Saturday, January 21, 2012

Some U.S. Definitive Postage Stamps

The image above shows a page from my old 1950s vintage stamp album. I really like this Presidential Series of stamps. This series was issued in 1938 and was in use until the mid-1950s. There was a contest in 1937 to design the first stamp in the series. The first stamp was a 1-cent stamp with a profile of the first president, George Washington, that was based on a bust by the sculptor Jean Antoine Houdin. The rest of the series was designed in a similar style with each stamp including a bust profile of a president and the dates of his term(s) as president. The twenty-nine presidents who had died before 1938 were depicted on the stamps. In addition to the presidents, the series included Benjamin Franklin on a half-cent stamp; Martha Washington on a 1.5-cent stamp; and the White House on a 4.5-cent stamp. From the 1-cent stamp through 22-cent stamp, each stamp's denomination corresponded to the presidential sequence. (source)

A newer series of definitive stamps, now known as the Liberty Series (1954-1968), was begun in the mid-1950s. The maximum card below shows the 3-cent Statue of Liberty stamp that was issued on June 24, 1954. This paid the domestic first-class rate until July 31, 1958. The Statue of Liberty also appeared on the 8-cent and 10-cent stamps. The stamps in this series were issued over a period of years and did not follow a common design. The designs also included some presidents, other famous people, and buildings.

The first day cover below shows the half-cent Franklin stamp issued October 20, 1955. At that time the series was called "Regular Postage Series of 1954-56." The series ended up including more stamps than were originally planned and was in general use from 1954 through 1973. Some stamps in the series remained on sale through the 1980s. (source)

I am participating in Sunday Stamps at Viridian's Postcard Blog


  1. How strange to have a half-cent stamp, not something you see now. Thanks for including more of the older 'regulars'.


  2. I really like the presidential Series best of all.

  3. Although I have a number of stamps showing Presidents. I have none of these. Fine series.

  4. I've only every seen the 1c of the Presidents series, what an interesting series when you see them all together.

  5. Quite educational, despite the small size.

    I added the whole series in my blog, per your request. :)

  6. Such pretty colours in that Presidential Series!


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