Monday, February 3, 2020

1958 Gardening and Horticulture

The 1958 Gardening and Horticulture stamp is such a beautiful stamp.  It was issued on March 15, 1958, in Ithaca, New York on what was the centennial celebration of the birth ( 3 1/2 years after the death) of Liberty Hyde Bailey, who was an American horticulturist and botanist of well renown and also co-founded the American Society for Horticultural Science.  Over 122 million were printed by the rotary press method by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and the perforations are 10 1/2 X 11. It is green in color. It was designed by Denver Gillen and features a woman holding a basket that holds an abundant amount of fruits and vegetables and is surrounded by fruits and vegetables on the ground.

Liberty Hyde Bailey was born on March 15, 1858, in South Haven, MI and was the son of farmers. From the years of 1878 through 1882 he attended Michigan Agricultural College  (now Michigan State University) and met his wife Annette Smith, that he had 2 daughters with. After graduating he returned to Michigan Agricultural College, but this time to teach, and established the very first horticulture department in the country. 

In 1888 he moved with his family to Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.  He was the dean of the New York State College of Agriculture from 1903 until his retirement in 1913.  In 1910 and 1912 some people wanted him to run for governor of the state of New York but was really looking forward to retirement. After retiring he dedicated almost 40 years to the study of palms and travelled the world in his studies until poor health demanded he gave up his passion. He returned home to Ithaca, NY and died at the age of 96 on Christmas Day in 1954. He and his family are buried in Ithaca, NY at Lake View Cemetary in a mausoleum he designed.

1. “1958 3¢ Gardening - Horticulture.” Mystic Stamp Company - America's Leading Stamp Company.,
2.“Liberty Hyde Bailey.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 16 Jan. 2020,
3.“Read ‘Biographical Memoirs: V.64’ at” National Academies Press: OpenBook,

Sunday, February 2, 2020

1963 Cordell Hull Stamp

The 1963 Cordell Hull stamp is a 5 cent U.S. prepaid postage stamp. It commemorates Cordell Hull, who was the longest-serving U.S. Secretary of State. It is blue-green in color and was printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing by the rotary press method. Its perforations are 10 ½ x 11. The stamp was issued on October 5, 1963, in Carthage, Tennessee and there were over 131 million printed.

Cordell Hull was a lifelong statesman who held numerous positions in politics. He was born on October 2, 1871, in a log cabin in Olympus, Tennessee. His father was a farmer and later a lumber merchant. I read an article that stated that his father had allegedly killed a man over a blood feud after he was shot in the head and lost an eye. Cordell had 4 brothers and he seemed to be the only one of the 5 boys who had an interest in learning. After finishing his early education Cordell attended a normal school, which was a school for the training of teachers and later National Normal University. In 1891 he received a law degree from Cumberland University School of Law in Lebanon, Tennessee after only a one year course and began practicing law before he was 20 years old in Celing, Tennessee.
Later, he decided to run for the Tennessee State Legislature and served as a legislator from 1893-97 in the Tennessee House of Representatives. When the Spanish-American war started in 1898 he took a break from politics and was stationed in Cuba with the Tennessee Volunteer Infantry in the 4th regiment as a captain.

After the war, he resumed the practice of law and was appointed as a judge. He served in the Fifth Judicial District from 1903 to 1907 until he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives where he served for 11 terms for a total of 22 years. The only break in that time was a loss in 1920 during which he served as the chairman of the Democratic National Committee. In 1917 he married Rose Frances Whitney and they had 6 children. In 1928 he was a candidate for President at the Democratic National Convention.

During his time in Congress, he authored the Federal Income Tax Bill (1913), the Revised Act (1916) and the Federal and State Inheritance Tax Law (1916). He was elected for the 1931-37 term as a U.S. senator but resigned due to being appointed as secretary of state by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on March 4, 1933, at the age of 62. He served as secretary of state for almost 12 years before having to resign due to ill health in 1944.

Cordell Hull served as secretary of state during World War 2 and was pivotal in many talks and negotiations. He was also a major architect in the creation of the United Nations which was created in October of 1945. His role in the creation of the United Nations was the reason he was nominated by Franklin D. Roosevelt for the Nobel Prize for Peace for which he subsequently won.

