Stamps had been issued as early as 1851 in independent Italian States of Sardinia and Tuscany. The first stamps of the United Kingdom of Italy appeared in 1862. These issues featured an embossed portrait of King Victor Emmanuel II. Italy stamps bore his likeness until 1879, when Humbert I became king. In 1943, Mussolini’s Fascist party established the Italian Social Republic and issued stamps for northern Italy which was occupied at the time by Germany. From 1945 to 47 stamps overprinted with the initials “AMG” (Allied Military Government) were issued jointly by the United States and Great Britain during their occupation of Italy. Interesting fact: Francobollo on stamps of Italy means “postage stamp.”