Home CD index CD volume 1 index CD volume 2 index
Preview of Stamps Catalogue CD : VOLUME 1

LOUS-HENRI MERCIER (Henri Goegg); STAMP FORGER

Return To Catalogue

Note: on my website many of the pictures can not be seen! They are of course present in the cd's;
contact me if you want to purchase them.


According to 'Philatelic Forgers, their Lives and Works' Louis Henri Mercier was a stamp forger (his real name was Henri Goegg). He started in Geneva in 1890 forging stamps. He offered Swiss Cantonals and Rayon stamps mainly. Just after 1900 his business went bankrupt and his stock was bought over by another forger: Francois Fournier.

Some of his forgeries:

Forgery, '2d' should be red! Forgery!
Mercier forgeries of Fiji

Mercier made forgeries of all three unsurcharged stamps.
In his 1 p forgery, there are too many pearls (65 instead of 55), and the base of the crown is rounded instead of being flat. The 1 p forgery also exists imperforate (without cancel).
In his 3 p forgery, the correct pattern for the circle is used, but the base of the crown is rounded instead of being flat (I've also seen the 3 p forgery without any overprint).
In his 6 p forgery there are pearls in the circle instead of the zig-zag pattern of the genuine stamps (similar to the Spiro forgeries, the Spiro forgeries have 55 pearls, Mercier's forgeries have 56 pearls). I've also seen the 6 p forgery with a 'VR' overprint only. These could actually be the forgeries that were offered by Oneglia?

Forgeries of the Providence Postmaster issue of the USA made by Mercier:
According to The American Philatelist 31, 205-220, 1918, the forger L.H.Mercier of Geneva (wrongly spelt as 'Mersier') made forgeries of these stamps. They are made from a photograph of a genuine stamp. They can be found with a New York postmark or a bar cancel. The left and top is heavily outlined (the genuine stamps only have heavy outlines at the right and bottom). These forgeries were also sold in London.
Sorry, no image available yet of this forgery.

In Le Timbre Poste of 1890, Vol.28, page 6, the following text can be found:
Le timbre de Bâle .... réimprimé. Mr Henri Goegg, de Geneève a adressé à un de nos correspondants la lettre suivante :
"Ayant racheté une des machines qui servaient antérieurement à la Confédération suisse, pour la fabrication d‘un de ses timbres-poste, je viens vous offrir ci joint une réimpression de la colombe de Bâle à 23 fr. la douzaine, soit en bleu ou en vert. «
Moralité. Le timbre de Mr H. Goegg est faux. Il est mis en vente collé sur fragment de lettre et oblitéré !
This text proves that Mercier started in or before 1890 offering his 'reprints'.


Copyright by Evert Klaseboer