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ENGELHARDT FOHL Forgeries

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The forger Engelhardt Fohl of Dresden (Germany) made several deceiving forgeries. A large number was overprinted 'Falsch!'(meaning 'forged' in German) when they were discovered. They were subsequently distributed with some philatelic journals. Fohl ordered his forgery in the printing firm Leutsch. He seems to have becomes interested in stamps through his friend Alwin Nieske, a stamp forger himself (source 'Philatelic Forgers, thier Lives and Works' by V.E.Tyler).

Example of such a leaflet:

The text reads:

Verzeichniss

der aus dem Leutsch'schen Concurse hervohrenden, vom Deutschen Philatelisten - Verband erworbenen Fohl'schen Fälschungen und dazugehörigem Druckmaterial.

A. Aufgefundene und von der Staatsanwaltschaft zu Gera freigegebene Druckutensilien.

---------

B. Aufgefundene und vom bisherigen Besitzer and den Verband übergeben Vorräthe gefälschter Marken.

1. Canada -Couvert 5 C roth

1420 Stück

2. Donau-Dampfschiffahrt 10 Soldi grün, ungezähnt

7841 "

3. Donau-Dampfschiffahrt 17 Soldi roth, ungezähnt

46040 "

4. Donau-Dampfschiffahrt 10 Solid grün, gezähnt

7841 "

5. Hannover, Bestellgeldfrei (Pferd)

7149 "

6. Lübeck, I Em. 2 1/2 Sch. rosa

19800 "

7. Lübeck, I Em. 4 SCh. grün

21025 "

8. Portugal, II Em. 50 R. grün

1270 "

9. Portugal, II Em. 100 R. lila

3257 "

10. Portugal, III Em. 5 R braun

4900 "

11. Suez-Canal 40 C. roth

3631 "

  Summa 161.533 Stück

Ausserdem sind noch in jenem Officin hergestellt worden:
Baden, Landpost 1, 3 und 12 Kr. (die in der Mitteld. Philat- Zeitung No 11 bescriebenen Fälschungen);
Canada, Couvert 10 C.;
Donau Dampfschiffahrt, alle Sorten;
Hannover, Couvert Kleeblatt;
Lübeck, all I. Em.;
Sachsen, Marken 5 und 10 Gr.;
Serbien, Zeit-M., Kopf 1 C. grün, 2 C. braun, ungezähnt und gezähnt;
Suez-Canal, alle Sorten.

Jedoch sind davon weder Vorräthe noch Utensilien vorgefunden worden, der grösste Theil ist in Lithographie hergestellt und die Steine jedenfalls längst unschädlich gemacht.
Im bestize des letzten Besitzers, der dem unlautern Treiben völlig fern stand, ist nichts mehr geblieben, was mit der Affaire im Zusammenhang steht.
Wie lange diese unsauberen geschäfte gegangen sind, geht daraus hervor, dass die Correspondenz mit Fohl, der die Fälschungen auf Abruf bei Leutsch bestellte, bis 1886 zurückreicht.
Mit der Aufdeckung und Unschädlichmachung dieser alten Fälschungsquelle dürfte, wenn auch mit peculären Opfern, der gesammten Philatelie ein Dienst erwiesen sein, für wlechen vor Allem der Dank Herrn Hauptmann v. Döring in Gera, dessen unermüdlichen Nachforschungen seit länger als Jahresfrist die endliche Auffindung und Unschädlichmachung dieses Fälschungsnestes zur Folge hatte, gebührt.
Die Druckutensilien werden dem Reichs-Postmuseum zur Verfügung gestellt, die Falsifikate aber, soweit sie nicht an die Vereine zur Vertheilung gelangen, vernichtet werden.
Deutscher Philat.- Verband.

It seems that later more forgeries were found and also distributed with a leaflet in a stamp journal:

The translation reads:

Special-appendix for no 11, 1898 of 'Vertraul. Correspondenz-Blattes'.
Following the announcement on the tenth philately day concerning the discovery of a forgery stock, we are today able to present to you another even larger stock from the same source. This stock, which was purchased by us at the 8th of October does possess:
200387 forgeries
So together 361860 forgeries have been made harmless by us and given to collectors to warn them. We will proceed with our investigations and will inform you of future developments.
German Philatelic Union,
Gossnitz S.-Altbg.

Here some forgeries of Lubeck made by him:

Forgery, with overprint 'FALSCH!' (=forged in german). Forgery! No stop before 'L' of 'LUBECK' and only 8 feathers! Forgery from the above leaflet


With overprint 'Falsch'

A picture of the 4 s forgery can also be found in 'Philatelic forgers, their lives and works' by Varro E. Tyler).

Forgeries of the envelopes of Mecklenburg-Schwerin:

Forgery of postal stationery (5 c and 10 c Queen Victoria brown) of Canada:


And a Fohl forgery of the 5 c postal stationary (reduced size).

Fohl forgeries of the postal stationery of Hannover:

Forgeries of the Suez Canal Company (Egypt):

With 'Falsch' overprint from the above leaflet

I think the above forgeries are made by Engelhardt Fohl. A picture of these forgeries can be found in 'Philatelic forgers, their lives and works' by Varro E. Tyler.

Engelhardt Fohl also made forgeries of the first issue of the Philippines, in the values 1 r and 2 r, the inscription 'CORREOS 1854Y55' is at the top instead of at the bottom. Pictures can be found at: http://nigelgooding.co.uk/Spanish/Forgeries/1854-2reales.htm and http://nigelgooding.co.uk/Spanish/Forgeries/1854-1real.htm.

