$1 Violet brown, blackish brown
Printing Method: Flat Plate
Subject: Benjamin Franklin
Number issued: 251,000
Scott #: 478
Issued: December 22nd, 1916
$8 - $20
No postmark with gum (MH)
$175 - $325
Full perfect gum, no postmark
no trace of stamp hinge mark (MNH)
$1,700 - $3,000
Most of these were used Parcel Post packages for shipment to Europe, especially Russia and would have been placed on bank tags such as the one shown above, which would be tied to a sack or large parcel, machine parts for the war effort being the major package contents.
Large blocks and multiples are common as the parcels or crates were heavy and required a lot of postage.
Earliest known use of #478, May 24, 1917
It was first intended to issue this stamp in "pink", really a dusky rose, and the die was approved by the Postmaster-General, Geo. Von L. Myer, on January 6, 1909. In spite of this approval, it was decided that this stamp looked too much like the two cent value and the Department decided to issue the stamp in a violet brown.
#478 was issued with the following plate #'s
Imprint, "A" and number