081817 eclipse stamps

The U.S. Postal Service has issued limited-edition, color-changing stamps to commemorate Monday's total solar eclipse.

CHRISTOPHER HUFF, T&D

The U.S. Postal Service is celebrating Monday’s total solar eclipse in a special way – with limited-edition, color-changing total eclipse stamps.

A first for the Post Office, the stamps use thermochromic ink that is sensitive to heat from a fingertip. When you touch it, the moon appears. As it cools, the eclipse reappears.

“That’s the first kind that we’ve actually released where you touch it, it changes,” Orangeburg Postmaster Dan Washington said.

“They’re real cool stamps,” he said. “Once you touch them, they start to change from the heat of your finger. They’re 'Forever’ stamps so you can use them forever."

The stamps have been in high demand by customers, Washington said.

“As a matter of fact, we’ve sold out twice. But as soon as we sell out, we replenish them,” he said.

When asked how long the stamps will be around, Washington said, “Until we sell out of them.”

“We have them in stock, and they’re nice items,” he said. “It’s not something that we’re going to sell out any time soon.”

Washington said he suspects people from out of town visiting for the eclipse may stop by the Post Office to buy some of the stamps.

“It’s a rarity stamp. You’re going to have tens of millions of people actually going out to look at it that day,” he said. "It’s a nice stamp, just for a collector’s item. You just want to put it up and say, ‘Hey, I’ve got it.’

“You can mark it down in history, you know?”

A sheet of solar eclipse stamps is $7.84 and can be purchased from your local Post Office or online at usps.com while supplies last.

Contact the writer: chuff@timesanddemocrat.com or 803-533-5543.

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