Signing of United Nations Charter

U.S. #928 was the last stamp created under FDR’s leadership, issued just two weeks after his death.

On June 26, 1945, 50 nations signed the United Nations Charter.

Following the Paris Peace Conference that ended World War I, several nations joined together to create the League of Nations, aimed at maintaining world peace. However, the league was unable to prevent the aggression of the Axis powers in the 1930s that ultimately led to World War II.

U.S. #1419 was issued for the U.N.’s 25th anniversary.

By 1939, the U.S. State Department had formulated a place for a new world organization to replace the League of Nations. Additionally, representatives from the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and nine other nations met in London in June 1941 to sign the Declaration of St. James’ Palace. This was the first of six conferences that ultimately led to the founding of the United Nations.

That December, U.S. President Franklin Roosevelt suggested the term United Nations as a name for the Allies of World War II. Then, on December 29, 1941, Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill drafted the Declaration of the United Nations, an agreement to uphold the Atlantic Charter, commit all resources to war against the Axis powers, and to not sign separate treaties with Germany or Japan. Twenty-six nations signed the declaration in early January 1942 at the Arcadia Conference (21 more nations would sign it within the next three years).

U.S. #2974 – The U.N. emblem pictures a map of the world viewed from the North Pole.

Over the course of the war, the idea of the United Nations continued to evolve as Allied nations met at the Moscow and Tehran Conferences. Through these meetings national leaders agreed to the need for an international peace and security organization.   President Franklin Roosevelt wrote that the work of the U.N. was “peace: more than an end of this war – an end to the beginning of all wars.”

This led to a meeting of 46 nations in San Francisco on April 25, 1945. Exhausted from the extended war and disheartened by the inhumanity they’d seen, they were determined to prevent future generations from experiencing what they had seen firsthand. Their ultimate goal was to form an international organization that would have the power to maintain security and foster prosperity and give human rights an international legal status.

U.S. #3186k pictures the Secretariat Building, the New York headquarters completed in 1952.

A group of non-governmental organizations lobbied vigorously for a strong commitment to human rights in the U.N. Charter. In particular, several small Latin American countries were committed to the inclusion of such a guarantee. A Pan-American conference held in Mexico City produced a group united in their determination to see such goals met. A number of American non-governmental groups also pushed for a type of “bill of rights” in the charter. Over 1,300 organizations placed ads in newspapers demanding that human rights be an integral part of the international organization.

When the member nations met in San Francisco in April of 1945, their proposal fell short of the clear and concise commitment to human rights that these groups sought. Forty-two American groups serving as consultants to the U.S. delegation convinced participating governments of the need to clearly state a policy of protection for individual human rights. They were persuasive, and the result was a legal commitment by governments around the world to promote and encourage respect for the inalienable human rights of every man, woman, and child.

U.N. #12 pictures the Veterans Building (War Memorial) in San Francisco where the U.N. Charter was signed.

On June 26, 1945, the fifty nations present signed the United Nations charter, with its high goal. “We the peoples of the United Nations determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war…to reaffirm faith in fundamental human rights…to establish conditions under which…international law can be maintained, and…to promote social progress and better standards of life…”

U.N. #85 pictures the United Nations headquarters in New York City.

In order for the charter to come into effect, it had to be ratified by China, France, the USSR, the United Kingdom, the U.S., and a majority of the other 46 nations. Over the next four months, 29 nations ratified the charter, setting it into effect on October 24, 1945. The remaining nations ratified it by the end of the year and the U.N. held its first General Assembly on January 10, 1946.

Today, the U.N. vision has grown to include nearly every country in the world.

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  1. What started out to be a Honorable Organization designed to help people has been perverted into a organization of Power Hungry Parasitic Elitist whose sole aim is to rule over the world and to eliminate the U. S. Constitution and render all under their jurisdiction. I say we should rid ourselves as a country from this organization and spend this money as we as a nation sees fit to do.

  2. The United Nations is a wonderful organization for the work they do fostering peace and human rights. I toured the UN in NY some years ago where I learned so much. United Nations stamps are beautiful and always informative. Thank you for this article.

  3. Noble idea, but almost unworkable. There are just too many countries
    on this planet that believe others should live as they deem so. It
    started with the Soviet Union deciding that Eastern Europe (then eventually
    all of Europe. followed by the Middle East, Asia and then North and South
    America) should live under Communist Rule. England and France, whom
    we spent a lot of blood and treasure to keep them from becoming German Colonies
    decided after Germany was defeated to go back and retake their colonies in
    Africa, India and Indochina. Now we have the Muslim Extremists who want us
    to live under their religion and law.

  4. Hi Kenneth,

    I agree with you. But, I don’t view the U.S. as a victim in this game. I view the U.S. as one of the major players. In fact, since the end of the Cold War, I view the U.S. as the biggest player.

    I’d like to add one more note. I want the U.S. to win the game.

    God Bless the United States of America!

  5. A remarkable upgrade in history for me. Thank God for our great country !! As AMERICAN citizens, we are NOT having to live under communism, a dictatorship of ANY type, “monarchal” control, Nazism, or some other form of citizen-subjugation from idiots only interested in THEIR power, wealth, decision-making and HIGH-quality lifestyle, AND protecting the “crap” that keeps them in control because THEIR lives are better SUPPORTING “him” than it would be if NOT supporting the EVII, greedy, uncaring and idiot-ruler in control !! God help ALL American citizens keep OUR Country free and independent through the future, for all of our family members, friends and each other !!!

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