who we are
Taxes have always been with us; when the first postage stamps made their appearance in 1840, revenue stamps had already been in use for over 200 years. The early stamps were embossed or printed on the
document being taxed but there is a known use of a tax stamp, as an adhesive, used in
Furstenberg, Germany, dated March 25, 1775.
Among revenues may be found stamps rich in historical associations, stamps
beautiful, quaint and novel in design and form, and stamps possessing an
integrity of purpose sadly lacking in modern postage issues. (Not to mention
stamps far rarer than any airmail invert at a tiny fraction of the
Beyond revenue stamps as such, lies the rich and endless field of other
non-postal Cinderellas---stamps, stamped paper, seals, labels, things and
devices issued publicly and privately, officially and unofficially, to serve a
bewildering variety of purposes.
Interest in the revenue and Cinderella fields is growing rapidly, and as a
present or potential collector of these fascinating stamps, you may wonder
where to turn for up-to-date information, where to obtain needed material
unavailable from most dealers, and how to contact fellow collectors with
similar interests. There is just one answer---The American Revenue Association!
Founded in 1947, the ARA is a non-profit corporation serving the needs and
interests of ALL collectors of revenues, tax stamps, stamped paper, telegraph
and railroad stamps, and general non-postal Back-of-the-Book material,
U. S. and foreign, federal, state, provincial, local, municipal and private. The ARA
is by far the largest, oldest and fastest-growing national or international
society fulfilling this goal.