Arago: Touro Synagogue Issue

Touro Synagogue Issue

A 20-cent commemorative stamp featuring the historic Touro Synagogue was issued August 22, 1982, in Newport, Rhode Island. The First Day of Issue ceremony was held in the synagogue.

Touro Synagogue is the oldest existing synagogue building in the United States. Dedicated in 1763, it was designed by noted colonial architect Peter Harrison. Built principally by Sephardic Jews from Spain and Portugal who had fled the Inquisition and found in the Rhode Island colony the religious freedom they sought, it was designated a National Historical Site in 1946.

Postmaster General William F. Bolger unveiled the stamp design of the stamp in Washington, DC, on December 10, 1980, at the opening of an exhibition titled "The Jewish Community in Early America: 1654-1830." The design of the stamp honors Touro Synagogue as an historic American building and a symbol of America's tradition of religious freedom.

Donald Moss of Ridgefield, Connecticut, rendered the view of the synagogue, and the typography was done by Bradbury Thompson. The modeler was Peter Cocci.

A philatelic first was marked with the issuance of this stamp: for the first time both the intaglio and gravure sections of the combination press were used jointly to print the same stamp. It was issued in panes of fifty stamps.


Postal Bulletin (July 22, 1982).

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