Information Graphics

Statehood History Explained with Postal Stamps

This one-of-a-kind flag assemblage, from Kit Hinrichs’ vast Stars & Stripes collection, was designed by the quartermaster of a U.S. military post office during World War II. A closer look reveals that it is not just a flag made out of a bunch of used stamps and cancellation marks; it is clever information graphics. The blue canton is made from dozens of five-cent stamps, and the stars are cut from cancellation marks mailed from the state capital of each of the 48 states that were in the Union in 1943 (see detail after the jump). The unknown artist didn’t stop there. He placed the stars chronologically according to when each state entered the Union. The red stripes are composed of two-cent stamps (yes, they once existed!), and the white stripes are pieced together from envelopes mailed from the states that were part of the Original Thirteen Colonies that declared their independence from Great Britain on July 4th, 1776, and founded a new nation of united states. Something to think about while waiting for the fireworks to start. Happy Fourth of July!

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Stamps to Help Kids Learn

Every year since 1924, the Dutch Postal Service has worked together with the Stichting Kinderpostzegels Nederland (SKN), or the Foundation for Children’s Welfare Stamps Netherland, to produce a series of stamps to help disadvantaged children both in and outside the Netherlands. The last campaign raised more than 9.3m euros to fund educational programs. The special edition stamps, which cost a little more than regular stamps, have been sold door-to-door by Dutch school children since 1948. Art director Christian Borstlap from Kessels Kramer Creative Collective designed this year’s playful worm-like creatures, which were featured both on the stamp series and on postcards. The little worm people were turned into an animated commercial by Paul Postma Motion Design.

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