Get the Complete Champions of Liberty Series
The Champions of Liberty Series was introduced in 1957, as America was embroiled in the Cold War. The Eisenhower administration saw these stamps as a way to combat Soviet totalitarianism by honoring men who fought for freedom in their homelands. Each of the people honored in the Champions of Liberty series struggled courageously to protect their homeland from tyranny and further the cause of freedom.
After Ramon Magsaysay’s single commemorative stamp was issued, the rest of the series had two stamps printed for each subject – one in a single color, and one with three colors. The pairs were also of different denominations. The single color stamps covered the domestic rate, while the multi-color stamps paid the international rate, to “carry the message of freedom around the world.”
Discover the Champions of Liberty:
Ramon Magsaysay was the seventh president of the Philippines. Magsaysay’s administration was noted for its freedom from corruption. Under his direction, the Philippines joined the Southeast Asia Treaty Organization. The Magsaysay stamp was issued on his birthday and was the largest US postage stamp issued up to that time.
Simón Bolívar was nicknamed the “George Washington of South America.” For over 20 years, Bolívar worked tirelessly to liberate its lands. Through a series of battles, Bolívar invaded and took over Merida, Caracas, and Venezuela, at which point he was proclaimed El Libertador.
Lajos Kossuth, a Hungarian revolutionary, fought tirelessly for independence for Hungary, and served briefly as Governor-President when the country earned its independence in 1849.
José de San Martín was one of the key figures in the Spanish-American Revolutions in the early 1800s. San Martín is considered the greatest of the Libertadores of South America.
Ernst Reuter was the mayor of West Berlin during the early years of the Cold War. As the Soviets tried to block access to West Berlin, Reuter became the spokesman for the West Berlin citizens, appealing to the world to not abandon Berlin. In response, the Allies coordinated the “Berlin Airlift,” a massive effort of over 200,000 flights to provide supplies.
Thomas Masaryk was born in Austria-Hungary, and later became the founder and first president of the Czechoslovakia Republic. After the Austria-Hungary Empire was dissolved following World War I, Masaryk was named head of the Provisional Government.
Ignacy Paderewski was arguably the finest musician of his era. Paderewski frequently performed before huge crowds in the US and championed Poland’s independence. He later served as its third Prime Minister.
Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim rose to the rank of general in the Russian army. When Finland was at war with the Soviet Union between 1939 and 1944, Mannerheim became commander of Finland’s armed forces. He later served as Marshal and President of Finland.
Giuseppe Garibaldi dedicated his life to liberating his homeland from Austrian control. He aided the gaucho rebels in Brazil in their fight for independence and led the “Italian Legion” in the Uruguayan Civil War. Garibaldi went on to participate in the Wars for Italian Independence and later served in the Italian parliament.
Mahatma Gandhi, or “Great Soul,” was the foremost political and spiritual leader of India during that nation’s independence movement. He founded the idea of satyagraha, or “soul force,” which is a form of nonviolent resistance, which included civil disobedience. He initiated campaigns to reduce poverty, increase women’s rights, ease religious tensions, and raise economic self-reliance.
These stamps honor some of the world’s bravest individuals and are and important addition to your collection. Get the complete set of 19 stamps today and save time and money.