May 2016

This Day in History… May 31, 1819

Happy Birthday Walt Whitman 

U.S. #867 – Whitman was called father of free verse.

Acclaimed poet Walter Whitman was born on May 31, 1819, in Huntington, Long Island, New York.

The second of nine children, Whitman was called “Walt” at a young age to differentiate from his father, Walter Whitman, Sr. His family moved frequently due to bad investments. Whitman remembered his childhood as restless and unhappy. But he did have one happy childhood memory from July 4, 1825. On that occasion he met the Marquis de Lafayette, who lifted the six-year up in the air and kissed him on the cheek.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 6 Comments

This Day in History… May 30, 1922

Dedication of Lincoln Memorial 

U.S. #571 was issued less than a year after the dedication.

On May 30, 1922, William Howard Taft dedicated the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

In 1860, Leonard Volk made plaster masks of Abraham Lincoln’s face and hands. Two days earlier, the Illinois lawyer had learned he was the Republican Party’s presidential nominee. Neither man could have known Lincoln would be assassinated five years later or that Volk’s casts would be used to create a monument to the fallen leader.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 7 Comments

This Day in History… May 29, 1848

Wisconsin Becomes 30th State 

U.S. #755 commemorates the 300th anniversary of the landing of French explorer, Jean Nicolet, on the shores of present-day Green Bay.

On May 29, 1848, Wisconsin was admitted as America’s 30th state.

When the first European explorers arrived in Wisconsin during the early 1600s, the main Indian tribes were the Winnebago, Dakota, and Menominee. Within the next 100 years, many other Native American groups moved into the region after being pushed from their lands in the East by whites – or to escape the warring Iroquois League. These tribes included the Sauk, Fox, Ottawa, Kickapoo, Huron, Miami, Illinois, and Potawatomi.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 3 Comments

This Day in History… May 29, 1790

Rhode Island Becomes 13th State 

U.S. #777 – This Rhode Island tercentenary stamp pictures Roger Williams, who founded the state’s first permanent white settlement.

On May 29, 1790, Rhode Island became the last of the original 13 colonies to ratify the U.S. Constitution, making it our 13th state.

When the first Europeans arrived, Algonquian Indians lived in the area that is now Rhode Island. A Portuguese navigator, Miguel de Cortereal, may have reached the Rhode Island coast as early as 1511. Giovanni da Verrazano, an Italian explorer working for France, reached Narragansett Bay in 1524. Verrazano may have given Rhode Island its name, after the Island of Rhodes in the Mediterranean Sea.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 5 Comments

This Day in History… May 28, 1888

Happy Birthday Jim Thorpe 

U.S. #2089 pictures Thorpe in his Canton Bulldogs football uniform.

Jim Thorpe claimed he was born on May 28, 1888, though some sources say he was born on May 22, 1887.

Thorpe was born in Indian Territory and baptized in the Catholic Church, though his birth certificate has never been found. In an interview later in life, Thorpe claimed, he was born “on his mother’s allotment” near and south of Bellemont – Pottawatomie County – along the banks of the North Fork River … hope this will clear up the inquiries as to my birthplace.” The town of Prague, Oklahoma considers it his birthplace, but there’s little evidence of that.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 6 Comments

This Day in History… May 27, 1933

Century of Progress World’s Fair Opens 

U.S. #728 – Restoration of Fort Dearborn stamp issued for the fair.

U.S. #728 – Restoration of Fort Dearborn stamp issued for the fair.

The 1933 World’s Fair opened in Chicago, Illinois, on May 27, 1933.

By the late 1920s, the city of Chicago was looking toward 1933 as it’s 100th anniversary. A nonprofit corporation, A Century of Progress, was founded in 1928 to plan and host the upcoming World’s Fair to be held there.

Continue reading

Posted in May 2016, This Day in History | 5 Comments