Saturday, August 6, 2011
Bradbury Thompson, Library Stamp Designer
Three of my favorite library related postage stamps were designed by the same person, Bradbury Thompson (1911-1995). This year is the 100th anniversary of his birth. Thompson was one of the world's great graphic artists and received numerous awards for his work. He was responsible for designing more than 90 postage stamps himself and influenced many more. Two of Thompson's library stamps were issued by the United States Postal Service in the same year, 1982. They were the "Library of Congress" stamp and the "America's Libraries" stamp. Initially only one stamp was to be issued but Librarian of Congress Daniel Boorstin insisted on a more traditional depiction of the Library of Congress on the stamp. Thompson responded with a pair of stamps that are highly compatible in their design. The third stamp, "A Nation of Readers", was issued in 1984. I have a previous post about the "A Nation of Readers" stamp. I have an extensive collection of "First Day Covers" for all three stamps, and I have created philatelic exhibits for stamp shows which display the covers. Another stamp designed by Thompson that I like is his "Learning Never Ends" stamp which was issued in 1980.