On July 23, 1955 he died in Washington, D.C. at the age of 83 years old after having several strokes and heart attacks and is buried in the Chapel of St. Joseph of Arimathea in Washington D.C.

1.“The Nobel Peace Prize 1945.”,
2.“Cordell Hull.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 28 Jan. 2020,
3. “1963 5c Cordell Hull.” Mystic Stamp Company - America's Leading Stamp Company.,

1935 Dedication of Boulder Dam Stamp

The 1935 Dedication of Boulder Dam stamp is a 3 cent prepaid postage stamp. It was issued on September 30, 1935, to commemorate the dedication of the dam by President Franklin D. Roosevelt that same day. The stamp's first city was Boulder City, Nevada, which was a town that was fundamental in the dam's construction. There were over 73 million stamps printed.

Construction of the dam started in 1931 in Black Canyon of the Colorado River and lies on the Arizona/Nevada border. It is a concrete arch-gravity dam, which curves upstream and directs most of the pressure of the water to rock walls which then causes the force to compress the dam.

In 1936 building was completed and Lake Meade was impounded. The cost of the building the Boulder Dam was $49 million ($600 million today). 112 human casualties were reported being linked with the construction of the dam. In 1947 the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution changing the name to Hoover Dam for President Herbert Hoover.

The Hoover Dam (as it has been called for some 73 years) contributes electricity generated for Nevada, Arizona, and California and attracts roughly a million tourists/visitors a year.


1.“1935 3c Dedication of Boulder Dam.” Mystic Stamp Company - America's Leading Stamp Company.,
2.“Hoover Dam.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 18 Jan. 2020,

1955 Armed Forces Reserve Stamp

The 1955 Armed Forces Reserve stamp is a 3 cent stamp commemorating the Armed Forces Reserve components of the United States military. It is a purple stamp and it's perforations are 110 x 10 1/2. The stamp was printed by Rotary press by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing, and over 176 million were printed. The stamp was issued on May 21, 1955, in Washington, D.C.

When I searched for information on the history of the reserve components of the United States armed forces, I was happy to find some good material.

The reserve forces are generally the same as their active-duty counterparts with a few differences. They are still military organizations, however, they usually train one weekend a month and two weeks a year to keep their skills fresh so that they can reinforce the active duty (or full-time) military when needed. Sometimes people refer to the Armed Forces Reserve as just "Reserve" and sometimes as "National Guard".

Title 10 of the United States Code defines the role of the armed forces (military). In section 10102 it gives the purpose of reserve components. It says: "The purpose of each component is to provide trained units and qualified persons available for active duty in the armed forces, in time of war or national emergency, and at such other times as the national security may require, to fill the needs of the armed forces whenever more units and persons are needed than are in the regular components".

There are currently seven reserve components of the U. S. military. They are Air Force Reserve, Air National Guard, Army National Guard, Army Reserve, Coast Guard Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, and Navy Reserve. There are also five different civilian auxiliaries but they are not considered reserve forces. Also as stated in the U. S. Constitution each state may have its own militia. These forces are also not considered reserve forces, traditionally. Most are usually referred to as "state guards".

In one context the term "reserve" applies to all seven reserve components. In another context, it means the five branch reserves but not to the Army National Guard nor the Air Force National Guard. The Army National Guard and the Air Force National Guard are very similar to their reserve counterparts. The main difference is the level of government they fall under. "Reserve" components fall under the subordination of the Federal Government while the "Guards" fall under the subordination of their various state governments. However, they can be called into federal service by the President of the United States.

In short, the "reserve" units and "guard" units of the United States Armed Forces are a fundamental part of the American military and can trace their roots to before the start of the United States. I've enjoyed this and stamp and looking a little more into its meaning. I'm glad to have it and share it with you.

1.“Reserve components of the United States Armed Forces.” Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia., n.d. Web. 8 Feb. 2020.
2.“1955 3¢ Armed Forces Reserve.” Mystic Stamp Company - America's Leading Stamp Company.,