1934 8¢ Zion
National Parks Issue
Issue Date: September 18, 1934
First City: Washington, DC
Quantity Issued: 15,288,700
As a stamp collector, President Franklin D. Roosevelt personally oversaw the selection of stamp subjects and designs during his administration. As Roosevelt was reviewing suggestions for the 1934 schedule, Secretary of the Interior Harold Ickes saw an opportunity to advertise the national park system. Ickes felt many Americans were unaware the federal government had set aside vast amounts of land for their enjoyment and for future generations. At his suggestion, 1934 had been declared National Parks Year. Ickes now proposed the legacy of the national parks be portrayed on postage stamps to give people a glimpse of their diversity and natural beauty. FDR approved the idea immediately, and ten parks were chosen, each to be pictured on a different denomination ranging from 1¢ to 10¢.
Zion National Park
Soaring cliffs and twisting ravines shape Zion National Park, located in Southwestern Utah. Looming cliff formations overlook deep canyons, creating a landscape that has inspired such lofty names as Angel’s Landing, Great White Throne, Emerald Pools, Cathedral Mountain, and Temple of Sinawava.
The most distinctive feature in Zion is the series of slot canyons. Slot canyons are deep and narrow – sometimes only a few feet wide, and as deep as 100 feet. They’re formed by a rare set of conditions. Water from the Virgin River and swirling wind currents cut ravines through the rock. Utah has the highest concentration of slot canyons in the world.
But as scenic as the canyons are, they can be dangerous as well. People who settled in that area (notably the Paiutes, the Anasazi, and Europeans) had to deal with flash floods that could wipe out entire small villages in moments.
The Park was first recognized in 1909, when President William Howard Taft proclaimed the region the Mukuntuweap National Monument. Congress renamed it Zion in 1919, and made the area into a National Park. Zion celebrated its 100-year anniversary in 2009 and now attracts nearly three million visitors yearly.
This stamp pictures the "Great White Throne," which is one of the peculiar rock formations within the park.