Arago: 1956 Wildlife Conservation Issues

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1956 Wildlife Conservation Issues
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The Post Office Department drew attention to the importance of wildlife conservation with a series of three commemorative stamps issued in 1956. The stamps featured images of the wild turkey, the Pronghorn antelope, and the King Salmon. Each of the Wildlife Conservation stamps paid the postage on a one-ounce first-class domestic letter.

Each of the three intaglio stamps, perforated 11x10 1/2, was printed on the Stickney rotary press from 200-subject plates. Printers used the plates 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.

The 3-cent Wild Turkey stamp was issued on May 5, 1956, in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, at the convention of the Wisconsin Federation of Stamp Clubs. Robert W. Hines, an artist for the Fish and Wildlife Service of the Department of Interior, designed the stamp's vignette. Victor S. McCloskey of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing designed the frame. Charles A. Brooks and John S. Edmondson engraved the die. Four plates were used to print the Wild Turkey stamp: 25395, 25397, 25398, and 25409. An additional plate (25396) was made but found defective, and no stamps exist from this plate.

The 3-cent Pronghorn Antelope stamp was released on June 22, 1956, in Gunnison, Colorado, at the annual convention of the Colorado Division of the Izaak Walton League. Robert W. Hines, an artist working for the Fish and Wildlife Service of the Department of Interior, designed the stamp's vignette, which depicts a buck and two does of the Pronghorn antelope species in their natural habitat. Victor S. McCloskey of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing designed the frame. The engravers of the die were Matthew D. Fenton (vignette) and John S. Edmondson. The four plates used to print the stamp were 25429, 25430, 25431, and 25432.

The third and final stamp in the series, the 3-cent King Salmon, was issued on November 9, 1956, in Seattle, Washington, at a ceremony co-sponsored by the Salmon Industry of the Northwest and the Seattle Chamber of Commerce. As with the other stamps in the series, Robert W. Hines designed the vignette and Victor S. McCloskey designed the frame. The engravers of the die were Matthew D. Fenton (vignette) and John S. Edmondson. The four plates used to print the stamp were 25496, 25497, 25498, and 25499.

Reference:

Linn's World Stamp Almanac. Sidney, Ohio: Amos Press, 2000.