Old Man of the Mountains Stamp

US Postage Stamps: 1955

Old Man of the Mountains Stamp

Old Man of the Mountains StampIssued on June 21, 1955 in Franconia, NH, this stamp features the Old Man of the Mountain, a 40 foot natural granite structure on a high cliff in New Hampshire. 

The Old Man of the Mountain is one of New Hampshire’s most iconic landmarks.  This stamp commemorates the 150th anniversary of its discovery in 1805.  Composed of five different granite cliff ledges, the rugged profile appears when they are viewed from just the right angle.  The Old Man of the Mountains has been mentioned in many historical documents going back centuries.  Nathaniel Hawthorn, the famous American writer, wrote “The Great Stone Face” that was inspired by the landmark.  Daniel Webster, the famous statesman wrote, “Men hang out their signs indicative of their respective trades; shoe makers hang out a gigantic shoe; jewelers a monster watch, and the dentist hangs out a golden tooth; but up in the Mountains of New Hampshire, Gold Almighty has hang out a sign to show that there he makes men.”   The Old Man was also featured on the New Hampshire state quarter that was released in 2000.

Alas, the Old Man of the Mountain is no more.  In 2003, the landmark collapsed due to the constant freezing and thawing of the stones over the years.  A variety of proposals have been made to reconstruct the Old Man or to build a memorial at the site.  It was decided to build an Old Man of the Mountain memorial and construction began in 2010.  This will feature a number of exhibits covering the history of the landmark.

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