These are being issued on August 2... Im sure most of our US members will want to get some of these to use on our outgoing mail.
Whether your idea of the perfect pet is a loyal dog or majestic macaw, these 20 new Forever® stamps celebrate the animals in our lives that bring joy, companionship, and love.
The stamp art for Pets features 20 existing photographs of different animals taken against white backgrounds by Eric Isselée. Each photograph represents animals we love from these groups: puppies, betta fish, iguanas, hamsters, goldfish, parrots, guinea pigs, tortoises, rabbits, kittens, corn snakes, mice, hermit crabs, chinchillas, gerbils, dogs, parakeets, horses, cats, and geckos.
On August 12, 2016, the U.S. Postal Service issues Apples, a new one-cent definitive stamp.
The stamp design features two apples on a branch surrounded by leaves. The original art for this stamp was illustrated using pen and ink and watercolor.
Also known as the Newtown pippin, the Albemarle pippin apple has deep historical roots. It first appeared in the late 17th century in an area of Queens, New York, formerly known as Newtown. The word pippin indicates that the trees originated from seedlings rather than from grafting - a technique common in the propagation of apple trees.
Savored for their crisp flesh and balanced flavor, these medium-sized, reddish-yellow and green apples soon gained popularity throughout colonial America. In 1755, Dr. Thomas Walker introduced them in Virginia when he returned home from the French and Indian War with a pile of cuttings. Grown on Walker's plantation in Albemarle County, the celebrated New York apple received a new name and wider distribution.
Though harvesting of Albemarle pippins usually takes place in October, they are often considered a late-winter fruit. Unlike many other heirloom apple varieties, these durable apples maintain quality in storage, their initial tartness mellowing over time. By February, the apples still retain their characteristic flavor that makes them difficult to resist. The distinctive aroma and pleasant taste of the Albemarle pippin make it well suited for pie fillings, applesauce, and especially cider.
Patriotic Spiral, a Forever® stamp, will be sold in self-adhesive coils of 10,000. Patriotic Spiral will also be sold in booklets of 10. These Forever stamps will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail® one-ounce price.
Offering a new spin on patriotic stamps, the festive and energetic design suggests connection and movement, with 50 red and blue stars spiraling around one gold star in the center. The idea behind the design was to illustrate a community protectively orbiting the central star that in an abstract sense stands for our nation’s steadfast idealism and hope for a more perfect union. At once both modern and timeless, this stamp is a lively take on past issuances featuring stars.
With this vibrant new Kwanzaa stamp design, the U.S. Postal Service® continues its tradition of celebrating Kwanzaa. This annual non-religious holiday, which takes place over seven days from December 26 to January 1, brings family, community, and culture together for many African Americans. December 26, 2016, marks the 50th anniversary of this widely celebrated holiday.
The colorful stamp art features a young African-American woman as the embodiment of Africa. She wears a lavender dress with a collar of African design that also appears in her earring. In front of the woman sits a large purple bowl. It overflows with fruits and vegetables, symbolizing the abundance of African first harvest celebrations.
Created in 1966, Kwanzaa draws on African traditions, deriving its name from the phrase “first fruits” in Swahili, a widely spoken African language. It has its origins in first harvest celebrations that occurred across the African continent in ancient and modern times. Kwanzaa synthesizes and reinvents these tribal traditions as a contemporary celebration of African-American culture.
The three primary colors of Kwanzaa—red, black, and green—also hold special significance for the holiday and its participants. Red indicates the blood shed during struggles endured by those of African descent, black symbolizes the African people, and green signifies growth and renewal. Adopted to help unify African Americans from a wide array of religious and cultural backgrounds, these colors also appear on the Kwanzaa flag, which is prominently displayed during the weeklong celebration.
Artist Synthia Saint James worked with art director Greg Breeding, who designed the stamp.
This is the sixth stamp design issued by the U.S. Postal Service in celebration of Kwanzaa. The first Kwanzaa commemorative stamp was issued in 1997. New designs were also issued in 2004, 2009, 2011, and 2013.
Last Edit: Sept 12, 2016 14:43:00 GMT -5 by kacyds
In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service® commemorates the joyous festival of Diwali, which is also known as Deepavali. One of the most important annual Hindu events, the holiday celebrates the triumph of good over evil. Spanning five days each autumn, it is considered by some to be the start of the new year.
Diwali is a shortened version of the Sanskrit word Deepavali, which roughly translates as “a necklace of lights.” During Diwali flickering oil-wick lamps called diyas dot the homes of observers around the world. The stamp features a traditional diya against a background of glimmering gold and flower petals.
