On Carl Sagan Stamps

A little more than a year ago, author Kevin Lauderdale suggested that the United States needs to issue a commemorative Carl Sagan stamp. Sagan had done so much to educate the public on the wonders of science and the cosmos, and watching his television series COSMOS was very much a defining moment in my own life.

A group based in Utica, New York — the Sagan Appreciation Society — will be presenting Carl Sagan stamp designs to the United States Postal Service. There’s no official word on the Postal Service’s part to issue stamps, but the group intends to lobby the Postal Service with the four designs they’ve created.

“As Carl was America’s science popularizer, it seems fitting that he be bestowed with a populist kind of honor,” Fish said. “Carl wasn’t just an astronomer, physicist and the world’s pre-eminent science teacher. He was arguably the first exobiologist, one of the fathers of global-warming awareness, a peacemaker and a brilliant author who could make science sound like poetry.”

Trautmann read a statement by Sagan’s widow, author Ann Druyan, at the media launch. She described how Sagan had been an avid stamp collector as a boy and how that interest was perhaps early evidence of his “passion for the diversity of Earth’s cultures.”

“So this particular tribute to Carl would have held special significance for him, as it does for me,” Druyan said in the statement.

The Sagan Appreciation Society initiated the process in 2007 when artists Greg Mort, Pat Linse, Lisa Hutter and Chris Fix began creating preliminary stamp designs.

The process for getting a stamp approved by the U.S. government is an arduous one, and there are no guarantees of success. Designs must be submitted and approved by a 14-member Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee, which meets four times per year. If approved, it can take years before the stamp is printed.

Letters to the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee are encouraged, to show that there’s demand for a Carl Sagan postage stamp:

Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee
Stamp Development
US Postal Service
1735 North Lynn St, Rm 5013
Arlington VA 22209-6432

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