April 2016

This Day in History… April 13, 1743

Happy Birthday Thomas Jefferson 

U.S. #28 is from the first series of perforated U.S. postage stamps.

Thomas Jefferson was born on April 13, 1743, in Shadwell, Colony of Virginia.

Jefferson was the third of ten children in a prosperous family, permitting him to receive private tutoring at the age of five. He was an excellent student and gifted violinist who enjoyed dancing and horseback riding. Jefferson went on to graduate from the College of William & Mary with highest honors and began to study law. Jefferson was admitted to the Virginia bar in 1767.

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This Day in History… April 12, 1861

Battle of Fort Sumter Begins Civil War

U.S. #1178 was issued on the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Fort Sumter.

On April 12, 1861, the North and South fought the first battle of the Civil War at Fort Sumter.

The day after Christmas, rowboats sliced quietly across Charleston Harbor under cover of darkness. South Carolina had seceded six days earlier, leaving Union Major General Robert Anderson and his group of 127 men stranded at Fort Moultrie, deep within rebel territory. Anderson and his troops left Fort Moultrie, which was impossible to defend, for the daring journey to nearby Fort Sumter, which was one of the strongest garrisons in the world at the time. As the sun rose, Anderson’s men proudly hoisted the Stars and Stripes over Fort Sumter, where it waved above the entrance to South Carolina’s most important port city.

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This Day in History… April 11, 1919

International Labour Organization Founded 

Item #UN443 pictures the I.L.O. training center in Turin, Italy.

On April 11, 1919, the International Labour Organization was created.

By the early 1900s, there were a number of professional groups around the world dedicated workers’ rights. These included the International Association for Labor Legislation.

During World War I, there was demand for a comprehensive international program to protect the working class, largely in consideration of those working toward the war effort. For many, attention soon turned to post-war reconstruction and the protection of labor unions. Labor groups in Europe wanted to create an international labor rights body, in part, to end secret diplomacy.

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This Day in History… April 10, 1872

First Arbor Day is Celebrated 

U.S. #717 was issued for the 60th anniversary of Arbor Day (and Morton’s 100th birthday).

On April 10, 1872, the first Arbor Day was held in Nebraska.

The man that founded Arbor Day, Julius Sterling Morton, was born on April 22, 1832, in Adams, New York. His family later moved to Michigan, where he attended college.

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This Day in History… April 9, 1865

Lee Surrenders at Appomattox 

U.S. #1182 includes a phrase from Lincoln’s second inaugural address.

On April 9, 1865, Robert E. Lee surrendered his Army of Northern Virginia to Ulysses S. Grant, effectively ending the Civil War.

Following the 10-month siege of Petersburg and defeat at Five Forks, Southern General Robert E. Lee hoped to meet up with the Army of Tennessee and go on the offensive near the Roanoke River bordering Virginia and North Carolina. He planned to reform his forces, made up of two small infantry corps and a cavalry corps, at Amelia Courthouse where he anticipated supplies would be waiting.

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This Day in History… April 8, 1918

Movie Stars Hit Streets to Sell War Bonds 

U.S. #2088 – Fairbanks was the 6th honoree in the Performing Arts Series.

On April 8, 1918, Charlie Chaplin and Douglas Fairbanks held a war bond drive on Wall Street to bolster support for the war effort.

A year and two days earlier, America had entered World War I and began selling war bonds (also known as Liberty Bonds). While patriotism was high, few Americans had ever bought bonds before, so their sales suffered.

Soon, the government turned to celebrities to help encourage sales. Since Hollywood was not yet the film center it is today, most film stars could be found in New York. Many were enlisted to take to the streets to encourage war bond sales.

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