This Day in History

This Day in History… December 31, 1862

Battle of Stones River

Item #M11555 – Tuvalu sheet honoring the Battle of Stones River.

On December 31, 1862, the Battle of Stones River (also known as the Second Battle of Murfreesboro) began in Middle Tennessee.

In November 1862, Confederate General Braxton Bragg and his army of Tennessee took up a defensive position along the Stones River near the former state capital of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.  Some of his units were sent to help defend the important river fort in Vicksburg, Mississippi, leaving Bragg with a force of 35,000 men.  The Confederate goal was to block the Union Army from advancing on Chattanooga.

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 4 Comments

This Day in History… December 30, 1992

First U.S. Chinese New Year Stamp

US #2720 – America’s first Chinese New Year stamp, issued on this day in 1992.

On December 30, 1992, the USPS issued its first Chinese New Year stamp, honoring the start of the Year of the Rooster.

The issue of this stamp was in part inspired by repeated requests for stamps to honor additional holidays – New Year’s, Easter, the Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving.  There had also been calls for stamps honoring the signs of the Zodiac.  And there had been several groups calling for stamps to recognize the contributions of Asian Americans, while the USPS wanted to explore topics to appeal to younger Asian American collectors.

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 2 Comments

This Day in History… December 29, 1808

Birth of President Andrew Johnson

US #822 from the Presidential Series.

Andrew Johnson was born in Raleigh, North Carolina, on December 29, 1808.  When Johnson was just three years old, his father, Jacob Johnson, died.  Mary McDonough Johnson supported him and his brothers by taking on washing and sewing for others. 

At the age of 13, Johnson was apprenticed to a tailor.  Shortly thereafter, the young man was taught to read.  It was at this point that he first became interested in history, politics, and the United States Constitution.  After just two years of his apprenticeship, Johnson ran away to Carthage, North Carolina and then Greeneville, Tennessee to start his own tailoring business.

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 5 Comments

This Day in History… December 28, 1973

Endangered Species Act 

US #B4 – US semi-postal that raised funds for Wildlife Without Borders.

On December 28, 1973, President Richard Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act into law in an effort to protect threatened species from extinction.

Throughout the late 1800s and early 1900s, people around the globe grew increasingly concerned about the plight of animals nearing extinction.  As the bison neared extinction and the passenger pigeon disappeared, people began calling for wildlife conservation.  Proponents of the conservation movement introduced the larger American public to the idea of extinction.

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 4 Comments

This Day in History… December 27, 1980

Great Americans Series 

US #1859 was issued on this day in 1980.

On December 27, 1980, the USPS issued the first stamp in the Great Americans Series, which would go on to become the longest-running US definitive series.

The Great Americans Series was created to replace the Americana Series, which had begun in 1975.  The new series would be characterized by a standard definitive size, simple design, and monochromatic colors.

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 2 Comments

This Day in History… December 26, 1837

Birth of Admiral George Dewey

US #793 pictures Dewey with two other Spanish-American war naval heroes – William Sampson and Winfield Schley.

George Dewey was born in Montpelier, Vermont, on December 26, 1837.  His father had helped found the National Life Insurance Company as well as the Christ Episcopal Church in Montpelier. 

Continue reading

Posted in December 2019, This Day in History | 2 Comments