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1886 Poll Tax Receipt With Postage Stamp Tied On Reverse

 
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United States
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Posted 11/21/2020   12:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add locals4me to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Here is a poll tax receipt from MA for 1886. Folding and wear suggests it might have been carried in the resident's wallet. On the back is a one cent postage stamp tied by the circular datestamp of Northborough.
Why is there a postage stamp tied to this poll tax receipt? There is no address or evidence that it was mailed.

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United States
7101 Posts
Posted 11/21/2020   1:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It has probably been cut down from a larger size. There was no one cent tax rate, to begin with. But there would have been one cent postage rates at the time.
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United States
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Posted 11/21/2020   1:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ericjackson to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
And there were no documentary stamp taxes in effect in 1886 that the stamp could have been paying, albeit improperly. I don't see any apparent reason for the stamp being there.
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Posted 11/21/2020   4:04 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add John Becker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The receipt was mailed back for 1 cent, as a local letter at a non-carrier office. Nothing more than the name was needed.
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United States
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Posted 11/21/2020   5:05 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add locals4me to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The datestamp is August 1866, matching the printed receipt. The $2 tax received a 2% discount because it was paid before December (Treasurer signed receipt in October). It does appear that the blank receipt with taxes due was mailed to the resident in August, and probably paid in person in October. Thus the postage stamp was a local or printed circular rate and posted to the taxpayer.
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Posted 11/21/2020   8:00 pm  Show Profile Check revenuecollector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add revenuecollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
The datestamp is August 1866, matching the printed receipt.


I think you meant 1886. This stamp wasn't issued until well after the Civil War revenue tax period.
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United States
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Posted 11/21/2020   9:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add locals4me to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Yes, I meant 1886.
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Posted 11/21/2020   10:13 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It's a neat postal history item.
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United States
1035 Posts
Posted 11/22/2020   3:59 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add GregAlex to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I always associated the poll tax with Southern states using it as a way to prevent poor blacks from voting. I didn't realize Northern states had it as well. Hard to imagine paying a tax in order to vote today.
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United States
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Posted 11/22/2020   4:28 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add ericjackson to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Western states had them too. San Francisco County poll tax receipts are quite ornate and very collectible.

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Posted 11/22/2020   6:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add littleriverphil to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Mendocino County's receipt isn't nearly as attractive, especially after being stuck in a billfold. But I'll forgive GGGgranddad Sam. This time.

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United States
23 Posts
Posted 11/23/2020   2:31 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add locals4me to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I've sold a couple on eBay that had space to indicate B or W and also M or W.
Primarily, the high poll tax discouraged anyone without means, not just blacks and females.
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