This Day in History

This Day in History… October 4, 1957

Launch of Sputnik I 

Soviet Union #3758 pictures Sputnik I.

On October 4, 1957, the Soviet Union launched Sputnik I, the first man-made object in space, which sparked the start of the Space Race with the United States.

Plans for the satellite began back in December 1954, when Soviet rocket scientist Sergei Korolev proposed the creation of an artificial satellite, urging that it was an important step in the development of rocket technology.  Less than a year later, US President Dwight D. Eisenhower announced that the US would launch an artificial satellite during the International Geophysical Year of 1957-58. In response, the Soviet government quickly approved work to move forward on the satellite.

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This Day in History… October 3, 1900

Birth of Thomas Wolfe

US #3444 was issued on Wolfe’s 100th birthday.

Novelist Thomas Clayton Wolfe was born on October 3, 1900, in Asheville, North Carolina.

Wolfe was the youngest of eight siblings.  His father was a stone carver and his mother ran a series of boarding houses, eventually becoming a successful real estate speculator.  Wolfe grew up in one of these boarding houses until he went to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1916.

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This Day in History… October 2, 1879

Birth of Wallace Stevens 

US #4660 from the 20th Century American Poets issue.

Poet Wallace Stevens was born on October 2, 1879, in Reading, Pennsylvania.

The son of a successful lawyer, Stevens grew up in a wealthy household with an extensive in-home library.  He went on to attend Harvard, where he wrote for both of the university’s publications and earned all of the school’s writing honors.

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This Day in History… October 1, 1981

Happy National Stamp Collecting Month!

US #1474 was issued for the 125th anniversary of the first US stamp.

On October 1, 1981, the USPS began its very first National Stamp Collecting Month, a celebration that continues to this day.

The USPS and the Council of Philatelic Organizations created National Stamp Collecting Month in 1981. In announcing the annual celebration, then-Postmaster General William F. Bolger encouraged “employees and customers alike to discover the joy of stamp collecting – the hobby of a lifetime.”

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This Day in History… September 30, 1972

Roberto Clemente’s 3,000th Hit 

US #2097 was issued one day after Clemente’s 50th birthday.

On September 30, 1972, Roberto Clemente scored his 3,000th hit on the very last regular season at-bat of his career.

Roberto Clemente was born on August 18, 1934, in Barrio San Antón, Carolina, Puerto Rico.  The youngest of seven children, he grew up helping his father in the sugar fields and loading and unloading trucks.

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This Day in History… September 29, 1899

Founding the VFW

US #1525 – The VFW’s cross of Malta dates back to the Crusades and stands for the ideas of freedom, justice, and tolerance.

On September 29, 1899, the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) was founded in Columbus, Ohio.

As with many wars, soldiers returning from the Spanish-American War had a difficult time readjusting to civilian life. Those who were disabled during battle or as a result of tropical diseases found little assistance from the government.  There were no hospitals dedicated to treating veterans, no specialized medical care or veterans’ pensions.  They were left to fend for themselves.

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Posted in September 2018, This Day in History | 3 Comments