The term dated is a general term meaning any precancel that has a dating (initials and date) on it.  The dated precancel was made necessary when the Post office Department ruled that all precancels above the 6 cents domination should show the user’s initials and the date being used.   This ruling went into effect in July 1938.   The Post Office Department thought this ruling was necessary to prevent the reuse of high value precancels.

The dated controls are bureau of city type precancels that have the dating added separately to them.  This dating can be printed on the precancels thus creating printed controls (type set printing press).  It can be hand stamped (rubber stamp or roller) on the precancel creating handstamp controls.  The integral precancels are made with a device that does the precancelling (city and state) and the dating (initials and date) in one and the same operation to the plain stamps.

The heaviest usage of dated was from July 1938 through World War II years.  The large mail order companies (Montgomery Wards and Sears) used them on into the 1960.  Another note is that payment orders was commonly made with postage stamps.  These stamps were sent to the mail room precancels and used on the outgoing mail.  This practice lead to a wide verity of stamp issues precanceled.

You can collect dateds in several ways:

  • A type collection of one example of each type
  • General collection of each face different stamp and different date

Example denominati0n collection

             Example denomination collection