The thing is to keep the heat turned up under the proposal and not lose heart and quit. The more requests and letters which come in, the better over time. Yes, it does take a minimum of 3 years I hear. John, the TIS website is running the proposal under Hot Topics, -maybe other Titanic websites will put up a notice too. Steady bombardment is the key-and from as many fronts as possible.

sharon rutman

I'm not being pessimistic, just realistic about a Walter lord commemorative stamp. However it is a little disheartening to receive an itty-bitty index card back in the mail as an acknowledgement for a worthy stamp subject. All we can do is hope for the best and that the powers that be also see it that way.
Shelley, thanks for the announcement on the TIS website. Perhaps a similar appeal will be made by THS, either on-line or in The Commutator.

I have finished my proposal letter, and will mail that out tomorrow. I've included several attachments, as well.

Sharon, I, too, anticipate a similar reply from the Postal Service. However, I hope many others will lobby the Postal Service and the Stamp Advisory Committee.

With luck, we will hear from various sources, should a commemorative stamp be approved (i.e. date of unveiling, dedication, etc).
I have mailed my proposal letter to the Citizens' Stamp Selection Committee. I included copies of Walter's obituary, tribute articles, readers' reviews of his books (from and additional biographical data.

I will let everyone know if I hear anything.

In the meantime, I still encourage everyone who would like to do so to prepare their own proposal packages, to send to the Committee.

sharon rutman

Johm, I hate to burst the bubble, but your passion is going to be rewarded with an itty bitty index card from them saying they'll think about it. Don't mean to be a constant cynic but we've got an uphill battle ahead of us.
Sharon, I am realistic: the proposal for the stamp will either be accepted or rejected; that I can accept.

I still, though, hope others will send in their letters and statements, especially those people who shared great times with Walter Lord, and who have invaluable data to share.

Hopefully, we will hear, indirectly, if others are asked to participate in the unveiling of a commemorative stamp, as well as whatever steps are taken in designing it (pictures used, artists hired, etc). The year 2012 will be the earliest time we will know for sure our efforts have succeeded.

Shelley, Michael: I don't know how much more TIS can do, as an organization. Mass mailings to members will only create a small response. Still I hope that many of the organizations to which Walter Lord belonged to will also lobby the Postal Service.

We will see.
I'd like to think the glass is half-full, not half-empty. No good in being a defeatist before the battle begins. The proposal is a sound one, the person being commemorated is worthy and fits the postal service criteria, and thousands of people, world-wide admire Walter Lord, and not only in Titanic circles or for A Night to Remember. Although we are aiming for a United States Postal Service stamp, support from international quarters can not hurt. The fact that it has not been turned down right off the bat is hopeful. I got a letter immediately saying Titanic the ship was not suitable for a stamp because she was British. We will not have that issue with Walter Lord. So, let us not be discouraged at the start, for heaven's sake.

I would again state that enlisting the aid of historical societies, the giants in journalistic reporting and their news clubs, Yale and Princeton, alumni societies, and all the Titanic societies would be a real plus. I will dig out a list of Walter's clubs and societies, he counted many distinguished and influential people among his acquaintances.

John, I think an article for Voyage is a great idea. TIS has worked on several projects with the US Postal Service involving the postal workers on Titanic, John Starr March, a presentation of a memorial plaque in D.C., and their Titanic postal worker exhibit. There is interest. Go for it! Nothing ventured- nothing gained. I have undertaken a project recently to have a rose named for Lillian Asplund, which is just about as daunting an enterprise, but I believe we will have success.
Shelley, I included a listing of Walter's Societies, and the obituaries, plus tributes to him, and a listing of his books. THis way, the Postal Service will have sufficient information on which to base their research work.

Walter Lord was an outstanding American Historian. He may not be listed for Literary Works, but his works are fairly well-known, and I made sure to point out how the Titanic affected the lives of Americans, both directly and indirectly, even noted the fact that the Postal Service was affected by the loss of John March and his two coworkers.

