3c Benjamin Franklin stamp


Smithsonian's National Postal Museum

Smithsonian's National Postal Museum

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) was a printer, publisher, author, inventor, and diplomat. He promoted the establishment of such public services as a fire department, a lending library, and an academy that grew to be the University of Pennsylvania. After a long stay in London, he returned to Philadelphia, where he served as a delegate to the Second Continental Congress and helped to draft the Declaration of Independence. At the close of the Revolutionary War, Franklin was one of the diplomats chosen to negotiate peace with Great Britain. He was instrumental in achieving the adoption of the US Constitution.

A 3-cent stamp commemorating the 250th anniversary of the birth of Benjamin Franklin was issued in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on January 17, 1956.

Designed by Charles R. Chickering, the stamp reproduced a painting entitled "Franklin Taking Electricity from the Sky" by Benjamin West, currently in the collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

The wording "US Postage" and the denomination "3c," arranged in two lines, appears in the upper right corner in whiteface Gothic. In a panel at the bottom of the stamp is the lettering "Benjamin Franklin 250th Anniversary," arranged in two lines, in dark modified architectural Roman.

The stamp is 0.84 by 1.44 inches in dimension, arranged vertically with a double outline frame, printed by the rotary process, electric-eye perforated, and issued in sheets of fifty. The color of the stamp is red. The printing of 120,000,000 stamps was authorized.

Postal Bulletin (December 27, 1955).
Encyclopedia Britannica, 15th ed., s.v. "Benjamin Franklin."

Scott Catalogue USA: 1073

Museum ID: 1980.2493.5167

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  • Title: 3c Benjamin Franklin stamp
  • Date Created: 1956-01-17
  • Subject Keywords: Benjamin Franklin
  • Medium: paper; ink (bright carmine); adhesive / engraving


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