3¢ Landing of Swedes and Finns
Issue Date: June 27, 1938
City: Wilmington, DE
Printed by: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Flat-Plate
Color: Red violet
U.S. #836 commemorates the 300th anniversary of the arrival of Swedish and Finnish settlers in 1638 that established Delaware’s first permanent settlement. The design selected by President Franklin Roosevelt was based on Stanley M. Arthur’s painting of the arrival of those first settlers at present-day Wilmington. When the design was first shown to the President, he pointed out that the stamp should honor the Finnish settlers as well (as the original design simply mentioned the Swedish.
Delaware’s First Permanent Settlement
In 1638, a group of Swedish pioneers established Delaware’s first permanent settlement, Fort Christina (present-day Wilmington), in the New Sweden colony. Peter Minuit, governor of New Netherland (New York), led them there. The New Sweden Company and the Dutch sponsored their settlement. However, the Dutch eventually halted their support. Despite the loss of support, the Swedes were used to cold winters and living on heavily forested lands, and continued to thrive. The colony was home to about 1,000 people, including several Finnish pioneers who had traveled and landed with the Swedish.
In 1638, Swedish settlers landed in present-day Delaware. They founded the colony of New Sweden at what is now Wilmington. New Sweden became the first permanent settlement in the region.
FDR – The Stamp-Collecting President
President Franklin Roosevelt was instrumental in the design and issuance of U.S. #836. Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s mother introduced the future President to stamp collecting at a young age. Throughout his life, he turned to his collection to relax and unwind.
Roosevelt was elected President four times, serving in the nation’s highest office longer than any other chief executive – 12 years. During those 12 years, Roosevelt promoted the importance of stamps by personally approving each of more than 200 stamp designs. This included suggesting topics, rejecting others, and even designing some of the stamps himself. He used U.S. postage stamps to educate Americans about their heritage, to buoy war-weary spirits during World War II, and to send a message of peace and hope as Europe faced the overwhelming task of rebuilding.