Many of today's collectors started collecting U.S. postage stamps as kids, often with a parent or family member. The US stamp collecting market has weakened in recent years, however, with many stamps and even entire collections trading below face value (so many copies of common stamps were printed that there's not enough demand to warrant a premium).

Rare or unusual U.S. stamps, however, are another story - there's a robust market for those, and some specimens can be worth thousands of dollars or more.

There are many ways to approach collecting U.S. stamps. Some collectors focus on a specific time period, like the 19th century. Others choose specific themes like airmail stamps or duck stamps. Some focus on specific formats like sheets, plate blocks, coils, or booklets. There are also a large number of collectors who focus on first day covers - stamps that were affixed to a special envelope and cancelled on the first day of issue.

As with many collectibles, rarity and condition are two key determinants of value. U.S. stamps can be either unused (never cancelled) or used, and there are collectors who focus on both varieties.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Stamp Collecting Round-up

The Stamp Collecting Round-up

Don Schilling's long-running, in-depth blog on stamp collecting and postal operations. Schilling stays up on all th… [read review or visit site]

National Postal Museum

National Postal Museum

If you're into postal history or collectibles, check out the Smithsonian's National Postal Museum. This extensive s… [read review or visit site]

Post Office in Paradise

Post Office in Paradise

Post Office in Paradise showcases Hawaiian postal history from the years before Hawaii became a part of the United … [read review or visit site]

Private Die Proprietary Stamps

Private Die Proprietary Stamps

Bob Hohertz's impressive database of U.S. Private Die Proprietary stamps from the Civil War and Spanish American Wa… [read review or visit site]

R. A. Siegel Auction Galleries

R. A. Siegel Auction Galleries

This auction house site offers an extensive online database of US stamp information. Includes PDF catalogs of past … [read review or visit site]

Alphabetilately

Alphabetilately

First shown in 2008 to celebrate the Smithsonian National Postal Museum's 15th anniversary, Alphabetilately is esse… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

U.s. #39 Rare Used - 1860 90c Blue ($11,000)Ckstamps : Us Stamps Scott #12 5c Red Brown Type I Jefferson 1856 Used Cv$70069 Used Pse Cert Graded 85Nystamps Us Revenue Stamp # R115b Used $1250 Inverted Center Error W/certNystamps Us Stamp # 39 Mint With Gum H $3000Scott # 292 Us 1898 Trans-mississippi $1 Nh Cat $3500U.s. #122 Used Beauty - 1869 90c Lincoln ($2,000)Scott 37a, Unused, Gray Shade, 1860, No Gum, Scarce! $525Usa 1893 Columbus $5 Used Stamp Scott $1500Brass Lock Padlock W/ Key Rotary Uspo Sargent & Greenleaf Post Office Postal PodNystamps Us Stamp # 71 Mint With Gum H $2600Scott 2(f), Sperati Forgery (#96), Blue Grid Cancel! Xf Gem! E$500/$700Scott # 29 Us 1857-61 Type I 5c H Cat $5500Scott # 243 Us 1893 Columbian $3 Nh Cat $5250Nystamps Us Stamp # 239 Mint Og Nh $750Us #122 Used Vf App Nice Margins 90c Lincoln Pictorial Pse Cert., Scv $2,250.14 Used Pse Cert Graded 85Nystamps Us Csa Confederate Stamp # 3 Mint With Gum H $950Scott # 122 Us Pictorial 90c Used Cat $2100Nystamps Us Air Mail Stamp # C15 Mint Og H $57572 Used Pse Cert Graded 75Ckstamps : Us Stamps Scott #315 5c Blue Imperf 1908 Unused Appear Rg $725/ogNystamps Us Stamp # 121 Used $450Drbobstamps Us Shanghai Scott #k1-k18 Complete Mint Stamp SetScott # 6 Us Type Ia 1c Vlh Cat $45000U.s. #366 Scarce Mint W/cert - 15c Ultra On Bluish Paper ($1,250)U.s. 1869 Pictorials Complete Stamp Set Scott #112 - #122 Cv $5350 Mint & UsedU.s. #1 Used Beauty - 1847 5c Red Brown ($400)Scott 353, Mint Washington-franklin Coil Line Pair, H Og, Scarce! $750Scott Bk101, Unexploded Booklet, 3mm Spacing, Choice/scarce & Xf! $700Nystamps Us Stamp # 243 Mint With Gum H $1600Usa 1869 90c Lincoln Used Stamp Scott $2500Us 122 Used 90c Abe Lincoln Carmine And Black G Grill $2100 For Vf Usa # 292 1 $ Mississippi Used Nice !!! Cat 725us.Ckstamps: Us Stamps Scott #c14 $1.3 Graf Zeppelin 1930 Airmail Mint Lh/og Cv$400Ckstamps : Us Old Stamps Scott #1 5c Franklin 1847 Imperf. Used Cv$4501920 $1.00 Red On Green, Treasury Savings Ts1 Very Fine Unused Lightly Hinged OgScott 20, Used, Type Ii, 1857, Paid Cancel! Scarce! $290Nystamps Us Stamp # 311 Mint Og H $625Nystamps Us Stamp # 422 Mint Og H $225 FranklinNystamps Us Stamp # 138 Mint With Gum H $4250 Grill137 Vf Used Pse CertScott Tdb18, Dummy Handstamp Booklet Testing, Nh Og, Scarce! E$750Scott # 115 Us Pictorial 6c H Cat $2750Us Stamp:#533 2c (v) 1918-20 Imperf Offset Mnh/og Stamp $180Nystamps Us Stamp # 155 Used $350N2- Proprietary Stamp- Scott #rb8bNystamps Us Stamp # 293 Mint With Gum H $1900Usa 1893 Columbus $1 Mnh Stamp High Cat17 Used Pse Cert Graded 80Ckstamps : Us Old Stamps Scott #96 10c Green 1868 F-grill Unused Rg Cv$2750/ogScott 17, Used Vertical Pair, Black/red Cancels! Nice! $635Nystamps Us Stamp # 76 Used $12036b Vf Used Pse CertNystamps Us Stamp # 77 Mint Og H $1400Us Stamp:#342 $1 1908-09 12p. Mh/og StampPony Express 1862 Scott #143l8 Wells Fargo 4 Margins, See Description [id:10006]U.s. $3 Columbian 1893 Sc #243. Mint Nh Og. Cat Value $5250.Nystamps Us Stamp # 293 Used $1100Ckstamps : Us Stamps Scott #242 $2 Brown Red 1893 Columbian Mint Hr Og Cv$1150