Saturday, April 02, 2011

The Other Stamp Designing President Roosevelt

Yesterday, April 1, Round-Up reader John Langlois wrote on his always intriguing 1898 Revenues website about the revenue stamp which was designed by President Roosevelt.

Not philatelist Franklin, but rather his 5th cousin Theodore!

According to John, "President Theodore Roosevelt, the first great conservationist President, considered extending certain Spanish-American War taxes in order to support and expand his goal of preserving some of America’s great natural areas...And the President considered how these great reserves would be cared for, and in turn, how that care would be supported."

John goes on to pen:
"Realizing that the Spanish-American War taxes on checks and drafts were to expire at the end of June, 1901, Roosevelt proposed to some of his trusted advisors whether a one-year extension of the check tax (2 cents per check) could raise the revenue necessary to support to National Parks programming through the end of his term.
"Looking over a 2 cent battleship documentary stamp while at his home at Sagamore Hill, New York, Roosevelt took it upon himself to create a redesign.  If the check tax was to be extended to make the tax seem as non-intrusive as possible, why not make a subtle change to the existing tax stamp, one more in-line with the ruggedness and the spirit of park preservation?
"Just as private die proprietary users like Johnson and Johnson made subtle changes to the battleship design, Roosevelt thought that the replacement of the battleship with a canoe, the well known water craft of the rugged and self-reliant American Indian, would make a perfect center for a new stamp.
"After consultations with the Secretary of the Treasury Lyman J. Gage, Yerkes and Gage agreed that an extension of the check tax would be unnecessary. This would make Roosevelt's search for revenue much simpler. Yerkes promptly told Roosevelt of the lack of a need for a tax extension, and the matter, and the stamp above, were soon forgotten."
Shown above, the revenue stamp Theodore Roosevelt designed.

Click here to read the full fascinating post...which by the way, John says is completely bogus.  April Fool!

Good one, John!
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM