February 2018

This Day in History… February 16, 1868

Founding of the Elks

US #1342 was issued for the Elks’ 100th anniversary and their “Support Our Youth” service program.

On February 16, 1868, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE) was founded in New York City.

The story of the Elks begins on November 15, 1867, when British comic singer Charles A. Vivian arrived in New York. That night, he visited the Star Hotel and met piano player Richard R. Steirly. Vivian offered to sing a few songs with Steirly and the two became fast friends.

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This Day in History… February 15, 1926

First Contract Airmail Flight

US #1684 was issued for the 50th anniversary of the first contract airmail flight.

On February 15, 1926, the first contract airmail flight was made between Michigan and Ohio.

American airmail service officially began in 1918. A handful of adventurous young aviators – some who had established themselves as “Flying Aces” during World War I – were eager for the opportunity to fly again, no matter what the circumstances.

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This Day in History… February 14, 1824

Birth of Winfield Scott Hancock 

US #2975n – Hancock had an identical twin brother named Hilary Baker Hancock.

Winfield Scott Hancock was born on February 14, 1824, in Montgomeryville, Pennsylvania.

Named after the legendary War of 1812 general, Winfield Scott, Hancock attended the Norristown Academy and public schools before he was nominated to the US Military Academy at West Point. He was an average student, graduating 18th out of 25 and was assigned to the 6th US Infantry.

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This Day in History… February 13, 1914

Founding of ASCAP

US #1252 was issued at ASCAPs headquarters for the organization’s 50th anniversary.

On February 13, 1914, the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP) was founded in New York City.

For many years, composers and publishers made most of their money from sheet music sales, particularly for personal use. However, by the start of the 20th century, sheet music was being purchased for performances in nightclubs. The clubs made huge profits while the publishers only received payment for the cost of the printed musical scores.

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This Day in History… February 12, 1893

Birth of Omar Bradley

US #3394 – The insignia of General Bradley’s unit, the 1st Army, is shown on his stamp.

US General Omar Nelson Bradley was born on February 12, 1893, in Clark, Missouri.

Bradley’s family didn’t have much money when he was growing up. But his father was a schoolteacher and he attended at least eight schools where his father taught. Bradley was a good student and athlete, serving as captain of both the baseball and track teams before graduating from high school in 1910.

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This Day in History… February 11, 1983

First US Inventors’ Day 

US #945 was issued on Edison’s 100th birthday.

On February 11, 1983, America celebrated its first Inventors’ Day.

Other nations have set aside days to honor their inventors before and since 1983. In January of that year, US President Ronald Reagan issued a proclamation establishing February 11, Thomas Edison’s birthday, as Inventors’ Day.

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