PRESIDENT KONSTANTIN PÄTS ISSUE

A large regular issue with 14 different values in 17 different colors.
A 65 senti value was ordered but not printed.
Design by Georg Westenberg after a photo by Gabriel Kirillov. Engraving by Karl Tael (Doll).
Portrait of the President of the Republic Konstantin Päts (1874-1956).

Paper:
Thick, chalk surfaced white (English) paper. The blue 15 senti value also has been printed on a greyish chalk surfaced paper (German).

Gum.
The paper appears with two different gums. The earlier printings are on paper with a white, quite even gum. A white, more uneven gum with a mesh pattern appears with the later printings.

Print.
Printed in sheets of 400. The sheets were arranged in four panes of 100 each and separated from each other with gutters. Each pane has marginal numbers appearing on the left and top margins. Starting with this issue the Printing Order Numbers were introduced in panes. The numbers also include the date of the order and the number of stamps ordered. The printing order numbers can be found in six different positions:

a) under the Ist and 2nd stamps of the bottom row,
b) under the left margin, 1st and 2nd stamps.
c) under the 2nd and 3rd stamps.
d) under the 1 st, 2nd and 3rd stamps.
e) under the 8th, 9th and 10th stamps.
f) at the right side of the 9th and 10th horizontal rows.

The first printing of the 1, 2, 5, 6, 10 and 20 senti (March and April 1936) and the last printing of the 3 and 15 senti (ordered in May 1940) do not have the printing order numbers. Both, the 2 senti value T 239, and the 10 senti value T 240 show two different numbers of stamps ordered: 2 senti 6.800.000 (correct) and 6.000.000 (incorrect) and 10 senti 11.200.000 (correct) and 10.000.000 (incorrect).
The numbers issued are shown for each individual stamp. The information from the stock-book of the
GPO has in comparison with Eichenthal and Michel the following differences:

2 senti.
Number of stamps received by the GPO: 26.467.400
Destroyed in 1941: 2.336.981
Remaining: 24.130.419
Both Eichenthal and Michel show 19.663.019. The difference cannot be explained.

3 senti.
A further print order was placed on May 8, 1940 and 8.790 printing sheets were delivered.
The figures should be as follows:
Received by the GPO: 7.516000
Destroyed in 1941: 4.243.742
Remaining: 3.272.258

4 senti.
According to the stock book the number of stamps sold over the counter should be 1.414.311 and not
1.413.711 as shown by Michel and Eichenthal.

6 senti.
Eichenthal informs us that 1.601.249 of the lilac-red stamp and 34.947 of the green one were sold over the counter. The corresponding figures in Michel are 1.670.000 and 34.947. The stock-book gives us the following information:
Order of December 12, 1935 (lilac-red): 1.670.000
May 16, 1939 (green): 400.000
Total: 2.070.000
Destroyed in 1941: 433.804
Remaining: 1.636.196
Obviously the Michel figures are incorrect and we will use the figures given by Eichenthal, although we are unable to trace their origin.

15 senti.
According to Eichenthal 2.589.187 red stamps were issued. The corresponding figure in Michel is 2.787.000. Also the stock-book shows the same number of stamps received by the GPO. Although a small number of the red stamps may have been destroyed 1941, we consider it to be insignificant and accept the Michel figure.
On May 8, 1940 an additional printing of the blue 15 senti stamp was ordered and a partial delivery was made (450 printing sheets).
Received by the GPO: 5.780.000
Destroyed in 1941: 3.566.299
Remaining: 2.213.701
The figures given by Eichenthal and Michel are both incorrect.

30 senti.
According to Eichenthal 418.685 stamps of the first printing (bistre) were sold. The figure in Michel is
420.000. Also the stock-book shows the same figure, which therefore is accepted by us.
800.000 of the second printing (blue) were delivered, whehereof 305.535 were destroyed in 1941. The sale over counter therefore was 494.465.

Perforation.
14 1/2 x 14. The imperforate stamps are proofs.

Proofs.
Both regular and irregular proofs exist. After the war a sizable number of proofs were made with genuine plates, stolen from the Government Printing. The paper is always different and the print is mostly unclear.

Forgeries.
Only the "proofs" mentioned above are known.

Valid until December 31, 1940. Their later use, also together with Soviet stamps, was quietly tolerated.

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Literature:
Votele Org
Marginalinskriptionerna på estniska frimärken (Marginal markings of Estonian stamps). Frimärksbladet No 1, 1951. (in Swedish).

Julius Bleyer
Eesti postmarkide "autodafeid" (The destroying of Estonian Stamps) Eesti Filatelist No 22-23, 1978 (in Estonian, with summary in English).