1996 32c Folk Heroes: Paul Bunyan

# 3084 - 1996 32c Folk Heroes: Paul Bunyan

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US #3084
1996 Paul Bunyan

  • Part of set of four featuring characters from American Folklore

Stamp Category:  Commemorative
Set:  Folk Heroes
Value:  32¢, First-class mail rate
First Day of Issue:  July 11, 1996
First Day City:  Anaheim, California
Quantity Issued:  23,687,500
Printed by:  Ashton-Potter (USA) Ltd.
Printing Method:  Lithographed
Format:  Panes of 20 (5 across, 4 down) from plates of 120 subjects (8 across, 15 down)
Perforations:  11.1

Why the stamp was issued:  The set of four Folk Heroes stamps were issued to celebrate folklore characters of America.

About the stamp design:  The stamp artwork was made by Dave LaFleur, a commercial illustrator.  His style is similar to murals and posters created during the New Deal era in America and Soviet propaganda art.  LeFleur’s characters show strength through their thick necks and strong jaws.  For his portraits, LaFleur didn’t want to be influenced by anyone else’s illustrations, so he read their stories in books without illustrations to develop his own images of the men. He painted the Folk Heroes using oil paints rather than acrylics or watercolors used for most stamp art.
Initially, the USPS had tasked Dave LaFleur with painting six folk heroes “ the four that were issued as well as Johnny Appleseed and Rip Van Winkle.  They liked his paintings but decided to make it a set of four. Pecos Bill, Paul Bunyan, John Henry, and Mighty Casey were chosen to be portrayed.  

First Day City:  The Folk Heroes stamps were issued on the opening day of the American Stamp Dealers Association’s Postage Stamp Mega-Event, held in Anaheim, California.  Actors portraying the four characters featured on the stamps were in attendance at the ceremony.

Unusual fact about these stamps:  The Folk Heroes stamps weren’t the first to feature characters from American folklore.  In 1966, the US Post Office Department began issuing stamps in the American Folklore series.  These highlighted Johnny Appleseed, Davy Crockett, Daniel Boone, Grandma Moses, and Tom Sawyer, as well as Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman.

About the Folk Heroes stamps:

This set of four commemorates some of the greatest heroes of American folklore.  These four men were known for their super human strength and size, with a personality to match.

History of this stamp: Paul Bunyan – Hero of the Lumberjacks
Logging was the principle work on the frontier after the great days of exploration and fur trapping. The cry for lumber at home and abroad kept loggers pushing deeper into the woods. It was during this push across the northern continent that Paul Bunyan became the lumberjack’s hero. 

Paul Bunyan stories evolved in logging shanties during the long winter evenings. After cutting and hauling from dawn to dusk, and after eating a filling meal, lumberjacks gathered ’round to exchange stories of the greatest lumberjack that ever was. As lumber camps followed the great forests westward, Paul Bunyan acquired the traits and exploits of other people. 
The first written Paul Bunyan story, “The Round-River Drive,” appeared in a Detroit newspaper in 1910. Other simple, realistic stories followed. Then in 1914, W. B. Laughead began using Paul Bunyan to advertise the Red River Lumber Company of Westwood, California and Paul Bunyan’s exploits became superhuman. This was the time Paul acquired Babe, the Blue Ox. Together, fueled by a powerful mixture of flapjacks and syrup, they dug the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River, shaved the slopes of the Rocky Mountains, and gouged the Grand Canyon – just for starters.
 
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US #3084
1996 Paul Bunyan

  • Part of set of four featuring characters from American Folklore

Stamp Category:  Commemorative
Set:  Folk Heroes
Value:  32¢, First-class mail rate
First Day of Issue:  July 11, 1996
First Day City:  Anaheim, California
Quantity Issued:  23,687,500
Printed by:  Ashton-Potter (USA) Ltd.
Printing Method:  Lithographed
Format:  Panes of 20 (5 across, 4 down) from plates of 120 subjects (8 across, 15 down)
Perforations:  11.1

Why the stamp was issued:  The set of four Folk Heroes stamps were issued to celebrate folklore characters of America.

About the stamp design:  The stamp artwork was made by Dave LaFleur, a commercial illustrator.  His style is similar to murals and posters created during the New Deal era in America and Soviet propaganda art.  LeFleur’s characters show strength through their thick necks and strong jaws.  For his portraits, LaFleur didn’t want to be influenced by anyone else’s illustrations, so he read their stories in books without illustrations to develop his own images of the men. He painted the Folk Heroes using oil paints rather than acrylics or watercolors used for most stamp art.
Initially, the USPS had tasked Dave LaFleur with painting six folk heroes “ the four that were issued as well as Johnny Appleseed and Rip Van Winkle.  They liked his paintings but decided to make it a set of four. Pecos Bill, Paul Bunyan, John Henry, and Mighty Casey were chosen to be portrayed.  

First Day City:  The Folk Heroes stamps were issued on the opening day of the American Stamp Dealers Association’s Postage Stamp Mega-Event, held in Anaheim, California.  Actors portraying the four characters featured on the stamps were in attendance at the ceremony.

Unusual fact about these stamps:  The Folk Heroes stamps weren’t the first to feature characters from American folklore.  In 1966, the US Post Office Department began issuing stamps in the American Folklore series.  These highlighted Johnny Appleseed, Davy Crockett, Daniel Boone, Grandma Moses, and Tom Sawyer, as well as Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman.

About the Folk Heroes stamps:

This set of four commemorates some of the greatest heroes of American folklore.  These four men were known for their super human strength and size, with a personality to match.

History of this stamp: Paul Bunyan – Hero of the Lumberjacks
Logging was the principle work on the frontier after the great days of exploration and fur trapping. The cry for lumber at home and abroad kept loggers pushing deeper into the woods. It was during this push across the northern continent that Paul Bunyan became the lumberjack’s hero. 

Paul Bunyan stories evolved in logging shanties during the long winter evenings. After cutting and hauling from dawn to dusk, and after eating a filling meal, lumberjacks gathered ’round to exchange stories of the greatest lumberjack that ever was. As lumber camps followed the great forests westward, Paul Bunyan acquired the traits and exploits of other people. 
The first written Paul Bunyan story, “The Round-River Drive,” appeared in a Detroit newspaper in 1910. Other simple, realistic stories followed. Then in 1914, W. B. Laughead began using Paul Bunyan to advertise the Red River Lumber Company of Westwood, California and Paul Bunyan’s exploits became superhuman. This was the time Paul acquired Babe, the Blue Ox. Together, fueled by a powerful mixture of flapjacks and syrup, they dug the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River, shaved the slopes of the Rocky Mountains, and gouged the Grand Canyon – just for starters.