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Envelope and stamps commemorating chaplains killed on a ship sunk by a German U-boat

Object | Accession Number: 1990.335.5 a

Commemorative envelope and stamps with blank stationery, depicting four United States Army chaplains who died after their ship was sunk by a German U boat. Rabbi Alexander Goode, Reverend George L. Fox, Reverend Clark V. Poling, and Reverend John P. Washington were among the 902 people onboard the Army Transport Dorchester during the early hours of February 3, 1943, when it was fatally hit by a torpedo from a German U boat in the North Atlantic Ocean. The explosion killed and wounded many men, and created chaos amongst the rest. The four chaplains attempted to help and comfort the others aboard, and began distributing lifejackets. When they ran out of lifejackets, the four chaplains gave up their own. As the ship sank, they linked arms and prayed together on the slanting deck. The four chaplains were among the 672 men on the Dorchester who died. They were posthumously awarded with the Distinguished Service Cross, the Purple Heart, and a Special Medal for Heroism, which was equivalent to the Medal of Honor, as men who died in service but not under fire. In 1948, the United States Post Office Department issued a three-cent stamp commemorating the four chaplains.

issue:  1948 May 28
commemoration:  1943 February 03
issue: Washington (D.C.)
distribution: United States.
Credit Line
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection
Record last modified: 2020-07-10 09:01:18
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