Need help with the cachet maker


  • 19 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • It's a U523 FDC. Can anyone tell me who made this cover. Thanks Richard
  • Not being able to examine the cachet closely, I think I would have to say that this is a latter-day 'add-on' cachet, with the bas-relief image of Washington applied recently to a blank FDC by a contemporary collector with a computer printer.

    This happens a lot these days. The American First Day Cover Society has long urged cachetmakers to include a notation on the reverse of the cover that the cachet is an 'add-on' and not "of the period" with the date of issue, when they do something like this to increase the value of a previously uncacheted FDC. Not all do!

    It's pretty unlikely that any cachetmaker in 1932 was using full-color process printing for their cachets. :wink:
  • The vignette Is brass.
  • I beleve the cancel is correct. like you said probably added on later . Thanks Richard
  • "The vignette Is brass."

    Really??! I'm surprised! It must not be very thick . . . or maybe they were created that way so the FDC could be used as a paperweight!

    I've never seen one like that -- is it glued to the envelope, or visible through a 'window' cut in the paper? I couldn't tell from your scan that it was actually three-dimensional!
  • Its glued on and about as thin or thick as a old razor blade. Thicker than foil stamps.
  • It looks like it was on when it was canceled2
  • That's sure interesting!! I'm going to show your scan to a couple of Classic Era Specialists that I know and see if they are familiar with this cachetmaker.

    I'd love to know his identity as much as you would! :smiley:
  • I asked on another message board frequented by many astute fdc luck yet....
  • Thank you for the reply's I'm having fun going through my old covers.
    Keep on Stamping
  • From John White of the AFDCS:

    "55049.2 in reply to 55049.1

    This item is listed in the Planty FDC Catalog as U523 P10, and Unknown. The caption reads:
    "Embossed bronze label plaque-like design with right profile bust of Washington, banner below."'
  • Thank you. Nice it a real FDC Thank you All for the help
  • This is an example of "foil embossing" - a close relative of steel die engraving (Artcraft and HF). In addition to an embossing die, heat and a thin colored foil is added to the procedure. Tremendous pressure and a heated die are applied to the paper along with a thin foil. When the pressure is released the foil stays attached to the paper where ever the die and heat were applied. It is an old procedure using modified letterpress equipment. Many cachet makers used it in the glory days of FDCs sometimes without foil (blind embossing). The raised part can go the other way making the front side a bunch of "dents" this is called debossing and foil can sometimes be used for this too with not so great results.
  • Thanks for that information, Wayne! It makes much more sense in this case than someone pouring tiny and thin bronze 'badges' and gluing them to the envelopes!

    I am familiar with embossing, but not with the use of a 'bronze' foil, as this cachet was described. And I am a bit surprised to see that the reverse of the envelope, in the image that Richard W. posted, does not show the imprint of the embossing.

    I can't think of enough examples that I have seen to support your statement that "Many cachetmakers used it . . " Could you give us some examples?
  • edited November 2019 0 LikesVote Down
    A better way to say it is that examples appear many times. Artcraft, Artmaster, Fleetwood (early ones), House of Farnam are all cachet makers who produced engraved covers. Since the process is similar (ink rather than foil), blind embossing (no foil at all) can be included. Sometimes the effect is lost, other times you can feel it along with the engraving ridges.
    Blind embossing appears on stamps along with foil embossing too - mostly Sand Dunes and stamp factory nations. For one close to home check out the recent Transcontinental Railroad issue from the US and the less recent Woodstock issue.

    The reverse of the envelope does not show a "deboss' probably because the envelope was produced on a flat sheet then die cut, folded and glued afterwards. that eliminates the back showing anything and eliminates any registration problems for additional printing.

    Maybe because of my background or some other mental deficiency, but I love to examine a cover and discover just HOW it was produced.
  • "The reverse of the envelope does not show a "deboss' probably because the envelope was produced on a flat sheet then die cut, folded and glued afterwards."

    But this is a Post Office Dept. Stamped Envelope, so that can't be true, can it? The postal stationery envelope was sold over the counter already formed.

    Are you suggesting the envelope might have been 'exploded', then embossed by the cachetmaker, then reformed? I suppose that's possible --- maybe Richard Willis can let us know if there is 'debossing' on the inside of the front of the envelope! :wink:

  • EEK! It is possible it was done that way, but litterally thousands would have to have been purchased, produced.
    Looking closely at the image (as I should have done originally) you can see a slight indent on the back of the envelope.
    It is faint, but there. If the OP would like to give it to me, I can tell for sure then :).
  • If you look inside of the envelope you can see the indent better it's there. but I think it's more the way it's pressed on. its not foil. Its a Embossed bronze label plaque-like design you could cut your finger on the edge.
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