec 6 A.M., 1941, duplex with "Midway Islands" slogan ties 1¢ Prexie (804) strip of three on cover to Seattle Wash., Very Fine and scarce civilian use from Midway Island the day prior to Pearl Harbor.
Estimate    $500 - 750.

Realized: $425

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Lot 1214    

1941 (Dec. 7) U.S.S. Chester and U.S.S. Enterprise, two covers comprising "U.S.S. Enterprise, 7 Nov, 9 AM, 1941" duplex on legal-size Navy Department Official Business penalty envelope to the Commandant of the Eleventh Naval District at San Diego Cal., flap tear; and "U.S.S. Chester, Dec 7, A.M., 1941" duplex ties 3¢ defense (901) on Navy Department Penalty envelope with "Official Business" and imprint crossed out as used for private correspondence to J. Robert Byrd at Manhattan Beach Cal., "Paid by Naval Censor" handstamp; wear and creasing, F.-V.F.
Estimate    $5,000 - 7,500.

A RARE PAIR OF COVERS FROM THE TASK FORCE 8 THAT WAS PROVIDENTIALLY DELAYED OUT OF HARMS WAY WHILE THE JAPANESE BOMBED PEARL HARBOR, ARRIVING THE FOLLOWING DAY TO WITNESS THE CARNAGE AND OFF-LOAD MAILS AT PEARL HARBOR.

Task Force 8, consisting of the aircraft carrier USS
Enterprise, commanded by Admiral William F. Halsey Jr., and its escorts, departed Pearl Harbor on 28 November 1941 for Wake Island. The cruiser USS Chester was an escort ship on this trip. The task force had been scheduled to return to Pearl Harbor late on December 6, but had been delayed by inclement weather, providentially keeping the carrier Enterprise and its escorts out of harm's way when Japanese attack forces torpedoed and bombed American ships berthed in port. The USS Chester cover (an official Penalty Mail envelope used for private correspondence, so it required postage) was canceled December 7th, the date of the Japanese attack, when Task Force 8 was about 200 miles west of Hawaii on its return to Pearl Harbor. After searching in vain for the Japanese attack force, Enterprise and the rest of Task Force 8 arrived back at Pearl Harbor amid the smoldering carnage late Monday December 8th, when the ships' mail was put ashore.

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Lot 1215    

Anzac Clipper to Honolulu, Dec. 7, 1941 -- The Day of Infamy, red and blue "Via Airmail" cover with purple "American Hard Rubber Co." corner card handstamp bearing "New York N.Y., Dec. 4 '41" Pitney Bowes meter strip of 10¢ and three 20¢ stamps paying the 70¢ per half ounce rate to Hong Kong, carried on the Anzac Clipper from San Francisco on December 6th to Honolulu arriving during the morning of the Pearl Harbor attacks, the flight was less than an hour away from Honolulu when word of the attacks was radioed and it was then diverted to Hilo, reverse with "RELEASED/BY I.C.B." (Information Control Branch) and "190" Hawaii censorship examiner backstamps struck across the sealing tape, "Honolulu, Hawaii, Feb 25, 1942" machine backstamp, purple "Return to Sender / Service Suspended" two-line handstamp struck twice, original letter foreboding of war: "…We believe that unless something unforeseen occurs, this will be sufficient to cover the merchandise, freight and insurance, including war risk, to Hong Kong…In view of the extremely tense situation that has arisen in the Far East, the American Lines have cancelled all sailings to Hongkong and it may be that all other lines will follow suit…", fresh and Very Fine.
Estimate    $2,000 - 3,000.

A HISTORIC FLIGHT COVER FROM SAN FRANCISCO TO HONOLULU ON THE ANZAC CLIPPER, ARRIVING IN HAWAII LATE ENOUGH ON DECEMBER 7, 1941 FOR DIVERSION TO HILO AS THE BOMBS FELL.

Ken Lawrence has written extensively on WWII postal history and the Pearl Harbor Day flight of the Anzac Clipper. In his Linn's article, "International airmail covers recall the 'Day of Infamy' ", he writes how the Pan American Airways FAM 14 Anzac Clipper, a Boeing B-314A flying boat, registration No. NC 18611 had taken took off from San Francisco late on the afternoon of December 5 but experienced mechanical trouble 400 miles out and had to return for repairs. "After being repaired, she had been rescheduled to leave at 2 p.m. California time on Dec. 6, but the veteran pilot, Capt. H. Lanier Turner, had been granted a brief postponement of the departure time, about half an hour, so he could attend his daughter's first piano recital at Oakland. At 8 a.m. the next morning, Anzac Clipper was less than an hour away from Honolulu when its radio officer received a coded flash warning that Pearl Harbor was under Japanese air attack. Turner's providentially late departure from San Francisco had delayed his approach just long enough to have kept his vulnerable aircraft out of harms way. Turner's "Plan A" secret instructions in the event of war rerouted Anzac Clipper to Hilo, 220 miles southwest of the combat zone. Gen. Walter C. Short, the military governor of Hawaii, had immediately declared martial law in the islands and had ordered the newly created Information Control Board, headquartered beside the Honolulu post office, to open and examine all transit and outbound civil mail."

The Anzac Clipper's mail was forwarded from Hilo to Honolulu for censorship, denoted by the handstamped RELEASED BY I.C.B. marking in black ink over the cellophane tape seal on the cover offered here. Mail to destinations in Hawaii was delivered, while flights farther west ceased. Mail to Japanese-occupied places was of course returned to sender, as was the case with the cover offered here. Mail to other places was rerouted for transatlantic transport to the destinations.

Realized: $1,600

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Lot 1216    

Japanese Internment Camp Covers, 1942-45, of 10 covers from seven camps; includes Amache (Colo.) (2), Heart Mountain (Wyo.) (2), Minidoka (Hunt, Idaho), Poston (Ariz.) (2), Rivers (Ariz.), Topaz (Utah) and Tule Lake (Cal.), with four address to Heat Mountain relocation camp, Very Fine.
Estimate    $300 - 400.

Complete Images.

Realized: $475

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Lot 1217    

Tule Lake Relocation Center - Japanese Internment Camp, 1942, cover addressed to the North Portland Assembly Center in Oregon, franked with 1¢ Defense, three singles tied by "Tule Lake, Calif., Aug 10, 42" machine postmark; slightly reduced at left, Very Fine, covers to or from the North Portland Assembly Center are rare with only a few known, The Portland Assembly Center operated from May 1 to September 10, 1942.
Estimate    $300 - 400.

Realized: $350

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Lots 1211-1217

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