Sunday, 13 May 2012


When Mrs McClure of Kansas City, past president of a group called American War Mothers, suggested to President Franklin D Roosevelt there should be a stamp issued to honour the mothers of America he enthusiastically took up her idea, sketched a design and sent it to the Postmaster General, James A Farley. With some modifications it was engraved and issued in 1934. The stamp collecting president often brainstormed ideas for stamps with Farley in the 1930s, what a marvellous perk of being president.  Here instead of my rather time worn stamp is a pristine version from Wikipedia:
The mother in question is that of James Abbot McNeil Whistler who painted her in 1871 as "Portrait of my Mother", the painting now always known as Whistler's Mother.  Famously she is painted sitting down because she could not stand for the length of time it would take to paint. The details of the original painting have been stripped out of the stamp
I always wonder if she had a bad back because of the book placed under her feet, or was it just to make her more comfortable. Unlike the stamp there were no flowers in the painting but as that favoured gift of Mothers Day makes an appearance on the stamp so here are some more flowers
being held by Valentina Tereshkova, mother and first woman in space visiting East Berlin after her space fllight  in 1963. She would marry fellow cosmonaut Andrian Nikolaev the same year and would never return to space but said she would have liked to have gone to Mars, even if it had to be a one way trip. 

An entry to Viridian Postcard's Sunday Stamp theme of -  Mothers


viridian said...

I did not know that about FDR, that he collected stamps and enjoyed such a perk. And such a grat stamp. I have sent out postcards to postcrossers with this image on it. thank you for participating!

Bob Scotney said...

Two contrasting stamps. The history behind the first is very interesting, I was trying to identify the woman on the stamp before I scrolled down. When I did I knew why she looked familiar. Liked the DDR too.

Postcardy said...

I like the Valentina Tereshkova stamp. I didn't know about her before.

Sheila @ A Postcard a Day said...

I don't know the stamp but I have been lucky enough to see the picture. I remember Valentina Tereschkova fairly well, though not what she said about the one-way trip to Mars. I don't see that attraction at all.