1996 32¢ Tennessee Statehood
Issue Date: May 31, 1996
City: Knoxville, TN
Printed By: Stamp Venturers
Printing Method: Photogravure
Indians were the first to settle in what is now Tennessee. In fact, the name Tennessee comes from Tanasie – a Cherokee village in the region. During the 16th and 17th centuries, Spain, France, and England all claimed the Tennessee region as a colony. These claims eventually led to the French and Indian War between British and French settlers in 1754. In 1763, in the Treaty of Paris, France surrendered all claims to land east of the Mississippi, and Tennessee became part of the British col ony of North Carolina.
Following the Revolutionary War, North Carolina relinquished its claim to the land and the region became a U.S. territory. Six years later, on June 1, 1796, Tennessee entered the Union as our 16th state.
Home to the Great Smoky Mountains, Graceland, and the Grand Ole Opry, Tennessee celebrated its 200th statehood anniversary in 1996. The stamp issued to commemorate the occasion features the state capitol building in Nashville, which was designed by noted architect William Strickland. Although he had worked on plans for the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., he considered the state capitol building his crowning achievement. Called the “Athens of the South,” Nashville has been Tennessee’s capital since 1862.