Trains

1944 3¢ Completion of First Transcontinental Railroad
May 10, 1869

Transcontinental Railroad Completed

On May 10, 1869, the Transcontinental Railroad was completed with the driving of the golden spike at Promontory Summit, Utah. Completing the Transcontinental Railroad is widely considered one of the greatest accomplishments of the 19th century!

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1987 22¢ Steam Locomotives: Gowan & Marx
February 20, 1840

Impressive Run of the Gowan & Marx

On February 20, 1840, the Gowan & Marx made an impressive run, hauling more than 100 cars weighing 423 tons. It was one of the earliest 4-4-0 locomotives with equalizing levers and became internationally known for hauling a train 40 times its own weight.

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1966 5¢ Marine Corps Reserve stamp
November 7, 1921

Marines Ordered to Guard Mail

On November 7, 1921, President Warren G. Harding ordered 2,200 Marines to guard the mail in the wake of a series of daring mail robberies.

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1950 3¢ Railroad Engineers Issue
October 7, 1826

The Granite Railway

On October 7, 1826, the Granite Railway opened in Massachusetts. Built to carry granite for the Bunker Hill Monument, it’s been called the first chartered and commercial railroad in the United States.

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1901 2¢ Pan-American Exposition: Empire State Express stamp
September 14, 1891

The Empire State Express

On September 14, 1891, the Empire State Express became one of the world’s first high-speed passenger train, traveling 436 miles between New York City and Buffalo in 7 hours, 6 minutes. It averaged 61.4 miles per hour and reached a top speed of 82 miles per hour.

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1978 13¢ Performing Arts: Jimmie Rodgers stamp
September 8, 1897

Happy Birthday, Jimmie Rodgers

James Charles Rodgers was born on September 8, 1897, in Meridian, Mississippi.  He was known for his distinctive yodel and has been called the “Father of Country Music.”

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1988 Railroad Mail Car stamp
July 7, 1838

Railway Mail

On July 7, 1838, Congress approved an act that declared all United States railroads as post roads.  This would lead to a dramatic increase in the use of railroads to deliver mail.

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1994 McQueen's Jupiter stamp
March 20, 1869

First Run of McQueen’s Jupiter

The Jupiter, also known as Central Pacific Railroad #60, made its first run on March 20, 1869. Less than two months later, the Jupiter made history as one of the two locomotives that met at Promontory Summit, Utah to mark the completion of America’s First Transcontinental Railroad.

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 US #2818 was issued in conjunction with the Seventh National Convention of the Afro-American Postal Leaders United for Success.
September 21, 1866

Buffalo Soldiers 

On September 21, 1866, the 9th and 10th Cavalry units and the 38th, 39th, 40th, and 41st Infantry units (later consolidated as the 24th and 25th Infantry) were formed.  The units were comprised entirely of black soldiers – the first to serve in a peacetime army.  They would come to be known as Buffalo Soldiers.

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