SOURCE: Jamestown 2007

April 03, 2007 11:10 ET

Sales of Jamestown U.S. Postage Stamp, America's 400th Anniversary Official Cachets Begin During Anniversary Weekend

First-Day-of-Issue Ceremony Part of Weekend's Opening Day Ceremonies

WILLIAMSBURG, VA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- April 3, 2007 -- The U.S. Postal Service will launch America's Anniversary Weekend on May 11 with a special first-day-of-issue ceremony for its new stamp honoring the 400th anniversary of the nation's first permanent English settlement.

The three-sided Settlement of Jamestown stamp -- reminiscent of the shape of James Fort -- will be on sale at gift shops and through Postal Service mobile units at Jamestown Settlement, Historic Jamestowne and Anniversary Park during Anniversary Weekend, a three-day salute to the settlement and its legacies. The 41-cent stamp will be the first sold at the new First-Class Mail rate.

James C. Miller III, chairman of the Postal Service's Board of Governors, will lead the first-day-of-issue ceremony, which begins at 10 a.m. at Jamestown Settlement. At 4 p.m. Miller also will highlight the stamp during the "Welcome America" program at Historic Jamestowne, a rededication of the original Jamestown site that will include addresses by state and national dignitaries.

"The Postal Service has a long tradition of honoring milestone moments in our history, and this is certainly one of them. This stamp underscores the importance of Jamestown as the place where the foundations of our nation were established, including democracy, free enterprise and a culturally diverse society," Miller said.

Sales of America's 400th Anniversary official cachets begin the same day. The set of four decorative envelopes, chosen from among more than 4,000 entries in a design contest, will be sold in Anniversary Weekend gift shops. The cachets are affixed with the Settlement of Jamestown stamp and hand-canceled with a commemorative postmark being offered exclusively for America's 400th Anniversary. Official cachets with the Settlement of Jamestown stamp and commemorative postmark will be sold at the Jamestown sites.

Initiated by the Williamsburg, Va., Stamp Society in 2001, the Jamestown 2007 Stamp & Cachet Project was formed and, along with its partners, worked closely with the U.S. Postal Service on the issuance of the Settlement of Jamestown stamp to commemorate America's 400th Anniversary.

Attendance at the first-day-of-issue ceremony requires a May 11 Anniversary Weekend ticket, which also provides access to the Jamestown sites and Anniversary Weekend programming. Information about Anniversary Weekend, as well as images of the U.S. postage stamp and commemorative cachets, can be found by visiting the commemoration's Web site at www.Americas400thAnniversary.com.

Single-day, date-specific tickets provide visitors with access to the entertainment and programming at the three sites as well as parking and shuttle transportation to the venues. Guests may purchase tickets at $30 for adult and $15 for children 6-12. Children younger than 6 years old receive free admission. Tickets are being limited to 30,000 per day to ensure guests enjoy a comfortable visit.

Anniversary Weekend tickets and accommodations are available through Colonial Williamsburg, the official hotels of the commemoration, and may be reserved by telephone at (866) 400-1607 or through wwwAmericas400thAnniversary.com. The call center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Callers outside of regular operating hours will be prompted to leave a message, which will be returned the next day.

Branches of the Williamsburg-area Post Offices will have a supply of Settlement of Jamestown stamps available for sale during Anniversary Weekend as well.

Jamestown 2007, a sub-agency of the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, is coordinating efforts to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Jamestown, Va., the first permanent English settlement in the Americas. The nation's first representative government, free enterprise system and culturally diverse society began at Jamestown. State, national, and international commemorative events to salute these legacies began in May 2006 and continue into 2008. Major corporate sponsors of America's 400th Anniversary include Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC), Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Other supporters include Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc. (NYSE: BUD), AirTran Airways (NYSE: AAI), Dominion, James City County, Philip Morris USA, SunTrust, TowneBank and Wolseley PLC/Ferguson Enterprises, Inc. Contributors include the City of Poquoson and Rutherfoord Insurance. More information about the commemoration is available at www.Americas400thAnniversary.com.

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