Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Golden Spike Ceremony Stamp

From: "Henk van Zutphen"

The question I am going to ask you, may be somewhat odd, coming from a philatelist, but it really has to do with the Ogden Railway Station I was told.

[Also] In my collection is a stamp from 1944 showing the “Golden Spike Ceremony” in 1869:

Scott Catalog #922 issued 1944  Completion of First Transcontinental Railroad
[After a mural in the Union Pacific depot in Salt Lake City.]

As you can see, the smoke from the locomotive and the flag are moving in opposite directions, which is at least remarkable. Such an error in the design of a post stamp is worth collecting. But… I read that the scene is taken from a wall painting in the Railway Station of Ogden. Now my question is: was the error already on the original wall painting? If not, then it was probably made by the engraver just to make it possible to have the flag visible in the outline of the scene on the stamp? I already had contact with Lee Witten from the Ogden Union Station who told me that he has no picture of the original painting any more. Now my hope is that you might have one in your museum. Can you help me?

If possible, would you be so kind as to send me a picture of the original wall painting? ...

—Henk van Zutphen, Bergharen, Netherlands


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have visited the Ogden Station many times, and have seen but one mural, that of Chinese workers (none in baskets!) working on the railroad. It is my understanding that the Station burned in 1920's, and was rebuilt. That said, the 1944 stamp you have could not have been a copy of an original mural, as any such item would be been destroyed in the fire.
G J Chris Graves,NewCastle, Cal.

11/11/2010 11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Take a look at the Union Station mural by Harry Hopp, painted in 1909 at Great Salt Lake City, Utah. You will find the locomotive smoke, the flag blowing, and the folks standing around. It would appear that the stamp was taken, in large part, from this mural.
G J Chris Graves, NewCastle, Cal.

11/11/2010 12:41 PM  
Blogger CPRR Discussion Group said...


The Ogden station has a very different painting.

Check out the painting in the Union Pacific depot in Salt Lake City.

This website also gives alternate versions of the stamp design, ones not used.

Also see:

Union Pacific Railroad Station—Salt Lake City

Utah State Historical Society Classified Photograph Collection.

—Kyle Wyatt

11/11/2010 1:46 PM  

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