Located approximately 1,600 miles east of the Philippines in the Pacific Ocean, Guam is the largest and southernmost of the Mariana Islands. Approximately 212 square miles in size—roughly three times the area of Washington, D.C.—Guam is home to a population of approximately 158,000 people, including native Guamanians, known as Chamorro, as well as others of European and Asian descent.
Like the other Mariana Islands, Guam was settled prior to 1500 B.C. Claimed by Spain in 1565, the island remained a Spanish outpost until 1898, when it was ceded to the United States after the Spanish-American War. Occupied by Japan during World War II, Guam was recaptured by the United States in 1944 and became the site of an important U.S. military base. In 1950, Guam officially became a U.S. territory.
The stamp issued in 2007 features a photograph by Michael S. Yamashita of a sunset at Hagåtña Bay in Hagåtña, the capital of Guam. The capital was known as Agana until 2002, when it was officially changed back to its pre-World War II name. Today the island is a popular destination for tourists, with some 1.5 million people visiting the island annually to enjoy its natural beauty.
This picturesque stamp image of Hagåtña Bay is one of ten designs featured on the upcoming set of Scenic American Landscapes stamped cards. Scheduled for release on June 23 at the National Topical Stamp Show in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, these cards are the second set highlighting some of our nation’s most beautiful natural places.