The Star-Spangled Banner
The Star-Spangled Banner has been a treasured American icon ever since Francis Scott Key celebrated the sight of an American flag still flying over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812.This stamp commemorates the 200th anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner with a photograph of the flag that flies over Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine in Baltimore. This flag is a replica of the one that inspired Key to write “The Star-Spangled Banner” after Fort McHenry withstood the British attack of September 13-14, 1814.Photographer Gary Clark took the picture of the flag against a backdrop of fireworks during an annual celebration of Defenders’ Day. Defenders’ Day, according to the National Park Service, is “Baltimore’s oldest holiday commemorating the bombardment of Fort McHenry and the writing of “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Clark said it was a challenge to get the fireworks and the flag in the same shot and that “the wind picked up quite a bit that night.”Art director Phil Jordan designed the stamp.
C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson
The stamp, the 15th in the Distinguished Americans series, is based on a photograph of Anderson in the 1942 yearbook of the Tuskegee Institute’s flight training school in Tuskegee, Alabama. The artist added headgear used by pilots in World War II. The stamp art was created with a combination of acrylic paint, watercolor, and oil.
When Anderson secured his pilot’s license in 1932, he was the only African American in the country qualified to serve as a flight instructor or to fly commercially. He then began breaking flight records and inspiring other blacks to become pilots. During World War II, Anderson served as the chief flight instructor of a flying school at Tuskegee Institute. To the Tuskegee Airmen who learned their piloting skills from Anderson, he was affectionately known as “Chief.” During the war, the Tuskegee Airmen flew thousands of sorties in the European theater, destroyed more than a hundred German aircraft, and received scores of Distinguished Flying Crosses.
Illustrator Sterling Hundley created an original painting for the stamp, which was designed by art director Phil Jordan.
The 70-cent C. Alfred “Chief” Anderson stamp was designed for First-Class Mail® two-ounce rate and is being issued in self-adhesive sheets of 20.
New Lincoln Postage Stamp
On the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln\’s birth Wednesday, the U.S. Postal Service issued a new stamp paying homage to the Sixteenth President. A new, black-and-white, 21 cent stamp is available at post offices nationwide. It features a close-up photograph of the Lincoln Memorial statue, in Washington D.C.
A new postcard stamp by the USPS celebrates the beauty and grace of the hummingbird.The stamp art is a tinted, highly stylized, digital depiction of a hummingbird hovering near a plant.Hummingbirds, known for their agility, brilliant colors, and long bills, are among the smallest birds in the world, ranging in size from about two to eight inches long. Some weigh less than a penny. Special wing anatomy enables hummingbirds to fly forward, backward, and upside down, as well as to hover in one spot. The “humming” sound they produce is made by their rapid wing movements – the wings of some species beat up to 80 times per second!The Hummingbird stamp features the art of illustrator Nancy Stahl. Carl T. Herrman was the art director.
Great Spangled Fritillary
The great spangled fritillary butterfly graces the fourth butterfly stamp by the U.S.P.S. for use on large greeting card envelopes. The stamp art was created on a computer, using images of preserved butterflies as a starting point. The result is a highly stylized, simplified image of a great spangled fritillary rather than an exact replica.The great spangled fritillary (Speyeria cybele) is named for the silvery spots found on the undersides of its wings. A large butterfly with a wingspan of 2.25 to 4 inches, it is found in all northern states and ranges as far south as northern Georgia in the east and central California in the west. Nationally known artist Tom Engeman worked with art director Derry Noyes on this design.The square format of the stamp was developed in partnership with the greeting card industry to indicate that this stamp may be used for square envelopes.
The U.S. Postal Service celebrates the blooms that brighten the dark days of winter today with the issuance of the Winter Flowers Forever stamps. Pictured clockwise from upper left, the four plants — amaryllis, cyclamen, Christmas cactus and paper white — bring a hint of spring indoors during the coldest months of the year.Available in booklets of 20, the Forever stamps were issued during the American Philatelic Society Ameri Stamp Expo 2014 at the Statehouse Convention Center.