3¢ Steamship Savannah
Issue Date: May 22, 1944
City: Savannah, GA; Kings Point, NY
Printed by: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Rotary Press
Perforations: 11 x 10.5
U.S. #923 was issued to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the steamship Savannah’s crossing of the Atlantic Ocean in 1819. The first steam-propelled vessel to cross the Atlantic Ocean, the Savannah sailed from Savannah, Georgia, on May 22, 1819, and arrived in Liverpool, England, 29 days later.
On June 20, 1819, the 300-ton steamship Savannah sailed from Savannah, Georgia, to Liverpool, England. Although the ship was built in New York, it was named after its homeport in Georgia.
The Savannah was the first steamship to cross the Atlantic Ocean. It used both sails and steam to propel itself. During its trans-Atlantic voyage, the ship was driven by steam for 105 hours. Sails were used for the remainder of the 29-day journey. However, the trip was considered a successful demonstration of ocean-worthy steam power.
Interestingly, when another ship sighted the Savannah off the coast of Ireland, it immediately set out to assist the ship. It seems the ship’s crew mistook the long, black plume of smoke generated by the ship’s engine for evidence of a devastating fire.
FDR – The Stamp-Collecting President
President Franklin Roosevelt was instrumental in the design and issuance of U.S. #923. 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.