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Alexander Haimann
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Source: Associated Press/New York Times Yesterday, June 5, 2012, pulitzer prize winning science fiction and fantasy author Ray Bradbury passed away. In honor of this important figure in the history of American literature, the Smithsonian National Postal Museum has published a mini-online exhibit: Ray Bradbury: The Man, His Life & His Work Read Today's News About Ray Bradbury: New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2012 at National Postal Museum
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By Dr. Mick Zais, State Superintendent of Education for South Carolina. Caption: All 5 stamps of the 1936-37 Army Series on first day cover of the 5-cent stamp with Eugene Laird cachet. There are many similarities between stamp collecting (Philately) and coin collecting (Numismatics). Both involve collecting items produced by national governments, represent denominations of money and favor depicting important past leaders. This post highlights a unique element of stamp collecting – knowledge about where a specific stamp has traveled in its lifetime. The only information about where a coin has traveled is where it started its journey (the location... Continue reading
Posted May 8, 2011 at National Postal Museum
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A 1.30-euro stamp issued by Monaco celebrating the London 2010 Festival of Stamps (image provided by Daniel Piazza, NPM Assistant Curator of Philately) This NPM Blog post contains a short (mostly pictorial) report of my three-day visit to the 2010 London International Stamp Exhibition (read introductory blog post here). The Exhibition was held at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London, England. The main floor (depicted in the photo above) hosted booths for a large variety of philatelic dealers and auction houses from around the world. The exhibits of stamps and covers were located in another section of the Centre.... Continue reading
Posted May 20, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Click On The YPLF Logo Above To Learn More About This Exciting Youth Program Last August, James Chenevert (above center), Melissa Stanton (above left) and Jimmy Tian (above right) began their year-long projects as part of their involvement in the inaugural year of the American Philatelic Society's Young Philatelic Leaders Fellowship. These three YPLF Fellows are each working on different projects related to a specific track within the Fellowship. Due to the generous support of the United States Stamp Society, Melissa Stanton is the 2009-2010 United States Stamp Society YPLF Fellow. YPLF Fellow James Chenevert with his Mentor Jeffrey Shapiro... Continue reading
Posted May 3, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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For the uninitiated it is hard to imagine that topics as diverse as Star Wars, Deep Sea Creatures, Toys, Horses, Michigan History, America's Founding Fathers, Rock N' Roll and the Japanese Attack on Pearl Harbor are all connected through stamps and postal history. I was fortunate to be able to spend the past two weeks (April 12-23, 2010) exploring these topics and much more with 1500+ K-12 students at seven Michigan schools. A class presentation at Way Elementary School, Bloomfield Hills, MI The seven schools comprised two high schools (one public, one private), three middle schools (one public, two private)... Continue reading
Posted Apr 29, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Caption: 1893 4-dollar Queen Isabella & Christopher Columbus stamp One-hundred and seventeen years ago with the release of the 1893 Columbian Exposition Issue, Queen Isabella of Spain became the first woman to be featured on a United States postage stamp. Since that 4-dollar crimson lake colored stamp which Queen Isabella shared with Christopher Columbus was issued, hundreds of United States definitive and commemorative postage stamps have honored important women in American and world history. Explore NPM's Dedicated Women's History Month Landing Page Here. 2002 37-cent Ethel Payne & 1991 29-cent Fanny Brice © United States Postal Service. All rights reserved.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Stamps Featuring Mother Teresa, Vintage Mahogany Speedboats, McGruff The Crime Dog? A USPS Conspiracy? The Catholic Church, Champion Stamp Company & A Scott Catalogue? What is the connection? Find out more by watching a segment from the March 8, 2010 episode of Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart---Click On "Mail Mary" Below To View The Segment---Remember That The Show Is A Parody of Everything! Click On "Mail Mary" Above To View The Segment A 2003 postage stamp featuring Mother Teresa issued by Vatican City. A few of the stamps featured in The Daily Show segment--click on them to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Stamps Featuring Mother Teresa, Vintage Mahogany Speedboats, McGruff The Crime Dog? A USPS Conspiracy? The Catholic Church, Champion Stamp Company & A Scott Catalogue? What is the connection? Find out more by watching a segment from the March 8, 2010 episode of Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart---Click On "Mail Mary" Below To View The Segment---Remember That The Show Is A Parody of Everything! Click On "Mail Mary" Above To View The Segment A 2003 postage stamp featuring Mother Teresa issued by Vatican City. A few of the stamps featured in The Daily Show segment--click on them to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Today, February 9, 2010 is my 24th birthday. As someone with a lifelong passion for stamps and postal history, I am fascinated by historical dates. February 9th is a date with particular importance to me for obvious reasons. I also share this birthday with America's 9th president, William Henry Harrison, who died one month after assuming the Presidency in 1841. Whenever I am looking at a postal history object with a date attached to it (usually envelopes/covers displaying a postmark), I can't help but notice when the date is February 9th, regardless of the year. This blog post showcases a... Continue reading
