Arago: 8-cent Gandhi

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8-cent Gandhi

On January 26, 1961, the last two stamps in the Champion of Liberty Series were issued in the Postmaster General's Reception Room in the Post Office Building in Washington, DC. The stamps commemorated Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948), "Apostle of Non-Violence." Gandhi was a political and spiritual leader of India who, using civil disobedience and non-violence, led his countrymen to independence from Great Britain in 1947. Postmaster General J. Edward Day presided over the First Day of Issue ceremony. The city of Calcutta, India, hosted a similar ceremony.

As with the preceding four pairs in the Champion of Liberty Series, one of the stamps paid the domestic letter rate (4-cent) and the other paid the international letter surface rate (8-cent).

The 8-cent Gandhi stamp, perforated 11, was printed on the sheet-fed Giori press from 288-subject engraved plates. Each 288-subject sheet was cut into four panes of seventy-two stamps for distribution to post offices. Two plates were used: 26841 and 26844.

William K. Schrage of the Bureau of Engraving and Printing modeled the stamp. He based it on a photograph of a drawing of Gandhi by Indian artist R. L. Lekhi. Charles A. Brooks engraved the portrait, torch, spray of the leaves, and ribbon; Robert J. Jones engraved the lettering and numerals.

References:

Glass, Sol. Champion of Liberty - Gandhi. The Bureau Specialist 35, no. 12 (1964): 432.

Cleland, W. Wallace. Durland Standard Plate Number Catalog. Katy, Texas: United States Stamp Society. 2008.


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