2016 47c Repeal of the Stamp Act
On March 18, 1766, British Parliament repealed the Stamp Act. The decision slowed calls for independence, though it did not stop the march toward the American Revolution.
The Stamp Act had passed a year earlier and was enacted in November 1765. It forced colonists to buy a British tax stamp for every official document they obtained. Colonists were outraged and protested against taxation by Parliament, because they had no one to represent them.
In response British goods were boycotted, customhouses were vandalized, and tax collectors were attacked. In England, merchants whose products were boycotted pressured Parliament to repeal the act.
The “Sons of Liberty” secret society was formed within the 13 colonies to coordinate protests. Effigies were burned under the “Liberty Tree” in Boston, and fear kept many tax distributors from selling the stamps.
The first American Congress then drafted a formal petition outlining the reasons why Parliament had no right to tax colonists. As news of rebellion reached England, Parliament voted 276-168 to repeal the act.
But the die had been cast. Flush with victory, colonists would soon use their Stamp Act protest tactics to push for true independence. The American Revolution was on the horizon.
Issued: May 29, 2016
First Day City: New York, NY
Type of Stamp: First Class Mail
Printed by: Banknote Corporation of America
Method: Offset, Microprint
Quantity Printed: 12,000,000
The Repeal of the Stamp Act issue marks the 250th anniversary of the repeal of the Stamp Act, which had imposed a tax on the American Colonies by Great Britain. Historical painter Greg Harlin illustrated the stamp. The stamp and the pane were designed by art director Antonia Alcala.