For 50 years Star Trek™ has thrilled generations of fans with explorations of universes and cultures far and wide. The “five year mission” has covered six decades since it was introduced and there is no end in the foreseeable future.
The United States Postal Service™ celebrated the iconic TV series by launching the Star Trek Forever stamps at Star Trek: Mission New York on September 2. The first-day-of-issue ceremony included special guests Walter Koenig, who portrayed Pavel Chekov in the series and films, and Postmaster General Megan Brennan. Attendees were treated to a special USPS® Cancellation Station to obtain their commemorative cancellation of the stamp and purchase other merchandise.
Designs of the USPS Star Trek stamps
The stamps, under license by CBS Consumer Products, showcase four digital illustrations inspired by classic elements of the television program that premiered Sept. 8, 1966:
– The Starship Enterprise inside the outline of a Starfleet insignia against a gold background
– The silhouette of a crewman in a transporter against a red background
– The Enterprise inside the outline of the Vulcan salute (Spock’s iconic hand gesture) against a blue background
– The silhouette of the Enterprise from above against a green background
History of the iconic series
The Star Trek series was created by Gene Roddenberry and was inspired by the television westerns of the fifties. It was originally presented to Desilu Productions as “a Wagon Train to the stars.” A script was developed and proposed to NBC, which paid for a pilot episode. Although that first episode was not accepted, NBC was still interested in the project and ordered a second pilot.
The series debuted on Thursday September 8, 1966 and enjoyed high ratings. A letter campaign saved the series from cancellation after its second season, but ratings were not high enough to keep the show on the air. NBC cancelled the show in 1969 after 79 episodes and the series was purchased by Paramount Studios who broadcast the episodes as reruns beginning that fall.
The popularity of the series grew and, in 1972, the first Star Trek convention proved to the studios that they still had a successful franchise. Following the live production, cast members reprised their roles for two seasons of Star Trek: The Animated Series (1973 to 1974). The growing fan base showed that the Enterprise and crew were here to stay.
Since The Original Series, the Star Trek universe has supported six television series (a seventh is in production and is scheduled for release in 2017), 13 feature films, nearly 200 novels, comic books, games, merchandise and countless fan-produced videos, stories, and adventures.
USPS is thrilled to participate in this historic event of celebrating half a century of adventure and looking to the future for many more years of exploring “the final frontier.”
™ & ©2016 CBS Studios Inc. STAR TREK and related marks and logos are trademarks of CBS Studios Inc. All Rights Reserved.