Indian Hunting Buffalo
4¢ Orange or Deep Orange
Scott #287 - 1898

Used: $2-$9
No postmark with gum (MH): $23-$35
Full perfect gum, no postmark, no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH): $70-$180


Introduced on June 17th, 1890. Earliest documented use,
a first day cover from June 17th 1898

Plate Size:
Sheets of 100 subjects (2 panes of 50)

287 Pane Scotts - US Postage Stamps
A full pane of #287

Printer: The Bureau of Printing and Engraving

Double lined USPS watermark.

Quantity Issued:

What you should look for

The orange ink, like most orange inks of the period is prone to oxidation,
if possible avoid these and go for the bright orange examples

287-oxidized stamp US Postage
An oxidized example

The Inspiration for the Design

The design was obtained from a drawing from Captain S. Eastman 1854 'Information
Respecting the History, Condition and Prospects of the Indian Tribes of the United
States, titled, 'Buffalo Chase'. A copy of the original text and drawings can be
found in the Library of Congress and Indiana University.

Indian Hunting Buffalo

The original engraving

Indians hunting buffalo

A later adaptation produced for the Sholastic Series of textbooks
sometimes, incorrectly, referred to as the source of the design.

287-cheyenne warrior Scotts - US Postage Stamps

The Trans-Mississippi Exposition focused on First Americans
and as such it was envisaged that an 'Indian' should be depicted.
The above stamp ( showing 289-E1 vignette) shows the design that would have
ended up on one of the values, the vignette was completed
however did not got to the stage of being inserted into a frame.

The Essay's and Proofs

287-E3 United States Postage Stamps

#287 E3
Large Die Essay on India
Die sunk on 92mm x 81mm card

287-E9 United States Postage Stamps

Bicolored die essay in red orange and black #287 E9
Large Die on India
Die sunk on 63mm x 55mm card

286-E5 Scotts - US Postage Stamps

#288 E5
The original bi-color design.
The bi-color design had to be dropped as the bi-color printing process
was taxed to the max printing revenue stamps for the Spanish-American
war that had broken out.

Ariel photograph of the Trans-Mississippi Exhibition
A Smithsonian Mineral Display featured at the Exhibition
Unlike the Columbian Exhibition of 1892 this was a little dry in its
content, the First Americans turned out to be the only major attraction.
Nevertheless, attendance numbers exceeded expectations, thanks
to the great rail service extended to lonely Omaha, Nebraska.