This Day in History… March 11, 1977

First Se-Tenant Booklet Stamps

US #1623Be – The se-tenant pair from the booklet. Click image to order.

On March 11, 1977, the USPS issued its first se-tenant stamps in booklet form.

The booklet was issued at the INTERPEX stamp show in New York City.  It was the 19th annual exhibition and it marked the first time in several years that the US and UN issued stamps at the show.

US #1623a – The se-tenant booklet perforated 11 x 10½. Click image to order.

US #1623Bc – The se-tenant booklet perforated 10 x 9¾. Click image to order.

The se-tenant booklet was one of the most significant issues.  The booklet was produced especially for vending machines that couldn’t accept more than $1.  The $1 booklet contained seven 13¢ stamps and one 9¢ stamp.  At the time, 9¢ was the postcard rate and 13¢ was the first-class letter rate.  The 9¢ stamp design was the same as US #1591, except while the earlier issue was printed on grayish paper, the new one was on white paper.  The 13¢ stamp was a new design and was also the first multicolor stamp issued in booklet form.

US #1623a – Silk Cachet First Day Cover. Click image to order.

People attending the show could purchase the booklets or loose panes, so they could get First Day Covers.  Interestingly, the loose panes were perforated 10 x 10. Previous booklet stamps were perforated 11 x 10½, as were the full booklets available at the exhibition.

US #1623a – Silk Cachet First Day Cover.  Click image to order.

At some point after the exhibition ended, booklets were discovered that were perforated 10 x 9¾.  When Scott Catalogue assigned these booklets a major number, speculators drove the price up to $300.00, though the price has dropped significantly since then.

Click here to see what else happened on This Day in History.

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