In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service® issues another stamp in its popular Love series, Quilled Paper Heart. Quilling—also called paper filigree—involves rolling and shaping narrow strips of paper, laying them on their edges, and gluing them in place to form intricate designs. The origin of the name “quilling” is obscure, but it might have come from the first tool used to create the paper curls, the base of a feather or quill.
United States 2016 Postal Stamp Program
The issue commemorates the Year of the Monkey.
The stamp art features two bright reddish-orange peonies against a purple background. Peonies symbolize wealth and honor in Chinese culture and often decorate the sides of the traditional drums played during the holiday festivities.
The stamp design incorporates two elements from the previous series of Lunar New Year stamps: the intricate cut-paper design of a monkey and the Chinese character for “monkey,” drawn in grass-style calligraphy.
Preacher, activist, and civic leader Richard Allen (1760–1831) was an inspiring figure whose life and work resonate profoundly in American history. This stamp coincides with the 200th anniversary of Allen’s founding of the African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church, one of the most important institutions in African-American life, and his election as its first bishop.
The stamp art is a portrait of Allen, a detail from an 1876 print titled “Bishops of the A.M.E. Church.” Featuring Allen in the center surrounded by ten other bishops and six historical vignettes, the print is from the collection of the Library Company of Philadelphia.
Sarah Vaughan (1924–1990) was one of America’s greatest singers, successful in both jazz and pop, with a talent for improvisation and skillful phrasing and a voice that ranged over several octaves.
The stamp art is an oil painting of Vaughan in performance based on a 1955 photograph by Hugh Bell. A few lines of selvage text explain her importance as a Music Icon. The cover side of the pane features a larger version of the stamp art, a list of some of Vaughan’s popular songs, and the Music Icons logo.
The U.S. Postal Service continues its tradition of beautiful floral-themed stamps with Botanical Art, a booklet of 20 stamps featuring vintage illustrations taken from 19th- and early-20th-century plant and seed catalogs.
Beginning in the late 15th century, intrepid Europeans explored new lands in the Americas, the South Pacific, and other areas of the world. There they discovered plants unknown in Europe, which they imported for study and propagation. Scientists, gardeners, plant hunters, and collectors required accurate botanical drawings of the exotic new species. Botanical illustrators produced works that were meticulous and highly detailed and quite often beautiful pieces of art as well. The years 1750 to 1850 are considered the height of the botanical illustrator’s art.
This issuance commemorates the 250th anniversary of the repeal of the Stamp Act, British legislation that galvanized and united the American colonies and set them on a path toward revolution. The act required payment of a tax on a wide array of paper materials, such as newspapers, pamphlets, legal documents, licenses, mortgages, contracts, and bills of sale. A stamp would be embossed on these papers to indicate payment.
The stamp art depicts a crowd gathered around a “liberty tree” to celebrate the repeal of the Stamp Act. The selvage area displays a proof print of a one-penny revenue stamp and includes a famous slogan from the era: “Taxation without representation is tyranny.” Verso text appears on the back of the pane.
With this new Priority Mail® stamp, the U.S. Postal Service® celebrates one of Puerto Rico’s many magical and mysterious caves, La Cueva del Indio.
The stamp art depicts a view of La Cueva del Indio, or the Cave of the Indian, which is located near Arecibo on Puerto Rico’s north coast.
The U.S. Postal Service® celebrates the grandeur of the Columbia River Gorge with a new Priority Mail Express™ stamp in 2016. Expansive and breathtaking, the Columbia River Gorge is a natural wonder of the Pacific Northwest. Approximately 80 miles long and up to 4,000 feet deep, the gorge runs along the Columbia River, which forms part of the border between Oregon and Washington.
In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service® issues Pears, a new ten-cent definitive stamp featuring an illustration of two brilliantly red pears.
Pears (genus Pyrus) are one of the world’s oldest cultivated fruits. They grow on medium-sized, long-lived, flowering trees that generally produce fruit in their fourth to sixth year of growth. Thousands of varieties-in hues of green, yellow, red, and brown-are grown throughout the world.
Celebrate “Old Glory” with this new patriotic U.S. Flag stamp.
