Share on Facebook

A Trusted Friend in a Complicated World

10 of the Most Stunning Stamp Designs Over the Past 50 Years

We all love a good stamp design, and the following stamps are just a few examples of the true beauties out there.

1 / 12

Stunning stamps

Stamps are an incredible and often overlooked part of everyday life. Who can imagine mailing a letter without a stamp? October is National Stamp Collecting Month so it makes sense to give some stamps some love. Choosing a beautiful stamp is a bit more subjective than you might think. “The most stunning stamps depend upon who you ask. The American Philatelic Society is made up of 28,000 members from around the globe and includes affiliates and chapters,” Kathleen Edwards, Education Coordinator, American Philatelic Society, tells Reader’s Digest. “Stamp technology has certainly changed over the last 50 years and the variety of which we are pleased as variety opens the door to the hobby. If there’s an interest, there’s a stamp for it.” Without further ado, here are a few of the most stunning stamps of the past 50 years.

2 / 12

Golden Gate Bridge

Stamps pass the test of time. In this one, the Golden Gate Bridge is still being constructed in San Francisco, California! You might be able to guess where the Golden Gate Bridge is located. But can you guess the country from these famous landmarks?

3 / 12

Rock ‘n’ Roll

Music is a large part of American culture. This stamp, with its vibrant yellow background and upbeat vibe, highlights a 1950s rock ‘n’ roll band with musicians and dancers having a great time. Everyone has their favorite song, but do you know the most popular movie the year you were born?

4 / 12


This 2010 stamp honors scouting and taking care of nature is key to being a good citizen. The world right now is changing. The world as we know it is changing. If you love nature and national parks as much as we do, here are 12 things you shouldn’t do at reopened national parks.

5 / 12

Girl Scouts

This stamp is a nice tribute to the millions of Girl Scouts across the United States who help serve their communities. The Girl Scout cookies are a nice touch, too. Here’s how being in the Girl Scouts helped save this woman’s life.

6 / 12

Columbia University

Education is increasingly important in the United States and around the world. It’s important to have stamps show how important education is to young minds. This stamp highlights Columbia University’s bicentennial from 1754 to 1954. Looking to learn a bit more about the world around you? Check out these 45 free online college courses from the best colleges and universities.

7 / 12


Surf’s up! Hawaii is without a doubt one of the most beautiful places in the United States. Home to some of the best beaches to visit in this lifetime to coolest secret locations, Hawaii is a place to admire. Remember: don’t let your fears stand in the way of your dreams, like surfing!

8 / 12

New Mexico statehood

It’s important for each state to celebrate when it turns 100! This stamp featuring beautiful junipers, rivers, and mountains of New Mexico’s landscape celebrates the centennial of New Mexico’s statehood in 2012. Know your state facts? Here are 30 state facts everyone gets wrong.

9 / 12

Morgan Horse

The Morgan horse is the state mammal of Vermont, and this stamp highlights how beautiful this horse is. This particular stamp was issued in 1985 as part of the Racing Horses of the USA. If you think your good with state trivia, can you guess the U.S. state from its motto?

10 / 12

California Bicentennial

Issued on July 16, 1969, in San Diego, California, this stamp highlights the California bicentennial.

11 / 12

Lancaster, Pennsylvania

This stamp from 2012 shows a quiet scene of farmlands with an Amish buggy going by which features Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. If you’re looking to make a move, here are the 50 best places to live in the United States.

12 / 12

How are stamps designed?

Have you ever wondered how a stamp design is actually made? Edwards gives us the lowdown. “Stamp proposals are reviewed by the Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee (CSAC). Appointed by the Postmaster General, members of the committee include authors, designers, historians, and philatelists,” Edwards explains. “Once a general subject has been chosen, the postal administration typically contracts an outside artist to produce a design. The artist must take into account the rules and constraints put in place by the USPS such as size, denomination, etc.” Now that you know a bit more about stamps and a few beautiful stamps from history, next check out 12 of the most beautiful post offices in the United States.


Madeline Wahl
Madeline Wahl is a Digital Associate Editor/Writer at Previously, she worked for HuffPost and Golf Channel. Her writing has appeared on HuffPost, Red Magazine, McSweeney's, Pink Pangea, The Mighty, and Yahoo Lifestyle, among others. More of her work can be found on her website: