Existing comment:
Who was on the first postage stamps?
The first two U.S. postage stamps were a 5-cent stamp showing Benjamin Franklin and a 10-cent stamp with the image of George Washington. In 1855, Post Office made the use of prepaid postage stamps mandatory for mailing letters.

How did lower postage rates affect ordinary citizens?
Lower rates and prepaid postage stamps brought the cost of send first-class mail within reach of many more Americans. This encouraged more reading and writing, letters to distant friends and relatives, business transactions, and communication of many kinds across the growing United States.
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