Treskilling Yellow Back in a Private Collection


Mar 27, 2014 Europe/London

Remember the famed and highly-sought after ‘Treskilling’ Yellow stamp of Sweden? This valuable stamp that has been the subject of many write-ups and stamp auctions is now back in the hands of a private collector and lover of stamps, after being held by different banks, groups and dealers for some time. The official turnover happened last May, 2013 when Count Gustaf Douglas, a Swedish nobleman, purchased the stamp under a private treaty. The stamp was subsequently shown to the general public last October 31 through the Royal Philatelic Society in London. This latest transaction involving this famed and ‘defective yellow stamp’ was just one of the many transactions since 1855.

From a ‘defective yellow stamp’ to a highly prized collector’s item

It all started in 1855 when this stamp was erroneously printed in yellow. At first, the stamp was lost in the dustbin of postal history, but in 1886 a young collector named Georg Backman came across a three-skilling stamp and was assessed for even kronor per piece. The stamp was unloaded and it changed hands until it was acquired by Philipp von Ferrary in 1894, for an astonishing 4,000 Austro-Hungrian gulden. After some time, it was confirmed that no other ‘yellow stamp’ will come up, thus making the stamp the only surviving stamp of its kind.  During the 1970s, the stamp made it to the headlines again when the Swedish Postal Museum declared that the stamp was a forgery. But the subsequent tests revealed that the stamp was genuine, and in 1984 the stamp made history again when it was purchased by David Feldman. In the next few years, the stamp was sold and re-sold, and the valuation was increased each time. 
Most of the deals surrounding this stamp were private and mysterious, and the observers were left with no choice but to speculate on the buyers, the other participants and the final valuation for the stamp. The last massive buyout for the stamp happened in 1996 when the stamp made world history when it was purchased for $2.3 million. This was the highest sum paid for a stamp in the market.  According to reports, the buyer during this deal was known as ‘The Box AB'.  The stamp again changed hands and was acquired by Armand Rousso. And now, after a string of auctions, the ‘Treskilling’ Yellow stamp is back in the hands of a private collector, Count Gustaf Douglas.

Private collector gains control of the prized yellow ‘Treskilling stamp’

Right now, the stamp is safe in the hands of someone who knows and appreciates philately. Count Gustaf Douglas is the person behind the company Securitas, and considered as one of the world’s richest according to Forbes. Though he was the one who purchased the stamp, it doesn’t mean that his passion is only on the stamps. When he showed his collection, the general public appreciated his other interests encompassing postal history, especially those issued by Sweden. As a self-made man with a fine taste in life, we can be sure that the ‘Treskilling’ yellow stamp is in good hands for years to come!