As a community service, the US Postal Service sometimes works with organizations to create special commemorative postmarks, or cancellations. These are also sometimes referred to as “pictorial postmarks.” These are timed with special community events and help commemorate the event, and the commemorative postage stamp associated with the event.
The Go For Broke Soldiers Stamp embodies the history of Japanese Americans who served in the US military during World War II. Many of them enlisted from incarceration camps that were set up by the US government out of unfounded doubts of their loyalty, and the loyalty of the whole Japanese American community. Ten major US concentration camps, and multiple smaller detention centers, were set up across the US and the territory of Hawaii during the war. To commemorate events associated with this history, organizations have been working with the Stamp Our Story Committee to do a Go For Broke Stamp Postmark. Below are some examples from 2022-23.
June 17, 2023 Walk the Farm Postmark
The Stamp Our Story Committee worked with Tanaka Farms, Kazuo Masuda VFW Memorial Post 3670, Irvine US Postmaster Kimberley Wright, USPS Customer Relations Liaison Vencent Quaglia, and SELONOCO JACL Former President Ken Inouye. A special Go For Broke Stamp Postmark was created for the June 17, 2023 “Walk the Farm” event in Irvine, California. With the generous help from Tanaka Farms and VFW Post 3670, a special commemorative card was printed, and the Go For Broke Stamp and Postmark were included on the memento card for attendees as part of an educational campaign. The goal is to remember our Nisei veterans who served during the war, and to honor their legacy that continues today. We thank Tanaka Farms, VFW Post 3670, and all of the volunteers who helped us!
October 21, 2022 Poston Pilgrimage Postmark
The Stamp Our Story Committee attended the 2022 Poston Pilgrimage in Parker, Arizona. The Pilgrimage is a gathering to remember the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II at the Poston confinement site, as well as to honor the legacy of the Colorado River Indian Tribes whose lands were used at Poston. Hundreds of Japanese Americans enlisted in the US Army from Poston, and 25 gave their lives in service to our nation during the war (as shown in the photo of the Poston Monument below). Stamp Our Story Committee worked with the US Postmaster Bob Adams to create the “Poston Station” Postmark to honor the Go For Broke Soldiers of the war.
July 2-4, 2022 Manzanar National Historic Site Postmark
Manzanar National Historic Site and the USPS Independence, California collaborated with the Stamp Our Story Committee to bring the Go For Broke Stamp Postmark to the Owens Valley over July 4th weekend in 2022. A special program at Manzanar included the Postmark, along with a special presentation by actor Darrell Kunitomi about his uncle, Ted Fujioka, who enlisted in the US Army from Manzanar and was killed in action.
If you or your organization would like to set up a special pictorial postmark using the Go For Broke Soldiers Forever Stamp, please contact us.
More pictorial postmark events that honor the Nisei Soldiers are being planned for 2023 across the nation. Thank you!