50 Really Fascinating Facts about Stamps

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26British Album Cover Stamps

In 2010, the Royal Mail turned 10 classic British albums into postage stamps, including albums by Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, and Blur.


27. The Vatican City has its own post office and it issues its own stamps. The Vatican mail system is widely used by Romans as in most cases it is a lot quicker than Italian mail.


28. Delaware was founded by Swedes and Finns in the 1630s. Both Sweden and Finland issued stamps in 1938 to commemorate it.


29. Two-thirds of Pitcairn Island's revenue came from stamps in the 1970s. A decrease in sales meant the islands became bankrupt in 2004.


30. A British man named Angus McDonagh designed and printed his own fake postage stamps, with images of himself wearing an eye patch, a beret, and a Father Christmas beard. He successfully used them to post over 100 letters.


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31Licking Stamps

Every time you lick a stamp, you are consuming one-tenth of a Calorie.


32. Placing a stamp upside down means "I love you." Stamp orientation has conveyed protest and secret messages for decades across the world.


33. North Korea issued a series of postage stamps featuring Prince Charles and Princess Diana in 1982. There were even celebrations in North Korea when the two married in 1981.


34. Postage stamps weren't always prepaid. Some of the first post offices in the 1840s made recipients pay for their mail, when they came to pick it up. This led to postage going unpaid, a decrease in revenue, and the creation of federal postage stamps.


35. The Treskilling Yellow is a Swedish postage stamp. It is one of the rarest stamps in the whole world and because of how rare it is, it is to be worth more than $3.14 million dollars.


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36Mark Twain

Mark Twain was born and died in the same years as the Halley's Comet flew by the earth. He even predicted that he would 'go out with' the comet a year before its arrival. Because of this connection, the American Postal Service created a commemorative stamp with Twain riding Halley's comet.


37. In 1994, Abkhazia released a parody series of stamps celebrating Marxism and Leninism but instead had a picture of Groucho Marx and John Lennon. They did this to assert their independence from Soviet Union.


38. Kirani James won Grenada's first-ever Olympic gold medal in 2012. His home country was so proud that the government held a giant 3-hour celebratory rally which was attended by thousands, gave him $186,000 USD, printed new stamps, named a new stadium after him, and built a museum/gym in his home town.


39. Scotland's National Bard, Robert Burns, is also seen as the "People's Poet" of Russia. A commemorative stamp was issued in his honor by the Soviet Government in 1956 (160 years after his death) and his work continues to be popular in Russia to this day.


40. In 1974, the United States Postal Office issued a 10-cent stamp which said "Retarded Children Can Be Helped."


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411988 Iran Plane Crash Stamp

Iran Air Flight 655 was an Iran Air civilian passenger flight that was shot down by the US Navy guided missile cruiser USS Vincennes in 1988. All 290 on board, including 66 children and 16 crewmembers died. One month later, Iran released a postage stamp to commemorate the disastrous attack.


42. A Redback Spider stamp was designed as part of a "Dangerous Australians" stamp series in 2006 but was withheld from general circulation by Australia Post due to concerns that the realistic depiction would scare people opening their mailboxes.


43. In 2011, Togo released a postage stamp of Marie Curie, but instead of using the photo of Marie Curie, by mistake they used the photo of an actress who once portrayed Marie Curie.


44. In 2016, the Government of Barbados issued a limited edition series of postage stamps featuring some of their centenarians and super-centenarians.


45. Reuse of a stamp is a felony in the US.


46Kosher Stamps

The glue on Israeli postage stamps is certified Kosher.


47. The first child to be "mailed" was sent to his grandmother in 1913. The 10 ¾ pound boy from Batavia, Ohio was sent to his grandmother a mile away. The boy’s parents paid 15 cents for the stamps and insured their son for $50.


48. The First Postal System of Iran was run by India using Indian stamps.


49. Collecting stamps was a nearly lifelong passion for Franklin D. Roosevelt. When FDR contracted polio in 1921, he turned to his stamps as a distraction during his bedridden days. He once said, "I owe my life to my hobbies especially stamp collecting."


50. Members of congress can sign the corner of an envelope and mail it without a stamp using USPS. This is known as ‘Franking Privilege.’

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