The act of Congress approved August 24, 1912, making appropriations for the Postal Service for the fiscal year 1913. contain- the following provisions as to parcel-post stamps:
“That the rate of postage on fourth-class matter weighing not more than 4 ounces shall be 1 cent for each ounce or fraction of an ounce; and on such matter in excess of 4 ounces in weight the rate shall be by the pound, as hereinafter provided, the postage. in all cases to be prepaid by distinctive postage stamps affixed.
“Parcel-post equipment, 1913.—That the Postmaster General shall provide such special equipment, maps, stamps, directories, and printed instructions as may be necessary for the administration of this section * * *.”
Under this provision of law, the Department prepared a set of 12 parcel-post stamps and a set of 5 parcel-post due to stamps of distinctive designs. The designs were prepared in 3 groups of 4 stamps each, the working personnel of the Postal Service being represented by the first group, the transportation of the mail by the second group, and the manufacturing and agricultural interests of the country by the third group. Descriptions with dates of issue of the several denominations, follow:
The parcel-post stamps are 875/1000 by 1 and 375/1000 inches in dimension. The color is red for all denominations. In a curved panel across the top, supported by a paneled perpendicular column at each end, appear the words “U. S. parcel post” in Roman capital letters. Triangular ornaments occupy both upper corners. The denomination in large numerals is in each lower corner, with the title of the subject and the word “Cents” (or “Dollar”) between.
The stamps were first placed on sale January 1, 1913, with the inauguration of the parcel-post law.
Published by John Jr. Paperly
Source: Postage Stamps of the United States 1847-1959