US Stamps

A good place for U.S. revenue stamp collectors to start

Jan 28, 2017, 12 PM
The 1918-22 United States set of 10 Numeral stock transfer revenue stamps (Scott RD1-RD10) is difficult to find in grades of fine-very fine or better.

By Henry Gitner and Rick Miller

The market for revenue stamps remains one of the most active segments of the U.S. stamp market. 

Some collectors are into revenues from the beginning of their entrance to the hobby. Others begin as postage stamp collectors, but move on to revenues when they take their postage collections as far as they can go. The market for match and medicine stamps is particularly strong, but all areas of revenue stamps are in demand.

Stock transfer stamps are revenue stamps that were issued to facilitate collection of tax on sales, agreements to sell, memoranda to sell, or other transfers of certificates of stock.

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The first rather pedestrian-looking set (Scott RD1-RD10) was produced in 1918-22 by overprinting “Stock Transfer” in two lines on carmine-rose Numeral documentary stamps. 

The 2017 Scott Specialized Catalogue of United States Stamps and Covers assigns a total value to the 10 stamps of just $16.95 in unused hinged condition. 

These stamps are relatively common, but most of the issue is very badly centered. You will probably have to buy these stamps one at a time because they are rarely offered as a complete set with all of the stamps acceptably centered. 

Finding the stamps in grades of fine-very fine or better and mint never-hinged condition is especially challenging. Expect to pay a premium if you find them.

If you want to fill out your collection of stock transfer stamps, there are numerous other stamps to consider. Among these are the attractive issues of 1940-52, which feature portraits of Alexander Hamilton, first secretary of the Treasury under President George Washington, and Levi Woodbury, who served as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Stock transfer stamps were discontined in 1952.