2014 49¢ Grand Canyon
Hudson River School Paintings
This stamp pictures a 1912 painting by Thomas Moran. It is one of four showing artwork typical of the Hudson River School movement. The stamps are the 12th issue in the American Treasures series.
In 1871, self-taught painter Thomas Moran (1837-1926) was recruited for an expedition to Yellowstone. He would illustrate the then-unknown wonders of the vast Western Territory. In awe of the unfamiliar landscapes, Moran confessed that the “beautiful tints were beyond the reach of human art.” He could not capture the true scale of the vivid scenes in sketches or watercolors.
Upon his return east, Moran took to a large canvas to convey the grandeur of Yellowstone from memory. The result, Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, was a panoramic masterpiece measuring seven-by-twelve-feet, which Congress promptly purchased for $10,000. Moran’s depictions of the area influenced the establishment of the 3,500-square-mile area as the nation’s first National Park.
Subsequent expeditions west began Moran’s particular interest in the Grand Canyon. It became his greatest source of inspiration. Over the last 25 years of his life, Moran would travel to the canyon almost annually, producing hundreds of works in all.
Known as the “landscape artist of the American West,” Moran’s portrayals of the Western United States were instrumental in promoting commerce and expansion westward in the latter part of the 19th century.
49¢ Hudson River School, issued to satisfy the first-class mail rate
Issue Date: August 21, 2014
City: Hartford, CT, at the American Philatelic Society Stamp Show
Quantity: 25 million
Printed By: CCL Label
Printing Method: Photogravure
Perforations: Serpentine Die Cut 10¾