The Ultimate Guide to Elvis Presley Stamp Values for Collectors and Fans

Elvis Presley‘s legacy as the King of Rock and Roll has endured long after his untimely death in 1977 at the age of 42. Elvis‘s music, style, and larger-than-life persona made him one of the most significant cultural icons of the 20th century. Over 40 years later, Elvis remains widely celebrated, with a vast market for Elvis merchandise and memorabilia.

One of the most popular and accessible Elvis collectibles are postage stamps featuring the legendary performer. Since 1978, over 40 countries have issued Elvis-themed stamps, offering a wide range for collectors. In this comprehensive guide, we‘ll take a detailed look at the history and value of Elvis stamps, and provide expert tips for buying, selling, and collecting them.

The Story Behind the Famous Elvis Presley Stamps

The first Elvis stamp was issued in 1978 by the Caribbean island nation of Grenada, just one year after Elvis passed away. It didn‘t take long for Elvis‘s worldwide popularity to be reflected and celebrated on postage stamps. However, the U.S. Post Office had a rule requiring 10 years to pass after a person‘s death before they could be honored on a stamp.

Finally, in 1992, the U.S. Post Office polled the American public on which Elvis they‘d like to see on a stamp – a young 1950s Elvis or a 1970s Elvis in one of his famous jumpsuits. The vote was conducted through post office ballots as well as phone votes for those calling the special 1-900 phone number set up by the USPS. Over 1.2 million votes were cast, with the young Elvis winning in a landslide.

1993 USPS Elvis Presley 29 cent stamp

On January 8, 1993, on what would have been Elvis‘s 58th birthday, the USPS issued the now iconic 29 cent Elvis Presley commemorative stamp. Featuring a classic portrait of a young, smiling Elvis in a pose inspired by a 1956 photo, the stamp was wildly popular. The USPS printed over 500 million, which sold out rapidly at post offices across the country.

At Elvis‘s famous home Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee, fans lined up for hours to buy the new Elvis stamp and have their envelopes postmarked on the first day of issue. Many fans and collectors purchased entire sheets of the stamps to keep in pristine condition. The 1993 Elvis stamp quickly became a prized collectible as well as one of the most well-known stamps in U.S. history.

In 2015, the USPS again honored Elvis, this time with a Forever stamp as part of the Music Icons series. This stamp featured a black and white portrait of Elvis in his later years, dressed in a leather jacket and with a more serious expression. While not as famous as its 1993 predecessor, the 2015 Elvis stamp gave collectors another great option.

The Most Valuable Elvis Presley Stamps

With so many Elvis stamps to choose from, which are the most valuable for collectors? Here are some of the most prized Elvis stamp sets and individual stamps, along with value estimates:

1993 USPS 29 Cent Elvis Presley Commemorative Stamp

Unused Stamps:

  • Single stamp: $2-$3
  • Sheet of 40 stamps: $80-$100+

First Day of Issue/Graceland Postmark:

  • Single stamp on envelope: $10-$20
  • Sheet of 40 stamps: $150-$300

Recall that sheets and rolls of the 1993 Elvis stamp are still valid for postage today as Forever stamps, adding functional value. Professionally graded stamps in perfect condition will fetch higher prices. For example, a rare sheet of 40 stamps graded in perfect condition by PSE sold at auction for $375.

Elvis Presley 70th Birthday Stamps

Several countries issued stamps honoring Elvis on what would have been his 70th birthday on January 8, 2005. Values vary based on the country and other factors:

St. Vincent 70th Birthday Elvis Stamps

  • 9 stamp sheet: $25-$35

Gambia 70th Birthday Elvis Stamps

  • 4 stamp sheet: $10-$20

Grenada 70th Birthday Elvis Stamps

  • 4 stamp sheet: $10-$20

Rare Elvis Stamps

Some of the most valuable Elvis stamps are scarce variations or printing errors, such as:

1978 St. Vincent Elvis Presley Gutter Pair

  • Imperforate gutter pair: $500+

1978 St. Lucia Elvis Presley Stamp

  • Overprint inverted error: $200+

Tips for Buying and Selling Elvis Stamps

Whether you‘re looking to add Elvis stamps to your collection or sell Elvis stamps you currently own, here are some expert tips:

Buying Elvis Stamps:

  • Purchase from reputable dealers or established collectors. Check reviews and seller ratings if buying online.

  • Ask for detailed photos of the front and back of stamps to evaluate condition. Avoid damaged, torn, or heavily postmarked stamps unless they are rare variations.

  • Use a stamp price guide like the Scott Postage Stamp Catalogue to assess fair market value. Prices can vary significantly based on condition and other factors.

  • Consider the long-term value and investment potential, but buy what you love and will enjoy owning as a collector.

Selling Elvis Stamps:

  • Get stamps professionally authenticated and graded by a respected service like Professional Stamp Experts (PSE). Graded stamps typically command higher prices.

  • Consider selling at auction for rare or high value Elvis stamps. Well-known auction houses like Sotheby‘s, Robert A. Siegel, and Cherrystone often feature stamp sales.

  • If selling independently, provide quality photos and detailed descriptions disclosing any flaws or wear. Price competitively using completed sales as a guide.

  • Offer fair refund policies and ship with tracking and insurance for buyer confidence. Develop a reputation for honesty and customer service.

Elvis Presley Stamps: Frequently Asked Questions

Is Elvis Presley the only rock star on a U.S. stamp?
While Elvis is the most well-known, he‘s not the only rock legend on a U.S. stamp. Other stars like Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and John Lennon have also been honored in the Music Icons series.

What is the value of a mint sheet of 1993 Elvis stamps?
Sheets of 40 mint 1993 29 cent Elvis commemorative stamps typically sell in the $80-$100 range. Professionally graded sheets in perfect condition can fetch $300-$400 or more.

Are Elvis stamps a good investment?
Like any collectible, Elvis stamp values can fluctuate based on market demand and overall economic conditions. Very rare stamps in top condition are most likely to appreciate in value over time. However, most collectors are drawn to Elvis stamps due to a personal affinity for the King of Rock and Roll.

Can I use Elvis stamps as actual postage?
Yes, as Forever stamps, both the 1993 and 2015 U.S. Elvis stamps are still valid to mail a First Class letter, regardless of current postal rates. Most overseas Elvis stamps are not valid for postage in the U.S.

With Elvis‘s enduring popularity, it‘s likely that new Elvis stamps will continue to be issued around the world, giving collectors new opportunities to own a unique piece of music and cultural history. Collectors and fans of the King can build a valuable and meaningful collection of Elvis stamps, preserving Elvis‘s legacy for years to come.

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