Arago: Von Steuben Issue

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Von Steuben Issue

Issued September 17, 1930, this red 2-cent stamp honored the 200th anniversary of the birth of Baron Frederick Wilhelm von Steuben (1730-1794). In December 1777, at the urging of the French minister of war, von Steuben came to America and offered his services to General George Washington. Washington, then at Valley Forge, assigned him to drilling the troops. Von Steuben installed a system of rigid discipline that brought order out of chaos and instilled an esprit de corps in the ragged army. This transformation of the troops played a major role in bringing about victory in future campaigns. The stamp features a profile portrait of von Steuben, who stayed on to fight with American forces throughout the war.

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