New U.S. stamp to celebrate acclaimed children’s author Tomie dePaola May 5
By Charles Snee
Children’s author Thomas Anthony “Tomie” dePaola, who wrote and/or illustrated more than 270 books during a career spanning half a century, will be celebrated when the United States Postal Service issues a commemorative forever stamp in his honor on May 5 in Manchester, N.H.
Pictured on the nondenominated (63¢) Tomie dePaola stamp is a detail from the cover of Strega Nona, one of his best-known books.
“The title character, ‘Grandma Witch’ in Italian, uses magic to cure her neighbors’ ills and to help with matters of the heart,” the Postal Service said. “The stamp image shows her carrying her magic pasta pot.”
The Tomie dePaola stamp will be issued during a Postal Service first-day ceremony at 11 a.m. Eastern Time at the Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash St., in Manchester.
The ceremony is free and open to the public. Attendees are encouraged to RSVP online with the USPS.
Serving as dedicating official will be Steve Monteith, chief customer and marketing officer and executive vice president of the USPS.
Joining Monteith on the stage will be Alan Chong, director and CEO of the Currier Museum of Art; Susan Lynch, former first lady of New Hampshire; Jon Anderson, president of Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers and publisher of Strega Nona; Erin Fehlau, WMUR-TV anchor; and Sarah Mackenzie, founder of Read-Aloud Revival, a website dedicated to helping kids fall in love with books.
More than 100 of dePaola’s works are contained in the collection of the Currier Museum of Art, according to the museum’s website.
The museum said, “dePaola had a masterful ability to express complicated emotions through accessible narratives and dynamic illustrations, filled with his warm and lively characters.”
“The Currier Museum shares dePaola’s belief in the transformative power of art and honors his legacy by making art accessible to children in our region.”
The museum established the Tomie dePaola Art Education Fund to support art education for young people.
“DePaola’s stories contain layers of emotional meaning that appeal to readers of all ages,” the USPS said.
“DePaola tried to convey three fundamental truths in all his books: Success depends on hard work, happiness relies on embracing one’s true self, and love and kindness underscore all.”
The Tomie dePaola stamp will be available for purchase in panes of 20 nationwide on the first day of issue. A total of 22 million stamps (1.1 million panes) were printed by Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd. of Williamsville, N.Y., using offset lithography. Microprinting appears somewhere in the design.
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