Thursday, March 5, 2020

First Reverse Side Printed Stamp

In 1973, the postal service decided to spotlight ten special stamps showing a different service performed by our nation’s “Postal People.” The 8 cent Postal People Issue was the first stamp to have writing on the reverse side under the adhesive. In 1973, couriers covered enough miles each day to equal eight round trips to the moon. All ten stamps appeared in a pane of fifty stamps (10 across and 5 complete sets top to bottom). A non-toxic green dye was used for the message on the back.

The stamp was designed by Edward Vebell and issued on April 30, 1973, in Washington DC.

The stamp series was made to emphasize the important duties that the United States Postal Service employees performed. The printed matter on the back showed the magnitude of the task of processing and delivering the mail.

Here are the different stamps and the messages on the back:

Window Clerk – 8¢: “Nearly 27 billion U.S. stamps are sold yearly to carry your letters to every corner of the world. People Serving You.

Mail Pickup – 8¢: “Mail is picked up from nearly a third of a million local collection boxes, as well as your own mailbox. People Serving You.

Conveyor Belt – 8¢: “More than 87 billion letters and packages are handled yearly – almost 300 million every delivery day. People Serving You.

Sorting Parcels – 8¢: “The people in your Postal Service handle and deliver more than 500 million packages yearly. People Serving You.

Mail Canceling – 8¢: “Thousands of machines, buildings, and vehicles must be operated and maintained to keep your mail moving. People Serving You.

Manual Sorting – 8¢: “The skill of sorting mail manually is still vital to the delivery of your mail. People Serving You.

Machine Sorting – 8¢: “Employees use modern, high speed equipment to sort and process huge volumes of mail in central locations. People Serving You.

Loading Truck – 8¢: “Thirteen billion pounds of mail are handled yearly by postal employees as they speed your letters and packages. People Serving You.

Letter Carrier – 8¢: “Our customers include 54 million urban and 12 million rural families, plus millions of businesses. People Serving You.

Rural Delivery – 8¢: “Employees cover 4 million miles each delivery day to bring mail to your home or business. People Serving You.

Class activities:
1.     Look up each worker and describe their duties.
2.     Research the postal service and see how many people they employ.
3.     Look up the requirements needed to be a postal worker.
4.     Invite a local postmaster to your class to talk to the students.
5.     Bring in a stamp from mail you have received and tell the class about the stamp.

Original photo by Pat Hensley

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