Posted Feb 9, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Today, February 3, 2010 marks Norman Rockwell's 116th birthday. Rockwell, the well-known illustrator of Saturday Evening Post covers beginning in 1916 at the age of twenty-two, serves as a prime example of an artist who used his art to honor ‘main street’ America. Rockwell's artistic talents were apparent at a very young age as he attended art classes in New York City, then the National Academy of Design, and finally the Art Students League. Richard Sheaff, an art director at the Postal Service in 1993, wrote an inscription that appeared on the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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Left To Right: Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins, Buzz Aldrin - Photo courtesy of NASA. On January 20, 1930, legendary Gemini 12 & Apollo 11 Astronaut Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin was born in Montclair, New Jersey to Marion Moon and Airforce Colonel Edwin Eugene Aldrin. Dr. Aldrin can claim numerous professional accomplishments that by themselves are notable, but none will be as remembered by history as his participation in the Apollo 11 Mission to the Moon. Explore NPM's Arago Online Exhibit One Giant Leap For Mankind: Celebrating NASA & Apollo 11 Through Stamps On July 16, 1969, less than seven months after... Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Seventy-five years ago today Elvis Presley, The King of Rock 'N' Roll, was born in Tupelo, Mississippi. During a twenty-three year long music and film career (1954-1977), Presley entertained hundreds of millions of people around the world. His impact on music, the entertainment industry and world-wide popular culture is incalculable. In 1992, the United States Postal Service offered the American public two possible designs for a postage stamp commemorating Presley. Then USPS placed ballots in post offices around the country for the public to submit their votes. After tallying up 1.2 million... Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Today the Smithsonian National Postal Museum is celebrating the 119th birthday of widely acclaimed American writer -- Zora Neale Hurston! Hurston was one of America’s most original and accomplished writers, and a central figure in the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and early 1930s. She studied African-American heritage at a time when African-American culture was not a popular field of study. Though born in Notasulga, Alabama, Hurston moved to Eatonville, Florida at an early age. Eatonville was the first incorporated all-black town in the United States and the location that influenced the... Continue reading
Posted Jan 7, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Today the Smithsonian National Postal Museum is celebrating professional dance choreographer Alvin Ailey’s 79th birthday! Throughout his career, beginning at the Lester Horton Dance Theater in 1953 to the time of his death in 1989, Alvin Ailey profoundly impacted American dance. Primarily through his own dance company, the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, Ailey developed new and innovative movements and productions by bringing together blues and gospel rhythms with a plethora of dance styles including ballet and modern dance. The portrait of Ailey featured on the 2004 U.S. postage stamp honoring him was... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2010 at National Postal Museum
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On December 6, 1947, President Harry Truman dedicated the Everglades National Park in the state of Florida, protecting more than 2,000 square miles of wetlands and wildlife. In celebration of this event, the National Postal Museum has created this mini-exhibit showcasing the history and wildlife of one of America’s most unique treasures. Explore this new online exhibit by clicking here. © United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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This is the first in a series of NPM Blog Posts highlighting the postage stamp designs of Newberry College graphic design students. Click Here To Learn More: NPM & Postal History Objects Come To Newberry College In South Carolina Newberry College Junior---Elmano Hamilton "Since Sesame Street is having its 40th anniversary this year, I decided to design a postage stamp celebrating this famous children's television series. I chose Cookie Monster as the central character because--Who doesn't love Cookie Monster? In the stamp, Cookie Monster is devouring a cookie with the background also being a giant cookie. I included a Sesame... Continue reading
