#5278 - Engineering
2018 50c STEM Education
Value: 50¢ 1-ounce first-class letter rate- Forever
Issued: April 6, 2018
First Day City: Washington, DC
Type of Stamp: Commemorative
Printed by: Ashton Potter
Format: Pane of 20
Quantity Printed: 15,000,000 stamps
Engineers play a critical role in shaping the modern world. They design and create the technology we use every day. Now is the time to inspire young engineers with the achievements of those who came before them.
Elijah McCoy, born to fugitive slaves, was a certified mechanical engineer with 57 patents in his lifetime. Many of these were for lubrication systems in steam engines. McCoy’s systems allowed trains to run faster and more efficiently because they required fewer stops for lubrication and maintenance. Reportedly, his oil-drip cup was so popular, railroad engineers would ask if the trains were fitted with “the real McCoy.”
Another engineering pioneer, Mary Anderson, invented the windshield wiper. While in New York City one winter, she saw a trolley with its windshield open so the driver could see in the poor weather. When she returned home, Anderson drew up designs for a rubber blade attached to a spring-loaded arm that removed rain and snow from the windshield. After her patent expired and the automobile market expanded, the windshield wiper became standard on cars.
Engineers and inventors such as McCoy and Anderson help solve the world’s problems with new innovations. Today’s children can learn from their creative thinking to help give us all a brighter future.