U.S. Postal Service To Honor Civil Rights Icon Rosa Parks On 100th Birthday

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January 24, 2013 ‐ By Ann Brown
Stamp of Civil Rights activist Rosa Parks

Stamp of Civil Rights activist Rosa Parks

The United States Postal Service has just debuted its Rosa Parks stamp. The Forever stamp featuring the civil rights icon will be officially released on February 4 in Michigan with two events.

One event, the National Day of Courage, will take place at Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn with the Rosa Parks bus. In 1955, Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, AL bus to a white man, an action that helped push the civil rights movement into high gear.

There will also be events at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit, held on what would have been Parks’ 100th birthday.  According to USA Today, the first Rosa Parks Forever stamps will be sold at the Wright museum. People in attendance at the two events will be able to purchase the first stamps issued, postmarked February 4 and canceled with Detroit or Dearborn postmarks.

Activist and former NAACP Chairman Julian Bond, author and scholar Henry Louis Gates, and U.S. Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), will speak at the Henry Ford event. Rep. Conyers if from Detroit, and Parks worked as his secretary and receptionist from 1965 to 1988, . Former President Bill Clinton, who presented Parks with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1996, will deliver a video message.

Parks died Oct. 24, 2005, in Detroit.

The Postal Service recently also commemorated the 150th Anniversary of The Emancipation Proclamation with collector stamp, as we reported.

While the new Rosa Parks stamp is reason to celebrate, all the news coming out of USPS isn’t good.  As MadameNoire reported, the Postal Service has been slashing jobs, which may actually hurt the black middle class as a high percentage of USPS workers are African Americans.

In other Rosa Parks news, later this year she will become the first African American with a statue on Capitol Hill.  According to Vibe Vixen, “As part of an annual tradition, each state donates two statues of their most honorable citizens to Capitol Hill. Rosa Parks is one of those representing Alabama this year. “

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