U.S. Issues Replacements for Demonetized Stamps 

U.S. #63 was issued on this day in 1861.

On August 17, 1861, the first of several Civil War era stamps was first used.

In 1860 and 1861, eleven Southern states left the Union and formed the Confederate States of America, an action that resulted in the beginning of the Civil War. On April 12, 1861, the war erupted at Fort Sumter. Less than two months later, the United States discontinued postal services to the South.

U.S. #64 – The frame of this stamp is very different from the previous version of it.

However, numerous stamps were still in the hands of postmasters of seceding states. Fearing that these stamps would be sent to the North and sold (thus providing money for the Confederate states) the United States sent a proclamation to all postmasters, requesting that the remainders be sent to Washington. When this order was largely ignored, the government made arrangements for designing new issues and demonetizing the old issues.

U.S. #64b – A variety of the above stamp printed in pink.

The process of demonetizing rendered the old stamps invalid, and at the same time replaced them with newly designed stamps. The new 1861 stamps were sent to post offices along with a notice that required an exchange period of six days be announced in local newspapers. During the exchange period, old stamps could be exchanged for new ones. After the six-day exchange period, the old stamps were no longer accepted as postage. Four of these new stamps were issued on August 17, 1861.

U.S. #68 is the first U.S. stamp known to be used in Japan.

While the designs and color of the new issues differed from the old ones, the Postal Service wanted to be certain there would be no confusion between the two. They felt a change that could be easily recognized was necessary, and so the 1861 issues have the values expressed in numerals instead of being written out.

The Confederates, concerned that the Federal Government would use the postal system to spread anti-Southern propaganda, quickly set up their own postal service.

Click here to view and purchase more Civil War era stamps.

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  1. Southern states had for years been using their strong influence on the federal government to keep anti-slavery literature from circulating in the south.

  2. Its a shame what is going on in this country these days. Stamps, like statues and currency honor American statesmen and those of importance in our history. They are those that shaped our country and formed the political system we have today. Slowly our history and heritage is being erased by the ultra left wing radicals who have failed or did not study our history and heritage. Next to disappear will be stamps, like those pictured, as well as currency, and perhaps any mention at all of the Civil War. This country is slowly digressing into a society of mob rule and anarchy which is not the country I was brought up to love and defend.

    1. Is it just a matter of time before the radicals demand that all the CSA stamps with Jefferson Davis no longer be shown at stamp shows or traded on eBay?

    2. I appreciate your comments. This country needs to change it’s course radically to defend the U.S. Constitution and Declaration of Independence. There are many hopeful Americans who will defend it and look up for help. Yes, our U.S. History and heritage has been ignored and freedoms taken away. True Americans will stand up and fight for their freedoms. We cannot sit back and accept what is going on these days. Thanks for your reminder to all of us!

    3. Very well said, Mr. Carpenter. Our history is our history and let it remain so, that is not forgotten or changed.

    4. Great and timely article. Too bad the young people of today don’t realize that history is a story of what has happened and cannot be changed by destroying monuments to the past. The people who are tearing down monuments and moving and hiding monuments are no different than ISIS destroying the artifacts in Iraq. Sad.

  3. It is refreshing to hear these replies. Sometimes by listening to the news I feel like I have travelled to a foreign land or distant world. God bless America…please!

  4. Today is August 17, 2020. The above comments are all from 2017, but they all appear to be still very valid. I hope they do not get worse this November. God bless America.

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