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Passion for postage stamps can be an expensive hobby. Parts of the collection of the late Tengelmann boss Erivan Haub are being auctioned. A historical letter from Lübeck exceeds the starting bid by far and changes hands as the most expensive copy. 430,000 euros for a historical letter: at this price a letter with the first stamps from the city of Lübeck from 1859 was auctioned off in Wiesbaden. The auction house Heinrich Köhler announced that the starting bid was only 80,000 euros. According to its own information, it is the oldest stamp auction house in Germany. An anonymous bidder got hold of the historic letter. Parts of the stamp collection of the former Tengelmann boss Erivan Haub were auctioned. According to the auction house, a stamped so-called Baden letter from 1856, which entered the race for 100,000 euros, brought in 320,000 euros. It once belonged to King Carol II of Romania, a passionate stamp collector.
When he escaped into exile in 1940 by special train, he took his collection with him. “Even when Carol II had to sell part of his collection to secure his livelihood, the letter remained in his possession,” it said. After his death, the letter went under the hammer in 1953. Now an anonymous bidder has also bought it. A letter to the German Emperor Wilhelm I, which, according to the auction house, was sent franked with the first postage stamps of the German Empire on January 1, 1872, even brought in a sum 20 times larger than originally estimated. Instead of 2000 euros, an anonymous bidder bought it for 40,000 euros, the Heinrich Köhler auction house announced. The collection of ex-Tengelmann boss Haub has been auctioned since summer 2019. 30 auctions with a total of 8000 lots are planned in different countries by 2023.