Postal stationery is one of my favorite collecting areas. I am a member of the United Postal Stationery Society ( If youíre interested in postal stationery and youíre not a UPSS member, I encourage you to join. Itís a terrific society with a wealth of information about both worldwide and US postal stationery issues. They also offer a series of catalogs for sale that go well beyond what you find in the Scott US Specialized catalog. Catalogs are available to anyone, but UPSS members get a reduced rate.

Collectors interested in postal stationery are sometimes confused by the Scott catalog lists. Scott lists three prices: mint, unused, and used.

Used prices are pretty obvious. But what is the difference between mint and unused?

Mint is as the item came from the USPS. Unused means that the item didnít go through the mail (this would be used), but the item does have markings on it such as a printed return address. Large businesses would print their return address on boxes of envelopes at a time. Sometimes collectors would buy the unused remainders from a mailing.

In general, the prices for unused postal stationery items are worth less than mint copies.