Rhode Island First Day of Issue Covers
State Birds and Flowers Issue
Scott NRs 1953-2002 (Tagged) and 1953a-2002a (Not Tagged)
Issued April 14, 1982 in Washington, D.C. & State Capitols

DRC Cachet with Unofficial City cancel from Flora, Indiana
with Dual First Day Cancels for Scott #s 2078, 2490 & 2667

In the late 1890s, a Rhode Island School Commissioner named Thomas Stockwell organized a vote for the state flower. Students from all over Rhode Island voted for their favorite flowers. The ten flowers receiving the most votes were listed on an official ballot and the students were asked to vote for their favorite among the ten finalists.

On Arbor Day, 1897 the official results were released. The violet had won with 10,013 votes. 

In 1898 Professor W. Bailey of Brown University nominated the Bird Foot Violet, Viola Pedata, as Rhode Islandís official flower.

However, more than half a century would pass before Rhode Island formally adopted the violet as it's state flower. In 1967 a politician named Francis Sherman decided that Rhode Island had waited long enough and introduced a bill in the state senate to adopt the violet as the state flower. The violet was officially adopted as Rhode Island's state flower on March 11, 1968. Rhode Island was the last state to officially adopt a state flower.

SEE ALSO: State Birds Error Stamp

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