June 2016

This Day in History… June 7, 1942

Allies Win Battle of Midway

U.S. #2697g – The U.S. lost the Yorktown and 1 destroyer while the Japanese lost four aircraft carriers and a heavy cruiser.

U.S. #2697g – The U.S. lost the Yorktown and 1 destroyer while the Japanese lost four aircraft carriers and a heavy cruiser.

On June 7, 1942, the Allies won the Battle of Midway in the Pacific, turning the tide of the war.

Shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941, the Japanese began mapping out a plan to take down America’s carrier forces. Realizing Pearl Harbor was now too well defended, they set their sights northwest on Midway Island, at the end of the Hawaiian Island chain.

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This Day in History… June 6, 1944

Allies Storm Normandy on D-Day

U.S. #2838c was issued on the 50th anniversary of D-Day.

On June 6, 1944, some 155,000 Allied troops stormed the shores of Normandy on D-Day, the start of Operation Overlord.

Following the invasion of Poland in 1939 that sparked the start of World War II, German troops moved swiftly through Belgium and the Netherlands to France. There, they trapped British, French, and Belgian troops, who were eventually saved in the Dunkirk evacuation. However, France was soon occupied by German troops, and would remain so for five years.

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This Day in History… June 5, 1968

Bobby Kennedy Assassinated 

U.S. #1770 features a family photo provided by Bobby’s wife.

Bobby Kennedy was shot by an assassin on June 5, 1968, and died from his wounds early the next day.

Robert F. (Bobby) Kennedy was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on November 20, 1925, though the family moved to New York two years later. Bobby was the seventh of nine children born to Joe Kennedy, Sr., a businessman and leading figure in the democratic party who hoped one of his sons would grow up to be president. While he focused on preparing Bobby’s older brothers for such a feat, he encouraged the younger siblings to study current events so that they too could enter public service.

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This Day in History… June 4, 1783

First Public Hot Air Balloon Demonstration 

U.S. #2032-35 was issued for the 200th anniversary of the first balloon flights in 1783.

On June 4, 1783, the Montgolfier brothers staged the first successful public hot air balloon demonstration, sparking interest and rapid advancements.

In 1782, Joseph Montgolfier was sitting in front of a fire when he began to wonder about the force that made the smoke and sparks rise into the night sky. He took a shirt, tied off the collar and held it above the fire. To his surprise, this force (later called Montgolfier gas) made the shirt rise.

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This Day in History… June 3, 1808

Birth of Jefferson Davis 

U.S. #2975f – Davis stamp from the 1995 Civil War sheet.

Jefferson Davis was born on June 3, 1808, in Fairview, Kentucky, though he grew up in Wilkinson County, deep in Mississippi’s cotton country.

Davis entered West Point in 1824. Two years later, he was placed under house arrest for his involvement in the “Eggnog Riot.” Following graduation, he served under Zachary Taylor and became smitten with Taylor’s daughter, Sarah. Taylor was against the courtship and didn’t attend their wedding. His animosity grew three months later when the young couple contracted malaria while visiting Davis’ sister in Louisiana. Jefferson survived; Sarah did not.

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This Day in History… June 2, 1731

Happy Birthday Martha Washington 

U.S. #306 is considered the most beautiful of the Series of 1902-03.

America’s first First Lady was born Martha Dandridge on June 2, 1731, on her parents’ Chestnut Grove Plantation near Williamsburg, Virginia.

The oldest daughter of planter John Dandridge and his wife Frances Jones, Martha had a privileged childhood. She enjoyed riding horses, gardening, sewing, playing the spinet piano, and dancing. She also received an education in basic mathematics, reading, and writing – an uncommon practice for girls of the time. She may have been educated by family servant Thomas Leonard in plantation management, crop sales, alternative medicine, and breeding and raising livestock.

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