This Day in History… October 28, 1942

The Alaska Highway 

US #2635 was issued for the highway’s 50th anniversary.

On October 28, 1942, construction was completed on the 1,700 mile Alaska Highway.

In the 1920s, people began proposing a highway from the lower 48 states, through Canada, to Alaska.  The Canadian government refused to offer funds for its construction because it would have benefited only the small population of the country’s Yukon Territory.  Support increased in both Canada and the US toward the end of the decade.  Unfortunately, the Great Depression hit and there was no money for such a program.

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This Day in History… October 27, 1858

Happy Birthday Teddy Roosevelt 

U.S. #557 was issued on Roosevelt’s 64th birthday.

US #557 was issued on Roosevelt’s 64th birthday.

Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt was born October 27, 1858, in New York City, the second of four children.

Roosevelt suffered from asthma and other sicknesses throughout his childhood.  Despite this, he was often active and mischievous, taking great joy in activities outdoors.  Roosevelt had a photographic memory and excelled in geography, history, biology, French, and German.

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This Day in History… October 26, 1940

First Flight of the P-51 Mustang

US #3142a – from the Classic American Aircraft Sheet

On October 26, 1940, the P-51 Mustang completed its first flight.

In April 1940, the British government sought to purchase planes from American manufacturers.  At the time, the Curtiss P-40 Tomahawk was the best American fighter aircraft in production, however, the Curtiss-Wright plant was working at capacity.

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This Day in History… October 25, 1881

Birth of Pablo Picasso 

 

Burundi #950 was issued for Picasso’s 130th birthday.

Pablo Ruiz Picasso was born on October 25, 1881, in Málaga, Spain.

The son of a painter, Picasso showed a talent for art from an early age.  When he was seven, his father gave him formal drawing and painting lessons.  Soon, Picasso was so occupied with his art, it distracted him from his schoolwork.

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This Day in History… October 24, 1911

Happy Birthday to Sonny Terry

US #3214 – from the 1998 Folk Musicians Issue

Saunders Terrell, later known as Sonny Terry, was born on October 24, 1911, in Greensboro, Georgia. 

Born to a poor farming family, Terry received a blues harp from his father when he was a child.  His father taught him some basics and before long he was picking up songs he heard at home and church. 

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This Day in History… October 23, 1910

First Public Flight by an American Female Aviator

US #C99 – Scott was known as the “Tomboy of the Air.”

On October 23, 1910, Blanche Scott became the first American female pilot to make a public flight.

Blanche Stuart Scott was born on April 8, 1884, in Rochester, New York.  An adventurous tomboy from a young age, she would take her father’s car out for joy rides when she was just 13 years old.  Her parents hoped to “cure” her tomboy habits and sent her to finishing school, though it had little effect.

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