Tag Archives: stamps

USPS: A Decade In Space

My favorite moon mission, Apollo 15, is somewhat depicted in the image above, reproducing the 1971 USPS issue honoring a “decade.” Ten years prior, Alan Shepherd went into space for a brief 15-minute mission–that’s the reference. By 1971, interest in … Continue reading

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USPS: First On The Moon

I suppose the USPS figured it had to depict the Earth in this representation of Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the Moon. But it’s another inaccuracy in philatelic art.  The Moon’s rotation is locked relative to the Earth–the same half … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1973: Needlepoint and Madonna

I know it’s just an artistic design on a stamp from 1973, right, but if your tree ornaments were at this scale … well, that’s a nicely huge gingerbread cookie for munching. You can have those 18-inch candy canes. The … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1972: A Coronation and a Santa

Check that painting above. Venture a guess as to what it might depict? For Catholics, it’s easy: the feast celebrated on the 22nd of August. This was the inspiration for the USPS “traditional” Christmas stamp. Specifically, a pair of musicians … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1971: Shepherds and a Partridge

Another 16th century Venetian, the one known as Giorgione, gave the US mail his Adoration of the Shepherds, once again courtesy of the National Gallery of Art. The USPS edited out the accompanying landscape. Obviously, way too large for such … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1970: Joseph Debuts, Plus Some Toys

Thanks to Lorenzo Lotto, a 16th century painter from Venice, we get a full Christmas scene in 1970 for cards and letters courtesy of the US Post Office. The National Gallery of Art supplied the art. Check the full original here. … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1969: Winter

After four years of Gabriel, Mary, and Jesus, the US Post Office pulled back a smidge from explicit figures of Christian importance. The last edition of the Christmas stamps of the 1960s might be my favorite. It marks a further … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1968: Return of the Angel

For Catholics, the Annunciation (right, painted by Jan Van  Eyck, and in possession of the National Gallery of Art) is an Advent Fourth Sunday event. Or March 25th. Not Christmas as such. The US Post Office didn’t care in 1968.  … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1966-67: Madonna and Child

People lobbied the US Post Office for Christmas issues for a long time. After the feds acquiesced, they found themselves with a boon in stamp sales. Some citizens criticized the honoring of a religious holiday. Others complained that there was … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamp 1965: The Gender Controversy

It was 1965, and the sexual so-called revolution was almost on the horizon. Also, before the so-called War on Christmas, a little controversy was stirred up in year 4 of the US Post Office’s Christmas series.  It wasn’t the figure … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamps 1964

  Stamps, plural. Catch this? Other nations had a long tradition of issuing stamps for Christmas. (Check the world’s first, from north of the border and all the way back to the 19th century.) The US Post Office was late … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamp 1963

A year after the Christmas stamp from the US Post Office debuted, they did it again. In 1963, still no Jesus, no Mary, no Santa. Left, note that a few lights in the White House are on. Huge tree in … Continue reading

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Christmas Stamp 1962

US people lobbied for years for Christmas-themed postage stamps. Their wish finally came to pass 49 years ago: Anticipating a huge demand for the new Christmas stamp, the (US Post Office) Department ordered 500 million printed — the largest number … Continue reading

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Mary Did You Know You Would Be On A Christmas Stamp?

That’s a rhetorical question, by the way. Almost as heralded as the Hallmark Christmas Movie event is the release of seasonal stamps by the US Postal Service. If they ever get to your little house in the country, that is. … Continue reading

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Jesuit Philately

After nearly a month with mostly daily posts on Ignatian spirituality, here’s something different: Jesuits on stamps. Right, Belgium honors one of their own, Georges Lemaitre, “Father of the Big Bang Theory.” Not the tv show, but the actual theory. … Continue reading

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