1961 4¢ Naismith – Basketball
Issue Date: November 6, 1961
City: Springfield, Massachusetts
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Rotary Press
Perforations: 10 ½ x 11
U.S. #1189 commemorates basketball and the 100th anniversary of the birth of James Naismith, who invented the game. Naismith is not pictured on the stamp, although his name and birth year are inscribed. Instead, a close-up view of a “lay-up” shot is shown.
Naismith was teaching at a Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) training school in Springfield, Massachusetts, when he was asked to create a new sport that could be played indoors. Naismith wrote 13 rules for a game he called “basket ball,” since it involved throwing a ball through a peach basket hung on a wall. The new game was soon very popular, and is now played by an estimated 300 million people worldwide.