July 2020

This Day in History… July 31, 1953

Death of Robert A. Taft 

US #1161 was issued seven years after Taft’s death.

Senator Robert A. Taft, son of America’s 27th president, died on July 31, 1953, in New York City.

Taft was born on September 8, 1889, to future president William Howard Taft.  Taft spent four years of his youth in the Philippines, where his father was serving as governor.  He then graduated first in his class from the Taft School at Yale College before graduating from Harvard Law School in 1913.

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This Day in History… July 30, 1993

National Postal Museum Opens 

US #2779 pictures Ben Franklin, a printing press, mail rider, and Independence Hall.

On July 30, 1993, the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum opened in Washington, DC.

The history of the National Postal Museum dates back to 1886.  That year, the National Philatelic Collection was first established with the donation of a sheet of 10¢ Confederate stamps.  In the coming years, individuals, foreign governments, and American government agencies helped the collection grow through donations.  Today it consists of more than 5.9 million items.

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This Day in History… July 29, 1889

Birth of Ernst Reuter

US #1136 was issued on the sixth anniversary of Reuter’s death.

The mayor of West Berlin, Ernst Rudolph Johannes Reuter, was born on July 29, 1889, in Apenrade, Kingdom of Prussia, German Empire.

Reuter spent his childhood in Leer, where a public square was later named after him.  He went on to study at colleges in Münster and Marburg.

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This Day in History… July 28, 1929

Happy Birthday, Jackie Kennedy

Grenada Grenadines #2374 features several portraits of Jackie Kennedy.

Jacqueline Lee Bouvier was born on July 28, 1929, in Southampton, New York.

Jacqueline, or “Jackie” as she was popularly known, enjoyed a relatively privileged childhood due to her father’s success as a stockbroker on Wall Street.  She learned to ride a horse when she was just a year old and, by age 11, had already won several national championships.  A private girl from a young age, Jackie became more introverted after her parents divorced when she was seven.

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This Day in History… July 27, 1909

Wright Brothers Set Flight Record

US #C45 was issued for the 46th anniversary of the Wright brothers’ first successful flight of a heavier-than-air powered aircraft.

On July 27, 1909, Orville Wright flew a plane a record one hour and 12 minutes.

Born in 1867 and 1871, Wilbur and Orville Wright had been interested in science and technology from a young age.  After receiving a flying toy as a gift from their father in 1878, they became fascinated with flight.  They sought to develop a heavier-than-air flying machine that could carry a man.

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This Day in History… July 26, 1948

Executive Order 9981

On July 26, 1948, President Harry Truman signed Executive Order 9981, calling for the end of racial discrimination in the US armed forces.

Early American laws barred African Americans from the military, but in times of war, white leaders recruited both slaves and free blacks.  The Continental Army had 5,000 African Americans, and at least 198,000 black men served in the Union forces during the Civil War.

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