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Spotlight on the 2014 Star Spangled Banner issues

The various Star Spangled Banner issues have been assigned non-sequential Scott numbers and can be hard to distinguish and track down.  Here's all the summary data in one place.

These Forever stamps had a denomination of 49¢ at the time they were first issued. The design chosen commemorated the 200th anniversary of the bombardment of Fort McHenry near Baltimore, which inspired Francis Scott Key's poem. They are alternately referred to as "Flag & Fireworks" or "Star Spangled Banner" issues. However, avoid confusion with the 22¢ Flag and Fireworks issues.

 

Water-activated sheet stamps

Water-activated coils

While it was a longstanding tradition to issue at least one traditional water-activated sheet or coil stamp for each "Flag" design, none was issued this time.

 

Self-adhesive coils

Scott 4853, (49¢) self-adhesive coil, die cut 8.5 vertically, no microprinting

 

  • Plate number C11111 (rolls of 100), issued in January 2014
  • Printed by CCL

 

Scott 4854, (49) self-adhesive coil, die cut 9.5 vertically, microprinting at bottom of flagpole

  • Plate number P1111 (rolls of 100), issued in January 2014
  • Printed by Ashton-Potter USA

 

Scott 4868, (49¢) self-adhesive coil, die cut 11 vertically, microprinting in fireworks above flagpole

  • Plate number S11111 (rolls of 100)
  • Printed by SSP

Error with die cutting omitted, Scott 4868b

Image courtesy of Bill Langs

Errors are known with individual coils rolls not separated, essentially vertical pairs or vertical strips with die cutting omitted, Scott 4868a

 

Booklet stamps

Scott 4855, (49) convertible booklet of 20, die cut 11.25 x 10.75 on 2 or 3 sides, microprinting

 

  • Plate number P1111 on peelable strip at left or right, issued January 2014
  • Plate number P2222 on peelable strip at left or right, first reported December 2014
  • Greenish tagging
  • Matte paper
  • Booklet of 20, Scott 4855a
  • Printed by Ashton-Potter USA

 

 

Scott 4869, (49) convertible booklet of 20, die cut 11.25 x 11.5 (or 11.4 x 11.6) on 2 or 3 sides

  • Plate number C1111 on peelable strip at left or right
  • White tagging
  • Low glossy paper
  • Booklet of 20, Scott 4869a
  • Printed by CCL

 

Scott 4870, (49) convertible booklet of 20, die cut 11.25 x 10.75 (or 11.25 x 11) on 2 or 3 sides, microprinting in fireworks above flagpole

  • Plate number S11111 on peelable strip at left or right
  • Greenish tagging
  • Glossy paper
  • Booklet of 20, Scott 4870a
  • Printed by SSP

Individual used examples are difficult to distinguish from the ATM stamps with die cutting on 2 or 3 sides. The microprinting, design size, tagging and are identical. The only apparent difference is the paper thickness, which requires that the used stamp be carefully separated from the paper.

Scott 4870 var, miscut vertically and horizontally

 

ATM pane stamp

Scott 4871, (49¢) ATM pane of 18, die cut 11.25 x 10.75 (or 11.25 x 11) on 2, 3 or 4 sides, microprinting

 

  • Plate number S11111 on peelable strip at top or bottom
  • Greenish tagging
  • Thin and glossy paper
  • ATM pane of 18, Scott 4871a
  • Printed by SSP

Individual used examples with die cutting on 2 or 3 sides are difficult to distinguish from the booklet stamps. The microprinting, design size, tagging and are identical. The only apparent difference is the paper thickness, which requires that the used stamp be carefully separated from the paper.

Stamps with die cutting on all four sides must be from the ATM pane.

 

Additional details for coil and booklet stamps can be found on the PNC3 web site.

Related links:

New issues for 2013

New issues for 2014

New issues for 2015 

 

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This page last updated January 5, 2020.