The Postal Service will issue a stamp next week to mark the 250th anniversary of a turning point in the drive for American independence.
In 1765, the British Parliament passed the Stamp Act, which taxed America’s colonists for documents, including newspapers, mortgages, contracts and receipts. Under the law, stamps were used to indicate payment.
The British contended the tax was needed to pay off debt incurred from the French and Indian War (1754-1763), when British soldiers helped drive the French out of North America.
However, colonists resented the passage of the tax without their consent.
Mounting public sentiment ultimately forced the British to repeal the act in 1766, although the “taxation without representation” issue would continue to stir controversy until the beginning of the Revolutionary War the following decade.
The Repeal of the Stamp Act stamp depicts a crowd celebrating the law’s abolishment by gathering around a “liberty tree,” which were designated focal points for political discussions in colonial America.
The stamp will be dedicated May 29 at the World Stamp Show in New York City.