The meaning of Diwali often depends on regional identity on the Indian subcontinent, but Hindu stories provide a framework for the significance of the festival. For many people in the north of India, the holiday honors the return of Rama, an incarnation or avatar of the god Vishnu, after a long period of exile. For some in the south of India, it marks the defeat of the demon Narakasura by Krishna, another incarnation of Vishnu. Others commemorate Vishnu’s decision to make King Bali ruler of the underworld.
Before the festival, many Hindus go shopping; clean their homes; open their doors and windows; create intricate rangoli, a vibrant floor pattern traditionally made from materials such as rice powder, colored sand, and flower petals; and light diyas with hopes that Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and prosperity, will visit. In some regions of India, people gamble and play games, just as Hindu lore says that deity Shiva did. On the festive main day of the holiday, families pray to Lakshmi, dress up in their best clothes, enjoy lavish feasts and sweets, exchange gifts, and light fireworks. Diwali also marks the new year for people in Gujarat and a few other states in India.
Diwali is an important festival in several religions. Buddhists honor ancient Indian Emperor Ashoka’s conversion to Buddhism. Jains commemorate the teacher Mahavira's attainment of liberation from the cycle of life and death. Sikhs celebrate the freeing of guru Hargobind from captivity.
On the Hindu calendar, Diwali falls on the eve of or on the new moon that occurs between mid-October and mid-November. In 2016, the main day of the festival will be celebrated on October 29 (for South Indians) and October 30 (for North Indians).
Last Edit: Sept 12, 2016 14:41:29 GMT -5 by kacyds
First seen in October 1941 in a back-up story for All Star Comics #8, meant to test her appeal at a time when female superheroes were rare, Wonder Woman quickly broke out and headlined her own title by the next year. Subsequent generations came to know the star-spangled heroine with metal bracelets on her wrists and a magic lasso by her waist via her hit 1975-79 television series and roles in animated shows and movies, as well as her historic appearance on the cover Ms. Magazine #1 in 1972. This past March, Wonder Woman was seen for the first time in a live action motion picture with her introduction in the movie “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.”
The U.S. Postal Service celebrates her diamond anniversary by chronicling her evolution on Forever stamps from her World War II origins to today. This new issuance showcases four different stamp designs on a sheet of 20 stamps depicting Wonder Woman during four eras of comic book history: Golden Age (1941–55), Silver Age (1956–72), Bronze Age (1973–86) and Modern Age (1987–present). The selvage, or text outside of the stamp images, features the current block-letter Wonder Woman logo in white against a comic book style power burst rendered in shades of blue.
With evocative names like Blazing Star, Touching Stars, and Starburst, stars are one of the most popular design motifs for American quilters.
Available in coils of 3,000 and 10,000, these Lone Star pattern stamps for use by businesses highlight designs of American quilters.
Each stamp shows a detail from a photograph of one of the two quilts — made by Amish quiltmakers — highlighting the intricate work involved in creating the star design. The Lone Star design has been known by several names including the Mathematical Star, the Star of the East, and among Native Americans, the Morning Star. The first dated example that carried the name “Lone Star” is inscribed “1835,” the year before the fall of the Alamo. Derry Noyes was the art director.
The U.S. Postal Service announced that it will issue the Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly stamp as a 68 cent nonmachineable stamp. It will be for use on irregularly sized envelopes, such as square greeting cards, invitations and announcements. Details on the date of the stamp issue will be forthcoming.
Nationally acclaimed artist Tom Engeman created the stamp design on a computer using images of preserved butterflies as a starting point. The result is a highly stylized, simplified image of an Eastern Tailed-Blue rather than an exact replica.
The Eastern Tailed-Blue butterfly (Cupido comyntas) is named for the iridescent blue color of its upper wing surface, more vivid in the male, and for the short, thread-like tail on each hind wing. Females are often slate grey, sometimes with vivid blue coloration close to the body. This 2016 stamp depicts a first-generation male, which displays the species’ brightest coloration. Each year sees two or more generations, the latter being less colorful.
The square format of the stamp was developed in collaboration with the greeting card industry specifically for oversized or square envelopes. These envelopes cannot pass through the automated Postal Service processing system and have to be hand-cancelled. The envelopes are charged a non-machineable surcharge even if they weigh less than 1 ounce. Greeting card envelopes printed with a silhouette of a butterfly indicate the need for additional postage — or the use of a butterfly stamp. Any nonmachineable envelope, like oddly-shaped or vertical envelopes, as well as lumpy envelopes, rigid envelopes and mail with clasps, ribbons and buttons may use this stamp.
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