American Military History Through Stamps (1775-1913)

Treaty of Paris

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The 20-cent Treaty of Paris stamp was issued September 2, 1983.

The Treaty of Paris, signed on September 3, 1783, officially ended the American Revolutionary War and recognized the independence of the United States. The treaty also revoked certain privileges that the Americans had received from the British and specified the borders of the new country. Additionally, it declared that creditors on either side would have no legal obstacle to collecting debts.

The design of the stamp shown here was composed by David Blossom based on a painting called The Signing of the Treaty of Paris by Benjamin West. The stamp, issued in 1983, shows the British signer David Hartley and the three American signers, Benjamin Franklin, John Jay, and John Adams. France and the United States issued stamps on the same day celebrating the Treaty of Paris, but they were never referred to as joint-issue stamps. The opening day ceremony for the stamp was initially an invitation-only event, but was changed to be open to the public due to outrage by stamp collectors.