"Inverted Jenny" reissued by U.S. Post

September 23rd, 2013

This souvenir sheet features a new version of perhaps the most famous error in the history of U.S. stamps: the Inverted Jenny, a 1918 misprint that highlights the ways a single stamp can turn history upside down.

The sheet includes six Inverted Jenny stamps, reprinted with an updated denomination and surrounded by an illustration that includes the National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C.; the route of the first regularly scheduled airmail service between Washington, Philadelphia, and New York; and aviation pioneer Reuben H. Fleet, who was in charge of the first group of airmail pilots.

Originally issued on May 14, 1918, to commemorate the start of the first regular airmail service the following day, the original Jenny stamp was designed to show a Curtiss JN-4H, or "Jenny," the biplane used to deliver the mail. However, one sheet of 100 stamps that mistakenly showed the biplane upside down was sold on the first day of issue to a collector in Washington, D.C. — and one of the greatest philatelic treasures in U.S. history was released into the world.

The art director for this souvenir sheet was Antonio Alcala. The selvage artwork was created by Steven Noble.

The new Inverted Jenny stamp is being reprinted with a $2 denomination to make it easily distinguishable from the 24-cent 1918 original.

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