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Collins FDC Catalog


Q3501 / Scott 3515 & 3620


Star & Flag - Baron von Steuben


Cover Announcement 

Ben Franklin met von Steuben in Paris and, at once, sized him up as a valuable man who could mightily assist America's cause. Franklin helped prepare the general's dossier and added a fair amount of embellishment to impress Congress. It is said that the recruitment of von Steuben was Benjamin Franklin's greatest contribution to the new American Army.

George Washington met this new officer a few miles from Valley Forge. Having served in the Prussian Armies of Frederick the Great, von Steuben did not desire a fixed command but rather wanted to train new and inexperienced troops and militia. Despite speaking only limited English he immediately established a bond with the cold, hungry, ragged, and often sick men who reported to him for drill.

Beginning with small groups, the indefatigable von Steuben trained the men from dawn to sunset. He progressed from squad to platoon to company to regiment. Soon his training encompassed brigades and divisions, and, to Washington's delight, a new American Army was born on the bleak plateau of Valley Forge.

This cover is the third and final one in my "Assisting America's Cause" series for the double First Day of Issue for the new Flag and Star stamps. The hand painted cachet is very bold with the large red, white, and blue star framing von Steuben. I am pleased to present the Prussian officer who transformed the new Continental Army into a well-drilled fighting force - Baron Friedrich Wilhelm Ludolf

Gerhard Augustin von Steuben. Collins #P3503 - $12.25.

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