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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    San Francisco, CA

    Re: tax stamp colors (strip stamps)

    As Bettye Jo has noted elsewhere here, Heaven Hill continued to use strip stamps as tamper-proofs until well into the '90s, and I've found many strip-stamped bottles (not tax stamps) from the late-'80s, early-'90s period.
    There was no uniform date when tamper-proof caps came into being -- it varied greatly by distillery and brand/label.
    What's the difference between a strip stamp and a tax stamp? I'm looking at the two "dusty shelf" bottles I found a couple of days ago. The red and white stamps on top say "Bureau of ATT, Distilled Spirits". Are these tax stamps or strip stamps?

  2. #12

    Re: tax stamp colors (strip stamps)

    The tax stamps will have numbers on them. In the case of Bottle In Bonds products, they also will include the season/year of distillation and bottling.
    The strip stamps used as tamper-proof seals after the requirement for tax stamps ended generally will have little or no writing at all on them although, in many cases, green was still used for BIB bottlings and red for others. But, even these vary. For instance I have a W.L. Weller 750 from 1994 "Distilled, Aged and Bottled by" United Distillers/Stitzel-Weller that has a plain, otherwise-unmarked red strip stamp seal. I have a 1992 Old Grand-Dad BIB bottle -- post-Beam ownership, but "Distilled and Bottle By" DSP-14 (Old Grand-Dad) that has a green stamp stating "100 Proof" "Bottled In Bond" and "Purchase Only If This Seal Is Unbroken".
    But, the long and the short of it is: actual tax stamps have tax numbers, while strip stamps used as solely as seals don't.
    Too, some states required tax stamps and specific info even after the federal requirement was lifted. Tennessee, for example, continued to put a small state-shaped decal-like stamp on the shoulder of each bottle until 1992. Wouldn't surprise me if some individual states continued requiring tax info on the strip stamps, too, though I've never found one of those.



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