Arago: 8-cent Simon Bolivar

8-cent Simon Bolivar

Two stamps issued on June 25, 1958, commemorated Simon Bolivar (1783-1830) as the second person to be featured in the Champions of Liberty series that honored men who fought for freedom in their homelands and offered a counterpoint to the totalitarianism of the Soviet Union. The stamp honors Bolivar with the appellation, "The Liberator." The Bolivar stamps were issued with impressive ceremony in the Postmaster General's Reception Room in the Post Office Department Building, a reflection of their importance to the federal government.

Simon Bolivar, leader in Spanish America's struggle for independence from Spain, contributed decisively to the independence of Columbia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. Historians have called him the "George Washington" of South America.

The 8-cent multicolored Bolivar stamps were perforated 11 and printed on the sheet-fed Giori press. The 288-subject sheets were cut into panes of seventy-two stamps each for distribution to post offices. Five plates were used: 26021, 26026, 26056, 26061, and 26062. Two plates were required for the printing of each sheet. Plates 26021 and 26026 printed the vignette and were used only for the Bolivar 8-cent stamp. The remaining plates were used for the frame, some of which were also used for the frame of the 8-cent Kossuth stamp.

William K. Schrage of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing modeled both the 4-cent and 8-cent Kossuth stamps after a photograph of Kossuth furnished by the American Hungarian Federation. Both were based, as were all the stamps in the series, on the previously issued Magsaysay commemorative (US Scott 1096), although reduced in size from the Magsaysay commemorative (US Scott 1096).

Charles A. Brooks, John S. Edmondson, and Howard F. Sharpless of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing engraved the Bolivar stamps.


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

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