1963 5¢ West Virginia Statehood
Issue Date: June 20, 1963
City: Wheeling, West Virginia
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Giori Press
Color: Green, red and black
The 100th anniversary of West Virginia statehood is commemorated on U.S. #1232. The stamp was issued in Wheeling, West Virginia, which was the location of the state’s first capital. The stamp has an outline of the state, and shows an image of the state capitol building – located in Charleston, the current capital.
America’s 35th State Emerges During Civil War
After the Civil War started in South Carolina on April 12, 1861, Virginia formed a state convention to decide which side to join. The convention voted for secession on April 17, 1861. However, most of the counties in the west part of the state sided with the Union. These counties declared their independence and formed the Restored Government of Virginia.
In August, these counties formed the state of Kanawha, from an Indian word meaning “white stone” – due to the region’s salt deposits. By November, a state constitution was prepared, and the name for the proposed state in this document was West Virginia. In April 1862, the people adopted the West Virginia Constitution. On June 20, 1863, West Virginia achieved statehood.
When West Virginia became a state, it had a population of about 380,000. About 15,000 of these people were slaves. Wheeling served as the state capital, and Arthur I. Boreman became the first governor.