I will have to see if any of the Titanic Societies will be interested in lobbying the Postal Service, themselves. If so I can copy and mail out the materials I sent to the Stamp Selection Committee. Other files I will email to you, Shelley. Those are copies of my WORD Files; many of those files were used for the letters, simply changing recipients' names and addresses and the text of some letters. Internet site links are included in some items, too, for easy reference.
If any additional information comes to me, from any of the individuals or organizations I wrote to, I will be sure and re-write the Postal Service.

I will work assist in any articles, as I also have been making sure to acknowledge those people who have replied to my inquiry. This week I need to write back to one of the historians.

Unfortunately, the one thing I won't be able to do is attend any current Society gatherings in the near future.
The next upcoming THS Convention is during a time when I will either be on, or just completing, Jury Duty (that week was secured as I have had to postpone an August session, because of a CPE session, for work, and a September trip).

It will be great to see a Walter Lord Postage Stamp issued in 2012 or later.
I have the project on the agenda for the August TIS board of trustees meeting, and I am certain it will receive overwhelming support from the board and members. Most alumni organizations and hobby clubs have either newsletters or websites or both which would run the stamp campaign also.

April 2007 (13-15) will be a multi-society meeting in Halifax, sponsored by BTS, which might be a good occasion to put out a convention packet flyer to the many attendees explaining about the endeavor. It takes a lot of tiny drops to make a deluge. Just read what these big guns have to say about Walter-
When you mentioned 'historian' a thought came to me that Mr. Lord was known for more than just his Titanic books. I remember that he wrote a book about Dunkirk.
I just looked him up in our library's catalogue and found he had written quite a number of books about American military history, including one about the War of 1812 (For some peculiar reason, we in Southern Ontario have a keen interest in that war.
) For America in World War II, he must be as prolific as Shelby Foote or Bruce Catton were about your Civil War.
Perhaps you should stress that as much as the Titanic in your proposal for a commemorative stamp.
Marilyn, I made sure to submit a list of Walter's works, as well as listings of societies he belonged to.

I mentioned that many of Walter Lord's topics were taken from episodes in American History.
Yesterday, I, too, received the 3*5 card statement from the Postal Service, thanking me for my submission. Along with that was a brochure about how stamps ideas are selected.

It was noted that about 50,000 suggestions are received, every year, about ideas for postage stamps.
However, as Shelley has noted, it was not a flat-out rejection of my idea, so I'm hoping that serious consideration will be given to the idea of the Walter Lord stamp.

If anyone should be concerned that individuals will not like a particular stamp subject, they should note that persons can simply express their dissatisfaction or indifference "by way of their pocketbooks", i.e. they simply don't purchase that particular stamp.
We have all done that, ourselves, at one time or another. I, myself, plan to not purchase the upcoming series of DC Comics Superheroes, or the American Motorcycles, stamps.

I'm not sure how many times will be too many times to try to lobby the Postal Service.

I do encourage everyone to send in their statements and data, to the Stamp Selection Committee.

Shelley: I hope the TIS Trustees will work to lobby the Stamp Selection Committee, and encourage the members to write, as well (I just don't recommend a mass flyer mailed out to everyone; that may be economically infeasible, since you can't how many people will discard those types of things).
We will see if the THS Officers choose to do likewise.

sharon rutman

I hate to be the one to say it but I told you so!!! Disheartening isn't it having to compete with Be Kind to Cockroaches day and God knows what else. all that work for a miserable postcard.
I suspect that the more people who endorse the idea in writing and send their support for the idea, the more likely it is to get the attention of the people who make the decisions. I am also thinking about a petition-like list of supporters which could be submitted as one long document. An ideal place to solicit this type of list might be the BTS Halifax convention in April where to date six societies have sent back positive responses for attendance. I am greatly encouraged, John, by the response you have received- we are still in the running- very much so. This is "ball one" of a nine inning game-with no strike-outs!.
"…I hate to be the one to say it but I told you so!!!…"

I doubt that. You enjoy taking potshots and spreading negativity. It’s all you seem to do on this message board. If you don’t want to support John’s idea, then fine, but why keep dogging him?