These stamps pay tribute to heritage breeds, pre-industrial farm animals that are enjoying renewed attention for their versatility, adaptability, and unique genetic traits. Heritage breeds of livestock take us back to our agricultural roots—and show the way to a more sustainable future.
The stamps feature photographs of 10 heritage breeds: the American Mammoth Jackstock donkey, the Narragansett turkey, the Cayuga duck, the San Clemente Island goat, the Mulefoot hog, the Cotton Patch goose, the American Cream draft horse, the Barbados Blackbelly sheep, the Milking Devon cow, and the Wyandotte chicken.
Since the worldwide adoption of industrial farming, a few breeds of livestock have been standardized for maximum productivity. As a result, many other breeds with different traits are now critically endangered, and several are extinct. These pre-industrial breeds, known as heritage breeds, possess a priceless genetic diversity that can help farmers and society at large adapt to variable conditions, ranging from new consumer tastes to a landscape altered by a changing climate.
Proponents of heritage breeds continue a pre-industrial tradition of raising diverse livestock to thrive in local environments or under certain types of farming conditions. Breeds like the ten shown on these stamps have proven their ability to adapt to specific challenges. Guarding these and similar animals from extinction offers humanity crucial resources not only for known problems, but also for unforeseen crises in the future.
Heritage breeds are especially important for small-scale, sustainable farms, which the public can support by purchasing their products, including milk, cheese, eggs, fibers, and meat. Public interest in the products of heritage livestock encourages farmers to continue to raise these breeds to meet demand, which in turn helps ensure their conservation. Heritage livestock are also valuable cultural resources. Across the country, living-history farms and historic sites are increasingly working with nationwide associations of breeders to acquire and raise heritage breeds, not only to preserve these animals but also to provide a more authentic sense of the past.
Zack Bryant designed the stamps with photographs by Aliza Eliazarov. Greg Breeding served as art director.
The Heritage Breeds stamps are being issued as Forever® stamps in panes of 20. These Forever stamps will always be equal in value to the current First-Class Mail® one-ounce price.
Made in the USA.
SKUs featured on this page: 480404
|Issue:||Heritage Breeds Stamps|
|Denomination &||First-Class Mail Forever|
|Type of Issue:|
|Format:||Pane of 20 (10 designs)|
|Issue Date & City:||May 17, 2021, Mount Vernon VA 22121|
|Art Director:||Greg Breeding, Charlottesville VA|
|Designer:||Zack Bryant, Charlottesville VA|
|Existing Photos::||Aliza Eliazarov, Brooklyn NY|
|Modeler:||Sandra Lane / Michelle Finn|
|Manufacturing Process:||Offset, Flexographic|
|Printer:||Banknote Corporation of America|
|Press Type:||Gallus RCS|
|Stamps per Pane:||20|
|Print Quantity:||25,000,000 stamps|
|Paper Type:||Phosphor, Block Tag|
|Colors:||Black, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Red PMS 7621, Black PMS 7C|
|Image Area (w x h):||1.085 x 1.42 in./ 27.559 x 36.068 mm|
|Overall Size (w x h):||1.225 x 1.56 in./31.115 x 39.624 mm|
|Full Pane Size (w x h):||7.12 x 8.375 in./180.848 x 212.725 mm|
|Plate Size:||80 stamps per revolution|
|Plate Numbers:||“B” followed by six (6) single digits in bottom two corners|
|Front:||Header: Heritage Breeds • Plate number in bottom two corners|
|Back:||©2020 USPS • USPS logo • 2 barcodes (480400) • Plate position diagram (4) • Promotional text|
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