US Stamps

Inside Linn’s: Postage due forms help use up unwanted stamps

Apr 18, 2024, 8 AM
In Modern U.S. Mail in the May 6 issue of Linn’s Stamp News, Richard L. Beecher explains how post offices use postage due forms to deplete stocks of stamps that went over poorly with the public or became obsolete following a rate change.

By Charles Snee

The May 6 digital-only issue of Linn’s Stamp News will be available to subscribers Saturday, April 20. While you wait for your issue to arrive in your inbox, enjoy these three quick glimpses of exclusive content available only to subscribers. 

Postage due forms deployed to use up unwanted stamps

Richard L. Beecher opens his Modern U.S. Mail column with a question: “How do post offices get rid of stamps that nobody wants or needs?” He then answers, “Well, there’s a form for that.” That form is the U.S. Postal Service’s Form 3582-A, which is known as a postage due bill. “This postage due form is generally not directly available to the mailing public and is usually completed by post office staff who also affix stamps to the form,” Beecher explains. He then illustrates and discusses two postage due forms, one of which is franked with a pair of an 18¢ stamp issued in 1981 that proved to be extremely unpopular with the mailing public. Read the column to find out the subject of the controversial stamp.

Rainbow Stamp Club blog highlights worldwide stamps

In Computers and Stamps, William F. Sharpe reviews the Rainbow Stamp Club blog site run by Joyoti Jeevan. According to Sharpe, Jovan has been publishing Rainbow Stamp News, an online monthly magazine, since 2008. Although Jeevan focuses on the stamps of India, she pays due attention to stamps from around the world. As Sharpe explains, “A sentence near the top of the home page says that the Rainbow Stamp Club is for stamp lovers and its objective is ‘to create philatelic fraternity around the world.’” Sharpe highlights stamps from Australia (one of his collecting interests) and, fittingly, a U.S. 2005 37¢ stamp (Scott 3905) celebrating Yip Harburg, who wrote the lyrics to the song Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

Word search puzzle: fruits and vegetables on stamps

Linn’s regularly publishes three games to entertain readers: Trickies, a word scramble puzzle by Joe Kennedy; a word search puzzle by D.E. Rubin; and Philatelic Lexicon, a crossword puzzle by David Saks. In this week’s issue, Rubin tasks readers with finding 21 words in the grid highlighting fruits and vegetables that appear on worldwide stamps. Accompanying the puzzle is an illustration of a 2007 Antigua and Barbuda stamp (Scott 3383a) that features a cluster of apple bananas. The fruit “is actually a banana said to be much sweeter than the variety usually sold in stores in the United States,” writes Rubin.

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