The United States Postal Service issues the H-rate makeup stamp, which costs one cent. Due to a change in the postage rate that took effect in 1999, it was issued in 1998.
The first-class letter rate for the United States Postal Service was 32 cents in 1998, but it was set to increase to 33 cents on January 10, 1999. There were no “forever stamps” at the time. The H-rate stamps were created ahead of the postage hike to allow postal customers to keep using their 32-cent stamps.
The stamp design included a rooster silhouette standing on a weathervane with a brilliant yellow sun in the backdrop, as well as the words “The H-Rate make-up stamp” and “USA” across the top. A top hat with an American flag design was put against a white backdrop on the accompanying H stamp, which was published in 1999. The hat was designed to look like the one worn by Uncle Sam in the renowned J.M. Flagg military recruitment posters, but with red and white flag stripes on the top half.
Throughout the USPS’s history, similar 1-cent stamps have been issued in response to postage hikes. A Tiffany lamp, an American Kestrel, and photographs of Margaret Mitchell and Dorothea Dix are just a few examples.