A Baker's Touch

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Rolling pin canceller

The Cristobal, Canal Zone, postmaster William D. Taylor came up with an innovative use of an ordinary kitchen utensil in 1939. The post office needed to precancel a large number of stamps that year that were headed to mail order businesses in the United States. Taylor was looking for an easy and quick way to mark a large number of stamps with precancel markings. He glued the rubber handstamp map to his rolling pin and stapled the mat onto the pin in some places to make sure it would hold.

The precancel stamps were sent in bulk to companies such as Sears, Roebuck & Co., and Montgomery Ward in the United States. And what did Taylor think of the plan? Well he was later quoted as saying he was glad to get the rolling pin out of his kitchen.