The following was first published in Stamps (April, 1935) and was written by John J. Haag, P.J.A., Cachet Editor of that publication.

uscs 456 cachet 1934

The best cachet for the year 1934.

For the third year the readers of Stamps have selected the cachets they considered the best during the year.

Each Labor Day sees many cachets issued. However, this year collectors selected the cachet sponsored by Russell R. Sheets, U.S.C.S. member 456, as the best cachet for the year 1934. The cachet was applied to 550 covers in red, green and blue. Leo Miller, Mail Clerk of the U.S.S. Northampton, cancelled about 400 of these covers, the remaining 150 being divided equally between A. A. Lopp, Mail Clerk of the U.S.S. Medusa, and J.V. Terrio, Mail Clerk of the U.S.S. Richmond, for cancellation.

C Wright Richell

C. Wright Richell

The designer of the winning cachet is C. Wright Richell. He is 27 years of age, a native of Ohio, a graduate of Ohio State University, Second Lieutenant in the Field Artillery Reserves, and, Commanding Officer of Oliver Hazard Perry Chapter No. 5, of the U.S.C.S. He has been interested in things nautical, including ship pictures and models, for many years. His interest was in model building and drawing and painting of ship pictures. His first introduction to the word “cachet” came in Nov. 1933. A friend of his asked him to design a cachet for the Perry Chapter. He had to look through his friend’s collections of covers to find out what a cachet is and the story it is supposed to tell. His first cachet was “Oliver Hazard Perry Chapter U.S.C.S. No. 5 Greets Old Ironsides,” cancelled Jan. 1, 1934, U.S.F. Constitution. This started his interest in the hobby of naval cover collecting and he became U.S.C.S. member No. 251. Since then, he has made many cachet designs and drawings. In, fact, he has lost count as to the exact number of designs he has made for use on covers by sponsors all over the country and by mail clerks on board the ships.

Since naval cover collectors are interested primarily in the study and collection of cancels, a cachet should illustrate the interest in the particular cancellation including date and slogan. Mr. Richell accomplished this in his design. Labor Day is for the working man and without him the wheel of industry could not turn, therefore man dominated the design. He works for “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Demeter and her cornucopiae with food from the soil pictures the sustenance of “Life.” The modern truck tractor used in tilling the soil, pictured on the right of the design, ties the modern and the ancient together. Since the design is for a naval cover, “Liberty” is depicted by the Navy, the strong right arm of our defenses on the water and in the air. Man must travel, therefore the motor truck and locomotive. The mason at work shows that man must build to progress.

It is interesting to note that three cachets designed by Mr. Richell finished among the first ten best cachets of 1934. This speaks for itself as to his work.

On Feb. 10, 1934, the Byrd Antarctic Imperforated stamp was first placed on sale to commemorate the National Stamp Exhibition. The Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd Post No. 17, United American War Veterans, sponsored a cachet, which was handled by Fred E. Sanders, for this event. This cachet was selected “Queen for 1934.” This cachet was also selected by the American Cover Club Board of Review for first place in the First Day Cover Selections.

On July 4, 1859, Oregon’s Star was added to “Old Glory.” As part of his Oregon Banner Year Series, J. C. Formick sponsored a cachet on July 4, 1934, to commemorate this event. The covers were mailed from Independence, Oregon. The cachet was selected “Crown Prince for 1934.” It was also selected by the A.C.C.B. of R. for first place in the Historical Selections.

To complete the Royal Family of 10, collectors selected the following cachets in the order mentioned: 20th anniversary of First Commercial Air Flight in the World, Jan 1st, by St. Petersburg C. of C. (selected by A.C.C.B. of R. for first place in Air Events Selections); Independence Day 1934, U.S.S. Gold Star Flying Old Glory Abroad, sponsored by Robert L. Manley, designed by C. Wright Richell; Rochester Centennial National Exhibition Opening Day, Aug. 11, by Stephen Platania; Akron Memorial, First Anniversary, from Ship Bottom, N. J., Apr. 4, by F. W. Tupper, designed by Ted Bedell, designer of last year’s King; Anniversary of Perry’s Victory on Lake Erie, Sept. 10, mailed from U.S.S. Perry, designed and sponsored by C. Wright Richell (selected by A.C.C.B. of R. as fourth best of the Naval Selections); U.S.S. Macon over Albany, Cal., a photo cachet on Dec. 17, by Albany C. of C. (selected by A.C.C.B. of R. as second best in Naval Selections); and Anniversary Death of Ulysses S. Grant, from Mt. McGregor, N. Y., April 23, sponsored by Roy Hubbard.