On 12 April, 1961, Yuri Gagarin did something that was beyond the scope of words to describe the magnitude properly. He had become the first human being to fly in space in his Vostok spacecraft.
This stamp, which came out after Gagarin had died, was made to commemorate that monumentous occasion.
This is a beautiful piece, in my opinion. The details:
The top text is the title. The text under the portrait is his name, Yuri Alekseevich Gagarin. The text on the medal translates as Pilot Cosmonaut, and I believe the medal to be Hero of the Soviet Union. Gagarin is seen here wearing the rank of “Polkovnik” or what the United States calls a colonel. The Piece has a face value of 50 Kopeks. These are numbered, mine being 110,464 of 450,000.
Gagarin would die in 1968 piloting as MiG-15. As I understand it his two daughters are alive and doing very well, both very prominent in Moscow. With the Cold War over, we can stop and give Gagarin’s contribution to humanity the respect it deserves. He was the first representative of this species in space. This year marks the 56th anniversary of Colonel Gagarin’s 1 hour 48 minute trip. Gagarin also oribited the earth during this trip.
Credits: World Book Encyclopedia: 2013, Volumes G and A, G-P.5 A-P.829, entries “Gagarin, Yuri” and “Astronaut”