Stamp Announcement 13-50: Kwanzaa Stamp

Stamp Announcement 13-50: Kwanzaa Stamp

In mid-December. the Postal Service™ will issue a Kwanzaa (Forever® priced at 46 cents) First-Class mail® stamp in one design in a pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) pane of 20 stamps (Item 585000).

The stamp will go on sale nationwide after the issue date is announced.

This new stamp design from the U.S. Postal Service® celebrates the annual non-religious holiday of Kwanzaa, which takes place over seven days from December 26 to January 1. Kwanzaa derives its name from the phrase “first fruits” in Swahili, a widely spoken African language. Cre­ated in 1966, the holiday honors African-American family, community, and culture. The stamp art features a stylized depiction of a man, woman, and child dressed in tradi­tional, African-inspired clothing joined together in a unifying embrace. The seven candles, known as the mishumaa saba, are a centerpiece of the Kwanzaa table. An open book symbolizes the holiday’s emphasis on knowledge and cultural history. The bold colors in the stamp art repre­sent the colors of the Kwanzaa flag – green for growth, red for blood, and black for the African people. Artist R. Gre­gory Christie worked with art director Antonio Alcalá, who designed the stamp.

To learn more about the stories behind the stamps, visit

Distribution: Item 585000, Kwanzaa (Forever priced at 46 cents) First-Class Mail PSA Pane of 20 Stamps

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

Initial Supply to Post Offices

SDOs/SDCs will NOT make an automatic distribution to Post Offices™. Post Offices requiring these items must requisition them from the eBuy2 SEAM Catalog or via Touch-tone ordering. Post Offices may preorder these stamps 30 days prior to first-day-of-issue. Post Offices should not sell the stamp prior to first-day-of-issue.

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All Post Offices should maintain a sufficient inventory level of this item until the stamp is officially withdrawn from sale.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:

Kwanzaa Stamp
(Address Unavailable)

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 up to a quantity of 50. For more than 50, customers have to pay five cents each. All orders must be postmarked 60 days from the issue date, when announced.

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 seven philatelic products available for this stamp issue:

n 585008, Press Sheet without Die cuts, $73.60 (print quantity of 1,000).

n 585010*, Keepsake (Pane and Digital Color Post­mark Set), $10.95.

n 585016*, First-Day Cover, $0.90.

n 585021*, Digital Color Postmark, $1.61.

n 585030*, Ceremony Program, $6.95.

n 585031*, Stamp Deck Card, $0.95.

n 585032*, Stamp Deck Card with Digital Color Post­mark, $1.96.

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.



Kwanzaa Stamp

Item Number:


Denomination & Type of Issue:

First-Class Mail Forever


Pane of 20 (1 design)


Holiday Celebrations

Issue Date & City:



Antonio Alcalá, Alexandria, VA

Art Director:

Antonio Alcalá, Alexandria, VA


Antonio Alcalá, Alexandria, VA


R. Gregory Christie, Brooklyn, NY


Joseph Sheeran

Manufacturing Process:

Offset/Microprint “USPS”




Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. (APU)

Printed at:

Williamsville, NY

Press Type:

Mueller Martini, A76

Stamps per Pane:


Print Quantity:

7 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 5.76 in./140.97 x 146.30 mm


Black, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, PMS 7733 (Green C),


PMS 485 (Red C)

Plate Size:

160 stamps per revolution

Plate Numbers:

“P” followed by six (6) single digits

Marginal Markings:


Plate block numbers in four corners of pane


© 2013 USPS l USPS logo l Plate position diagram l Barcode (585000) at top right and lower left corners of pane l Promotional text