The 4-cent stamp of the Trans-Mississippi Exposition Issue is probably the most dramatic of the entire series. The original image from which the stamp was engraved included a large scene of a valley and another Indian and buffalo in the foreground. The stamp's design focused just on the central subject of the original image. The original engraving appeared in a multi-volume book, "Information Respecting the History, Condition and Prospects of the Indian Tribes of the Untied States" published in 1854. This engraving appears in the fourth volume of the set. G. F. C. Smille, the vignette engraver of the 1-cent stamp also engraved the 4-cent Indian Hunting Buffalo. The 4-cent stamp was often used to pay the double weight domestic first class rate. It was also commonly used with other denominations to fulfill large weight and destination rates. A total of 4,924,500 stamps were printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
Roger S. Brody and Alexander T. Haimann, National Postal Museum
February 24, 2008
Scott Catalogue USA: 287
Museum ID: 1980.2493.1789