The Large Type
The Large Type Numeral Surcharges
By JOSEPH MANDOS
The large type numeral surcharges of 1922, which were ordered by the Government
of Guatemala in a decree dated April 26, 1922, and July 4, 1922, were issued to meet a
need for a 25-centavos value, the domestic letter rate at that time. Early in 1922 the
government placed an order with the firm of Waterlow and Sons, London, for a 25-cen-
tavos stamp, (Scott's No. 203). But the stamps did not arrive until October, 1922 and
therefore the need for these.provisionals was most urgent. The stamps receiving the 1922
surcharges, were the high values of the 1902, 1919 and 1921 issues, all engraved by the
firm of Waterlow and Sons. These stamps themselves offer a lucrative field for study,
as many printings were made from the same plates which show indications of wear;
offer many combinations of color and perforations changes which help immeasurably in
many respects to locate positions of the surcharges in the settings. The three-line sur-
charge appears in the colors of dark blue or red (Figure I and 2).
Figure 1. Figure 2.
Although other type surcharges of the 25-centavo value and a 25-centavo Telegrafos
stamp overprinted "CORREOS" appeared prior to the large numeral types, this paper is
limited to the latter as they offer the most interesting field for study. It is the intention
of this article to reveal the interesting arrangement of the settings which are divided into
two groups, the first containing four different types of the numerals "25" (Scott's No.
188 to 191) and the second containing five different types, (Scott's No. 192 to 201).
For the sake of convenience, all individual types of the numeral "25" will be listed
here as Type I to Type IX.
Group 1 Types I to IV
The complete surcharge setting of group I was arranged to cover the sheet of 1oo
stamps and was done by the private printing concern of Amos and Anderson, Guate-
mala City, through an order executed by the Post Office Department in the latter part
of May, 1922. This order was acted upon through a decree issued by the Guatemalan
Government dated April 26, 1922. The firm of Amos and Anderson did not prepare the
Ioo surcharge setting in cliches by multiple groups, but did it by setting each individual
surcharge by hand, using (by authorization- of the government) four distinct types of the
numerals "2" and "5" in "25." Amos and Anderson did not have sufficient type of the
same style to complete the setting and it is very likely that the urgent need for stamps
Figure 3. Sheet position arrangement of the four different
of Group I Types I to IV.
of this value caused the government to give this authorization. The arrangement (Figure
3) of the four different types (Figure 4) of numerals in the setting is as follows:
TYPE I, 50 times in stamp
TYPE II, o1 times in stamp
TYPE III, io times in stamp
TYPE IV, 30 times in stamp
positions No. I to No. 50
positions No. 51 to No. 60
positions No. 61 to No. 70
positions No. 71 to No.Ioo
I I I I I I I I I I
I I I I I I I I I I
I I I I I I I I I
II II II II II II II II II II
rI1 IlII III ] I II I I I Ill III iII
nr ISZ IsZ~ I3 Ir IZV 1S: I2R IS 1R
The same setting or surcharge plate was used to surcharge the entire printing of this
group, which consisted of:
25c. on 3P., red surcharge. 25c. on 5P. dark-blue surcharge.
TYPE I 250,000 TYPE I --- 25,000
TYPE II --- 50,000 TYPE II ------- 5,000
TYPE III -- ---- 50,ooo TYPE III --------------- 5,ooo
TYPE IV 150,000 TYPE IV ----- 15,000
Total ----------- 500,000 Total ------------- 50,000
25c. on I5P., dark-blue surcharge. 25c. on 15P., red surcharge.
TYPE I ----- ---- 37,500 TYPE I 0- -- 500
TYPE II -- ------ 7,500 TYPE II -------- oo
TYPE III--- 7,500 TYPE III-- oo
TYPE IV 22,500 TYPE IV ---- 300
Total ---..----- 75,000 Total ..-- 1,ooo0
The red surcharge on the 25c. on 15P. value was the original color ordered, but after
proofs were submitted it was found that the red surcharge was not easily distinguish-
able on the vermilion center design. A messenger was sent to the printing concern with
an order to apply the dark-blue surcharge on this value. When this order reached the
printers they had already finished o1 sheets in the red color and subsequently they were
delivered with the other sheets to the postal authorities and issued with the other pro-
visionals for postal use. The red surcharge provisional is known on cover. Postally used
copies and mint copies, especially in multiple piece, are extremely scarce.
On the whole, the type used for the group I setting is of excellent quality and there
are but few flaws in the entire setting. The positions of single stamps can not be easily
identified. However, there are some outstanding flaws in the setting which are constant
on all sheets and we believe it of interest to list the positions.
Stamp position No. 9-Serif at the top of "5" in "25" chipped off.
Stamp position No. 26-Bottom bar of "2" in "25" thinner.
Stamp position No. 34-Head of numeral "2" in "25," split.
Stamp position No. 36-Small colorless patches in "2" and "5" of "25."
Stamp position No. 49-Serif on foot of "2" of "25" chipped off, lower bar split.
Stamp position No. 66-Top left corner of "5" of "25," chipped off.
Stamp position No. 77-Center curved bar of "2" in "25" split.
Stamp position No. 93-"2" of "25" chipped at the top and the lower cross bar
at right end slanted with blob of color extending.
Very few printing errors are known in the group I setting. The only one recorded
and known is the inverted surcharge on the 25c. on 3P. green and black. One sheet was
printed in error. Strips of the error exist showing the four types, one being in the col-
lection of the writer. There also exists a variety horizontally imperf. between which is ex-
tremely scarce. Minor varieties such as misplaced surcharges exist and various compounds
perforations can be found. The basic stamps are printed on white paper and also on paper
with an ivory hue. Complete sheets showing the entire setting are seldom seen, but multiple
pieces, with the exception of Scott's No. 191 are quite plentiful. Stamps of group I on
cover are exceedingly scarce.
Group II Types V to IX
Group II, containing five different types of the numeral "25," was ordered printed
by a decree dated July 4, 1922, and came into use in August of that year. As before, the
complete surcharge setting was arranged to cover the entire sheet of 1oo stamps and was
done by the same private printing concern, Amos and Anderson of Guatemala City. The
entire setting was hand set in somewhat larger numerals and thicker letters. The material
used for this type was of poor quality, as many flaws are quite noticeable, so much so,
that it is possible to identify each stamp in the setting. Again the printing concern had
to resort to using what type they had on hand as not enough of the "2's" and "5's" were
available to make them all the same. Again the government of Guatemala authorized
this variation. The same surcharge layout was used on all printings of this group.
(Scott's No. 192 to No. 201) and therefore show the same constant flaws. The arrange-
ment (Figure 5) of the five types of numerals (Figure 6) in the setting is as follows:
TYPE V, 57 times in stamp positions No. I to No. 19, No. 41 to No. 59 and
No. 71 to No. 89.
TYPEVI, 30 times in stamp positions No. 20 to No. 29, No. 60 to No. 69 and
No. 90 to No. 99.
TYPE VII, 8 times in stamp positions No. 31 to No. 38.
TYPE VIII, 3 times in stamp positions No. 30, No. 70 and No. Ioo.
TYPE IX, 2 times in stamp positions No. 39 and No. 4o.
VVV V VV VVV V
V V V V V VVVVVVI
VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI JIv
VID VII I VII VII VII VII Ix Ix
VVVVVVV V VVI
VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VIIl
V V V V V V V V V VI
VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VI VIvm
Figure 5. Sheet position arrangement of the
Group II Types V to IX.
five different numeral types of
25c. on 75c., dark-blue surcharge.
25c. on 2P., dark-blue surcharge.
TYPE V ..-- 114,000
TYPE VI 60,ooo
TYPE VII 16,ooo
TYPE VIII 6,000
TYPE IX 4,000
25c. on 6oc., dark-blue surcharge.
25c. on IP., dark-blue surcharge.
25c. on 3oc. dark-blue surcharge.
TYPE VIII -
25c. on 90c., dark-blue surcharge.
TYPJ V --
25c. on i.SoP., dark-blue surcharge.
TYPE V .. ----- 171,000 TYPE V. 285,000
TYPE VI ------- 90,000 TYPE VI ---- 150,ooo
TYPE VII ----- 24,000 TYPE VII 40,000
TYPE VIII --- 9,000 TYPE VIII -- --- 15,00ooo
TYPE IX-- 6,o00 TYPE IX 10,000
Total --------.--- 300,000 Total ..--------- 500,000
25c. on 5P., dark-blue surcharge. 25c. on 15P., dark-blue surcharge.
TYPE V --- 62,700 TYPE V -- ------- 51,ooo
TYPE VI ------ 33,ooo TYPE VI 27,000
TYPE VII 8,8oo TYPE VII 7,200
TYPE VIII -------- 3,300 TYPE VIII 2,700
TYPE IX 2,200 TYPE IX ----- ,8oo
Total --...---- I110,000o Total ----- 90,000
Note: Quantities issued of each type show their relative scarcity.
Scott's No. 193, the 25c. on iP., and No. 199, the 25c. on I.5oP., exist with an in-
verted surcharge which, of course, appears in all numeral types. To the best of the
writer's knowledge only one sheet of each stamp was discovered. Another variety is also
known; the double surcharge, one laid diagonal, on Scott's No. 199, the 25c. on I.50P.
value. This variety is considered extremely scarce as the diagonal surcharge did not
cover the entire sheet, but only a portion of it. The inverted surcharge on Scott's No.
193 and 199 was reported in Scott's Monthly Journal, January 1923, which stated that
these inverted surcharged sheets were delivered with the entire batch and were dis-
covered by a postal clerk and sold by him to some collector at the usual margin of profit.
Group II surcharges were printed in dark blue or red as indicated for each stamp listed
above. However a light-blue surcharge on Scott's No. 193 and No. 195 is known and
it is the opinion of the writer that this was a trial color printing which was delivered
with the rest of the sheets and was dispensed in the usual manner. Covers with the
group II types can be found and make nice additions to a specialized collection of the
1922 surcharges of Guatemala. Complete sheets are hard to locate but ample multi-
ples can be found in strip or block. Figure 5 readily shows that all types of the numeral
"25" can be had by seeking the upper right corner block of 12 stamps, 3 wide and 4 high.
Mint singles are plentiful of all but type IX and these in used condition are indeed elusive.
As mentioned earlier, each individual position of the Ioo-subject setting of the group
II surcharges may be identified by the many major and minor flaws. The date "1922" in
the first horizontal row is almost always smudged and the last horizontal row shows a
broken line of color under the word "Centavos." The line diminishes in size until it
reaches the last stamp where it is not visible at all. Many other minor flaws exist but
we will not list them. However we think it is interesting to list all of the major flaws
so that the most important varieties can be identified.
Stamp position No. Io-"S" of "CENTAVOS" shows incomplete serif at the
top of loop.
Stamp position No. II-"2" of "25" is split at the top and in downward stroke.
Stamp position No. 13-Lower section of "C" of "CENTAVOS" is always
Stamp position No. 15-Line of color over the "S" of "CENTAVOS."
Stamp position No. 19-"5" of "25" always damaged.
Stamp position No. 21-"C" of "CENTAVOS" very thick with line of color
at left side.
25C. on 3P., red surcharge.
Stamp position No. 23-"S" of "CENTAVOS" has no serif at the top.
Stamp position No. 36 to 40-"I" of "1922" has enlarged and poorly shaped
serif at the top and the "2's" of "1922" poorly formed.
Stamp position No. 38-"2" in "25" has colorless spot.
Stamp position No. 40-Colorless dot in neck of "5."
Stamp position No. 44-Small speck of color in the open section at the top of
last "2" in "1922."
Stamp position No. 51-"2" of "25" has two splits, one at top and one in down-
Stamp position No. 4--Large speck of color in open section at top of last "2"
Stamp position No. 61-Vertical line of color in front of "I" in "1922" and also
broken line of color under entire word "CENTAVOS."
Stamp position No. 71-"C" of "CENTAVOS" chipped at left and line of
color extending to left at top of "S" in "CENTAVOS."
Stamp position No. 77-Left upward stroke of "N" in "CENTAVOS" is
Stamp position No. 78-Badly broken "9" in "1922."
Stamp position No. 8I-Only one split at lower downward stroke of "2" in
Stamp position No. 85-"S" of "CENTAVOS" has a flat top.
Stamp position No. 89-"5" in "25" is broken.
Stamp position No. 94-Blob of color under "I" of "1922."
Stamp position No. Ioo-"OS" in "CENTAVOS" has flat bottoms.
Note: To aid in finding various positions of the surcharge in the sheet it will be
found that the numeral "25" varies in its position with relation to the year date
"1922." If there is doubt that a certain surcharge has not been properly identified,
this position relationship is a good checking point.
Under stamp No. 38 will be found the printers guide-line and dot. This was placed
there by Waterlow and Sons and appears on all sheets. However, at times these marks
cannot be found as it is lost in the perforations. Each sheet shows the plate imprint at
the center of the lower margin. Although no plate number appears, a control number in
black can be found which was used only for sheet count and was placed there by the
Guatemalan officials, presumedly by the Department of Accounts.
Collecting the two groups of surcharges affords the collector a wonderful oppor-
tunity to build a specialized collection that will provide many hours of pleasure for there
are seventy stamps to collect and work with. If one includes multiple pieces, both mint
and used, errors and covers, it will fill an entire album of fifty pages. The majority of
these provisionals can be purchased at very reasonable prices, but to find the scarcer types
will take a great deal of hunting.
I hope I have told the story of the 1922 large type numerals in a manner which will
both help you and entice you to collect these interesting provisionals which were issued to
fill a specific postal need. I want to thank Mr. J. G. Freiburghaus for his valuable assist-
ance in supplying information from the "Kohl Handbook" and from his own personal
studies. I wish also to thank Sefior John M. Willemsen, successor and now owner of the
Amos and Anderson Printing Company who has been most kind in supplying needed
information which has appeared in "El Quetzal." the official organ of the "International
Society of Guatemala Collectors."
Reprinted with special permission from the
NINETEEN'I'THI AMEICAN PHILATELIC CONGRESS BOOK
and distributed to members of the
INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY OF GUATEMALA COLLECTORS