Stamp Announcement 12-25: Twentieth-Century Poets

Stamp Announcement 12-25: Twentieth-Century Poets

On April 21, 2012, in Los Angeles, California, the Postal Service™ will issue a Twentieth-Century Poets (Forever® priced at 45 cents) commemorative stamp, in ten designs in a pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) pane of 20 stamps (Item 468800).

With the issuance of Twentieth-Century Poets, the U.S. Postal Service® honors ten of our nation’s most admired poets: Elizabeth Bishop, Joseph Brodsky, Gwendolyn Brooks, E. E. Cummings, Robert Hayden, Denise Levertov, Sylvia Plath, Theodore Roethke, Wallace Stevens, and Wil­liam Carlos Williams. The many awards won by this illustri­ous group include numerous Pulitzer Prizes, National Book Awards, and honorary degrees. Each stamp features a photograph of one of the ten poets. Text on the back of the stamp sheet includes an excerpt from one poem by each poet. The art director was Derry Noyes.

The stamp will go on sale nationwide April 21, 2012.

Distribution: Item 468800, Twentieth-Century Poets (Forever priced at 45 cents) Commemorative PSA Pane of 20 Stamps

Stamp distribution offices (SDOs) and stamp distribu­tion centers (SDCs) will receive their standard automatic distribution quantity for a PSA pane stamp. Distributions are rounded up to the nearest master carton size of 40,000 stamps.

Initial Supply to Post Offices

SDOs/SDCs will make a subsequent automatic distribu­tion to Post Offices of a quantity to cover approximately 45 days of sales. Distribution quantities for the automatic dis­tribution will be posted, by finance number and unit ID, on the Asset Management SDC webpage at SDOs/SDCs must not distribute this commemorative sheet to Post Offices before April 6, 2012.

Additional Supply

Post Offices requiring additional quantities of Item 468800 must requisition them from their designated SDO/SDC after the first day of issue using PS Form 17, Stamp Requisition/Stamp Return.

Sales Policy

All Post Offices should maintain a sufficient inventory level of this item until the stamp is officially withdrawn from sale. If supplies run low, Post Offices must reorder addi­tional quantities using their normal ordering procedures.

How to Order the First Day of Issue Postmark

Customers have 60 days to obtain the first day of issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at their local Post Office™, at The Postal Store® website at, or by calling 800-STAMP-24. They should affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others), and place them in a larger envelope addressed to:

Twentieth-Century Poets Stamp
Main Post Office
7001 S. Central Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90052-9998

After applying the first day of issue postmark, the Postal Service will return the envelopes through the mail. There is no charge for the postmark. All orders must be postmarked by June 21, 2012.

How to Order First Day Covers

The Postal Service also offers first day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items post­marked with the official first day of issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the quarterly USA Philatelic Catalog, online at or by calling 800-782-6724. Customers may request a free catalog by calling 800-782-6724 or writing to:

U.S. Postal Service
Catalog Request
PO Box 219014
Kansas City, MO 64121-9014

Philatelic Products

There are five philatelic products available for this stamp issue:

n 468863*, First Day Cover Set of 10, $8.90.

n 468868*, Digital Color Postmark Set of 10, $16.00.

n 468891*, Ceremony Program (random single), $6.95.

n 468894, Notecards, $14.95.

n 468899*, Cancellation Keepsake (Random DCP w/Pane), $10.95.

Items with an asterisk (*) will use the 128 barcode from Stamp Fulfillment Services. All other philatelic products will continue to use barcode series A, with the exception of the Yearbook and the Guide Book.



Twentieth-Century Poets

Item Number:


Denomination & Type of Issue:

First-Class Mail® Forever Commemorative


Pane of 20 (10 designs)



Issue Date & City:

April 21, 2012, Los Angeles, CA 90052


Derry Noyes, Washington, DC

Art Director:

Derry Noyes, Washington, DC


Derry Noyes, Washington, DC


Joseph Sheeran

Manufacturing Process:





Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. (APU)

Printed at:

Williamsville, NY

Press Type:

Mueller Martini, A76

Stamps per Pane:


Print Quantity:

20 million stamps

Paper Type:

Nonphosphored Type III

Adhesive Type:


Processed at:

Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. (APU)

Stamp Orientation:


Image Area (w x h):

0.77 x 1.05 in./19.56 x 26.67 mm

Overall Size (w x h):

0.91 x 1.19 in./23.11 x 30.23 mm

Full Pane Size (w x h):

5.55 x 6.30 in./140.97 x 160.02 mm


Black, PMS 369 (Green), PMS 542 (Blue), PMS 253 (Red), PMS 266 (Purple), PMS 7417 (Orange) Border Only: PMS 535 (Blue), No Plate Number

Plate Size:

320 stamps per revolution

Plate Numbers:

“P” followed by six (6) single digits

Marginal Markings:



Header: “Twentieth-Century Poets”
Plate number in bottom left corner of pane


Side Header: “Twentieth-Century Poets” © 2011 USPS Excerpt from each poet Plate position diagram
USPS logo Barcode (468800) in lower left and upper right areas of pane Promotional text at bottom left of pane