The American flag has long symbolized the strength and spirit of our nation. This U.S. Flag First-Class Mail® stamp features a detail of Emmanuel Faure's vivid photograph of a U.S. flag waving against the background of the sky.
On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress passed the Flag Act, stating that the U.S. flag should consist of 13 alternating red and white stripes and 13 white stars in a blue field. In 1818, Congress passed legislation stipulating that the number of stars on the American flag should match the number of states in the Union. There are 13 stripes and 50 stars on the current flag.
This Global Forever® stamp can be used to mail a one-ounce letter to any country to which First-Class Mail International® service is available. As with all Global Forever® stamps, this stamp will have a postage value equivalent to the price of a single-piece First-Class Mail International® first ounce machinable letter in effect at the time of use. To distinguish this stamp from other Forever stamps, the shape of the international stamp is round and bears the words “Global Forever.”
Preorders are now being accepted
In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service® issues Grapes, a five-cent definitive stamp.
Two clusters of deep-purple Pinot noir grapes are depicted growing on vines among several green leaves. The artist used pen and ink and watercolor to produce the original art.
Preorders are now being accepted
Shirley Temple Postage Stamp
With this 20th stamp in the Legends of Hollywood series, the U.S. Postal Service® honors actress and diplomat Shirley Temple Black (1928-2014). The world’s most famous film star as a child, she went on to a distinguished career in public service and international affairs.
The stamp art is a painting by artist Tim O’Brien; it is based on a 1935 image from Curly Top, one of the child star’s iconic movie roles. The selvage features a publicity photo from the 1933 short film Managed Money. The Shirley Temple artwork is based on photos copyrighted by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation™. The pane's selvage and verso include biographical text about her acting and diplomatic careers.
This new nondenominated, nonprofit-price stamp, showcases the letters "USA" in a stamp that the Postal Service describes as "a patriotic design with full letterforms and flourishes [that] is a confident, playful, and celebratory treatment of one of our most familiar abbreviations."
In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service® continues a nearly century-long tradition of commemorating international philatelic exhibitions held every decade in the United States with specially designed issuances: stamps, souvenir sheets, and even covers. This year, the Postal Service™ celebrates World Stamp Show-NY 2016, an eight-day philatelic extravaganza that runs from May 28-June 4, 2016, in New York City, with the issuance of an elegant folio presenting two panes of stamps reminiscent of classic engraved 19th-century newspaper periodical stamps and banknotes.
The National Parks stamps celebrate the more than 400 national parks in the United States—breathtaking vistas and landscapes of unparalleled beauty and also monuments, historic sites, memorials, battlefields, and more. With this sheet of stamps, issued in 2016 to coincide with the centennial of the National Park Service, the U.S. Postal Service® encourages everyone to visit our national parks and discover—or rediscover—abundant opportunities for exploration, learning, and fun.
This sheet includes 16 different stamps, all of them showing views of national parks or plants, animals, artwork, objects, and structures found in or associated with a national park. Small type on the margin of each stamp indicates its location.
Military decorations are a grateful nation’s way of honoring the bravery and achievements of members of the U.S. Armed Forces. Previous stamp issuances have depicted the highest military decoration for valor in combat: the Medal of Honor. Honoring Extraordinary Heroism: The Service Cross Medals recognize the next highest tier of military decorations for valor: the Distinguished Service Cross (Army), Navy Cross (Navy and Marine Corps), Air Force Cross, and Coast Guard Cross.
The Pluto–Explored! souvenir sheet contains two stamp designs. One shows an artist's rendering of the New Horizons spacecraft. The other shows the spacecraft's striking image of Pluto taken near closest approach. The view—which is color-enhanced to highlight surface texture and composition—is a composite of four images from New Horizons' Long Range Reconnaissance Imager (LORRI), combined with color data from the imaging instrument Ralph. It clearly reveals the now-famous heart-shaped feature that measures about 1,000 miles across at its widest point.
During the modern era of space exploration, the planets of our solar system have been viewed with increasing clarity, thanks to the distant voyages of unmanned spacecraft and the development of ever-more powerful telescopes. With this pane of 16 stamps, the U.S. Postal Service® showcases some of the more visually compelling full-disk images of the planets obtained during this era.