1938 Presidential Series
Issue Date: August 29, 1938
City: Washington, DC
Printed by: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Flat plate
Color: Purple and black
Known affectionately as the “Prexies,” the 1938 Presidential series is a favorite among stamp collectors. The $1 denomination pictures Woodrow Wilson.
Although well known for serving as president of Princeton University and governor of New Jersey, Woodrow Wilson gained worldwide recognition as our 28th President. After successfully guiding the U.S. through World War I, he led the peace conference in Paris that resulted in the Treaty of Versailles. The treaty, which was based on Wilson's famous "Fourteen Points" speech, brought a peaceful end to the war. Throughout Europe, crowds cheered him as the champion of peace and democracy.
The series was issued in response to public clamoring for a new Regular Issue series. The series that was current at the time had been in use for more than a decade. President Franklin D. Roosevelt agreed, and a contest was staged. The public was asked to submit original designs for a new series picturing all deceased U.S. Presidents. Over 1,100 sketches were submitted, many from veteran stamp collectors. Elaine Rawlinson, who had little knowledge of stamps, won the contest and collected the $500 prize. Rawlinson was the first stamp designer since the Bureau of Engraving and Printing began producing U.S. stamps who was not a government employee.
Birth Of Walter Lippmann
Journalist Walter Lippmann was born on September 23, 1889, in New York City, New York.
Born into an upper-middle class family, Lippmann attended New York’s Dwight School. He went on to attend Harvard University where he focused on philosophy, German, and French. He graduated in three years and later joined the New York Socialist Party with Sinclair Lewis.
After briefly serving as secretary to George Lunn, mayor of Schenectady, New York, Lippmann began working as a journalist, media critic, and philosopher. He published several books in the coming years, including A Preface to Politics, Drift and Mastery, The Stakes of Diplomacy, The Political Scene, and Liberty and the News. Lippmann was also one of the founding editors of The New Republic Magazine.
During World War I, Lippmann was made a captain in the Army and joined the intelligence section of the American Expeditionary Forces in France. He was then part of the American Commission to negotiate peace. Returning to America, Lippmann became an advisor to President Woodrow Wilson and helped him write his Fourteen Points speech.
Lippmann closely examined the coverage of the war in American newspapers and was bothered by the large number of inaccuracies and biases that many writers included in their reports. He began to criticize these journalists for making generalizations about other people based on preconceived notions. He coined the term “stereotype” largely based on these observations.
Over the years, Lippmann served as an informal advisor for several other presidents. In 1958 he received a special Pulitzer Prize for journalism for “the wisdom, perception and high sense of responsibility with which he has commented for many years on national and international affairs.” He won another Pulitzer for International reporting four years later for his 1961 interview with Soviet Premier Nikita Krushchev. And in 1964 President Lyndon Johnson awarded him the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Lippmann died on December 14, 1974, in New York City. As a journalist, Lippmann wrote 26 books and more than 4,000 newspaper columns. He received several other prestigious honors over the years that established him as America’s foremost analyst of social, political, and ethical problems. He’s been called the “most influential journalist” of the 20th century and the Father of Modern Journalism.
Click here to read some of Lippmann’s writing.