Collecting seems to bring out that primitive instinct for the hunt in some of its devotees, who stalk their prey with skill.  – Alicia Craig Faxon

That instinct for the hunt has given a friend of mine the ability to assemble a “world class” collection of very rare stamps.  The stamps are, in fact, so rare that I will make an exception to my usual rule that all posts must relate to cars.  My friend, Mahendra Sagar has spent a lifetime hunting and acquiring the rarest stamps in the Philatelic world, called “Inverted Centers.”


These inverted centers, are stamps with the design element upside down with respect to the rest of the stamp.  Most famous of these types is the inverted Jenny,  a stamp with the printing of the plane upside down.  These errors are so rare, and so priceless, that they are pursued by only the most determined, skilled, and knowledgeable collectors. 


Mahendra Sagar is such a man.  He started collecting stamps when he inherited his older brothers collection at an early age.  Now he specializes in these rarest of rare inverted centers.  His collection includes many choice stamps from other major collections, as well as some previously unknown stamps, all of which were acquired through years of auction bidding throughout the world. 


The Mahendra Sagar Collection, as it is called, is one of the greatest offerings of inverted center stamps.  Portions of the proceeds from the sale of the collection will go to various charitable institutions, like Vipassana Research Institute, and Buddhist Global Relief.


Even if you are not a stamp collector, the catalogue is a brief history lesson into the world of inverted centers, and worthy of a look.  The auction house has created a special website linked here, which describes the collection in detail, and offers a printed brochure for prospective bidders. 


It is one thing when a friend tells you that he is a stamp collector, but it is entirely different when you learn that his collection is “world class.”  In the car world, it would be like finding out your best friend doesn’t just own a classic car, but has a collection that rivals Ralph Lauren or Jay Leno.  You have to be impressed. 



Article courtesy of Chris Raymond

Photographs courtesy of Cherrystone Philatelic Auctions