Genesis Of Stamps - The First Ten Years

Following the appearance of the world's first postage stamp on May 6, 1840, the next ten years saw the postage stamp idea spread throughout the world. Stamp and stamped envelope issuing countries of this period are listed below by year.
1840: Great Britain
1841: None
1842: New York City (Greig's city despatch)
1843: Brazil, Geneva (Switzerland), and Zurich, (Switzerland)
1844: None
1845: New Haven, Conn., New York City, St. Louis, and Basel (Switzerland) 1846: Alexandria, Va., Annapolis, Md., Baltimore, Md., Boscawen, N.H., Lockport, N.Y., Millbury, Mass., Providence, R.I.
1847: United States (First General Issue), Mauritius
1848: Bermuda, Russia.
1849: Bavaria, Belgium, France
1850: Austria, British Guiana, Hanover, New South Wales, Prussia, Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, Spain, Switzerland (Federal Administration) and Victoria

After 1850 the practice rapidly spread throughout the civilized world. Many collectors have the mistaken impression that the older a stamp is the more valuable it is. The stamps and stamped envelopes issued from 1840-1850 are perfect examples of the fact that age has no connection with the value of a stamp. For example of the stamps listed above several can be purchased for less than five dollars, one for less than 25 cents. Of course, on the other side of the picture a number of those listed above cost well over $10,000.