First World War Postal Rates in the United States

First World War Soldiers

Introduction -- During my research on the First World War, I have accumulated postal history and War-related "collateral". Since I also collect usages of the Washington-Franklin stamp issue, I have enjoyed covers and cards that show war usages. On November 3, 1917, the U.S. raised many postal rates to help finance the War. The rates for first-class envelopes went up from two cents to three cents, and postcards went from one cent to two cents. These represent 50% and 100% price increases! While we complain about postal rate increases in the 21st century, the increases in 1917 seem pretty extreme.

This page links you to some images of War-rate postal history items that demonstrate the postal rates in place during that time.

The Use of a Revenue Stamp to Pay Postage Due (1918) [32k JPG]

Typical Rate for a Postcard (1918) [28k JPG]

Typical Rate for a One-Ounce Letter (1918) [20k JPG]

Illegal Usage of Postage Due Stamp (1918) [32k JPG]

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