1861 Bowlsby Coupon Essay
Set your collection apart with a stamp essay that many collectors don’t know exist! This finely engraved essay combines the talents of the National Bank Note Company with an idea patented by George W. Bowlsby. Bowlsby – a Civil War soldier, railroad depot operator, and inventor – developed this unique concept to prevent the reuse of postage stamps two full years before grills were introduced.
Bowlsby’s idea called for a normal-sized stamp with a horizontal perforation or roulette through its center and gum on the lower half. The stamp was invalid without the coupon, which was to be removed by the postmaster. Neat postal history!