Pioneering Women and Early Government Leaders


4-dollar Isabella and Columbus stamp
Queen Isabella I was the first woman to appear on a U.S. postage stamp in 1893.

In Women on Stamps: Part 1, we explored the accomplishments and achievements of women in the United States. These women helped build America and made it their home. The actions of women such as Harriet Tubman, Elizabeth Stanton and Eleanor Roosevelt provided a foundation for the role of women in America, influencing later generations and empowering change. The stamps featured here help commemorate the achievements of these women and honor their place in history.

Women on Stamps: Part 1 introduces a series of virtual exhibitions exploring the accomplishments of women in America. The next will examine the role of women in the arts and sciences, highlighting achievements in science, education and business. Additional Women on Stamps virtual exhibitions will discuss women’s role in defining culture in the United States, featuring influential women in literature, art and film.

Created by Lauren Golden, Web Intern, and Christine Mereand, Web Volunteer Coordinator, National Postal Museum.

References used in this virtual exhibition include:

  • Davis, Anita Price and Louise Hunt. Women on United States Postage Stamps. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 2008.
  • James, Edward T., ed. Notable American Women 1607-1950. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1971.
  • Read, Phyllis J. and Bernard L. Witlieb. The Book of Women’s Firsts. New York: Random House, 1992.
  • Willard, Francis E and Mary A. Livermore, ed. Great Women of the 19th Century. Amherst, New York: Humanity Books, 2005.
  • Women on Stamps. United States Postal Service Publication 512. April 2003.