1875 Special Printing (PR53). Without gum as issued, deep rich color and detailed impression on bright paper, natural straight edge at top with trace of guide arrow at top left
The large-format Newspaper stamps issued in 1865 were unsatisfactory for collecting postage on the bulk mailing of newspapers and periodicals. Starting January 1, 1875, the rate was fixed at 2c per pound for weekly or more frequent publications, and 3c per pound for less frequent publications. A total of 24 denominations were created, ranging from 2c to $60, so that payment could be made on mailing weight from one pound to one ton without using more than five stamps in any transaction. They could not be used for any other purpose.
The $24.00 design depicts the mythological figure of the Goddess of Peace, shown half naked, leaning against a broken column, with an olive branch in her left hand and three arrows in her right. The regular-issue stamps were sent to postmasters on December 11, 1874, for use starting on the first day of the new year.