May 17 , 2006
MEDIA CONTACT: Caroline Witherspoon
or Jocelyn Collado
Bishop Museum to display rare Hawaiian stamps to commemorate unveiling of new postage stamps featuring Kilauea Volcano, Mount Waiale‘ale and the sea cliffs of Moloka‘i
HONOLULU – The Bishop Museum will commemorate the unveiling of three new Hawaii-related postage stamps with a special one-day exhibit of a portion of its Thomas G. Thrum Collection of Hawaiian stamps on Saturday, May 27. This renowned collection, which has not been publicly displayed for almost a decade, is one of the world’s major collections of Hawaiian stamps. The Thrum Collection includes the famous two-cent “Missionary blue” stamp. There are only 15 known copies of the two-cent blue, ranking it as one of the world’s rarest stamps. Also included are the “Numerals” stamps, which were printed under the aegis of then-Honolulu Postmaster David Kalākaua, who later became king; “Hawaiian Pictorials” stamps from 1861-1891; and Hawaiian postcards from 1882-1893. The rare stamp collection will be displayed in conjunction with a special ceremony in which postage stamps depicting three of Hawaii’s most spectacular natural wonders--Kilauea volcano, Mount Wai’ale’ale and the sea cliffs of Moloka‘i--will be unveiled at 11:30 a.m. at the Bishop Museum’s Science Adventure Center. The three Hawai‘i stamps are part of the 40-stamp Wonders of America: Land of Superlatives stamp pane that will be dedicated in Washington D.C. and available for purchase at post offices nationwide on the same day. The stamps depict 40 of America’s most remarkable places, plants, animals, and structures. Poster-sized representations of the three Hawai‘i stamps will be unveiled against the backdrop of the fiery eruption of the Bishop Museum’s 26-foot tall replica of Kilauea’s Pu’u ‘Ō‘ō volcanic vent at the culmination of a brief program. The program will be emceed by Bishop Museum Senior Vice President Mike Chinaka and will include remarks by Honolulu Postmaster Frank Santos, Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando, state Department of Land and Natural Resources Chairman Peter Young, and Hawai‘i Visitors and Convention Bureau Public Relations Manager Darlene Morikawa. Attendance at the unveiling ceremonies and viewing of the Thrum Collection will be open to all who pay the museum’s applicable admission fees. Immediately after the program, philatelists and casual collectors alike will be able to purchase the Wonders of America stamp pane with a special cancellation commemorating the three Hawai‘i images. The cancellation was designed by Bishop Museum and features elements of the Science Adventure Center logo. Stamp cancellation and sales will take place from noon to 2 p.m. outside the museum’s gift shop. No admission fee is required to access this area. The U.S. Postal Service delivers 212 billion pieces of mail a year, or about five pieces per address per day to more than 144 million homes, businesses, and Post Office boxes, and serves 7.5 million customers daily at more than 37,000 postal retail outlets.