We are pleased to announce this morning that our commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Civil War (1861–1865) will continue later this year with the release of the Civil War: 1863 souvenir sheet. The sheet features two stamp designs: the Battle of Gettysburg, the largest battle of the war, and the Battle of Vicksburg, a complex Union campaign to gain control of the Mississippi River.
Art director Phil Jordan of Falls Church, Virginia, created the stamps using images of Civil War battles. The Battle of Gettysburg stamp is a reproduction of an 1887 chromolithograph by Thure de Thulstrup (1848–1930), a Swedish-born artist who became an illustrator for Harper’s Weekly after the Civil War. Thulstrup’s work was one of a series of popular prints commissioned in the 1880s by Boston publisher Louis Prang & Co. to commemorate the Civil War.
The Battle of Vicksburg stamp is a reproduction of an 1863 lithograph by Currier & Ives titled “Admiral Porter’s Fleet Running the Rebel Blockade of the Mississippi at Vicksburg, April 16th, 1863.”
The Battle of Gettysburg and Battle of Vicksburg stamps will be issued as Forever® stamps. Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.
The U.S. Postal Service launched the Civil War stamp series in 2011, and a souvenir sheet of two stamp designs is being issued for each year of the war. The series will continue through 2015.