Beautifully engraved SCARCE SPECIMEN certificate from the Pitney Bowes Inc.
This historic document was printed by the Security-Columbian United States Banknote Company in 1988 and has an
ornate border around it with a vignette of an allegorical man. This item has the printed signatures of the Company’s Chairman of the Board and President and Secretary.
Founded in 1920 by the remarkable pair -Arthur Pitney and Walter Bowes - Pitney Bowes opened for business with a seemingly simple, yet significant invention--the world's first U.S. Postal Department-approved postage meter.
A tradition of innovation enabled the company to continually optimize the meter to make mailing faster, easier, more cost-effective and safer, providing both small- and large-sized business customers all over the world with highly advanced mailing systems that offer postal discounts as well as the ability to track and trace, practically eliminating the need a trip to the post office.
After more than 80 years of success as a leading mail and document solutions provider, the company entered the new millennium making history with attention to the customer, excellence in product and service design and development, and quick recognition and response to changing market needs.
These are among the key developments in the Pitney Bowes success story:
April 23,1920--The Universal Stamping Machine Company and American Postage Company merged to form the Pitney Bowes Postage Meter Company.
1922-23-- The government collected $4,339,070 in postage from the first commercial installations of 400 meters and products began to be sold outside the U.S.
1930's--Pitney Bowes expanded meter use by meeting the cost-saving needs of many Depression-era businesses.
1940-- Company income topped $4 million with the new "R" line meters that can print variable amounts of postage and employees numbered 1,243.
The War Years-- Pitney Bowes received four Army-Navy "E" awards for war production excellence for 28 different products.
1950's and 60's--The demand for meters grew rapidly, particularly the "DM" desk model C. New products included folders, Tickometers, and an electric mail opener.
1970's and 80's-- Pitney Bowes had nearly 800,000 postage meters producing more than $1 billion revenue and introduced electronic Postage By Phone®, full lines of facsimile, copier/printers and other computerized document and mail inserters, folders and related products. The U.S. Postal Service collected $8 billion through postage meter resettings, representing 49 percent of their total postage revenue. Pitney Bowes Management Services was created to provide mailroom management and other outsourcing services.
1990's-Pitney Bowes introduces solutions that manage the secure production, routing, multi-channel delivery and tracking of documents and Intellilink™-based technology, the next generation of advanced mailing systems that capture important customer data. Pitney Bowes celebrated its one millionth Postage By Phone® customer.
2000 - New products and services offer electronic statement presentment and bill payment, and software-based tools that track and manage documents and package flow.
2001 - During the anthrax threats that followed the terrorist attacks of 9/11, Pitney Bowes shares its expertise through a mail security campaign to address the immediate needs of customers and the public. The company divests its copier and fax business to focus on its core strengths in mailing and document management.
2002 - Pitney Bowes launches Intellilink™ technology globally and continues to expand its capability in the mailstream and increase its presence worldwide with strategic acquisitions, signaling an exciting new beginning for Pitney Bowes.
History from company Press Information
Specimen Certificates are actual certificates that have never been issued. They were usually kept by the printers in their permanent archives as their only example of a particular certificate. Sometimes you will see a hand stamp on the certificate that says "Do not remove from file".
Specimens were also used to show prospective clients different types of certificate designs that were available. Specimen certificates are usually much scarcer than issued certificates. In fact, many times they are the only way to get a certificate for a particular company because the issued certificates were redeemed and destroyed. In a few instances, Specimen certificates we made for a company but were never used because a different design was chosen by the company.
These certificates are normally stamped "Specimen" or they have small holes spelling the word specimen. Most of the time they don't have a serial number, or they have a serial number of 00000. This is an exciting sector of the hobby that grown in popularity and realized nice appreciation in value over the past several years.