5¢ Benjamin Franklin
Issue Date: May 19, 1947
City: New York, NY
Printed by: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Rotary Press
U.S. #948a commemorates the 100th anniversary of America’s first postage stamp. This reproduction of America’s first postage stamp was actually valid U.S. postage.
Honoring America’s First Postage Stamps
The first United States Postage Stamps, the 5¢ and 10¢ issues of 1847, began a new era in mail service. Before adhesive stamps revolutionized the U.S. postal system, letters were marked “Paid” by pen and ink, and by various hand-stamping devices.
America’s first postage stamps went on sale on July 1, 1847. As a nation, America was taking shape at that time, and these stamps played an important part in its growth.
The 5¢ issue of 1847 (Scott #1) features a portrait of Benjamin Franklin. Franklin is credited with organizing America’s postal service back in the 1700s. On July 26, 1775, he was appointed by the Continental Congress as the first Postmaster General of the Confederation – which was of great importance to communications during the Revolutionary War. The 10¢ issue of 1847 (Scott #2) pictures George Washington, Revolutionary War hero and the first U.S. President.