45¢ Dr. Harvey Cushing
Great Americans Series
Issue Date: June 17, 1988
City: Cleveland, OH
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Engraved
Color: Bright blue
The first American to concentrate entirely in neurosurgery, Dr. Cushing devoted himself to reducing the hazards of brain operations. With new developments and improvements in old methods, he was able to attack many inoperable cases. During his career, he reduced the mortality rate of brain surgery from nearly 100% to 8.4%. Cushing is pictured on the 45¢ Great Americans stamp.
Issued between 1980 and 1999, the Great Americans definitive series features 63 designs, making it the larges set of face different Regular Issue stamps issued in the 20th century. One stamp honors a couple (Lila and Dewitt Wallace) while the remaining 62 commemorate individuals.
The series is characterized by a standard definitive size, simple design and monochromatic colors. The Bureau of Engraving and Printing produced most of the stamps, but some were printed by private firms. Several stamps saw multiple printings. The result is many different varieties, with tagging being the key to understanding them.