In 'The Stamp Collector's Magazine' (1871) one can find the following text:

A WORD WITH MR. ENGELHARDT FOHL
We have not very much to say to this gentleman, but we must not delay telling him - and at the same time our readers - what little has to be said with respect to his rather oblique ideas respecting honesty. In our September number appeared the following advertisement:
ENGELHARDT FOHL, DEUTSCHE BRIEFMARKENHANDLUNG, RIESA, SAXONY. For Sale, Italy 1851, 53, 54 set unused 10/ ; used, 3/6. Moldavia, 54, 81, 108, 80, 40, 5 paras set 3/. Mexico, 8 rls. violet, brown, green on brown, dos. 20/. Spain 1861, 52, '53, the 2 reals 15/- each. Luzon, 1854 y '55, 10/. Oldenburg 1/3 gr. 1852, doz. 7/6; 1860, 1/3 gr. doz. 6/. Naples, 1861, Sicily, modena Government Provisional, Param Government Proviosional, Romagna, Rome, unused, 1/3 sot of each. Large stock of old Baden, Oldenburg, Hamburg, Bremen, Mecklenburg, Lubeck &c, &c. All stamps genuine. Terms, Cahs. Small remittances in Postage Stamps. Correspondence desired. Colonial and Rare Stamps exchanged.
It will be noticed that in this announcement Mr.Fohl is careful to state that "all stamps" are "genuine," and yet among those he offers are some of the most dangerous forgeries ever brought on the market, notably the set of Moldavian stamps for 3/-, and the 8 rls. Mexican. As they are forgerries, we do not hesitate to denounce the original vendor to the public, and we trust that this present warning will suffice.
Mr.Bonasi, a respectable stamp dealer, was deceived by the Moldavian counterfeits, and sent them to our publishers, by whom they were sold to a very experienced philatelist, who took them to be reprints. As soon, however, as Mr.Bonasi learnt that they were forgeries, he wrote our publishers, informing them of the fact, and requesting them to return the stamps, when he would reimburese them the amount paid. Mr. Bonasi's conduct is as praiseworthy as Mr.Fohl's way of acting is reprehensible, and we only wish all our dealers were like him.
Besides the above mentioned stamps, Mr.Fohl has issued an unused 27 para Moldavia, for which he only asks two pounds. As the government stamps are all obliterated, collectors can be in no doubt as to what they are buying.
Since writing, we have been informed that Mr.Fohl has commisioned a house in Leipzig to fabricate these forgeries for him.

In 'The Stamp Collector's Magazine' (November 1874) one can find the following text:

FORGED LUZON AND DOCTORED FRENCH.
Great credit is due to Mr. H. de Joannis for having detected and "scotched" a very dangerous set of Luzon forgeries, which first made their appearance about August last. We hope by inserting their description in the philatelic Hue and Cry that they will be rendered powerless for evil. Anyone who is really well acquainted with the Luzon stamps of 1854 y 55 would at once suspect these forgeries ; but there are a great many collectors, and even some dealers, who have not a good knowledge of the true stamps, and the counterfeits sufficiently answer to the general idea which obtains respecting them. They have a primitive look about them, the lettering is uneven, the lines are deep, and altogether they have a very plausible look ; but two of the three values have been so incorrectly done, that the merest tyro can detect them at a glance, and though the third offers a closer resemblance to the genuine stamp, it is almost equally easy to distinguish. Taking them seriatim the 10 cuartos, the best of the three, is of a brick colour, instead of dark carmine or rose, and there are just twenty rings or pearls on each side of the portrait, including the imperfect top and bottom ones. The 1 real and 2 reales have evidently been printed from the same plate as the 10 c, and they both have the inscription CORREOS 1864 Y 55 at the top, and FRANCO at the bottom, which is just the reverse of the true positions ; therefore a stamp with CORREOS at top, stands condemned at once. Furthermore, instead of the value being expressed as " 1 RL. FTE"," or " 2 RLS. FTES"," it is simply given as "1 RL." and "2 RL.," even the "final s" not being added in the latter. We will not go into other and finer distinctions, as a farther analysis could add nothing to the efficacy of the foregoing tests. The stamps were first sold in this country by a Birmingham dealer, in ignorance of their true character. One of the sets fell into Mr. Joannis's hands, and upon his communicating with the dealer in question, the latter, as he informs us, called in the stamps he had supplied, and gave all the assistance in his power to discover by whom they were originally fabricated. He at length, in reply to his inquiries, received an offer of 150 sets of four stamps (the fourth being a pretended colour-variety of the 10 c.) for 50/-, — which would be at the rate of a penny each. The offer came from the notorious
ENGELHARDT FOHL,
Cigar Seller, of Riesa, Saxony. This man has launched several very artful forgeries, and we strongly advise every dealer who desires not to touch pitch, to have nothing whatever to do with him. We hope that the above description will prevent any of our readers from being taken in by these specious Luzon stamps, and we may, in conclusion, mention that, together with the gentleman referred to in the opening lines, Mr. Ysasi and other philatelic notabilities have been occupied in ferreting out the forger. Their united efforts have been crowned with success..........


(Forgery of a postal stationery of Mauritius, with overprint 'Falsch', made by Fohl, reduced size)


Forgeries of the 3 c and 10 c produced in Germany. Probably by Englehardt Fohl according to the Mitteldeutsche Philatelisten Zeitung (July 1900 issue; see also http://jobi.bizhosting.com/Many%20Faces%20Die%209FG.htm)

I further know that this forger made forgeries of the Danube company stamps, Serbia and the first stamp of Saxony (actually the forger Schroeder produced this forgery and Fohl merely sold it).

He also offered forgeries of the Oldenburg 1860 1/4 g value and Saxony 1855 5 ngr and 10 ngr values which were reported in Schweizer Illustr. Briefmarken Zeitung in November 1882 (source: http://briefmarken.ag/). Especially the forgeries of Saxony seem to have been quite deceptive.


Copyright by Evert Klaseboer