19th Century
"Fancy" Cancels Database

Tracings and info courtesy of James M. Cole,
The U.S. Philatelic Classics Society, and Bill Weiss

Welcome to the Stamp Smarter 1870-1894 US 'Fancy' Cancels Database. This database is a community project and is in database form in recognition that new cancels are being uncovered every week. If you have a cancel from this period that is not listed please consider sending a scan for inclusion into the database.

There is no firm definition is a ‘fancy cancel’ but they tend to be attractive, somewhat unique cancels. Many were produced at the local post office level by postmaster and other postal employees. This database leans towards inclusion of cancels as opposed to limiting the scope.

‘Fancy cancels’ of this era is a fun and fascinating part of US stamp collecting. To use the database simply select one of the buttons in the upper right hand corner of this page. You can choose to view the cancels by state, by ‘type’, by year, and simply page through the entire listing of them. The columns can be sorted in any way you desire by clicking on the column name.