Arago: Grand Coulee Dam Issue

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Grand Coulee Dam Issue

A 3-cent commemorative stamp depicting Grand Coulee Dam was issued on May 15, 1952, at Grand Coulee, Washington. Located on the Columbia River in arid eastern Washington state, the Grand Coulee Dam is the largest concrete structure in the United States. The dam provides electric power, irrigation water, and flood control for the lower Columbia River. Work on the dam began in 1933 and completed by 1941.

Charles R. Chickering, using photos provided by the Department of the Interior, designed the commemorative. Herbert F. Fichter engraved the vignette and ribbon, and Charles A. Smith engraved the frame, numerals, and lettering. Six 200-subject electric-eye printing plates (#24647-24652) were made for and used on the rotary Stickney Press. Plates were used in pairs on the press, so each rotation of the press produced two sheets of 200 stamps, each of which was divided into four fifty-subject panes for distribution to post offices. Stamps were perforated 11 x 10.5 and printed on unwatermarked paper.

The 3-cent Grand Coulee Dam stamp paid the postage rate for a one ounce first-class domestic letter.


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