US Stamps

By Michael Baadke

Born Aug. 19: Ogden Nash

August 19, 2016 03:30 AM

  • A 37¢ commemorative stamp for poet Ogden Nash was issued on his birth centenary, Aug. 19, 2002.

By Michael Baadke

The 37¢ commemorative stamp honoring poet Ogden Nash was issued Aug. 19, 2002, on the 100th anniversary of his birth. He was born Frederick Ogden Nash in Rye, N.Y., on Aug. 19, 1902, and his first published poem, Invocation, appeared in the pages of The New Yorker in January 1930.

The following year, Nash published Hard Lines, a collection of verse that became a bestseller. In 1933, Nash and his wife Frances moved from New York City to Baltimore. The couple had two daughters: Linell and Isabel.

“A gentle satirist, Nash poked fun at human foibles without cynicism,” the United States Postal Service noted in pre-release publicity for the Ogden Nash stamp. “He wrote on many subjects, but all of his poems expressed his wry wit and demonstrated his playfulness with language.”

Nash was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1950, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1965.

The Ogden Nash stamp design features a portrait of the writer by noted artist Michael J. Deas; it is set against the text of six Nash poems in the background: The Turtle, The Cow, Crossing the Border, The Kitten, Limerick One, and The Camel.