Thursday, September 10, 2009
In 1920, the newly formed nation of Lithuania issued a set of five stamps commemorating the Grand Dukes Vytautas and Gediminas (Scott #92-92D). Initially, these stamps were produced as trial proofs for the far more common Opening of the National Assembly set (Scott #81-91: 60,876 sets issued), and they were printed in different colors than the same denominations of that set. However, in order to raise funds by milking stamp collectors, the Ministry of Posts ordered that 2,000 of these trial proof sets be placed on sale at post offices. Though they were never valid for postal use, they are still listed by Scott and other stamp catalogs, and Scott '10 values the unused set at $ 750.00.
As virtually all of the sets were sold to collectors and none were used as postage, many of the sets issued back in 1920 probably still survive. Nevertheless, given the tiny printing quantity and an attractive design which appeals to Lithuanian nationalism, I believe the set to be an excellent investment, which will track the future economic growth of post-Communist Lithuania.