Reynoldsburg Tomato Festival
Slogan Cancellation for the 2003 Reynoldsburg Tomato Festival
Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Ohio's Statehood
Celebrating its 54th anniversary in 2020 (if COVID 19 does not get in the way), the Reynoldsburg Tomato Festival has been the subject of many very creative slogan cancellations throughout its history. The one for 2003 (pictured above) shows a map of Ohio with the number 200 superimposed on a tomato. The cover, dated September 6, is franked with the U.S. commemorative celebrating the 200th anniversary of Ohio's statehood issued on March 1, 2003. A colour cachet depicts five tomatoes on a vine.
The seed for the first Reynoldsburg Tomato Festival was planted in October of 1965 when a plaque was placed in front of the municipal building recognizing Alexander Livingston for his contributions to the city and declaring Reynoldsburg the birthplace of the tomato. The first festival was held in August of 1966. It was called the "Heritage Holiday Festival and Tomato Show." The festival website reports that there was a tomato fight between the Republicans and Democrats, a dog show, art shows for children and adults, a queen's pageant and parade.
Alexander Livingstone (1821-1898), one of the greatest tomato breeders in history, was born in Reynoldsburg, Ohio where he developed his smooth, round and juicy "Paragon" and a dozen other varieties of tomatoes in the latter half of the nineteenth century. He was also a skilled promoter and the author of an autobiography entitled Livingston and the Tomato.
The United State Postal Service offers pictorial postmarks to commemorate local events and it publishes a list of events for which pictorial postmarks are authorized. People attending these local events may obtain the postmark in person at the temporary Post Office station there. Those who cannot attend the event but who wish to obtain the postmark may submit a mail order request. Pictorial postmarks are available only for the dates indicated, and requests must be postmarked no later than 30 days following the requested pictorial postmark date. All requests must include a stamped envelope or postcard bearing at least the minimum first-class mail postage. Items submitted for postmark may not include postage issued after the date of the requested postmark. Customers wishing to obtain a postmark must affix stamps to any envelope or postcard of their choice, address the envelope or postcard to themselves or others, insert a card of postcard thickness in envelopes for sturdiness, and tuck in the flap. Place the envelope or postcard in a larger envelope and address it to: Pictorial Postmarks, followed by the Name of the Station, Address, City, State, ZIP Code, as listed next to the postmark.
Customers can also send stamped envelopes and postcards without addresses for postmark, as long as they supply a larger envelope with adequate postage and their return address. After applying the pictorial postmark, the Postal Service returns the items (with or without addresses) under addressed protective cover.
Pictorial Cancellation for the 17th Annual
Reynoldsburg Tomato Festival in 1982
Estabrook, Barry. Tomatoland. Kansas City: Andrews, McMeel Publishing, 2018.
"Home." Tomato Festival, Reynoldsburg, Ohio. . Web. 31 Jul. 2020
Livingstone, A.W. Livingston and the Tomato. Columbus, Ohio: A.W. Livingston's Sons, Seedmen, 1893.
"Pictorial Postmark Announcement." United States Postal Service. 15 Aug. 2019. Web. 31 Jul. 2020
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