Millions of people have marveled at the beauty of New York City’s Grand Central Terminal. But how many know the remarkable story of how it was built?
If you’re a fan of this New York icon, you might enjoy a first day cover affixed with a Grand Central Terminal Express Mail stamp and an official First Day of Issue postmark. Click the image for more information.
To get started, the New York Central Railroad had to bore deep into Manhattan bedrock to excavate two levels of tunnels, eventually removing some three million cubic yards of material. To pay for the construction, the railroad charged developers for “air rights”: the right to construct buildings over the former open rail yard, which had been paved over. Many of the city’s best-known buildings eventually rose over the site, including the Waldorf-Astoria hotel.
Construction of the new Grand Central lasted ten years, from 1903 to 1913. During that time, amazingly, trains continued to come and go without interruption!
This year we’re celebrating the 100th birthday of New York’s Grand Central Terminal, one of the most majestic public spaces in the world. But if you look back in history, this architectural masterpiece’s beginnings were anything but grand.
The site was originally home to the Grand Central Depot, built by railroad tycoon Cornelius Vanderbilt and opened to the public in 1871. The depot sat next to an open rail yard crammed with noisy, smoke-belching steam locomotives. When two trains en route to the depot collided on January 8, 1902, killing and injuring dozens of passengers, pressure mounted on the New York Central Railroad to switch to electric trains. By the end of that year, the railroad’s chief engineer, William Wilgus, began developing plans for a new Grand Central Terminal, one in which electric trains would run underground, beneath a new building.
You can mark 100 years of history with the Grand Central Terminal Digital Color Postmark Keepsake package, including a sheet of ten Grand Central Terminal Express Mail stamps, plus an envelope bearing the stamp along with a First Day of Issue color postmark. The black and gold postmark features the terminal’s famous four-sided clock and the phrase, “Grand Central, 100 Years.”
It’s hard to believe that Valentine’s Day is just over a week away. It’s time to declare your feelings! The charming new Sealed with Love notecard set lets you do that in style.
The set features four designs from the popular Love stamp series: the multicolor “LOVE” heart design from 1984; the cheerful folk-art heart released in 1987; the impressionistic bouquet of just-picked flowers that decorated the 2005 Love stamp; and, of course, the elegant wax seal of the 2013 Love stamp, Sealed with Love.
The designs are so varied that you are sure to find the perfect card for everyone on your list. The set includes eight cards (two of each design) with envelopes and eight Sealed with Love (Forever®) stamps—everything you need to share your love on Valentine’s Day or any day.
The new lunar year, the Year of the Snake, begins next Sunday, Feb. 10. Will you be ready?
Send timely greetings all year long with our Year of the Snake notecard set. The 12 blank notecards are decorated with the red firecrackers seen on the 2013 Year of the Snake Forever® stamp, along with a large version of the gold paper-cut snake that appears on the stamp’s top left corner. The intricate snake also embellishes the back of the envelopes. This set also comes with a dozen matching Year of the Snake Forever® stamps–enough to send a festive greeting all lunar year long.
This unique collectible was created using antique wood type and ornamentation set by hand at Hatch Show Print in Nashville, Tennessee, one of the oldest working letterpress shops in the U.S. (It opened about 15 years after the end of the Civil War.) “We’re proud to be part of such a momentous occasion in such a modern context,” said shop manager Jim Sherraden.