SHELBURNE, Vt. — The U.S. Postal Service has issued a series of 45-cent stamps depicting 19th-century weather vanes. Each of the five designs features a photograph of a figural weather vane from the Shelburne Museum’s collection: a cow, an eagle, two roosters and a centaur. Sally Anderson-Bruce of New Milford, Conn., photographed the weather vanes under the art direction of Derry Noyes of Washington, DC.
“These stamps are truly beautiful reminders of an era gone by,” said U.S. Postal Service Senior Manager, Post Office Operations Shawn Patton, while dedicating the stamps at Shelburne Museum. “We hope Americans will buy and use the stamps when communicating with friends, family and other loved ones.”
Joining Patton in dedicating the stamps were Kory Rogers, Curator of Design Arts, stamp photographer Sally Andersen-Bruce, and Shelburne, Vermont’s postmaster, Deborah Blondin.
About the weather vanes:
The cow weather vane was made of hammered sheet iron circa 1870 and was later found in Hardwick, Vermont. Its manufacturer is unknown.
The eagle weather vane is made of sheet iron and dates from sometime in the 19th century. Its manufacturer is unknown.
The rooster with the thick, rounded tail was made between 1875 and 1900 by Rochester Iron Works in Rochester, New Hampshire. This painted, cast-iron weather vane resembles several others from the late 19th century originally found in the Boston area and now in the museum collections nationwide.
Made of copper, the centaur weather vane was found near New Haven, Conn., during the 1940s. It was made during the 19th century by a firm in Waltham, Mass., first known as A.L. Jewell and Co., then Cushing and White, then L.W. Cushing and Sons.
The rooster with the bushy tail feathers is made of carved, painted wood and is believed to have been created circa 1890 by James Lombard (1865 -1920), a farmer and woodcarver who lived in Bridgton, ME. He specialized in hens and roosters that are often identifiable by their intricately cut tail feathers.
The weather vanes stamps — as well as many of this year’s other stamps — may be viewed on Facebook at facebook.com/USPSStamps, through Twitter @USPSstamps or on the website Beyond the Perf at beyondtheperf.com/2012-preview. Beyond the Perf is the Postal Service’s online site for background on upcoming stamp subjects, first-day-of-issue events and other philatelic news.
How to Order the First-Day-of-Issue Postmark:
Customers have until March 20, 2012 to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at a local Post Office, at The Postal Store website at usps.com/shop or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others) and place them in larger envelopes addressed to:
Weather Vanes Stamp
495 Falls Road
Shelburne, VT 05482-9998
After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes by mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by March 20, 2012.
How to Order First-Day Covers:
The Postal Service also offers first-day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic catalog. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-STAMP-24 or writing to:
U.S. Postal Service
P.O. Box 219014
Kansas City, MO 64121-9014
There is one philatelic product available for this stamp issue: 788963, First-Day Cover Set of 5, $4.45
The Postal Service receives no tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations.
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ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE