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Embossed postcard with train image - Limited Express

"The Singing Brakeman"
May 4, 1978

Sc. 1755 - issued 5/24/78

Jimmie Rodgers, famed as "The Singing Brakeman," and "The Father of Country Music," was born in Meridian, Mississippi, on September 8, 1897. At the age of 14, he began working on his father's railroad gang and continued working with the railroad in various capacities until frail health, resulting from tuberculosis, ended his career at the age of 29. When he could no longer work as a brakeman, Rodgers organized a small band and began singing country and western songs professionally in and around North Carolina. He made his first recording in 1927 and, within a matter of months, he had become the nation's number one recording star. He eventually became the first inductee into the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, Tennessee. Although the world was within his grasp, ill health restricted personal appearances to his native Southland. His only departures from the area were for recording sessions and to make one short movie, "The Singing Brakeman," in which he sang his famous "Waiting for a Train." Rodgers died from a lung hemorrhage on May 26, 1933, during a recording session in New York. Jimmie Rodgers' greatest contribution was in the music he left behind on records. The music of the great American Southland was his, and he told the stories of the common people and sang of the romance of the rails and steam locomotives more convincingly than any other person. The fame of his Southern ballads and blues was known throughout the civilized world, and his songs about trains and better times during the dark days of the Great Depression left a lasting impression on all those who remember him.
(Text from USPS Commemorative Panel #97)

None of the FDC's I've seen for this issue stands out as noteworthy, but the two above are worth sharing, the one on the left for its text, and on the right for its image. And below is the USPS Commemorative panel for this issue. Like all of these, it combines interesting, relevant text with top-quality impressions of stock engravings related to its subject.

August 23, 1979

Sc. 1612 - issued 8/23/79

There's no train on this stamp, but the image, a Railroad Conductor's lantern, ca. 1850, obviously belongs, and the stamp inspired some nice FDC's. This stamp has the distinction of being the highest face value stamp in the U.S. trains collection.

Sc. 1612 - Ralph Dyer hand painted FDC

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Revised -- 03/22/2001