Posted Dec 10, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. On December 2, 1942, the Manhattan Project’s team of scientists produced the world’s first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction at the University of Chicago. To commemorate this important accomplishment, the Smithsonian National Postal Museum has created a mini-online exhibit highlighting different objects with connections to this event. Explore this new exhibit here. Continue reading
Posted Dec 8, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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On November 22 1963, America's 35th President, John F. Kennedy, was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. To commemorate this tragic and pivotal event of the 20th century, the National Postal Museum has created a online mini-exhibit highlighting different postage stamps with connections to President Kennedy's life and legacy. Explore this exhibit by clicking here. Today, November 25, marks the anniversary of President Kennedy's burial at Arlington National Cemetary. Continue reading
Posted Nov 25, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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A major highlight of my trip to the Raleigh, North Carolina area two weeks ago was my time with the fourth and fifth grade classes of Brooks Museums Magnet Elementary School. I spent an hour with each grade exploring the ins and outs of the National Postal Museum’s Arago website. I asked the students to tell me different things they liked to do in their free time. Since the question did not have a wrong answer, every hand shot up to be called on! I collected a number of answers including swimming, playing video games, playing baseball, drawing, watching movies,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 23, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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Today, The Daily Record Newspaper of Wooster, Ohio featured two front-page stories about my presentations to student and adult groups in the Wooster/Akron region. Read Paul Locher’s lead story: Collector Says He Got Hooked On Stamps At Early Age Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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Yesterday afternoon I gave my first scheduled presentation of a four-day long speaking tour in the Akron, Ohio region to the members of the Kiwanis Club of Wooster. I have spent the past two weeks giving presentations incorporating the National Postal Museum’s virtual museum Arago and a number of postal history objects (postage stamps, letters and envelopes) to dozens of student and adult groups in Raleigh, North Carolina and in Newberry, South Carolina. One presentation to a large home school group in North Carolina was highlighted in a previous blog post. More posts on these experiences in the Carolinas will... Continue reading
Posted Nov 18, 2009 at National Postal Museum
Mr. Kantor, Your book "Sanitary Fairs: A Philatelic and Historical Study of Civil War Benevolences" was one of our sources for this post. Thank you. Alex Haimann
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Over 144 years since President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination and in the year of Lincoln’s 200th birthday, the United States Philatelic Classics Society has announced a dramatic discovery of forty-nine multicolor Civil War patriotic envelopes (covers) address to President Lincoln. (The Classics Society is a 50+ year-old organization devoted to the study of pre-20th century U.S. stamps and postal history). These remarkable patriotic covers were found among the John Hay papers at Brown University. Covers addressed to Lincoln as President are known, but none bearing dramatic multicolor patriotic themed designs were previously known to exist. The preprinted colored patriotic themed covers... Continue reading
Posted Nov 4, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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A painting of an American Wigeon duck resting in the water near some reeds graced the front page of The Washington Post's October 28th issue along with a picture of its artist, Robert Bealle. The painting was the winning design for the 2010 Federal Duck Stamp Art Contest. Every year a few hundred wildlife artists compete in the only art contest sponsored by the Federal Government to have their artwork featuring migratory birds be on the following year's Federal Duck Stamp. All duck hunters must purchase one of these stamps and affix it to their license. The stamps are also... Continue reading
Posted Nov 3, 2009 at National Postal Museum
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© United States Postal Service. All rights reserved. Halloween this year lurks in the shadow of the 80th anniversary of the stock market crash that ignited the Great Depression. Maybe you're superstitious of black cats skittering across your path, but the 2009 anniversary of this 1929 catastrophe seems especially eerie in the lingering glow of the United States' recent financial troubles. To highlight the connections between Halloween, the economy and the 1929 stock market crash, the National Postal Museum has created this mini-exhibit....Please Enjoy! Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2009 at National Postal Museum