The Girl Scouts, a cachet, and controversy

In 1987, the USPS issued a 22-cent stamp (Scott #2259) to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Girl Scouts of America.

Girl Scouts

It is a nice stamp, multi-colored, and features the images of 14 badges Girl Scouts could earn.

For those who worry about such things:

Issue Date: March 12, 1987
City: Washington, DC
Quantity: 149,980,000
Printed By: American Bank Note Co
Printing Method: 
Lithographed and engraved
Color: Multicolored

The controversy

As with many new issues, many cachet makers were preparing to create cachets for covers (often First Day of Issue Covers) surrounding the new Girl Scouts stamp.

Then a letter went out. It was sent by Patricia A. Smith, assistant national director for the girl scouts. She stated the GSA had entered an exclusive agreement with Washington Press/Artcraft to manufacture and sell cachets.

Her letter went on to state that cachet makers could not “print or sell a cachet which includes any representation of the Girl Scout uniform, the word Girl Scouts, Girl Scouts USA or any other words or impression to the trade and public that your cachets are approved, authorized or sponsored by the Girl Scouts of America.”

Eventually peace was made between cachet makers and the Girl Scouts. Of course the US Postal Service intervened, and a second letter was issued by the Girl Scouts.

You can read about the whole story at the Chicago Tribune.

My covers

I do not remember where I was, it was a show somewhere, and I ran across two covers related to the controversy.

These are not first day covers. And of course the cachets contain both letters (one for each envelope).

It’s nothing fancy and not worth a whole lot – I think I might have paid $5 for both. A quick search on Ebay did not reveal these specific covers for sale.

Still, it is an interesting tidbit of postal history related to one of my collecting areas – the Scouts topical.

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