Tom Sadowski Graphic Art: Postal Cancellation Marks
and commentary on the Town of Lincolnville, Maine

Below are four rubber stamp designs I submitted to the Lincolnville Bicentennial Committee for consideration as official Post Office cancellation marks for our 200 year celebration. Everyone was delighted with the designs and thought that they were very clever and funny but all were rejected as not being serious enough for the application.

Years from now people will look at what we did here in the town of Lincolnville and they will remark on how serious we all were and how conservative our cancellation marks and our town seal was. Heck, they do that now. We feel the same way when we look back at what the people 200 years ago left us. They seem to have all been a bunch of dour sourpusses. They had an excuse: life was hard. Indians and Frenchmen would try to kill them and steal their livestock. Then they would get the flu and die. Or they would cut their foot on a rock while plowing the field and die. I suspect they had a laugh or two but when it came to town business they were all quite serious because the French, Indians and local bacteria were always looking for weakness and lack or resolve. And, by golly, nothing shows chinks in your armor better than a bad joke that dies the moment it's uttered. And in those days, jokes were as vulnerable as any of the citizens.

Actually, humor takes courage. The town will never be able to laugh at itself until the time comes when the
people are brave enough and confident enough that others won't laugh at them. Someday I will find a town like that. A town that can laugh at itself and laugh at the world and laugh when the world pokes fun. It would be a very fun town indeed.

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