Ten Things Stamps Can Teach Us About Hawaii

May 1 (May Day!) not only marks the beginning of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, it’s also Lei Day, a Hawaiian holiday that dates from the late 1920s. Hawaii may be the youngest state in the nation, but it certainly has a rich history and cultural life. In celebration of Lei Day, here are ten things stamps can teach us about the 50th state.

The Hawaiian islands were unified by Kamehameha I into a single kingdom in 1810.

Carved wooden statues known as ki’i guard the ancient sanctuary at Puuhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, which is still considered a sacred space.

Hawaii’s state bird is the Hawaiian goose. The state flower is the yellow hibiscus, selected in the 1980s. And, according to some estimates, more than 90 percent of Hawaii’s 20,000 native terrestrial species are found nowhere else on Earth. The diversity of the state’s rain forests is especially remarkable.

Hawaii is also home to the W. M. Keck Observatory, located on the summit of the dormant Mauna Kea volcano. And the 14th Coast Guard District Commander lives at Diamond Head Lighthouse, the last occupied light station in Hawaii.

Some people have traced the “casual Friday” custom observed in America’s mainland offices to Hawaii, where Aloha shirts were first worn to work on Friday.

Want some star fruit? Head to Hawaii, where this mild but slightly sweet fruit is commercially cultivated.

Typical holiday wreathes in Hawaii are noted for their use of tropical foliage, like brilliant tulip anthuriums, hibiscus leaves, and varieties of orchids.  Three orchid varieties—purple vandas, pink phalaenopsis, and yellow miniature cattleyas—enhance the wreath’s tropical style.

This entry was posted in Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month, General Interest and tagged , , , , , , , by USPS Stamps. Bookmark the permalink.

About USPS Stamps

The Postal Service™ is proud of its role in portraying the American experience to a world audience through the issuance of postage stamps and postal stationery. Each year the Postal Service issues commemorative stamps reflecting subjects of national significance and appeal. More than 160 years of stamp development has yielded an incredible archive of imagery and commentary reflecting American culture and society. Even in this fast-changing world, stamps are still a versatile and convenient method of postage. And stamp collecting is a lifetime hobby that is fun and educational for all ages. Stamp collecting is easy to start without a big investment. It is also a great way to learn about the world and its many wonders, opening the door to an exciting universe of history, science, geography, the arts, technology, and sports. Our mission is to provide universal service that is prompt, reliable, efficient, affordable, and self-sustaining. Throughout its history the Postal Service has grown with the nation, binding it together by ensuring that everyone, everywhere, has the same ability to communicate regardless of technological change.

2 thoughts on “Ten Things Stamps Can Teach Us About Hawaii

  1. Mahalo, very beautiful illustrations. Stamps are bite size pieces of art you can carry with you.

Comments are closed.