When Was the First Stamp Produced?


Quick Answer

The first modern postage stamp was issued on May 6, 1840, in Great Britain and was known as the Penny Black stamp. It featured the profile of Queen Victoria's head.

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When Was the First Stamp Produced?
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Full Answer

Before postage stamps were circulated, letters were hand-stamped or postmarked with ink. The adoption of the adhesive stamp allowed postage to be paid in advance. Stamps were first issued in the United States on February 1, 1842, by Alexander M. Greig’s City Despatch Post, and Congress authorized U.S. postage stamps on March 3, 1847. However, other payment methods remained legal in the country until government-issued stamps became obligatory in 1856.

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