When sales taxes first happened, nobody wanted to round up their tax to the nearest penny. Tokens made change for change.



  • Fact 1: Sales tax tokens were introduced in the early 20th century, and represented the fractions of cents left over after taxing small purchases.
  • Fact 2: In 1935, the US Treasury proposed copper 1/2-cent and aluminum 1/10th-cent coins to aid in sales tax collection, but failed to convince Congress.
  • Fact 3: More than 500 types of tax tokens and stamps were produced in 14 states between 1933 and 1961.
  • Fact 4: Tax tokens took many forms, from metal or wooden coins to paper stamps to plastic and fiber discs. This one, from New Mexico, is pressed fiber.
  • Fact 5: The first formal sales tax law, collecting half of one-percent on all non-food goods, was written in France in 1292.

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