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French Stamps first began being used in 1848 after the revolution. The revolution is what propelled Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte to the presidency and also allowed the Second Republic to form. This is the same Napoleon III from 1852 that became the emperor of France. The first stamps from France that were issued and printed was the one that depicted Ceres, the Roman Goddess of Agriculture.

Shortly afterwards, the stamps began featuring Napoleon the Third of France up until 1870 when he was overthrown. Later on, they started depicting artwork from famous artists and similar designs. One notable stamp among collectors and philatelists was the design to promote The International Exposition of Decorative Arts. This was printed in 1925 and created much interest in Paris. The Exposition ultimately made the term "Art Deco" famous and mainstream. The philately world also prizes a 1939 stamp set from France that acted like a Revenue stamp, except it was meant to raise money for welfare for the unemployed intellectuals.