The Owens-Illinois Glass Company of Toledo, Ohio utilized illustrated advertising indicia (slugs) in their postage meters from 1939 through 1941. The images depicted “The History of Glass” and sbowed various scenes of man discovering and making glass as well as using it for various purposes. For the collector of archaeological subjects, this is a gold mine as Phoenician and Egyptian cultures are both represented in addition to prehistoric man. The text in the first of the series reads “Primitive Man Discovers Nature’s Glass” and shows a club carrying prehistoric man looking at a piece of obsidian he’s holding. To my knowledge, this is the earliest image of a prehistoric human in philately.
A favor imprint with a value of zero (.00) cents on meter tape of the National Postage Stamp Meter Company is shown above. The meter serial number is N.P.M. No 6131. These samples were often made available to the company’s prospective clients. They are NOT specimens as many collectors or dealers may have them labeled. An official specimen includes the text “Specimen”.