On July 1, 1961, a new international surface mail rate went into effect for which there was no single stamp available. The Bureau of Engraving and Printing decided to use the existing design of the 3-cent and 8-cent Liberty stamps to produce an 11-cent stamp. The Bureau reversed the colors of 8-cent stamp for the 11-cent bi-colored Liberty, producing a blue Statue of Liberty with a red frame.
The 11-cent stamp was issued on June 15, 1961, at the convention of the International Union of Local Authorities, held in Washington D.C., to whose audience the deputy postmaster general proclaimed, “This stamp reaffirms to all the nations of the world, friends and enemies alike, the United States’ determination to preserve the American tradition of political and religious freedom.”
Charles R. Chickering of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing designed the stamp from an original drawing, and Matthew D. Fenton and Howard F. Sharpless engraved the stamp.