Since its inception in 2008, the Celebrating Lunar New Year stamps have featured “bright, festive designs that mark each year of the Chinese lunar calendar — Year of the Rat, Ox, Tiger, and others.”
Year of the Rat
The 2008 Chinese New Year begins February 7 as the Year of the Rat. The Chinese New Year starts with the second new moon after winter commences. The celebration lasts for fifteen days, ending with the Lantern Festival.
According to ancient Chinese legend, a man-eating beast, called the Nián, emerges from the mountains every 12 months to feed. The people believe that the beast is afraid of loud noises and the color red, so they scare the Nián away with fireworks and an excessive use of the color red. This custom has become the Chinese New Year celebration.
Entitled simply “Artists,” this series honors “painters and sculptors whose distinctive brush strokes and compositions made an indelible impression.”
One of America’s leading artists, Georgia O’Keeffe is known for her sensitive, semi-abstract paintings derived from nature. Linked with the first generation of American modernists, her impressive career spanned the entire history of modern art. While much of the modernist work showed a strong European influence, O’Keeffe developed her own unique style, reducing and simplifying forms to an abstract study of color and light. Her best-known subjects included flowers, animal bones, and rocks. Continue reading
Since its introduction in 1981, the American Sports Personalities series has honored “world-champion athletes and Hall of Famers who changed the game and won over hearts.
Honors the great female athlete who set new Olympic and world records in the javelin throw and won more than 50 major golf tournaments. Zaharias made one of the greatest comebacks in sports history – winning the National Women’s Open and the Tam O’Shanter All-American golf tournaments after major cancer surgery. In 1950, the Associated Press named Zaharias the outstanding woman athlete of the first half of the 20th century. Continue reading
Introduced in 2005, the America on the Move series commemorates “Classic cars of the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s — fins, chrome, curves and all.”
Hanukkah is a celebration of a miracle that occurred at the Temple of Jerusalem in 165 B.C., when the Maccabees revolted against Syrian King Antiochus IV. The temple was reclaimed, but only enough purified oil was on hand to keep its light burning for one night. Yet the lamp burned for eight days, allowing the Maccabees time to purify more oil. Since that time, Jewish people celebrate the “Festival of Lights” each year for eight days. The U.S. Since 1996, the US has issued Hanukkah stamps to commemorate this joyous holiday.
Introduced in 1997, the Loony Tunes series showcases some of the most loved cartoon characters of all time.