This article is from the March-April 2003 issue of the Confederate Philatelist. Posted with the permission of the journal editor.
Both the New Dietz Catalog and the current Scott USA Specialized Catalog list the Earliest Known Usage (EKU) for the 5c blue lithograph (Scott #4) Stone 2 as February 28, 1862. I recently came across this stamp in a small collection I acquired that moves the EKU for this stamp back two full days. The stamp is tied on a small piece with a full strike of the Powell Type 3a Richmond, Virginia postmark clearly dated FEB 26 1862. In 1996, the stamp was submitted by its then owner to the CSA Authentication Committee and received Certificate #2879 but was apparently not reported to the Confederate philatelic community by the stamp's owner as an EKU because the Scott USA Specialized Catalog still erroneously listed the later date. (Since this report was prepared, this has now been corrected as the current catalogs now list the new date -- JLK) Collectors of the CSA general issue stamps and postal history can now update their records for the certified earliest known use of CSA #4 Stone 2 as February 26, 1862. If there are any earlier usages of this stamp in collections either on or off cover, be sure to submit the stamp or cover to the CSA Authentication Committee for examination and recording.