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Modern U.S. Stamps

Modern U.S. Stamps

The Bureau of Printing and Engraving continued to print U.S. stamps except for the Overrun Countries Issue (Scott 909 to 921) until the 1980’s when the American Bank Note Co. began printing several issues a year to supplement stamp production. During this period numerous experimental programs were tried. To make the use of automation of mail-handling equipment possible, tagged stamps were introduced. To reduce the problem of humidity making stamps stick together, dull gum stamps were tried. To eliminate the need to “lick stamps”, self-adhesive stamps became the standard. The last stamp printed by the Bureau of Printing and Engraving was the flag issue of 2002 (Scott 3632). Numerous private companies now print all stamps.

Two highlights of the Modern era were the controversy caused by the re-issue of the Dag Hammarskjold Invert Error and the introduction of the Plate Numbered Coil, which started a whole new collecting area.

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