WDEL Blog: Eclectic Hobbies with Allan Loudell

No shortage of possible subjects / themes for U.S. postage stamps

People may derisively refer to regular postal mail as "snail mail"; few people write personal letters anymore; and relatively few people request commemorative stamps when visiting the retail window at their local post office, but that hasn't stopped members of Congress from pushing particular subjects and themes on U.S. postage stamps.

LINN's STAMP NEWS reported recently: "This year alone, members of Congress have proposed 22 pieces of legislation expressing a desire to see one subject or another appear on a U.S. stamp."

Officially, the U.S. Postal Service proclaims Congressional requests for particular subjects on stamps are given the same weight as proposals from the public, except that the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee is informed that particular suggestions came from Congress.

Among the subjects members of Congress have proposed for U.S. stamps: Five former members of Congress; Sun Records founder/producer Sam Phillips; Texas Revolutionary War hero Juan Nepomuceno Seguin; basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain; and the World War II-era crew of the U.S.S. Mason.

Also, a stamp commemorating murdered civil rights workers James Chaney, Andrew Goodman, and Michael Schwerner; a stamp honoring law-enforcement officers killed in the line of duty; and a stamp acknowledging America's barbers.

Senator Jim Webb (D-VA) is pushing for a "forever" stamp for all Purple Heart recipients.

You also have proposed "semipostal" stamps to raise money for Alzheimer's disease research; to benefit the Peace Corps; to raise money for a species conservation fund; and to subsidize gang prevention programs.

I must say I feel "old" whenever a stamp comes out depicting a person I once covered. But I would find it particularly surreal to see a stamp commemorating Sun Records founder Sam Phillips. He would be my first former "boss" to appear on a U.S. postage stamp!

Meanwhile, you can always suggest a subject or theme worthy of commemoration. Send your letter to:

CITIZENS' STAMP ADVISORY COMMITTEE, U.S. Postal Service, 1735 North Lynn Street, Suite 5013, Arlington, VA 22209-6432

U.S. stamps can only portray deceased persons, although occasionally, projects or themes of living Americans have slipped through.

And remember, it would be downright sacrilegious to apply a metered stamp on your envelope addressed to the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee.

Posted at 6:42am on October 6, 2009 by Allan Loudell

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