3¢ Merchant Marine
Issue Date: February 26, 1946
City: Washington, D.C.
Printed by: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Rotary Press
Perforations: 11 x 10 1/2
Color: Blue green
U.S. #939 commemorates the achievements of the Merchant Marines during World War II. The stamp pictures a liberty ship unloading cargo.
U.S. Merchant Marines
A “merchant marine” is a nation’s fleet of commercial ships and the people who operate them. The American colonies had a large merchant fleet before the start of the Revolutionary War, in 1775. The U.S. Merchant Marine Cadet Corps was established in 1938. Since 1943, the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, New York, has served as the training center for Merchant Marine officers.
Merchant Marines play an especially important role in times of war. During World War II, the Academy devoted all of its resources to meeting emergency needs. Many merchant ships were fitted with armaments. The Merchant Marine casualty rate was the highest of any U.S. armed service.
Today, the United States has the sixth-largest Merchant Marine in the world.