Beer revenue stamps are stamps used to collect taxes and fees. Breweries purchased them from the government and attached them to taxed items. The stamps were printed on sheets, without perforations. Brewers had to cut the stamps apart, cancel them, and paste them over the bung of the beer barrel so that tapping the barrel destroyed the stamp.
The design of the early revenue stamps featured elements similar to postage stamps and banknotes. Designer’s back then (140 years ago) never took the easy way out.